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The Electors Vote: Wisconsin Elector Discusses Pledging of Ballots to Gore

Aired December 18, 2000 - 1:42 p.m. ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

KYRA PHILLIPS, CNN ANCHOR: And we're going to take you live to Minnesota, I understand, where -- are we still going there? OK, we are not going. But they have cast the ballots for Gore, 10 electoral votes. Once again, that is from Minnesota.

All right, moving along, we continue our coverage of the Electoral College with a visit to the Badger State. Wisconsin's 11 electors were pledged to Al Gore.

Reynolds Honold is an elector from Milwaukee. He's on the phone from the state capital of Madison.

How are you, Honold? Mr. Honold, are you there?

REYNOLDS HONOLD (D), WISCONSIN ELECTOR: Yes, I am.

PHILLIPS: Hello there.

HONOLD: Hi.

PHILLIPS: How was your experience? Tell us a little bit about it.

HONOLD: The experience was -- it was exhilarating. It has some highs and some lows, somewhat of bittersweet to say the least when the 11 of us were able to cast ballots for the vice president and for Senator Lieberman. Yet, they're not going anywhere. So we -- but we did it.

PHILLIPS: Very good. Well, now I was reading here that every four years, the Wisconsin Legislature proposing a referendum to abolish the Electoral College. Is that true?

HONOLD: Well, there is something to that. We had a couple of very zealous people -- part, members of the DNC, who routinely would bring that in. We did not discuss that today at all. It came up certainly in every question from every one of the media people that I talked to right afterwards came up about the Electoral College. But we did not propose it today. And in anticipation of your question, we suspect it'll be discussed again.

PHILLIPS: Do you think eventually it could be abolished? HONOLD: Well, we have discussed it at great length here. I have heard and read some fairly scholarly analyses of the pros and cons of the Electoral College system. I think, you know, the Democratic Party is one of fairness, and I think there is an issue of some smaller states that wouldn't have representation, although I don't think Wisconsin is necessary one of those. But certainly, the 107th Congress will be addressing the Electoral College I think in the next year.

PHILLIPS: How about reform?

HONOLD: Well, you mean campaign finance reform?

PHILLIPS: Electoral College -- maybe we should get into that. OK, talk about both of them.

HONOLD: I think -- well, of course, our senator, Russ Feingold, and John McCain are going to bring that to the floor as soon as they get the opportunity, as far as campaign finance reform is concerned. And as far as the Electoral College, as I said, I think there's going to be considerable discussion in the Congress as we go forward.

I've heard someone with a providence of Senator-elect Hillary Clinton recently talking about eliminating the Electoral College, and I think that obviously will be a hot item, especially in this very historic day, of all days, when the Electoral College is going to elect a person that didn't win the popular vote.

PHILLIPS: Well, I think this year being an elector is a hot item. Reynolds Honold, thanks so much joining us.

HONOLD: You bet. Thank you.

PHILLIPS: OK.

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