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មានទ្រព្យច្រើនមុនដឹកនាំជាតិ…និង មានទ្រព្យច្រើនពេលកំពុងដឹកនាំជាតិ…

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2,642,870 citizens have yet registered to vote, 17 days left

7,021,346 people registered to vote as of NOV 11

ប្រជារាស្ដ្រចំនួន ២.៦៤២.៨៧០រូបនៅមិនទាន់ចុះឈ្មោះបោះឆ្នោតនៅឡើយ ហើយនៅសល់តែ ១៧ថ្ងៃទៀតប៉ុណ្ណោះ។ ប្រជារាស្ដ្រចំនួន ១៥៥.៤៦៣រូបត្រូវទៅចុះឈ្មោះបោះឆ្នោតនៅរៀងរាល់ថ្ងៃ គ្រប់១៧ថ្ងៃ ទើបគ្រប់ចំនួននេះ។

2,642,870 people have yet to register to vote and there are 17 days left. It would take 155,463 citizens to register to vote on a daily basis to reach these marks.

សេចក្ដីប្រកាសព័ត៌មាន៖ លទ្ធផលបណ្តោះអាសន្ននៃការចុះឈ្មោះបោះឆ្នោត ដើម្បីរៀបចំបញ្ជីបោះឆ្នោតថ្មី ឆ្នាំ២០១៦ ពីថ្ងៃទី០១ ខែកញ្ញា ដល់ថ្ងៃទី១១ ខែវិច្ឆិកា ឆ្នាំ២០១៦
7,021,346 people registered to vote as of November 11, 2016 and the voter registration started on September 1 and last through November 29.

9,664,216 people are eligible to register to vote. How many foreigners? How many illegals?

Cambodia has a population of 15,721,366 citizens. Nationwide has 1,633 communes.
Data derived from NEC

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The real reason we have an Electoral College: to protect slave states

The real reason we have an Electoral College: to protect slave states

“In a direct election system, the South would have lost every time.”

Scott Olson/Getty Images

Vox, by Sean Illing, November 12, 2016

e·lec·tor·al col·lege

(in the US) a body of people representing the states of the US, who formally cast votes for the election of the president and vice president.

– a body of electors chosen or appointed by a larger group.

Every four years, we elect a president in this country, and we do it in a strange way: via the Electoral College. The reasons for the Electoral College are unclear to most people. On the surface, it appears anti-democratic, and needlessly complicated.
Why not rely on a popular vote, as almost every other democracy does? If a popular vote makes sense for gubernatorial elections, why doesn’t it make sense for presidential elections? What did the American founders have in mind when they erected this ostensible firewall against majority will?
Professor Akhil Reed Amar is the Sterling Professor of Law and Political Science at Yale University. A specialist in constitutional law, Amar is among America’s five most-cited legal scholars under the age of 60.

He’s also written extensively about the origins and utility of the Electoral College, most recently in his new book, The Constitution Today.

In the wake of last week’s election, I reached out to Amar to get his thoughts on the justness of our current system. I wanted to know why the Electoral College exists, whether it’s anti-democratic by design, and if he believes there’s any chance of the electors intervening this year.
Our conversation, lightly edited for length and clarity, follows.

Sean Illing
Let’s start with this: Why does the Electoral College exist? Is it exclusively about federalism and slavery?

Akhil Reed Amar
There are several standard stories that I learned in school, and then there’s an emerging story that I find more explanatory. I learned in school that it was a balance between big and small states. But the real divisions in America have never been big and small states; they’re between North and South, and between coasts and the center.

The House versus Senate is big versus small state, but from the beginning big states have almost always prevailed in the Electoral College. We’ve only had three small state presidents in American history: Zachary Taylor, Franklin Pierce, and Bill Clinton. All of the early presidents came from big states. So that theory isn’t particularly explanatory.

Then there’s the theory that the framers really didn’t believe in democracy. But they put the Constitution to a vote, they created a House of Representatives that was directly elected, they believed in direct election of governors, and there are all sorts of other democratic features in the Constitution. So that theory isn’t so explanatory.

There is an idea that democracy doesn’t work continentally because there are informational problems. How are people on one part of the continent supposed to know how good someone is on another part of the continent? But once political parties appear on the scene, they have platforms. And ordinary people know what they stand for, and presidential candidates are linked to local slates of politicians. So that problem is solved.

So what’s the real answer? In my view, it’s slavery. In a direct election system, the South would have lost every time because a huge percentage of its population was slaves, and slaves couldn’t vote. But an Electoral College allows states to count slaves, albeit at a discount (the three-fifths clause), and that’s what gave the South the inside track in presidential elections. And thus it’s no surprise that eight of the first nine presidents come from Virginia (the most populous state at the time).

This pro-slavery compromise was not clear to everyone when the Constitution was adopted, but it was clearly evident to everyone when the Electoral College was amended after the Jefferson-Adams contest of 1796 and 1800. These elections were decided, in large part, by the extra electoral votes created by slavery. Without the 13 extra electoral votes created by Southern slavery, John Adams would’ve won even in 1800, and every federalist knows that after the election.
And yet when the Constitution is amended, the slavery bias is preserved.

Sean Illing
So this raises an obvious question: Why do we still have the Electoral College? What’s the utility now?

Akhil Reed Amar
Well, inertia is one reason. It’s the system that we have. A constitutional amendment is a very difficult thing to accomplish. As a matter of public education, most people are not taught the slavery story. They’re taught that the Electoral College was about, say, federalism and institutional checks.

They’re not told that the Electoral College was not the framers’ finest hour.

Prof. Akhil Reed Amar.

Sean Illing
The founders weren’t entirely contemptuous of democracy, but were they skeptical about the ability of the average person to exercise wise political judgment?

Akhil Reed Amar
No, the standard story is that the electors were wise elders making choices instead of the citizenry, but from the beginning most electors were nondescript potted plants who simply ratified the choice made by voters on Election Day. And early on, in almost every place, popular elections for presidential electors became the norm.

Sean Illing
Who are these “electors” today and is there any reason to suppose they’re enlightened decision-makers?

Akhil Reed Amar
They’re nobodies from nowhere. They’re not even on the ballot. The Constitution prohibits them from being real notables like senators or representatives. They have to meet on a single day, which means there’s no time for them to deliberate with each other.

So, again, the standard stories that are told that the framers created an Electoral College because they didn’t trust voters doesn’t line up with the data.

Sean Illing
Then why didn’t they create a directly representative system? Why attach a useless appendage to the process? Is the answer once again slavery?

Akhil Reed Amar
Yes. At Philadelphia, the leading lawyer in America, James Wilson, proposed direct elections. Wilson was one of only six people to sign the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. He wrote the words “We the people” in the document. He’s one of the first five associate justices on the Supreme Court. And he was for a direct election.

When he advocated this, James Madison’s immediate response was: In principle, you’re right, but the South won’t go for it because they’ll lose every time because they won’t be able to count their slaves.

Sean Illing
The common criticism today is that the Electoral College is anti-democratic. That we’ve all just witnessed the election of another president who lost the popular vote will only fuel this perception.

Akhil Reed Amar
The Electoral College is in tension with one strong democratic ideal that I endorse: the idea of one person, one vote. The Electoral College ends up counting votes unequally depending on where they’re cast. That is at tension with a modern democratic sensibility of counting all votes equally.

Let me put it a different way: When it comes to governors, we count all votes equally, and if the election is close, we recount all votes carefully. This is how we do it in every one of the 50 states. And the governor analogy is useful because governors are, in effect, mini-presidents. They typically have four-year terms and veto pens and pardon pens, and in no state do we have a mini-Electoral College picking the governor.

Sean Illing
Just or not, the electors have the ability to install the candidate of their choosing. Is that even a remote possibility this year? If Donald Trump’s election doesn’t justify going “rogue,” what or who could?

Akhil Reed Amar
Donald Trump does not justify going rogue. I opposed him politically as fiercely as anyone, but he was picked by the rules.

Here’s a situation that would justify a rogue Electoral College: If something happened dramatically after election day but before the meeting of the Electoral College, such as a stroke or a death or possibly some extraordinary new information, a scandal that would’ve changed the minds of the people who picked the candidate. That, I believe, would justify a faithless elector.

Sean Illing
If the electors are going to reflexively vote the way they’re supposed to, then what’s the point?

Akhil Reed Amar
In many places, they pledge to vote a certain way — that’s true in about half of the states.

Sean Illing
Are they legally bound to honor their pledge?

Akhil Reed Amar
That’s a great question. The law requires them, in many places, to take a pledge, and the Supreme Court came very close to saying that those laws were constitutional, and that they do reflect our actual practice of bound electors. From the beginning, these electors have been understood as obligated to vote in accordance with their pledge.

Sean Illing
So I take it you see no plausible or likely scenario in which the Electoral College will overturn the results of an election?

Akhil Reed Amar
Only, as I said, if there were dramatic new information that would’ve changed the minds of the people who voted for that candidate.

Sean Illing
Do you agree that a popular vote would encourage greater turnout? As it stands, there are plenty of people who feel their vote is meaningless because they live in a politically homogeneous state.

Akhil Reed Amar
It would encourage greater turnout in a couple of ways. First, it makes every state a swing state in that the margin of victory matters, and so every voter can make a difference.

Second, it creates incentives for states seeking to maximize their clout to facilitate voting. Today, if a state makes it hard for people to vote, it pays no Electoral College penalty. It gets the same number of electoral votes whether it makes it easy or hard for citizens to participate.

In a direct election world, states that facilitate and encourage voting loom larger in the final count. So that gives states an incentive to experiment in ways that promote democracy.

Sean Illing
What’s the best defense of the Electoral College?

Akhil Reed Amar
It’s the system that we have. There are always transition costs. Brilliant reformers never fully anticipate possible defects in their reforms, and there are always unintended consequences.
We’ve managed to limp along with this system. It’s not highly skewed to either party today. The Democrats tend, in general, to win more big states. The Republicans tend, in general, to win more states overall. And these skews offset for the most part.

If we have a direct election, we’re going to need far more federal oversight over the process, and that’s a massive undertaking. States might also have incentives to push democracy too far, like lowering age to vote to 16, for example. Hence you’ll need more federal regulation over the process.

Sean Illing
What’s the greatest argument against it?

Akhil Reed Amar
Again, it’s in tension with a basic idea of one person, one vote. The problem with most of the arguments for the Electoral College are that they prove too much, because if they were good arguments, every state is stupid, as no state has a mini-Electoral College. And if that’s good enough for the governorship of Texas or California, why not for the presidency of the United States?

The only argument that has the right shape would have to explain why popular votes make sense for governors but not for presidents. There are only two that I can think of. One is just inertia — that this is the system that we have and we have to accept it.

The other is some argument about federalism, namely that there’s a difference between the federal governor (a.k.a. the president) and the state governor. But direct election would still involve states and state experimentation. It would preserve federalism at its best.

Sean Illing
How difficult would it be to throw off this system and replace it with a popular vote? Are there any serious reform efforts underway?

Akhil Reed Amar
There is one that’s afoot called The National Popular Vote Interstate Compact, and it’s an idea that several states have already endorsed. Under this idea, state legislatures have agreed that if enough other state legislatures agree, they will give their state’s electoral votes to the national popular vote winner.

Right now, only blue states have signed onto this. No red states have, and that partisan divide may be likely to intensify because Republicans might think that the current Electoral College system favors them given the results in 2000 and this year.

Sean Illing
Are you in favor of eliminating the Electoral College?

Akhil Reed Amar
I’m a believer in direct election, but I am aware that there’s always the possibility of unintended consequences of even well-intentioned reform. That, I suppose, is the Burkean conservative in me.

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For the fourth time in American history, the president-elect lost the popular vote. Credit the electoral college

For the fourth time in U.S. history, the president-elect won with fewer votes than his opponent. Here’s a look at the other times this has happened in history.

LA Times, by David G. Savage

For only the fourth time in U.S. history, the presidential campaign has ended with an electoral college winner who won fewer votes than his opponent.

Under the system established in the Constitution, in 1787, the winner is the candidate who wins the majority of electoral votes based on the state-by-state tallies, and that candidate is Donald Trump.

Hillary Clinton will finish second, even though she may end up beating him by more than 1 million votes in the national popular vote once the final tally is completed, assuming current trends continue.
For Democrats, it makes for a painful repeat of recent history.

In 2000, Vice President Al Gore won 539,000 more votes than Texas Gov. George W. Bush, but Bush won the presidency because he squeaked out a victory in Florida, following a U.S. Supreme Court decision that stopped a recount, giving him a majority of the electoral votes.

The system nearly worked in the opposite direction four years later. Had John F. Kerry won 60,000 more votes in Ohio, he could have won the White House, even though President Bush won 3 million more votes than his Democratic challenger.

How the electoral college works

Even if a candidate receives the popular vote, a candidate has to win the majority of electoral votes to win the election.

Before that, such a situation hadn’t occurred since 1888. That’s the year Benjamin Harrison was elected president even though Grover Cleveland won the popular vote.

Before that, in 1876, Samuel Tilden beat Rutherford B. Hayes in the popular vote, but ultimately lost in a complicated political deal known as the Compromise of 1877.

The electoral system is a legacy of the Constitution, part of an agreement between states, including Southern states that had more slaves than free men who were eligible to vote.

It was also an era when ordinary people living far from the handful of cities could not be expected to know leading figures of the time who could serve as the chief executive.

“So they decided to delegate the decision to wise elites. The framers thought they would be a check on demagogues and the popular passions,” said Jeffrey Rosen, president of the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia. “It seems antiquated, and it didn’t work as they anticipated.”

At first, the delegates to the 1787 convention considered having the elected members of Congress choose the president, similar to the way the British prime minister is selected by members of the parliament. But James Madison believed in separating power whenever possible, and he argued for electors who would be independent of Congress.

The Constitution does not use the phrase “electoral college.” Rather, it says “Each state shall appoint … a number of electors” that is equal to its representation in Congress, including its two senators.
However, by the early 1800s, the state electors were voting as a block in favor of the presidential candidate who won the most votes in their state. So the electoral college did no debating or deliberating, but instead became a mechanism for registering the state’s decision.

Critics of the electoral college have pointed out how slavery played a role in its creation. Southern delegates to the Philadelphia convention feared their states could be dominated by the new federal government because the Northern states had more people and more voters. So they fashioned a compromise that divided power based on counting the “whole number of free persons” in the states as well as “three-fifths of all other persons.” Thanks to this infamous deal, the Southern states were bolstered and given more seats in the House of Representatives as well as more “electors” who selected the president.

Pennsylvania may have had more free people and voters than Virginia, but the largest Southern state had more electors. “It’s no accident that for 32 of the first 36 years, the presidency was occupied by a white, slave-holding Virginian,” said Yale Law Professor Akhil Amar, a longtime critic of the electoral college.

While the Civil War ended slavery and the “three-fifths” deal, the electoral system survived as the method for choosing the president, in part because the Constitution is very hard to change.

Amendments need the approval of two-thirds of the House and Senate and three-fourths of the states.
Supporters of the electoral system say it encourages candidates to campaign across many states, rather than focusing on the huge states, such as California or Texas.

But in practice, presidential candidates tend to ignore states where one party already dominates, such as California, Texas and New York, and instead focus on the half-dozen states that are deemed to be “battlegrounds” where either party might prevail.

One possibility for changing the system is the National Popular Vote bill. The Constitution says states may decide on their own how to allocate their electoral votes, and a reform group is calling for states to agree by law to allocate all of their electoral votes to the winner of the national popular vote. So far, 11 states, including California, New York and Illinois, have said they would support this proposal. But the idea has won little traction in the Republican-leaning red states.

Still, many critics have insisted the electoral system violates the basic principle that it is voters who elect the president, so the winner should be the candidate who wins the most votes.
One such critic in November 2012 was Donald Trump, who tweeted: “The electoral college is a disaster for democracy.”

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NEC issuing appeal to all Khmer citizens to register to vote if had not done so

សេចក្ដីអំពាវនាវ៖ គ.ជ.ប សូមអំពាវនាវដល់ប្រជាពលរដ្ឋខ្មែរដែលមានសិទ្ធិបោះឆ្នោតទាំងអស់ ដែលមិនទាន់បានទៅចុះឈ្មោះបោះឆ្នោត សូមអញ្ជើញទៅចុះឈ្មោះបោះឆ្នោតឳ្យបានគ្រប់គ្នា

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Rainsy Calls PM a Dictator Again

Using the presidential election result in the United States as an example, Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) president Sam Rainsy has again claimed the Cambodian government is a dictatorship ruled by a leader who refuses to quit after many terms in office, contrary to democratic principles.

Khmer Time/Taing Vida 
Friday, 11 November 2016 

Using the presidential election result in the United States as an example, Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) president Sam Rainsy has again claimed the Cambodian government is a dictatorship ruled by a leader who refuses to quit after many terms in office, contrary to democratic principles.

Shortly after Donald Trump was elected the 45th president of the US, many countries’ leaders, including Cambodia, sent congratulatory messages and said they hoped diplomatic relations with the US would improve in the future.

In an interview with Radio Free Asia on Wednesday night, Mr. Rainsy – who previously said Mr. Trump had the attitude of a dictator but later congratulated him on his victory in a Facebook post – claimed that the US election results showed true democracy and real change.

He added that the current Cambodian leader, referring to Prime Minister Hun Sen, should follow the example of the US.

“No one would like to allow any dignitary or president to hold power over two terms,” he said.

“So, in Cambodia, if he [Mr. Hun Sen] claims to respect democracy in the United States, he should take the term sample which is no more than two terms, unlike in Cambodia, the prime minister who has held six to seven terms is called a dictator.”

Mr. Rainsy also said he appreciated the US system where state institutions had full independence without depending on an individual leader.

“It’s not like in Cambodia. The Cambodian assembly is a scarecrow, puppet court which created an authoritarian leader. You [Mr. Hun Sen] admire Donald Trump, but you yourself have done differently than the principles of democracy in the United States,” he said.

Mr. Hun Sen has served as prime minister for more than 30 years despite the opposition and others criticizing him for clinging on to power.

Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) spokesman Sok Eysan called Mr. Rainsy a dubious and tricky person after he called Mr. Trump a dictator.

“Before the election, he [Mr. Rainsy] claimed that Mr. Trump and Prime Minister Hun Sen were dictators,” he said.

“His demands seem to have overlooked the constitution. The presidency and a parliamentary regime are different.

“There is no article that determines the number of terms a prime minister can hold. I think Mr. Sam Rainsy himself should consider quitting his position as leader and let someone else take the post because he has lost five elections already.”

While many Americans are celebrating Mr. Trump’s victory, the election results have also sparked protests in cities throughout the United States including Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, Washington and several others.

Koul Panha, executive director of the Committee for Free and Fair Election in Cambodia, said the protests by some US citizens were not about the election process, but were over concerns about Mr. Trump’s policies as well as his stance and opinions towards immigrants, women and people of color in general.

“It is a good sign of the democratic process that puts pressure against the majority opinion within reason to find a solution for the minority who are vulnerable,” he said.

“Although Mr. Trump is elite and wasn’t [previously] involved in politics, Mr. Trump is considered the leader of the revolution against the current political system which has been accused of corruption and ineffectiveness.”

As for the Cambodian government, Mr. Panha supported a reduction in the number of terms available to the prime minister.

“Political leadership stability [among parties] creates opportunities to challenge much different effective leadership, reduce the risk of long authoritarian leadership and bad governance,” he said.

However, Mr. Rainsy and Mr. Hun Sen both hope cooperation and relations between Cambodia and the United States remain strong in all sectors and will continue to push to ensure democracy in Cambodia as well.

Despite unresolved political tensions in Cambodia, CNRP spokesman Yim Sovann said through Radio Free Asia on Wednesday that acting party president Kem Sokha was contacting the top leaders of the CPP to return to the negotiating table in hopes of returning to political normalcy.

Mr. Rainsy said: “If negotiations just let them bully, arrest and imprison whoever they [CPP] want, I completely do not agree. CNRP leaders do not sell their ideals. Their purpose is to break the CNRP.”

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Trump weighs cabinet picks and 'amended' Obamacare

Republican presidential elect Donald Trump (R) shakes hands with Republican candidate for Vice President Mike Pence speak during election night at the New York Hilton Midtown in New York on November 9, 2016

Michael Mathes
AFP News12 November 2016

Donald Trump is to huddle Saturday with his White House transition team for a second day over cabinet picks as the president-elect says he is open to keeping parts of President Barack Obama’s signature healthcare law.

The billionaire real estate mogul said in interviews that he would consider an “amended” version of the 2010 law, a shift in position after vowing on the campaign trail to repeal the measure.
The announcement was one of several surprises, as Trump shook up his transition team by putting running mate Mike Pence in charge and named a cohort of Washington insiders — and three of his children — to help with the process of choosing a new cabinet.

The reshuffle came as anti-Trump protesters spilled onto the streets for a third straight night, with the Republican facing mounting calls to reassure Americans who fear a xenophobic crackdown under his authority.

Throngs of people — among them families and children — rallied late Friday in New York’s Washington Square carrying banners reading “Peace and Love” and “Your wall can’t stand in our way.” Local media estimated a turnout of some 4,000 protesters.

More than 1,000 people gathered in Miami, with weekend protests planned in at least half a dozen cities.

A focal point for New York protests is Trump Tower, where the real estate tycoon-turned-world-leader has been ensconced in his luxury apartment, mapping out his next steps.

The 70-year-old incoming president has a mammoth task of fleshing out his cabinet, as well as steering the complex transition of power, and announced on Friday he was elevating Vice President-elect Pence to lead the process.

– Amending Obamacare? –

Trump included three of his children and his son-in-law Jared Kushner on the transition team — a move likely to raise eyebrows, since the tycoon earlier announced that should he win he would place his vast business interests into a blind trust operated by Donald Trump Jr, Eric Trump and Ivanka Trump.

And in a clear shift from his abrasive campaign, he added to his transition team a string of insider figures from the very establishment that he railed against so strongly, including Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus — now tipped as a possible chief of staff.

Trump took his first steps toward engaging with Washington on Thursday when he met with Barack Obama at the White House to discuss the transition ahead of the January 20 inauguration — a conversation the outgoing president called “excellent.”

The Oval Office meeting appears to have nudged Trump towards a compromise on his oft-repeated threat to repeal Obama’s Affordable Care Act.

Trump told The Wall Street Journal the president asked him to consider preserving parts of the healthcare law — and that he was open to the idea.

“Either Obamacare will be amended, or repealed and replaced,” Trump told the newspaper. “I told him I will look at his suggestions, and out of respect, I will do that.”

According to The Journal, Trump said he favored maintaining a prohibition on insurance companies denying consumers coverage based due to so-called pre-existing conditions. Before the law took effect, insurers had been able to refuse to cover people who had previously suffered almost any illness.

Trump also said he was not opposed to requiring insurers to allow children to remain on their parents’ insurance policies until the age of 26, a key Obamacare tenet.

On the Syrian conflict, however, Trump indicated a possible sharp shift away from Obama administration policy.

– Hillary’s concession –

“I’ve had an opposite view of many people regarding Syria,” he told the paper, suggesting a closer focus on fighting the Islamic State group — and arguing that in seeking to oust President Bashar al-Assad, “we end up fighting Russia,” the regime’s ally.

Trump has already spoken with a string of world leaders including British Prime Minister Theresa May and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, with whom he reaffirmed Washington’s strong relations.

The apparently harmonious meeting between Trump and Obama was designed to heal divisions and quell fears about the health of the world’s leading democracy.

Meanwhile, in an interview to be aired on Sunday, Trump showed a rare softer side, describing the election night call he received from Hillary Clinton conceding that he had won.

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