DING DONG, THE WITCH IS DEAD….The GOP-backed initiative to award California’s electoral votes by congressional district, ensuring that the Republican candidate for president would get 20-25 California electoral votes in 2008 instead of the zero they’d get under the current winner-take-all system, has failed:

Republican backers of the measure, which could have tilted the presidential contest toward the GOP nominee by changing how California awards electoral votes, conceded that they were unable to raise sufficient funds.

Sacramento consultant Dave Gilliard, the campaign manager, said that even if a financial angel were to shower the campaign with $1 million, there was not enough time to qualify the measure for June.

….Although confident they could have defeated it, Democrats said they were relieved that the measure would not appear in June.

“This effort to rig the presidential elections demonstrates that the Republicans . . . recognize that they will be a minority party if they lose the White House and will do everything they can to hold on to power,” said Democrat Chris Lehane, who helped organize the opposition.

And there’s even better news: the initiative is probably dead for the November ballot as well, and even if it qualifies it’s likely that it won’t affect the 2008 election anyway. Huzzah!

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