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December 17, 2012


By: David Siders



California casts Electoral College votes for Barack Obama



Assembly Speaker John A. Pérez called to order this afternoon California's members of the Electoral College, declaring 2 p.m. to have arrived on the first Monday after the second Wednesday in December.


Electors across the country were gathering to ratify President Barack Obama's re-election, and in his Assembly chambers, Pérez was not taking the tradition lightly.


"Each of you are partaking in a ceremony and a process unique to the American experience," he said. "Though the role of elector has changed over time, the actions you take today are a timeless expression of our Democratic values."


The vote, said Pérez, D-Los Angeles, would "memorialize forever" that California voters on Nov. 6 chose Obama.


"This is a solemn duty," Perez said, "but one we carry out with joy."


California is a winner-take-all state, and California's electors unanimously cast their 55 votes for Obama. A record of the vote will be sent to Congress, where it will be counted with other states' submissions in a joint session presided over by Vice President Joe Biden.


Had Biden been perusing Facebook, he might have known already how the vote was progressing.


Ballot in hand, Alfonso Sanchez, an elector from Sacramento and chief of staff to Sen. Gloria Negrete McLeod, turned to his seatmate and asked her to take his picture.


The two electors sitting behind them then did the same.


"I just wanted to memorialize this moment," Sanchez said later.


He wasn't sure about the decorum, but the photograph was already up.


Said Sanchez: "I posted from the floor."