• Isaac Brekken/AP
  • Republican electoral reform and the Obama power play are not equivalent.

The Tribune editorial page and Sun-Times op-ed columnist Steve Huntley both made the same sorry stab at equivalency Tuesday, deriding as Washington shenanigans two very different attempts to alter the political process.

The first was President Obama’s attempt to get the National Labor Relations Board up and running again by making three so-called recess appointments to the board a year ago. The other day a panel of three federal appellate judges in Washington, DC, put the kibosh on that one, ruling that the appointments were “constitutionally invalid.”

The other was an ingenious attempt by Republicans to refine the process by which presidents are elected. The electoral college system, with its state-by-state winner-take-all way of allocating electoral votes, has come in for plenty of criticism. The Republican idea is to make the electoral college vote better reflect the national vote—by allocating electoral votes according to who wins each congressional district. Of course there’s no way the GOP can impose this new system across the nation, but it proposes to make a gallant start by introducing the reform in blue states that at the moment enjoy Republican-controlled legislatures. States like Florida, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Wisconsin.