An argument against the electoral college in the united states of america

Electoral college meaning

Under a system of direct election, every vote would be equally important, and voters would believe they could play a crucial role in American democracy. Understandably, Hulme and Guelzo are eager to deny these grubby origins, writing: Above all, the electoral college had nothing to do with slavery. The founders opted for the Electoral College because the two leading alternatives, election by Congress and by popular vote, were thought to have serious defects. It forces candidates to campaign in rural areas A popular argument on conservative websites and talk radio is that without the Electoral College, candidates would spend all their time campaigning in big cities and would ignore low-population areas. If, say, environmental sustainability or abortion or the Second Amendment is your dominant concern, it does not matter whether you live in Wyoming or California, Pennsylvania or Delaware. The Electoral College consists of electors. The first is easily dismissed.

In July, Sen. The size of a state does not affect our real political preferences, even though the Electoral College system imagines that it does. The Electoral College consists of electors. While this argument that no single region has the power to elect a candidate is correct, a candidate does not need to win every region in the country to win an election.

Some advocates of the Electoral College have argued that the system requires both a candidate and his or her political party to have broad national support.

electoral college stanford

Meanwhile, during the entire period after the national conventions, the four candidates never campaigned at all in 24 statesincluding rural states like South Dakota, Kansas and Wyoming. Despite popular belief, the Founding Fathers were not magnanimously imagining a balance between small states and large states.

In fact, individual electors have done so on different occasionsthough 71 of those occasions can be attributed to the and elections when a candidate or his running mate died after the popular vote had taken place, but before electors officially cast their ballots.

Disadvantages of electoral college

But electors no longer work as independent agents nor as agents of the state legislature. Illustration: Steve Dinnino Yes. The founders opted for the Electoral College because the two leading alternatives, election by Congress and by popular vote, were thought to have serious defects. Their aim was to put off the slavery problem that plagued them in the creation of the Constitution, because they knew the North would win the popular vote every time. That same view will doubtless color the election as well. The two-party system solves the fractured vote problem more effectively than the Electoral College ever did, and the electors never exercised genuine independence. Because general elections center on winning states, not necessarily the most votes, candidates have an incentive to spend most of their resources on the contentious swing states, leaving safe states by the wayside.

Electors filter the passions of the people Some defend the system by citing its original purpose: to provide a check on the public in case they make a poor choice for president. But explaining exactly how it does this remains a mystery.

In doing so, we must acknowledge that most of the flaws of the popular vote are just as rampant under the electoral vote, simply in a different guise.

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Why Every Defense of the Electoral College Is Wrong