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Ignore the Mob—Long Live the Electoral College

You can't always get what you want.

This week, anti-Trump protesters hit the streets in big cities around the country, chanting "This is what democracy looks like!" Yes. That's the problem.

For many Democrats, the greatest political system is the one that instills their party with the most power. Now that it looks like Hillary Clinton will "win" the fictional popular vote over Donald Trump, people—not just young people who've spent their entire lives being told America is a democracy, but people who know better—are getting hysterical about the Electoral College. Not only is it "unfair" and "undemocratic" but like anything else progressives dislike these days it's also a tool of "white supremacy" and "sexism."

If liberals truly believe majoritarianism is the fairest way to run a government, then why shouldn't 50 percent of states be able to repeal constitutional amendments?

(Democrats only run only 13 state legislatures. But you know, when it's convenient.) Why should a bunch of white men from the late 18th century have any say in how contemporary Americans live? If proportional government is unfair, why do we even have two senators from each state? Why not 20 from California and one from Wyoming?

Why have states at all? Maybe we should have a series of referendums instead of relying on Congress.

Maybe we should let protesters overturn elections?

Granted, because of our childish propensity to use the word "fair," I understand that the Electoral College must seem like a relic that undercuts the sacramental notion of "one man, one vote." As if a losing vote ever counts anyway. But if you still generally believe the Founding Fathers did a decent job setting up the conditions for material prosperity and individual freedom to guarantee a stable government and dispersed political power, you should be a big fan of the Electoral College.

If it needs repeating, in the United States of America, we have an Electoral College, wherein the president and vice president aren't elected directly by the voters, but rather by electors who are chosen through the popular votes from each state. Your state's portion of electors equals the number of members in its congressional delegation—one for each member in the House of Representatives plus two for your senators. We have 51 separate elections. This is done so that every part of the nation has some kind of say over the next executive. The president, after all, is not a monarch. He does not make laws. Not even President Barack Obama was supposed to do that. Voters need to view the system as a whole to understand why this is "fair."

Diffused democracy weakens the ability of politicians to scaremonger and use emotional appeals to take power. It blunts the vagaries of the electorate. So, naturally, the left has been attacking the Electoral College for years—including talk of a national "compact" to circumvent smaller states.

Need it be repeated again, the Electoral College, and other mechanisms that balance democracy, create moderation and compromise—they stop one party from accumulating too much power. It is certainly possible that Obama's unilateral governance over the past eight years had a lot to do with the pushback of three consecutive losses in the Senate and Congress, and the election of Donald Trump.

To some extent, the Electoral College impels presidents and their political parties to consider all Americans in rhetoric and action. By allowing two senators for both Wyoming, with a population of less than 600,000, and California, with a population of more than 38 million, we create more national cohesion. We protect large swaths of the nation from being bullied. We incentivize Washington, D.C.—both the president and the Senate—to craft policy that meets the needs of Colorado as well as New York.

Moreover, besides protecting the rights of Americans who reside in those states, it should also remind us that smaller states have industries and functions that outweigh a measurement in population alone—the agriculture sector of a state, for instance. In a world with increasing productivity, this matters more than ever. Smaller states are laboratories for ideas, as are bigger ones. If they become marginalized and then coerced to embrace the policies favored by the people in urban areas, the nation loses valuable resourcefulness, imagination and brainpower.

It's also worth remembering that the dynamics of this election would be completely different if the popular vote actually mattered. The election is geared toward winning states, not people. There is no guarantee that Hillary Clinton would have won. There are tons of conservatives in blue states, for instance, who do not vote because they understand that the majority around them have a different political outlook. A direct national election would mean focusing on blue-state Republicans and red-state liberals. I'm not sure that setup works out for Democrats exactly as they imagine.

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  • MarkLastname||

    I think you actually make a great point about the mythical nature of the so-called popular vote: that if it weren't for the electoral college, a lot more (or different groups of people) would vote, especially in states where voting is futile so long as the electoral college exists. For this reason the electoral college likely causes the popular vote to tend toward a 50/50 split by disproportionately incentivizing voters to turn out in swing states. So when the ostensible popular vote is close (and perhaps even when it's not) who 'won' it is essentially meaningless in terms of inferring who would have won it if elections were determined by popular vote.

    This is something I never really thought much about. I doubt many lefties, in their current apoplexy, will give it much consideration, but it is an incredibly important point. Thanks David.

  • Spinach Chin||

    It's not only that - the campaign strategies used to win a popular vote election are not the same as one used to win an electoral college election.

    In addition to the natural effect if would have on blue-state conservatives (and, to a lesser extent, red-state libs), get out the vote efforts would target more populated areas, ads would be run differently, Republican candidates would start holding rallies in blue states.

    It's a completely different dynamic, and further underscores the absurdity of the "Hillary would have won if it was a popular vote" argument.

  • CE||

    I don't buy it. I think the campaign is mostly national and most people are pretty unaware of the status of their state. TV ads don't change voting behavior much at all. You didn't see Gary Johnson getting 10 percent in safe states and 2 percent in swing states -- he was around 2 to 6 percent across the board randomly (or culturally).

    Maybe California has lower conservative turnout now with top 2 primaries, but I think most people didn't realize the Senate ballot would have 2 Democrats on it until they got to the voting booth.

  • DarrenM||

    Most likely correct. If Republicans had given more thought to that Senate race, they would have voted for Sanchez. Instead, many probably saw two D's and chose not to vote at all in that race.

  • Zeb||

    a lot more (or different groups of people) would vote, especially in states where voting is futile so long as the electoral college exists.

    An interesting reform to elections would be to put the presidential election in an odd year when there aren't any congressional elections. Presidential elections affect voter turnout and behavior a lot. It would be interesting to see how congressional races would change without the "coattails" effect of the presidential race.

  • Rational Exuberance||

    For this reason the electoral college likely causes the popular vote to tend toward a 50/50 split by disproportionately incentivizing voters to turn out in swing states.

    In a two party system, the outcome is always close because parties adjust their messages to the point where they attract about equal numbers of voters. It doesn't matter whether the two party system uses the electoral college or not.

    Getting rid of the electoral collage would not change election outcomes; they'd still be close to 50/50, but Republicans would make a big jolt to the left as they would increasingly only address urban and elite concerns in places like California, NYC, and DC.

  • Bish Chan||

    That depends. If any changes to the EC led to more parties, election outcomes could very well change.

    Why would they make such an effort to address DC when it has one of the lowest populations?

  • josh||

    i agree that the electoral votes should be automatic by law. it's something like 21 states that don't require that, 29 states that do, and there's some question about whether or not a state can bind them (so you might have to make it automatic thru constitutional amendment), but i think if anything is actually insulting, it's that we still go to the polls and that vote isn't binding because the electors haven't had their say yet. you can meet in the middle-ish and allow the voters to determine things, but still keep the electoral college, which i agree, still makes sense.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    IIRC, the idea with electors is that they are a check and balance to some lunacy voting. Not that the Founders would have elected a Presidential candidate who stated they wanted to be King. The electors could vote for someone else.

  • GlenchristLaw||

    "there's some question about whether or not a state can bind them"

    No there isn't; these state laws are patently unconstitutional and would be declared so if any court ever actually had a case about it (which has never yet happened).

  • SFC B||

    Would it? I thought the states with such laws didn't require the elector's vote to count for a different candidate but that the vote simply doesn't count anymore. So, if a California elector were to vote Trump then CA only has 52 EV instead of 53. The states can apportion their EV however they like, that implies they can have fewer than allotted.

  • Robert||

    If anything, that'd be even more unconstitutional!

  • Chip Your Pets||

    Where is it forbidden in the Constitution?

    It would have to be expressly forbidden since we're talking about state action.

  • Publilius||

    From Wikipedia: "The constitutionality of state pledge laws was confirmed by the Supreme Court in 1952 in Ray v. Blair in a 5–2 vote. The court ruled states have the right to require electors to pledge to vote for the candidate whom their party supports, and the right to remove potential electors who refuse to pledge prior to the election."

  • josh||

    if you read further, it says that the the "violation of any pledge a faithless elector made was not at issue", so it's still an open question.

  • Publilius||

    Perhaps. But I was responding to GlenchristLaw's assertion above that it was not an open question. He claimed "No there isn't; these state laws are patently unconstitutional and would be declared so if any court ever actually had a case about it (which has never yet happened)." Ray v. Blair was a case about it, and the court did not declare these state laws unconstitutional.

  • Chip Your Pets||

    Which part of the Constitution forbids it? This is an exercise of state, not federal power, so there has to be something that explicitly bans it.

  • creech||

    Suppose the president-elect were found to have committed treason or sexually abused children? The electors should be free to vote for another candidate who did not win the electoral votes of their state.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Or you can impeach the President.

  • Rational Exuberance||

    "Were found" by who? Electors shouldn't make determinations of legal guilt based on hearsay and media reports.

  • JFree||

    I would prefer a reworking of the Electoral College so that we are actually voting for those people - not for President. There are actually more constitutional requirements for being an elector than there are for Prez but right now they are just invisible party hacks. It is the voting for electors that creates a constitutional basis for stopping states from violating voting rights (tho we never enforced that section).

    Make the EC real people again with actual discretionary power and accountability back to those who elected them and it changes everything. Prb more states like Maine/Nebraska with district elections, less party influence, more independents, and a lot easier for the Prez to build cross-partisan support and bypass DC insiders by appointing some electors to exec branch.

  • Hrimnir||

    I just had this exact discussion with a friend of mine. I said "be careful what you wish for". I have no evidence to support it, but I have a feeling there are a hellofa lot more republican voters in hardcore blue states that don't vote because they know it won't make a difference then there are democrats in hardcore red states. How pissed would the left be if they got rid of the electoral college and elections started going 55-60% republican every single time?

  • josh||

    if that happened, the left would suddenly discover the concept of electoral fraud as a political argument.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    The USA is mostly conservative. How conservative is the big question.

    Being conservative is kinda why we are still a nation, otherwise left fascists would tear the US apart.

  • colorblindkid||

    The House elections had a total national popular vote that pretty heavily favored Republicans this year.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    because....gerrymandering!

    -SJW out

  • Rational Exuberance||

    because....gerrymandering!

    Soon to be replaced by gerryfemdering.

  • Will4Freedom||

    This is true. While in NJ, I always voted, but mostly for the third party candidate which most closely matched my convictions. Now living in NC, I was forced to make an "Anti-Hillary" for the Trump.

  • Zeb||

    Forced? Someone held a gun to your head?

  • CE||

    And Trump only beat Clinton by 177,000 votes in North Carolina, so your one vote was key.

  • ant1sthenes||

    Eh, popular votes would i) eliminate the skew toward low-population states that the EC has due to counting Senators toward the number of electors a state gets, and ii) would make it easier and more rewarding for a state that creates fraudulent votes to influence national elections. Both of these would skew toward Democrats.

    Of course, the former makes it basically impossible that the EC will ever be repealed by legitimate means, and the latter nearly guarantees that eliminating the EC will also completely collapse public faith in the legitimacy of elections, and will likely lead to a second war between the states.

    I do think voting for electors makes more sense, and it should probably be staggered from the actual selection of a president by a year or more to give them time to run through the hiring process.

  • Bish Chan||

    Could just allocate the electoral votes proportionally instead of winner takes all. That retains the extra electors for small states whilst not distorting the result.

  • Bish Chan||

    If we believe in the principle we should not back out of it just because we did not win under it. The solution would be to widen appeal. More competitive elections are beneficial to the voter.

  • straffinrun||

    But if you still generally believe the Founding Fathers did a decent job setting up the conditions for material prosperity and individual freedom to guarantee a stable government and dispersed political power, you should be a big fan of the Electoral College.

    No lefty is going to persuaded with that line of argument. No, they don't believe the first part, so, no, they won't be a big fan of the EC. As long as any individual has more than other individuals we will never be free from oppression.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    EC is a direct barrier to tyranny. Lefties want tyranny for their positions.

  • Akello||

    I have a question: why does democracy work when we elect our governors?

  • DesigNate||

    Because if you think that Governor Moonbeam is a shit leader you can always move to Kansas?

    (Honestly, I don't know why the states didn't set up their individual systems in the same manner.)

  • tarran||

    why does democracy work when we elect our governors?

    It doesn't.

    Fortunately bad governors can do less damage and are constrained by their inability to print money and the fact their population can more readily change states when compared to changing countries.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Some states are democracies, some are republics and the USA is a democratic republic.

  • ||

    why does democracy work when we elect our governors?

    It's much easier for a lynch mob in Tennessee to get to Knoxville than to get to Washington D.C.?

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Don't forget the tar and feather mob, the pitchfork mob and the gun mob.

  • Don'tTreadOnMeChipper||

    Errr, the Tennessee capital is in Nashville, but you are still correct.

  • the_decadents||

    You've clearly not been paying attention to Illinois lately, have you?

  • Lurk Diggler||

    I think generally the reason democracy is more viable locally is because the leaders must live among and answer to people that elected them. You will likely never have any contact with the president or live within 500 miles of him. His policies will effect you, but not himself. The issue would certainly be exascerbated with a popular vote where the President would only answer to a handful of urban areas for national laws.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    I got my local city council to repeal their 20% pay increase and I was the only resident at the meeting. They have a harder time doing crazy shit when their neighbors are watching and call them on it. Hard to ignore you people you see at the grocery store.

  • Citizen X||

    This. Democracy doesn't scale up all that efficiently.

  • Don'tTreadOnMeChipper||

    I think the point is that the diversity within a state is much less than that within the entire country. Democracy works better, perhaps, where there is great homogeneity in values. While that MAY occur within any particular state, it will NEVER occur for the entire United States.

  • SadlyShakingHead||

    If you want the electoral college result to more closely track the popular vote, simply eliminate the statewide winner take all rules in most states. Why should a candidate who gets 51% of the vote in a state get 100% of the electors? Give them 51% of the electoral votes (rounded to a whole number, of course) and give a candidate who got 40% of the vote 40% of the electors, and so on. This would still give political minorities a reason to vote in a deep red or blue state. (Of course, both red and blue states would have to do it this way to prevent an unfair advantage to an individual party. If the red states went fractional but the blue states didn't, team red would get screwed, and vice versa if the blues did and red didn't.)

  • Kandralla||

    You're missing the point. Its specifically the way it is so the EC doesnt necessarily track the popular vote.

    Democracy = mob rule

  • Akello||

    Kandralla, so it's okay for democracy to work when voting for all other elected offices and ballot measures, except for the POTUS? Why is that?

  • chemjeff||

    One can argue that the office of POTUS is a unique threat to the Republic. Only POTUS is in charge of the military and only POTUS has the responsibility of faithfully executing the laws, for instance. And we've seen what happens when POTUS isn't too burdened by constitutional restrictions in his duties. So having POTUS one step further removed from the democratic mob seems okay with me.

  • UnCivilServant||

    We need to break the office of president into several separate, independantly elected offices each taking a part of the responsibilities.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Co-CEOs just does not work.

    Best known system is one executive but seriously reigned in by a representative branch and judicial branch to resolve disputes.

  • Don'tTreadOnMeChipper||

    Well stated.

  • Hamster of Doom||

    I was just wondering that the other day, in re: big blue cities ordering the lives of vat swathes of rural red counties.

    Why don't we EC the counties up, states-wise? That way huge population-dense areas don't get to ignore the needs of everyone else. Which is pretty much the reason I've always heard for the EC anyway.

    You know the answer to "why not" is probably because it would work.

  • Hamster of Doom||

    +1 s

  • Billy Bones||

    I believe this to be the case for the state of Illinois. The vast majority of counties in Illinois are red, but they are outnumbered by the very populous Cook County (Chicago). If I am not mistaking, a number of years ago there was talk about trying to force Cook County out of Illinois and into it's own state. Setting up a EC style system would probably alleviate some of the problems, but then again, the Dems in Cook County would never go for it.

  • Billy Bones||

  • Tim from Philly||

    Pennsylvania is the same. Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, maybe Harrisburg, are blue, the rest of the state is deep red. They don't call it pennsyltucky for nothing. Most state reps can get elected on a "Fuck Philadelphia" platform anywhere in the state.

  • Sevo||

    "Kandralla, so it's okay for democracy to work when voting for all other elected offices and ballot measures, except for the POTUS? Why is that?"

    The senate was originally elected through a form of the EC; the house was a sop to the founders who loved the mob.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Well it wasn't ok for the Senate either until William Jennings Bryan fucked it up with the 17th Amendment.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    And speaking of that:

    Oh, how have times changed!

  • The Fusionist||

    Are you comparing WJB to Hillary, absorbing the Democratic Party into his own political ambitions?

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    No, he's comparing populism to the Jews.

  • Citizen X||

    It's Jews all the way down.

  • sasob||

    Kandralla, so it's okay for democracy to work when voting for all other elected offices and ballot measures, except for the POTUS? Why is that?

    Because the constitution was set up and adopted to benefit state governments - not necessarily their riffraff citizens individually.

  • SadlyShakingHead||

    Actually, Kandralla, you are missing the phrase "If you want..." in my post. I didn't say that was what I wanted. I would prefer we vote for electors, not candidates, as intended, but that isn't going to happen any time soon. I was addressing the point of the article.

  • The Fusionist||

    The Electoral College empowers the states *qua* states, which is fine by me.

  • Lurk Diggler||

    It would still leave small population areas severely disadvantaged. Let's remember, the constitution was an agreement for the states. They didn't have to. If the agreement was join our club and then we'll make federal laws with a federal government and by the way your states population is so low that if you join our club you won't have any say in those laws then the states would have just said fuck off we don't want to be in your club. Imagine trying to sell that to Canada or Mexico. Join our club and you get no say in the government ruling over you but you can still cast pointless votes for entertainment. They'll just run their own government.

    The reason states get to have federal power based on borders instead of population is the same reason nations have that power. They set up the borders and decided that's how they wanted to live.

  • SimonD||

    Why should a candidate who gets 51% of the vote in a state get 100% of the electors? Give them 51% of the electoral votes

    The problem with this is that the states determine how to apportion Electoral College electors. Neither the blue states or the red states have any motivation to change to the system which you describe because it will damage their electoral chances. The only way to do it is in all of the states through a constitutional amendment. Even then you would have the problem of two or three large states steamrolling the rest of the country, even before the fraud machine really revs up in New York and Chicago (and probably L.A. too).

  • ||

    Why should a candidate who gets 51% of the vote in a state get 100% of the electors?

    So if a candidate gets 85% of the popular vote in North Dakota do they get two or three electoral votes? With the necessary rounding that falls apart pretty quickly.

  • Social Justice is neither||

    You could do it as winner by congressional/senate district.

  • DarrenM||

    Yes, it would have to be done this way. An elector represents the same area as a House representative. Whoever wins that specific district gets that elector. This would be done for each House district separately. The two electors corresponding to the two Senators would both be elected by the entire state.

  • CE||

    That makes sense. Do away with the extra 2 EC votes for your Senators too, to make it proportional to population.

  • Don'tTreadOnMeChipper||

    No.

  • Number 2||

    Funny. I seem to recall recently reading articles telling me about the Democrats having a built in electoral advantage and the Republicans being in the position of constantly needing to play catch up in the electoral college. Remember the "blue wall?"

    But because Hillary Clinton managed to lose states like Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Wisconsin, the electoral college is now suddenly an evil thing

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Haha. People have already forgot how CNN, NBC and other media were saying that Hillary had an insurmountable EC lead against Trump.

    Its all fun and games until your biased predictions about electoral college are WRONG and your hag loses.

  • Zeb||

    A number of people on here seemed pretty convinced of that as well.

    In the early 2000s we kept hearing about the new "permanent Republican majority".

  • Inigo Montoya||

    I would bet a thousand dollars that these condemnations of the electoral college would turn into praise the moment some Republican president won the popular vote but still lost the election. The fact it hasn't happened recently (maybe with Dewey vs Truman it did) does not mean it won't.

    It's always "principals over principles" with these people. Meanwhile for us libertarians, it's always a case of liberty losing regardless of which way they add up he votes.

  • Deli-bro||

    "The election is geared toward winning states, not people. There is no guarantee that Hillary Clinton would have won. There are tons of conservatives in blue states, for instance, who do not vote because they understand that the majority around them have a different political outlook. A direct national election would mean focusing on blue-state Republicans and red-state liberals. I'm not sure that setup works out for Democrats exactly as they imagine."

    This right here. If the rules change, the strategy changes.

  • Bob Boberson||


    not just young people who've spent their entire lives being told America is a democracy, but people who know better—are getting hysterical about the Electoral College.

    I've always suspected the democracy misnomer pushed in schools is intentional. Our educators fail to teach accurate civics lessons at the most basic level and I think this is part of the long-term strategy to condition students against federalism, the constitution, etc. Now the electoral college is being spuriously linked to slavery . As a result I'm pretty sure your average millennial would readily and emphatically assert that the EC is a bad thing

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Yup. There is a lot more intentional misinforming kids too. Kids go to school to learn and they really are being indoctrinated to undermine our Republic.

    Even the schools that might teach electoral college, they won't teach the fundamentals as to why EC is important to keep our Republic. If we Liberty minded folks don't take the education of American back, I don't think we have a chance as a Republic. People are getting dumber and dumber and more and more accepting to incremental stripping of rights.

  • Griffin3||

    Podesta wanted low information voters, Podesta gots low information voters.

  • Mauser||

    These are the same dipshits that either don't understand or totally disrespects the fact the U.S is technically a republic as opposed to a democracy. The dangers of mob rule, or - "the dictatorship of the majority" was a top concern for the founders. The rule of law as established by the founders and enshrined in the constitution, if followed correctly (which it isn't) will ensure freedom and prosperity. The constitution has its flaws, as it was a compromise of sorts for the emerging Federalists and anti-Federalists groups of the founding fathers. What these dipshits do not appreciate is the American constitution and the electoral system has brought unprecedented freedom to this country and has inspired other movements throughout the world. These "white founders" have pushed the world towards freedom.

  • Tony||

    Except for that tiny exception written directly into the constitution to protect the institution of owning people and keeping them in lifetime bondage.

    But other than that, freedom!

  • Douchey defeats Trumpman, Jr.||

    Oh, look - slavery is STILL legal. Why isn't Reason talking about this?

  • Brochettaward||

    Tony, are you a black man or a white man today? Straight or gay?

  • Douchey defeats Trumpman, Jr.||

    And is he in New Zealand yet?

  • BoTardESQue||

    Tony has spent the last week in his "safe space"- AKA Slate.

    Unfortunately for Tony- there was a "libertarian" that called him out over there, too.

    Tony is not a "troll", he really believes his blather.

  • sasob||

    He's a fucking cockroach - same as any day. Black, brown, white, or even green, I neither know nor care. Let the spiders eat them.

  • This Machine||

    RRRRRRRETARD.

  • Lurk Diggler||

    What part of the Constitution protected slavery?

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Yeah, progtards will never admit that the same government overreaches that produced and enforced slavery is now trying to enslave us in other ways.

    The only solution to being a slave is enforcing individual rights and Liberty and keeping government as small as possible.

  • DarrenM||

    The US Government "produced" slavery, which has been around for thousands of years? Perhaps progressives are right and the government really is all-powerful.

  • Chip Your Pets||

    The 3/5 clause that gave the South a disproportionate representation in Congress was intended to keep abolitionists from getting power in the federal govt.

    Of course, the Electoral College and the House were already agreed upon at that point, so it's hard to say that either one is really a slavery protector with the 3/5 clause now essentially voided.

  • sasob||

    The 3/5 clause in the original constitution was there to limit the number of congressional representatives the southern states would have, which otherwise would have been greater due to their higher populations. And since the number of presidential electors allotted to each state depends on the number of representatives and senators apportioned to that state, it also limited their power to choose the president. In short, the 3/5 compromise - although it may have been an insult to slaves (and native Americans) was put in there to limit the power of the southern states. The northern and more urban states with their smaller populations at the time wouldn't have allowed slaves and Indians to count for even that much representation, if they could have gotten away with it. The 3/5 was a compromise to get the south to ratify. Actually the southern states and their populations got slightly screwed.

  • Chip Your Pets||

    Great, another neo-Confederate. Yeah, the Southern states got screwed for having an entire race in chains. Poor slaveholders.

    The Southern states accorded slaves no rights of personhood, not even the right to life; it was a travesty for them to claim slaves should be counted as persons for the sake of determining House representation that they could never vote for.

    The rule of the 15th amendment should have been in place from the start -- if you deny a class of people the right to vote, then they don't count for determining your representation in Congress.

  • DarrenM||

    "Neo-Confederate"? Did you even read his post? sabob gave a good summary as to why the 3/5 compromise was reached. You apparently would have preferred there to have been two (or more) separate nations since slave-holding states would not have agreed to union if you had your way.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    The Southern states would not join without adequate states rights. The Founders decided that slavery would be tabled for a decade or two after the fragile new Republic got it sea legs. Either that or there would be no United States of America.

    Slavery sucked and now its illegal.

    Constitution worked as designed.

  • sasob||

    Slavery sucked and now its illegal.

    Let me fix that for you: private slavery is now illegal. Government slavery via working six months or so of the year to pay income taxes and Obamacare head taxes is perfectly legal, as was military conscription until recently. And males are still required to register for Selective Service.

  • SWalkerTTU||

    Seeing as there's a top marginal rate of 39.6%, it would be impossible for you to pay half your income in federal income tax. That estimated six months of working for taxes also includes state taxes of various forms.

  • Free Society||

    And if the popular vote was what won you the presidency, Trump and Hilary both would have campaigned very differently. So there's no way to say that she "should have won" because of the popular vote tally. Moreover the entirety of her popular vote lead on Trump can be explained with one foreign sounding word: California (German for a whale's vagina).

    You're god damn right the electoral college prevents a handful of cities from constantly outvoting and overriding the will of the rest of the country. That's the point.

  • robc||

    If the popular vote was what won the presidency, the election would have been thrown into the House as no one got 50% of the vote.

    The House would be choosing from Clinton, Trump and Johnson.

    And the election would have been entirely different under those criteria. With many more 3rd parties attempting to finish 3rd.

  • Raven Nation||

    And, if it was a popular vote, can you imagine the recounts?

  • Swiss Servator||

    *shudders*

  • DarrenM||

    Voter fraud would increase 10-fold.

  • SWalkerTTU||

    American cities are not politically monolithic. Central cities do tend to be more liberal and suburbs more conservative, but you'd find a mixture throughout. Still, though, it seems like you're saying that urban citizens don't deserve to have their interests considered.

  • Bob Boberson||

    IMO we lost that battle a long time ago. Since your average educator is under 40 and female it only stands to reason that they are going to trend to the left. It's a hard sell to get a liberty-minded person into education (although I must say I had a few of these in school) knowing that they aren't going to be making great money, be constantly subjected to diversity/inclusivity/sensitivitytraining indoctrination, be forced to teach the state curriculum with little ability to deviate, and be a pariah in the teachers lounge. At this point I think school choice is the only hope.

  • Bob Boberson||

    Damn it! That was supposed to be in response to loveconstitution1789|11.18.16 @ 8:45AM|#

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Yeah, I figured. I was telling myself that you had a great followup comment to my comment.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    to Bob Boberson's comment.

  • SWalkerTTU||

    You don't seem to have the first clue as to how schools actually function.

    The average educator is under 40 and female mostly because the pay is low relative to the education required; and why is that? Because people complain about the amount of taxes they have to pay.

    "[B]e constantly subjected to diversity/inclusivity/sensitivity indoctrination,": That you call it such reveals a certain disdain for the concept of non-discrimination. At least in my experience, there has been no such indoctrination, as the nature of the work itself requires that a teacher not discriminate.

    Also, in my experience there is no state curriculum. There are state curriculum standards which describe what is to be learned, but no more than that. Curriculum decisions are left to districts, schools and individual teachers. I teach four separate courses, two of which are some of the most rarely taught courses in the state. I have a great deal of freedom, and a hell of a lot more work because I don't have the level of curricular support that other subjects do.

  • bacon-magic||

    Great read.

  • Akello||

    David, you're correct: this is how our Republic is set up. However, I wish in cases when a candidate wins the E.C. but not the popular vote, we attach a formal designation to that president, notifying everyone that the phrase, "the people have spoken" in a democratic sense does not apply to him/her.

  • DesigNate||

    Even when they win both, "the people" haven't spoken.

    Well they have, and it was a landslide for NONE OF THE ABOVE.

  • Zeb||

    I always think it's ridiculous when they think they have some grand "mandate" because slightly more than half of the people who could be bothered to vote voted for them.

  • sasob||

    And the number of "people who could be bothered to vote" is usually only about half of those who are eligible to register and vote. So their mandate is actually only about a quarter of adult citizens?

  • Holger da Dane||

    You forget that it isn't just about the will of the people, but also the will of the states. The EC is a balancing act between the power of the states and of the people. This is why the President is not elected in the same way as governors are for instance.

    Congress used to be divided in this was as well, with Senators appointed by the states, and House Representatives elected by the people. Part of the checks and balances of the Constitution was broken when Senators were elected by popular vote instead.

    These things were set up in a very deliberate way to ensure a dilution of power. The founders understood that a pure democracy leads as easily to a dictatorship as having a king.

  • Inherent Chaos||

    Sure seem to work against Bernie. We know he won the popular vote while she bribed the Electorals. Get over it! America didn't want her! She ONLY won popular vote because of CA. Do your research.

  • GroundTruth||

    Nice article, too bad you're preaching to the choir on the terrors of mob rule.

  • GlenchristLaw||

    One can love the Electoral College while hating winner-take-all.

  • Tony||

    Blah blah blah... the only reason this country gives more votes to hillbillies is because their ancestors wanted to continue owning people and forcing them to do free labor and didn't want any oversensitive hippies to get in their way with so much as a majority and moral case.

    The electoral college has in contravention of the popular vote delivered the two worst presidents in history in the span of my adult life (Trump will unquestionably be the worst ever). There's no argument for it. At all.

  • Tundra||

    Head wound?

  • Tony||

    Fan of slavery are you?

  • Zero Sum Game||

    Well, no, we don't want the Democrats in power, but thanks for offering.

  • Tundra||

    Ah, I hadn't thought of early-onset dementia.

  • Sevo||

    "Fan of slavery are you?"

    This from the lefty asshole who supports slavery.
    BTW Tony, you LOST!
    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

  • I can't even||

    Modern Democrats are now basically neo-feudalists.

  • tarran||

    No. Government schools and utter ignorance of the reigns of terror and pogroms of the 1600's.

  • sasob||

    Seventeen hundreds and eighteen hundreds in France and Russia.

  • Douchey defeats Trumpman, Jr.||

    The electoral college has in contravention of the popular vote delivered the two worst presidents in history in the span of my adult life (Trump will unquestionably be the worst ever).

    But lefties are always so objective and open-minded.

  • sasob||

    Well of course they're open-minded - they have holes in their heads!

  • This Machine||

    the only reason this country gives more votes to hillbillies is because their ancestors wanted to continue owning people and forcing them to do free labor and didn't want any oversensitive hippies to get in their way with so much as a majority and moral case.

    RRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRETARD.

  • DesigNate||

    It's mighty progressive of you to admit what an abject failure and horrible president Obama has been. I don't think that's going to win you any friends of the leftist variety though.

  • Lurk Diggler||

    No, the reason why a Constitution is not a popular vote is because the states wouldn't have ratified it otherwise. You can write all your high minded ideals on toilet paper if you'd like but they don't mean anything if nobody joins.

    Another words the republic has an electoral college, because if they didn't, there wouldn't be a republic for you to even fetishize about ruling from afar.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    FDR won huge popular vote hauls and he was literally within the top 5 worst presidents. FDR put Americans in concentration camps and conspired to hide serious illness from Americans.

    I would say the two impeached presidents Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton. Nixon is on for almost being impeached.

    #5 is....

  • butt-head||

    Wilson.

  • Zeb||

    The Hillbillies (which does have a specific meaning) were not the slave owners, you ignorant slut.

    While you are correct that the constitution was originally set up to keep the slave states in the club, it's not as if abolition was an option on the table at the time. And if the slave states had formed their own country, or become independent states, slavery probably would have persisted for longer than it did.

    Slavery was pure evil, but you talk about it as if the founders could have ended it but chose not to.

  • GroundTruth||

    Tony! Where have you been hiding? Haven't seen your name in a while, thanks for coming back for us to kick around!

    But such an easily hit pitch, right down the middle over the plate??? " in contravention of the popular vote " Of course even you know the answer: It's a republic, not a democracy.

  • You ARE a Prog (MJG)||

    The Constitution has several conservative and anti-democratic provisions in it. People have had 225 years to accept that.

  • sasob||

    You are an ignorant and dishonest cockroach, Tony. The electoral college and congressional representation were set up expressly to keep the states with "hillbillies" and slave owners from having so many votes and power. At the time of ratification, large, rural, slave-owning states like Virginia had very large populations compared to relatively smaller, non-slave-owning, urban states.
    In congress they would have run rough shod over the smaller states, and their favorite sons would have had a clear advantage in becoming president. Have you forgotten - or were you even aware - that Virginia once included the states that are now West Virginia and Kentucky? Most of the southern, Atlantic seaboard states once extended significantly farther west than they do now.

    As for the "popular vote" - two things: one is that there is no popular vote for president - it is a myth. Voters are voting for an elector to represent them in the electoral college, which does the actual electing of the president. It is very similar to voting for representatives and senators to represent them in congress, but congress does the actual voting on legislation. Don't like it? Fine - amend the constitution.

    Two? With all the voting fraud that the liars, beggars and thieves (not to mention whoremongers) party - also known as Democrats - usually engage in, it is highly problematic whether either Gore or Hillary Clinton ever actually won the so-called "popular vote."

  • sasob||

    Hillary's husband, Cigar Bill, didn't the first time he ran. Btw, I guess America didn't care to smell Hillary's cigar this election.

  • Bodica Slayer of Woodchip||

    "Hillbilly" is a derivative of Billy's Boys - supporters of King William were known as Orangemen and Billy Boys and their North American counterparts were soon referred to as hill-billies. The origin of this American nickname for mountain folk in the Ozarks and in Appalachia comes from the Ulster-Scottish.

    And, contrary to your assertions, those hillbillies weren't slave owners! They were prisoners-of-war, who were on the losing side of the various English civil wars from 1640s to the early 1700s. Most of those "hillbillies" actually perished (mortality rates were over 65%), working in the plantation fields of Virginia and the British West Indies. The last official battle was the Battle of Preston in 1715.

  • Invisible Finger||

    In Chicago, 102% of the population voted.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    There was a recount- Every man, woman and child voted. All 103% of them.

  • Longtorso, Johnny||

    Dead people swaying elections on IL is bad enough. We don't want them deciding national elections.

  • The Fusionist||

    Lawrence Longley showed that the winner take all rule benefits the larger states, since a large state then has more influence over the election than a small one. "We Won Pennsylvania!" is better news than "We won Rhode Island!"

    Longley thinks this is a bad thing, but I'd argue that, given the Rube Goldberg system the founders set up, each part of the system interacts with the others so that messing with one part will affect the whole.

    To be more specific, the Electoral College advantage to large states balances out the small-state advantage in the Senate. Without the Electoral College, the influence of large states would be diminished when they already have a disadvantage in Congress.

    In any case, it's my understanding that *no* candidate got a majority of the so-called "popular vote," so freaking out that your candidate should have won because a plurality of voters voted for her seems disproportionate.

  • Chip Your Pets||

    Lawrence Longley showed that the winner take all rule benefits the larger states, since a large state then has more influence over the election than a small one.

    This argument doesn't make any sense. Large states would have more influence than small states in a direct popular vote too.

    Winner-take-all is chosen by each state individually, it's not an inherent feature of the EC. Note that Maine and Nebraska do not have winner take all. WTA does make any state, small or large, more influential than it would be not having WTA.

    In fact, the EC gives advantages to small states due to the inclusion of the senate seats in the EVs. For example, California has 53 times as many people as Wyoming, but only 17 times the electoral votes.

  • The Fusionist||

    No, I'd disagree.

    Again, there's more reason for a candidate to want to win Pennsylvania than to win Rhode Island.

    Hypothetically, if Rhode Islanders and Pennsylvanians disagree over something, whose side do you think a Presidential candidate would take under the current system.

    48 state legislatures have decided to go with the winner-take-all system because it gives their states, *qua* states, significance in the process. They always have the option of diluting their vote, but only Nebraska and Maine have taken that option.

  • Chip Your Pets||

    Again, there's more reason for a candidate to want to win Pennsylvania than to win Rhode Island.

    Which would be true in a popular vote system even moreso, since PA has 13 times as many people but only 5 times as many EVs. What you're talking about is a feature of any kind of democracy, not just the EC.

  • The Fusionist||

    I think the EC magnifies that tendency - if you alienate PA interests you risk losing *all* PA's votes, whereas under a popular-vote system you'd still pick up the votes of your hard-core party loyalists in PA regardless of how much you sell them out.

  • Chip Your Pets||

    Nope. In a popular vote system, it would be better to lose every vote in RI than to lose 10% of the vote in PA.

    Notice that the campaigns were spending more time fighting over NH than CA. It's not a big state vs. small state thing, it's a divided state vs. solid state thing.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Its also that the states ignored were decided, or so the parties thought.

    Taxifornia is going blue, so spend ~0% of the time there. NH might go Blue or Red, so spend some time there but they only have 4 EC votes.

    PA was important in this race because Trump was already 55 electoral votes behind before starting because CA was going blue.

    It is about what and how many states you have. We are a nation and if you cannot win most of the states, you probably should not be president. Winning the most populous states of CA, NY, TX and FL only will not win you the presidency.

  • DarrenM||

    I'd say WTA favors large states. In a state with a population of 10 million, you are "disenfranchising" 5 million people. In a state with a population of 1 million you are "disenfranchising" only 500,000 people. (I'm assuming the win is 50% + 1, then rounding.) The losing half of the population in the large state is effectively forced to support the winner just by existing and having electors allocated to the state on their behalf bound to the winner. The larger the state, the more leverage.

  • Ken Shultz||

    "We have 51 separate elections."

    We would still have 51 separate elections if there was no electoral college.

    The reason the electoral college is there is to give slave era Southern voters a disproportionate amount of power in Congress and in choosing the President--because slaves represented legitimate population in terms of census reapportionment of representatives to the House (albeit 3/5 of a person).

    If the framers had only counted free people for reapportionment purposes, the Southern states would have been run over by the North in Presidential elections and in the House of Representatives. The Southern states simply wouldn't have joined the union without either slaves being counted in full or the electoral college.

    In short, the electoral college is an an anachronism that was designed to weight power heavily in favor of the South to account for slavery. We could get rid of the electoral college and still have 51 elections and weight the results by state as single member districts. There is no need to have actual people come together and vote one way or the other. The number of "votes" for President could still be your number of senators plus your number of representatives--even if there weren't any actual people voting in an electoral college.

    That being said, "Because Hillary Clinton lost an election" isn't a good reason to change anything.

  • Chip Your Pets||

    That is bullshit. Even worse, it's bullshit that pushes a left wing narrative.

  • Ken Shultz||

    It isn't bullshit, and it doesn't push a left wing narrative.

    Oh, and even if it did push a left wing narrative, that wouldn't necessarily mean it wasn't true.

    Are you somebody who thinks the left wing is wrong because their solutions are wrong?

    Or are you somebody who thinks the left wing's solutions are wrong because they're left wing?

    P.S. Getting rid of the anachronism of the electoral college as I described wouldn't even change the outcome of this or any other election.

  • Chip Your Pets||

    Yawn. You're making a claim, a pretty extensive claim in fact, and providing no evidence. So yeah, I'm gonna call BS.

  • Ken Shultz||

    You think I'm the first person to notice this?

    There are whole sections of your local library filled with books that have been written about the Three Fifths Compromise, its impact on the electoral college, etc., etc.

    There have been reams of literature written on the topic going back to 1789!

    Your ignorance isn't my problem. Go read a book!

  • Chip Your Pets||

    "impact on the electoral college"

    ding ding ding! So you do know the EC existed before the 3/5 compromise?

    Then how could the Electoral College have been created to help slave states, when the compromise forced by the slave states happened AFTER the EC already was agreed upon?

  • chemjeff||

    "In short, the electoral college is an an anachronism that was designed to weight power heavily in favor of the South to account for slavery."

    Read Federalist No. 68. Hamilton envisioned the Electoral College to be akin to the nobility in England that had some say, formally or informally, in royal succession. Basically, if the rabble chose the "wrong" person to be president, the Electors should step in and choose the "right" person.

  • Ken Shultz||

    I'm sure he argued that when he was selling the Constitution to northern voters. It may even have been a contributing factor.

    Meanwhile, what was the purpose of the Three-Fifths Compromise?

    It was about the apportionment of representatives to the House and the obvious impact of that on Presidential elections--was it not?

    Why was adding new territories to the union such a contentious issue?

    We know the answers to these questions.

  • Chip Your Pets||

    The House and Senate and the electoral college were decided on before the 3/5 compromise, not the reverse. You're dispensing moonbattery that benefits the left wing narrative.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Excuse me, you're saying that how seats in the House would be apportioned was already decided before they decided how seats in the House would be apportioned?

    Either you're reading things you don't understand, or you've been binge watching Rick and Morty.

  • Bodica Slayer of Woodchip||

    Can you give us another grammar lesson? PULEEEEEZE?

  • Chip Your Pets||

    That the House would be apportioned according to population was already decided, yes. That's the Great Compromise, which came far earlier in the Constitutional Convention.

    The 3/5 compromise was merely about how slaves would be counted in the population computation.

  • sasob||

    I'm sure he argued that when he was selling the Constitution to northern voters.

    Not only was Hamilton a "northern" voter himself, he was also adamantly opposed to slavery. He wasn't attempting to aid the slave-holding states. He just wanted as many of them in the union as possible to make for a larger, stronger country - both financially and otherwise.

  • The Fusionist||

    If the slave states had their way, slaves would have counted as full persons.

    If the non-slave states had their way, slaves wouldn't have counted at all.

    The slave states voted to uphold slavery, and they did it while basically casting the votes of 3/5 of their slaves, who themselves had no say.

    With slavery abolished, and racial restrictions on voting at an end, all this is no longer relevant.

  • The Fusionist||

    "non-slave states" isn't technically accurate since all the states were slave states, but I'm using shorthand to describe states north of the Mason-Dixon which shortly after the Constitution was adopted, began abolishing slavery.

  • Chip Your Pets||

    Fun fact: when the Civil War broke out, there was a New York case making its way through the federal system that argued that state bans on slavery constituted a violation of the 5th amendment... which Chief Justice Taney, fresh off the Dred Scott decision, intended to make the law of the land to end the slavery issue forever.

  • The Fusionist||

  • Ken Shultz||

    "If the slave states had their way, slaves would have counted as full persons."

    That is incorrect.

    The question was also about taxation. If slaves were property, then they were taxable.

    Three-Fifths Compromise:

    "Representatives and direct Taxes shall be apportioned among the several States which may be included within this Union, according to their respective Numbers, which shall be determined by adding to the whole Number of free Persons, including those bound to Service for a Term of Years, and excluding Indians not taxed, three fifths of all other Persons".

    ----Article I, Section ii, Paragraph 3

    The North wanted to count only free persons for the House of Representatives, and they wanted to count slaves as property for tax purposes.

    The South wanted to count slaves as people for the House of Representatives, and they wanted to count slaves as nothing for tax purposes.

    They compromised on 3/5 for both.

  • Chip Your Pets||

    The North wanted to count only free persons for the House of Representatives, and they wanted to count slaves as property for tax purposes.

    The clause you just quoted does not authorize federal property taxes, so not sure what you could possibly mean. The only tax authorized by that clause is a tax on people, so if the North got its way (slaves don't count as people), the South would not pay taxes on slaves at all.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Are you Tulpa?

  • The Fusionist||

    As it happened, Congress used to be very sparing with the imposition of direct taxes. So the slave states reaped the benefit of this clause while rarely experiencing the down side.

  • Ken Shultz||

    The South wouldn't have joined the union otherwise.

    In fact, they left the union once Lincoln could get elected without any support from the South. It was even more tenuous than that in the beginning.

    People look back at it now and assume the union was inevitable and the terms could have been dictated to be whatever we wish we had now--if only they'd stood firm.

    But, in reality, as often happens, the deal they got was the only one that could have worked.

    Otherwise, we'd probably be a collection of independent countries. The North through and into the Ohio valley. The South. The Texas Republic. There might be a Mormon state centered in Utah. And Mexico might still extend up through Southern California.

  • The Fusionist||

    I'm just noting that the Southern states wanted their slaves to count as persons for representation purposes, they settled for 3/5 and a concession that direct taxes would be apportioned the same way as representation, but this "concession" wasn't a big deal since the feds mainly relied on duties not direct taxes until much later.

  • The Metonymy||

    "The Migration or Importation of such Persons as any of the States now existing shall think proper to admit, shall not be prohibited by the Congress prior to the Year one thousand eight hundred and eight, but a tax or duty may be imposed on such Importation, not exceeding ten dollars for each Person" - US Constitution Article 1, Section 9

    - Set in motion the banning of the importation of slaves into states on January 1, 1808

    - Made it expensive to cross state lines to sell and buy slaves (back when 10 dollars was equal to half an ounce of gold...) because a tax or duty could be imposed on each slave, on each state line crossed

    Thus, the reason slave states wanted their slave populations to count towards the apportionment of Representatives in Congress - the House of Representatives being where tax legislation is made.

    Essentially, the framers of the Constitution sought to destroy slavery by making it financially impractical to own or transport a slave.

  • The Metonymy||

    Had the duty on slave importation been enforced....

  • Grand Moff Serious Man||

    The reason the electoral college is there is to give slave era Southern voters a disproportionate amount of power in Congress and in choosing the President

    This is wrong. The EC was created as a check on mob rule and to prevent an unqualified or disreputable person becoming president by running a populist campaign. It's very clear from the Federalist Papers that electors were intended to be independent agents not bound to vote for anyone they didn't want to. The idea being they could compromise with other state's electors based on a candidate that suited their state's best interest.

    The 3/5ths Compromise was about Congressional representation since only Congress could interfere with slavery, the presidency was an afterthought.

  • Ken Shultz||

    It is not wrong.

    The House of Representatives was set up to exaggerate the power of Southern states in the House of Representatives, and the electoral college was set up to project that power into Presidential elections.

    When northerners were decrying "slave power" in the run up to the Civil War, even, they were talking about the South having an exaggerated number of representatives because of the three-fifths compromise.

    Honestly, guys, "Because Hillary lost an election" isn't a good reason to change anything.

    "Because Trump won" isn't a good reason to forget everything we know about American history, either.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    The House of representatives was set up because the Founders believed that the people must be represented and have common interest with the people. The Founders had several examples, including the House of Commons and Irish Parliament. The Founders wanted the people to have power but the reps to be checked by the other branches and The People.

    Fed Papers 52
    While the result was that the slave states had more reps in the House, the EC was designed to keep small states at par with large states in presidential elections. This kept the North and South on fairly even power terms for a few decades. As the power shifted to northern states and away from southern states plus various economic issues, the southern states decided to secede.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    The Founders were absolutely concerned about the how the president would be chosen and foremost was the concern by less populous states being controlled by more populous states. The Senate is the prime example of equal power of all states in that House of Congress and Congress could not do anything without both houses agreeing. Only the Senate can confirm executive appointees and ratify treaties. This gave all states equal say for matters like that. Another check of federal power was that states for and against slavery were fairly evenly matched. Another reason, new state entering the Union was such a big deal.

    Formation of the Constitution

    Furthermore, the Founders knew that adding new states would bring new opinions and factions to bring strength to any majority. The Founders planned that EC, the Constitution and citizen virtue would keep the Republic together.

  • ant1sthenes||

    The very notion of representative government implies that there is a difference between those people who have representation in public affairs, and the much smaller set of people who have decision-making power in public affairs. Just because the founders gave the franchise to a limited number of people didn't mean they thought other people didn't deserve representation, but more that they felt their chosen electorate would also act in the material interests of, e.g., their wives and children (the concept of a legal guardian relies on the same principle) and, less plausibly, their landless neighbors. That argument did not fly with free-staters in describing the relationship between slaveowners and their chattels, however.

  • Chip Your Pets||

    One advantage of the Electoral College that doesn't get much play is its stymieing of election fraud at the state level. If we had the president elected by national popular vote, a corrupt election commissioner in New York City could manufacture enough fake ballots to guarantee that the Dems win every time.

    But with the EC, the ability of a crooked election official to sway the election is limited to his or her state's electoral vote. And of course, election officials in one-party states can't have any impact at all, only the ones in swing states where there is bound to be more oversight from the other party.

  • tarran||

    I think that is a feature and not a bug for some of the loudest advocates of its dissolution.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    I've been seeing on Derpbook the argument that the electors should all just vote for Hillary. In other words, an elector from Nebraska should completely ignore what the voters from Nebraska want, and just do what voters in New York and California want. Yeah, that's democracy at its finest.

  • tarran||

    That would be a good thing in the long term.

    In my opinion the conversion of the electors from people who soberly debated and discussed who the best person to run the executive branch to mindless rubber stamps is a major factor in the increasingly degraded people who ascend to the presidency.

  • Enjoy Every Sandwich||

    That's NOT what the Left is arguing for. They want the electors to pick Hillary simply because the so-called popular vote favors her. In other words vote in rubber stamp fashion.

  • SimonD||

    For that matter, they don't want electors to pick Hillary for any other reason than that they want electors to pick Hillary. All of the other is just an excuse to allow them to say it.

  • SWalkerTTU||

    Well, that WAS the reason that people voted for Hillary: so that electors would pick Hillary. And really, would you expect that to stop before everything's done and dusted?

  • tarran||

    Oh yes, they want the electors to make themselves even more irrelevant. Which.... is..... not...... going to happen.

    But, can you imagine if the electors sat down and actually did their fucking job?!? It would utterly puncture much of the idiocy surrounding the presidency.

    It wouldn't be a stable system; the electors would likely be lynched, and eventually the system would regress back to the current set up.

  • Chip Your Pets||

    Who would these electors be? Angels come down from heaven?

    The only thing I fear more than the mob electing a president is a blue-ribbon commission, hand-picked by politicians the state legislatures, electing a president.

  • tarran||

    Who would these electors be? Angels come down from heaven?

    Nope. They'd be the people who get to go now; people appointed by the secretary of their state as members of the state's delegation. The appointees would invariably be the same sorts of people who are sent now: the guys selected by the political party calling the shots (in my scenario the party controlling the state legislature, in the current scenario, the party winning the presidential election in that state). And that's why I predicted that were electors to start asserting their power to select the president and behaving in the manner envisioned by the people who proposed the electoral college even if there were cultural support for such a thing (there isn't) the incentives in the system are such that the system would regress back to what we have now; party appointees who vote for whomever their party had nominated and who had won the popular vote.

    The reason why I like the idea of an independent electoral college, it acts as a buffer to the mob. IT would be nice to see it assert independence, if it were to change people's expectations as to how presidents get selected. But I am pessimistic as to whether it would make much of a difference practically.

  • Chip Your Pets||

    They'd be the people who get to go now; people appointed by the secretary of their state as members of the state's delegation.

    Um no, that is not how it works now, thank God. The candidates choose their own electors. When you vote for president, you're voting for which slate of electors should be sent.

    There would be room for all sorts of dirty tricks if it were the secretary of state choosing electors; it would transform the popular vote into a meaningless beauty contest, even within a single state.

  • chemjeff||

    That is actually the type of thing Hamilton envisioned with the Electoral College.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    This is why state's rights are bad. Nebraska should not get to decide what it wants.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    The mob rules!!!

    Fucking-A!

  • Brochettaward||

    If Democrats love the popular vote so much, tell them to get rid of their own super delegates and just have one national primary to pick their candidate.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Haha. Yup. Hillary did not win the absolute majority of regular delegates in the Democrat primary. They kept saying sanders cannot win because x amount of super delegates are for Hillary.

  • SWalkerTTU||

    Hillary had roughly 400 more pledged delegates than Sanders, and collected more votes during the primary. The superdelegates ended up not making the difference, unless they'd all swung over to Sanders.

  • simplybe||

    People that are calling for a straight popular vote are very naive. The Electoral College is OK but it needs to be changed to reflect the popular vote of each district the elector comes from instead of all electors going to one candidate. As it stands now the major cities have to much say and if went to a straight popular vote only the major cities would control elections and small town America would revolt as they did in this election. But next time with arms. Look at the voting map and see who voted where

  • Angry after 40||

    Can someone with more time than me, and a louder voice, refute the Electoral College analysis by the elites in this manner: provide a table that shows, per state, per electoral vote, the number of Residents, Eligible Voters, Registered Voters, and Actual Voters.

    All of this noise about under represented CA and NY is BS. My back of the envelope shows that an actual Wyoming vote represents 250k voters, and CA represents 294k of voters. While off, it is not 2.5 times as valuable!!

    None of the the current EC analysis that points out that it was a compromise to Slave holders as an argument point out that in the present it is a compromise to legal and illegal aliens. The House and EC are representative of population, not legal citizen population. Which I actual consider a good thing. But I think recognizing that it does provide representation for the non-voter should be recognized. It certainly needs to be calculated in the discussion and used to refute the populist Democrat knee jerk jerks.

    CA in particular, with the SYSTEMIC processes to suppress R votes should not ask for anyone to investigate the fairness of voting. Again, I don't care too much as I choose not to live there. But don't make me care by claiming the victim!

  • sasob||

    Hmm. Maybe illegal immigrants should only count for 3/5 of a person for representation and tax purposes.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    This is done so that every part of the nation has some kind of say over the next executive.

    There's your trouble. You cannot expect a bunch of dumb hicks out there in the hinterlands to vote as wisely or as well as brilliant sensitive humane people in the Culture Centers of the nation.

    That's just silly.

  • Animal||

    Speaking as one of the dumb hicks out in the hinterlands, I have seen this argument put forth seriously by proggies more than once. My response is invariably "go fuck yourself."

  • Chip Your Pets||

    How about this for an idea: severely limit the powers of the executive branch, so that the Electoral College can't cause much damage when it votes for the "wrong" candidate.

    And while we're at it, since the Senate is also kind of undemocratic, let's limit the powers of Congress too, and let the oppressed people in blue states breathe the free air and govern themselves more.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    While you're at it, revert the Senate back to being chosen by state legislatures. This gives a share of power back to state's interests.

    I think the 17th Amendment was sold on BS and was designed to give cities more power. If the Legislature of a state chose the Senator, it would have to consider rural state legislative interests in picking senators. The argument of the time was that state legislatures were corrupt and buying and selling Senate seats and then these senators deadlocked legislation. There is definitely corruption in state offices and political positions are bought and sold.

    Notice how much bigger the government got after 1913, when the 17th Amendment was ratified? Deadlocked government is a small government and we cannot have that!

  • CE||

    I've never bought the anti-17th Amendment hype. If state legislatures picked the Senators, I suspect 99 out of 100 US Senators would be the exact same people, and Rand Paul would still be an eye doctor in Kentucky.

  • Chip Your Pets||

    I used to agree with that line, but then I found out that the 17th amendment was ratified by 3/4 of the state legislatures (I had always assumed it was done by state conventions because legislatures wouldn't want to limit their own power). It turns out that the state legislators were sick of their own local elections revolving around who the legislator would vote for for Senate, and wanted to get rid of that responsibility so they could focus on local issues rather than national ones. Which kind of makes sense -- under the former system, the composition of the state legislature was driven by who the voters wanted in the Senate, which makes no sense. Better to have a separate election.

    Notice how much bigger the government got after 1913, when the 17th Amendment was ratified?

    The ushering in of the income tax and the Federal Reserve were far bigger drivers of that.

  • Holger da Dane||

    Isn't this essentially the intention of the Constitution?

  • Uncle Jay||

    RE: Ignore the Mob—Long Live the Electoral College
    You can't always get what you want.

    "This week, anti-Trump protesters hit the streets in big cities around the country, chanting "This is what democracy looks like!"

    Well, it wouldn't be a circus without the clowns.

  • Zero Sum Game||

    We had a choice between the evil queen and the court jester. America chose the court jester because nobody knows what he'll do, but it will be funnier.

    (Kidding)

  • Uncle Jay||

    RE: Ignore the Mob—Long Live the Electoral College: New at Reason

    The electoral college was put in by our Founding Fathers because they learned the lessons of democracy in ancient Greece. They feared rule by "the mob" was a bad idea and preferred people who more literate (many, if not the majority of the people in the USA at the time were illiterate) voters. I still find their wisdom to be correct. The good news is, thanks to the electorate college, we do not have Hillary as president. The bad news is we have Trump as president.

  • Zeb||

    Mob rule is bad. But where it really went wrong in Athens was demagogues coming to power. Which, as we can see, our republic is not immune to. But perhaps becoming more democratic has made that easier.

  • Zero Sum Game||

    It is the first time it's happened as far as I know. I'm trying to think of any historical President ever elected who was and coming up empty. It is a pretty stunning rebuke to an entrenched establishment that everyone hates.

    Lots of things have changed about the process since the founding of the Republic that I don't think they'd have predicted. For one, the sunshine movement for transparency forcing votes in Congress to become public record instead of secret ballot. It used to be that lobbyists wouldn't know whether they had successfully bought a congresscritter because they couldn't know how one actually voted. They could take the money and lie their asses off saying "Well, I did my part but we just couldn't make it happen for you, sorry." Now those who distort the process with bribes can easily verify that they got what they paid for. Maybe we'd have gotten a different system if the founding fathers had predicted such an outcome.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    We could have had Christie as president.

    We could have had Sanders as president.

    Trump is not good but he is far the worst.

  • CE||

    No, Christie never had a chance. Unless he shut down the bridges to all the polling places.

  • IamNotEvil||

    I would support a direct popular vote democracy as long as the rule was you had to get 90%+ of eligible voters to win the position. Anything less is a vote of no confidence and the potion remains empty. Any position that remains empty for 10 years is permanently eliminated.

  • Loss of Reason||

    Superdelagates are ok.
    Electoral college is evil though.

  • CE||

    Electoral College on Nov. 7: Wise system that sets up a Blue Wall for a Clinton victory and a permanent Democratic majority.

    Electoral College on Nov. 9: Anti-democratic relic of a slave-holding elite.

  • mortiscrum||

    I remember the articles about the Blue Wall, and the Democratic majority....I must've missed the articles that argued that the electoral college was good because of these points though.

  • JasonPen||

    While we're at it, let's change the topic into repealing the 17th amendment... Then maybe we'd have enough conservative Senators to get real change in Washington. Like a balanced budget amendment and constitutionalists on the Supreme court...
    Out of all the shitty things that happened with Woodrow Wilson (The FED, income tax, WW1, UN) the 17th amendment was the worst.

  • sasob||

    Um, the United Nations didn't happen under Wilson - it came much later. You are thinking of his pet progressive project, the League of Nations, which the US never joined.

  • Inherent Chaos||

    #1 Excellent journalism
    #2 The Electoral sure seem to work for her against Bernie
    #3 She ONLY won the popular vote because of CA.
    #4 Dems lost EVERYTHING
    #5 NOTHING they can do will change the outcome
    #6 Someone tell them to sit down and SHUT-UP

  • DarrenM||

    #7 Republicans will screw up again and Democrats will be back in power.

  • RMulryan||

    It seems that Mr. Harsanyi was unaware of, has forgotten, or has purposely omitted the fact that President-elect Trump, himself, has criticized the role of the Electoral College. Perhaps this was before Trump fully understood "the vagaries of the electorate", or that " the Electoral College impels presidents and their political parties to consider all Americans in their rhetoric and action". The amount of irony displayed by the present political situation is staggering.

    Also omitted is the fact that the Electoral College can actually prevent the President-elect from becoming President, simply by abstaining from voting. The number of votes for this to happen is relatively small. Seems reasonable to me, considering the current President-elect has made a mockery of the principles of the Constitution of the very country that he intends to lead.

    This article needs to be more balanced. It's something that I would expect coming from a website that calls itself "Reason".

  • sasob||

    Also omitted is the fact that the Electoral College can actually prevent the President-elect from becoming President, simply by abstaining from voting.

    In that case would it not be thrown into the House of Representatives for resolution? Who do you suppose the present majority party in the House would pick?

  • ant1sthenes||

    It's a good thing I'm working from home, within easy reach of bourbon.

  • sasob||

    Oh shit - I missed that one. DRINK!!!

  • Red Rocks Dickin Bimbos||

    The amount of irony displayed by the present political situation is staggering.

    Yeah, it's pretty ironic that a long-time political mafiosa got schlonged twice in 8 years--first by a not-even-one-term Senator whose most notable accomplishment to that point was making a nice speech at the 2004 DNC, and a real estate magnate and reality TV star who had no political experience whatsoever--and won the popular vote in both instances.

    I guess when she made her Faustian bargain, the devil nailed her on technicalities.

  • Bozkuhi||

    I'm for one or the other, but not both. The tension now is specifically being caused by the fact that the votes don't match. The majority of Americans wanted Hillary. By like a Million votes.

    Yet the Pre-set electoral college votes, are the ones that count.

    This is stupid. If we are as is advertised a "Representative" Democracy and those who are elected, can do as they please and cast their electoral college votes the way they personally feel, then the National election is a moot point and a huge waste of time and money, and in this case a whole lot of aggravation.

    So I say get rid of the National election. Then we can get rid of the conventions, and most of the campaigns. The Presidential choices need only convince the "Representatives", need only campaign for electoral votes, and we can all go along with it and if we disagree with the wisdom of choice of our Representative, vote them out at the appropriate time.

    I'm all for that.

    I'm not sure I agree with your suggestion that the validity of the Electoral college is based on the "...valuable resourcefulness, imagination and brainpower..." of the smaller states. I'd need some proof that the contribution of lesser states beyond good barbecue, is significant.

  • ant1sthenes||

    The majority of Americans wanted Hillary. By like a Million votes.

    The majority of Americans didn't vote. Of those that could, the vast majority did not vote for Hillary. And her so-called "popular vote margin" ignores the fact that, thanks to the electoral college, not all votes are even counted. Go look up the number of uncounted votes, and then compare it to Hillary's margin. And before you assume they will break down in the same proportion, remember that absentee/overseas ballots are the ones most likely to remain uncounted, and a good chunk of those will come from deployed military folks -- are they more likely to break for Hillary or Trump?

  • Bozkuhi||

    I'm for one or the other, but not both. The tension now is specifically being caused by the fact that the votes don't match. The majority of Americans wanted Hillary. By like a Million votes.

    Yet the Pre-set electoral college votes, are the ones that count.

    This is stupid. If we are as is advertised a "Representative" Democracy and those who are elected, can do as they please and cast their electoral college votes the way they personally feel, then the National election is a moot point and a huge waste of time and money, and in this case a whole lot of aggravation.

    So I say get rid of the National election. Then we can get rid of the conventions, and most of the campaigns. The Presidential choices need only convince the "Representatives", need only campaign for electoral votes, and we can all go along with it and if we disagree with the wisdom of choice of our Representative, vote them out at the appropriate time.

    I'm all for that.

    I'm not sure I agree with your suggestion that the validity of the Electoral college is based on the "...valuable resourcefulness, imagination and brainpower..." of the smaller states. I'd need some proof that the contribution of lesser states beyond good barbecue, is significant.

  • DGB||

    Have to disagree here. The Electoral College is an antiquated wreck that deserves to go the way of the 3/5 rule. Sure, there are many protections that prevent the minority from mob rule, the earliest & most important being the Bill of Rights, and I respect and appreciate all of them. But saying the losing side is EVER entitled to have their candidate become president is a long way from protecting the losing side from abuse. We're talking apples and quantum physics here.

    Having said all that, I have no dog in this fight. I voted for Gary Johnson & see the Big 2 pretty much as Mick and Keef did, "a choice of cancer or polio". I don't think the electors should swerve Trump this time. The rules that applied at the beginning of the campaign are the ones that should apply at the end. And if by some chance we go to 1 person, 1 vote in 2020, and all those non-voting blue state Republicans show up to reelect Trump, so be it.

  • The Fusionist||

    A majority of the "popular votes" went to Not Hillary.

    In fact, replace Hillary with any other candidate and a majority of the votes went to Not That Person.

    They were all losers.

  • DGB||

    Sure, if you have a triple threat or a fatal 4-way then instant runoff voting should be applied.

  • DGB||

    And another thing, if the Ds want to win next time around, they can try nominating someone who does not take such a feral, predatory view of foreign policy. In Clinton I saw many a Cheney (not a compliment).

  • Tornado35235gsg35423ttg3gt3g3g||

    I saw she was like McCain....a robot running as not the other guy.

  • Tornado35235gsg35423ttg3gt3g3g||

    Hillary supporters loved the electoral college prior to the election. Why the change of heart by them?

  • Bra Ket||

    The internal affairs of a state are the domain of that state's govt not the federal govt. The federal govt's power is limited to interstate commerce, hence a vote based on states' preferences makes more sense.

  • Praveen R.||

    The EC is outdated. As far as protecting smaller states, they already have disproportionate representation in the senate. A person in NY or Texas should have the same power of his or her vote as a person in OH or FL. We are not even red states or blue states for the most part. It's red counties , blue counties in a lot of states. The President is already kept in check by the Senate. So let the President be selected by popular vote. It will get rid of politicians pandering to swing states alone. They will be forced to run campaigns for most states as a vote everywhere counts the same.

  • Tornado35235gsg35423ttg3gt3g3g||

    NY and Texas have more house representatives. The senate was supposed to be made up of those by the state government.

  • Tornado35235gsg35423ttg3gt3g3g||

    NY and Texas have more house representatives. The senate was supposed to be made up of those by the state government.

  • Praveen R.||

    Another reason to get rid of EC is people are a lot more mobile now. People move from state to state. The division is among localities too.

  • Don'tTreadOnMeChipper||

    The EC is more relevant than ever. The values of the populous states (cities) are clearly different than those of the rural areas. If the EC didn't exist, the chief executive of the United States could be elected while virtually ignoring rural states. How is that okay?

  • Praveen R.||

    Like I said, where is the power of the vote of someone in a rural area in CA or NY compared to the power of a voter in Miami? The power lies in your residence in swing state.

    Also, you ignore the fact that small states have more than fair representation in the senate which keeps the President in check.

    And it still comes down to one person one vote for a person who represents EVERY PERSON in the country.

  • Red Rocks Dickin Bimbos||

    Like I said, where is the power of the vote of someone in a rural area in CA or NY compared to the power of a voter in Miami?

    Next time, don't nominate a corrupt mafiosa who gave arms deals to countries that donated to the Clinton Foundation.

    Obama gave the white working class a reason to vote for him. Hillary's team thought they could rely exclusively on their urban shitlib base, and got burned because the centers of power for that constituency are limited to about 10-12 big cities--and she still couldn't get people excited enough to vote for her, because Trump increased his share of the black and Hispanic vote over Romney.

  • DarrenM||

    Let force people to be redistributed among the states based on their political ideology in such a way that all states are swing states.

  • Tornado35235gsg35423ttg3gt3g3g||

    What does people moving from state to state have to do with getting rid of the EC? They can still vote in those states they move to.

  • LynneBoyd||

    This idea that reds and blues don't vote in their state because they know the state will lean red or blue is sort of the point isn't, because in truth for every vote that leans red in a blue state or blue in a red state is the point. 1) without the electoral college red would never win without the popular vote; blue has never lost the popular vote and taking the electoral college. 2) without the electoral college everyone would vote because everyone's vote would matter. 3) without the electoral college there wouldn't be protesters because the vote would be cut and dry, win the population, win the election. 4) the electoral college was established at a time when the population was nothing like it is now, as progressive as the founding fathers were as so elegantly pointed out that we'd be upsetting them, I think they would more then agree they're system was a stepping stone for the future progression of our country. I would also dare to state that as new citizens to this country themselves they would never say let's build a wall. But let's pretend for a minute that all our ancestors (unless your 100% Native American) came here from somewhere else. I am pretty sure the founding fathers would not be frowning on anyone for trying to progress this country in a direction that meets the needs of it people and allows their voices to be heard.

  • sasob||

    No pretense needed. All our ancestors did come here from somewhere else - including those of us who are so-called,100 % Native Americans. Homo Sapiens did not originate in North America - they migrated here from elsewhere.

  • liberalinsight||

    Electoral college today, senate tomorrow.

  • Hank Phillips||

    God's Own Creationist was doing just fine until the last paragraph about the popular vote not mattering. Spoiler votes determine all changes in national policy--most especially the Y2k transubstantiation of the Democratic Party into the Arbeiterpartei of Environmental National Socialism. Green spoiler votes cost them a win in Y2k by draining off 5 times the gap, and again just now by that loss too obviously converting them to environmental purity not-sees at the expense of individual rights. Surely the GOP violates enough individual rights for 3 or 4 parties, which is what Bush was doing with asset forfeiture before it touched off the subprime mortgage explosion. I was hoping the LP could spoilervote God's Own Prohibitionists out of the running, but you can't have everything... at least not just yet.

  • SWalkerTTU||

    Given that this is "Reason", this is ironically the most reasonable comment on the page.

  • Mike d||

    I respectfully disagree with the article. The points raised are well intentioned, but also just wrong.

    First off, the original idea behind to EC was to prevent "mob rule", but the way it currently works doesn't actually accomplish that. Thing is, your vote pretty much only counts if you live in a swing state, but that just means mob rule will take place in a few states instead of being spread out around the country. So you still have the issue of "vote buying", only it will get concentrated in a few areas instead of being spread around the country. Both parties will suck up to voters in the swing states instead of spreading their suckup-ness evenly throughout the country. Case in point, in 2008 Obama won in large part by bailing out GM. 8 years latter, Trump wins largely by promising to repeal NAFTA. The EC didn't really do its job of raining in mob rule.

    Secondly, if you are so worried about states rights getting trampled by mob rule; well, isn't that what the Senate is for. We already have a mechanism to protect the small states by giving them two senators.

    Thirdly, if I can't convince you; ok fine, lets compromise. How about a) do a popular vote, but give bonus votes (say, 100 k votes for each EC vote you would have won), or b) keep the EC, but whoever wins the overall popular vote gets a bonus 10 electoral votes. Fair?

  • SWalkerTTU||

    Obama didn't bail out GM until AFTER he was elected, and it was the Bush administration that used TARP money to keep them going as a stopgap. GM and Chrysler did become an issue, but probably not enough of one to swing the election one way or the other.

  • Mike d||

    Fair enough.

    But my larger point is that there is more incentive to give more to the people who live in swing states. Also, bailing out GM in the Midwest would have helped Obama with his re-election and later whoever his successor would be. I am not saying that there weren't good arguments on their own merits to save GM anyway, just that I don't think its fair to give them special treatment for living in a swing state.

  • Tornado35235gsg35423ttg3gt3g3g||

    Since it didn't result in the outcome you wanted....that doesn't mean it is invalid. You complain about mob rule and then want to install the popular vote as the main mechanism.

  • Mike d||

    You're missing my point. We are stuck with "mob rule" no matter what we do, short of strengthening the Supreme Court. The question is, now that we have it, whats the least bad way of doing it.

    Option 1, keep the electoral college.
    Option 2, use a simple popular vote system
    Option 3, some hybrid of option 1 and 2.

    As a Louisiana resident, my vote pretty much doesn't count. The upshot is that I get to vote for my ideal candidate instead of the lessor of the two evils. Therefore, neither Trump nor Hillary would do anything to benefit the people who live here. I mean yeah, it sucks that votes can be "bought" by giving people "free stuff"; but if thats the system no matter what I would rather that I and my neighbors at least get some of free stuff.

  • GroundTruth||

    1a)

    Move to an EC mode that looks like the original Congress: proportionate electors based on congressional districts, tempered by state electors (2 per state) selected by the legislatures of the states - Not by popular vote (and include a provision that the popular vote shall not be used as the basis for the state votes). It's not perfect, but it might help a bit.

    And yes Tony, I know that it is anti-democratic. That's the problem were trying to fix, or at least, temper.

  • smogly||

    Yet now one party controls both the Senate and Congress, and a member of their party holds the Presidency. That same party holds 37 state legislatures (as is cited in the article). It seems the electoral college has failed quite spectacularly in this instance in preventing one party from holding too much power.

    And certainly states like California and Texas have industries and functions that outweigh a measurement in population alone. Even though I find the suggestion that economic value should give or take some weight from a vote a bit troubling.

    And lastly, there is a continuous history of the Constitution being changed, so doing away with the electoral college doesnt mean you dont generally think the founding fathers did a decent job.

  • Tornado35235gsg35423ttg3gt3g3g||

    What does who holds congress and the state governments have to do with the electoral college? That only is for the election of President.

  • Eglei1||

    Now Soros and company are pulling out all the stops and harassing the electorate. Stand tall ladies and gentlemen- remember what's a stake. Don't let them bully you and stand up to them!

  • ToSeek||

    "Diffused democracy weakens the ability of politicians to scaremonger and use emotional appeals to take power."

    Yes, that worked really well this time.

  • Bish Chan||

    How does the national popular vote interstate compact circumvent smaller states when a few smaller states have joined it and a few more have considered or passed it in one legislative chamber? I'd say some of them realize that this electoral college doesn't necessarily give them any voice but simply gives it to swing states. Recall Delaware vs New York (1966) when a bunch of states including small states sued NY for using winner takes all.

    Ideally the EC would be retained so small states would have the extra votes, it is just the winner takes all system that 48 states have which distorts results. If they were proportionally allocated then both parties would vie for all states.

    It shouldn't be about Hillary or Trump. If it was popular vote or proportional allocation of EC votes they would have campaigned differently but i suspect Trump would still have won.

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