The Electoral College
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27 / M
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Posted 11/10/08 , edited 11/10/08
Eight years ago George Bush and Al Gore competed for the presidency. Although Al Gore defeated George Bush by over half a million votes in the popular polls he lost the election. George Bush won the election by the margin of -ONE- electoral vote. Even though the people preferred Al Gore George Bush won.

This has happened a total of four times throughout American history.

In 1824 John Quincy Adams lost the popular polls to Andrew Jackson. The electoral votes ended in a tie and the election was thrown to the House of Representatives.

Fifty two years later Ruthford B. Hayes defeated Samuel J. Tilden by a margin of one electoral vote in 1876.

Later that century,1888, Benjamin Harrison defeated Grover Cleveland by sixty-five electoral votes.

The electoral college is completely constitutional. It makes its first appearance in Article II section one, and then reappears in the 12th and 23rd amendments.

Each state receives a specific number of electors in the college. This number is equal to the states representatives and their senators. California, for example, has fifty-three representatives and two senators. That means they have fifty five points in the electoral college. Compare this to states like Oklahoma which have less than ten. Even Texas only has thirty four. Washington DC is given three representatives.

Personally I think the electoral college is a very good thing. Tyranny of the majority is still tyranny. California has more than thirty-million citizens. Oklahoma has less than four million, and other southern states have similarly small populations. However, southern states are a part of the nation. They have specific needs based on special geographical, economical, and political factors unique to them.

A candidate may ride a wave in one edge of the nation where population is higher to win the election and then reward these region for support while neglecting the rest of the nation and hurting America as a whole.

We can perhaps see this best in the case of Grover vs. Benjamin. Cleveland ran on over whelming support in the southern states. (Interestingly, Grover was a democrat. States like mine, Oklahoma, have traditionally been Democratic states apposed to the Republican party of the west, and north east)

Grover’s proposed plans to benefit the southern states while neglecting the rest of the nation. He had no intentions of serving the rest of the nation and -if- our system was strictly democratic the GOP states would’ve suffered. The nation as a whole would’ve declined. (As it is, Grover was later elected in 1892 and America then faced a little depression.)

United we stand, and all that jazz.

What are your thoughts and opinions on this system? Do you think that the electoral college should be abolished? Do you think we should keep it? Do you think that we should keep it in place as it is? Do you think it should evolve, and if so in what way? Naturally, why’s and why’s not.




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27 / F / BGSU - Ohio
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Posted 11/10/08 , edited 11/10/08
I believe that the system should be abolished. The presence of the electoral college means that citizens do not have a direct effect on the election. We rather elect people to choose our leader for us. This is perhaps the most important factor which makes our nation a REPUBLIC rather than a DEMOCRACY. As our founders feared, there are indeed many citizens who cannot be trusted to make good decisions when voting. That does not mean, however, that they do not have the right to vote as they choose (they do if we do not want to consider ourselves a nation of hypocrites).
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Posted 11/11/08

SkeletonQui wrote:

I believe that the system should be abolished. The presence of the electoral college means that citizens do not have a direct effect on the election. We rather elect people to choose our leader for us. This is perhaps the most important factor which makes our nation a REPUBLIC rather than a DEMOCRACY. As our founders feared, there are indeed many citizens who cannot be trusted to make good decisions when voting. That does not mean, however, that they do not have the right to vote as they choose (they do if we do not want to consider ourselves a nation of hypocrites).


I think you are wrong. The electoral college makes more votes count, and not less. The only way for your vote to actually matter in an election is if you will make or break a tie. If your candidate would win without you, then it doesn't matter if you vote or not. Voting in that instance becomes a waste of time which could be better spent on some more productive activity. If they will lose the election even if you vote, then you have paid the costs of voting for no logical reason. You wasted your time and you still get no policy benefits as a reward. If you make or break a tie you have a real effect on the election. You might ask how this relates to the electoral college. When you have a smaller over all population, and states have less people than the entire nation does, there is a higher chance that your vote will count in the election. Your vote has a much greater chance of making a difference than it would if you changed the system so we merely counted the popular vote. You still won't have much of a chance, but it becomes MUCH more unlikely that you will be pivotal in a system where whoever wins a plurality becomes president.
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30 / M / New Jersey
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Posted 11/11/08
The Electoral College is out dated and no longer needed. At the time it was created the vast majority was uninformed of what was going on outside of small local areas, thus could not make a logical choice. now that information is readily available people can make logical and informed choices. making the The Electoral College no longer need. but it will not go away
Posted 11/11/08
I would prefer the Electoral System to remain intact since it makes an efficient yet fair buffer against favoritism and serves a group of smaller states an opportunity to have their specific needs met by the elected president (pretty much what Seraph has already mentioned). True it may seem that the system prevents citizens from affecting the election directly and one can argue that it undermines the democratic nature of the U.S. However this nation is not entirely democratic because it also possesses traits seen in a republic like the Senate and the veto powers of the president. These republican components all serve as buffers so that not one group gains too much of an upper hand. Compare California with 55 electoral votes versus a number of Southern states who have fewer votes yet they have a common needs based on their unique status different to that of California. If they wish to have an opporutnity so that their needs will be addressed, the electoral college will grant that opportunity.
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27 / F / BGSU - Ohio
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Posted 11/11/08

YouAreDumb wrote:


SkeletonQui wrote:

I believe that the system should be abolished. The presence of the electoral college means that citizens do not have a direct effect on the election. We rather elect people to choose our leader for us. This is perhaps the most important factor which makes our nation a REPUBLIC rather than a DEMOCRACY. As our founders feared, there are indeed many citizens who cannot be trusted to make good decisions when voting. That does not mean, however, that they do not have the right to vote as they choose (they do if we do not want to consider ourselves a nation of hypocrites).


I think you are wrong. The electoral college makes more votes count, and not less. The only way for your vote to actually matter in an election is if you will make or break a tie. If your candidate would win without you, then it doesn't matter if you vote or not. Voting in that instance becomes a waste of time which could be better spent on some more productive activity. If they will lose the election even if you vote, then you have paid the costs of voting for no logical reason. You wasted your time and you still get no policy benefits as a reward. If you make or break a tie you have a real effect on the election. You might ask how this relates to the electoral college. When you have a smaller over all population, and states have less people than the entire nation does, there is a higher chance that your vote will count in the election. Your vote has a much greater chance of making a difference than it would if you changed the system so we merely counted the popular vote. You still won't have much of a chance, but it becomes MUCH more unlikely that you will be pivotal in a system where whoever wins a plurality becomes president.


Your individual points are correct. However, I fail to see how they relate to my belief that the electoral college goes against the principles supposedly supported by the nation.
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43 / M / orlando, fl
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Posted 11/12/08
the elcetorial college was originally set up the make it impossible for the people to vote for and put into office someone from england, so since we nolonger need that because of laws that say you must be a natual born citizen to even run for presidency then we no longer need a one sided system to tell us who will be president,

if you look into it further then you will find that 25 out of 50 states do not have to follow the popular vote, if thoses people of the electorial college feel that the other person is better for the presidency then they can, by law, give their votes to the other candidate,

that is why we live in a republic and not a democratic country, but yet we preach democracy to other nations and tell them to be more like that, our government is a hypocrite.

it doesnt matter who gets elected anyway, he or she is just window dressing, there is really a secret society of ultra rich people who control ours, and other countries governments,

we are talking people that dont need to carry anything but the clothes on their back around with then, when they want something they just get it, no money or credit cards involved, they are the kind of people you never see or read about because they own everything in this world, or sould i say they let other people own things,

i know it sound crazy but i belive it to be true, you can call me crazy i don't mind
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