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Post Reply Ideas for electoral reform in the U.S.?
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Posted 17 days ago
Whether you agree or disagree with the results of last week's election, I think many of us have noticed some issues with the way we vote. Low voter turnout, the methods we use to decide the winners, "strategic voting" for candidates you don't feel really deserve the votes they get, and more. It's become even more clear after this recent election that something needs to change if we ever want to prevent such a huge mess from happening again. Let's go over ideas that we as a country might be open to. If you're from another country, feel free to weigh in too. If you don't have time to read through all of these suggestions, skip to the last paragraph.

Methods for casting a ballot




There's no perfect method for voting. Every method is flawed to some extent. I personally find range voting to be the most flawed out of the three I mentioned. However, I think all of them could prove to be more effective than our current First Past The Post system. Especially approval voting. All these methods help give political parties an equal chance since people would be able to vote for the Libertarians or Green Party or some other third-party without fear of helping a terrible candidate come out on top. Any one of these methods would prevent like-minded candidates from splitting the vote and giving someone else the victory only by a plurality. It would become extremely difficult to use strategic voting to prevent one candidate from winning when everyone is able to vote their conscience.

Electoral College




Regardless, whatever change happens to the EC would have to be approved by enough states to make up a majority in electoral votes (270).

Get Out The Vote


Getting voters to turn out for election day is always a difficult task. Voter apathy could lead to someone winning with minimal support from the community just because hardly anyone felt like voting for their opponent.



After reading that great wall of text (I bet Trump would be jealous of how big it is), what do you guys think? I went over a lot of different ideas so we could discuss what changes most of us would like to see. Were any of these suggestions worse than our current First Past The Post system? An improvement? I'd like to see if anyone has any other ideas that sound plausible. Any system is bound to have flaws so don't worry if you're unsure about how well it'd work. I don't agree with these ideas 100%. They're just suggestions to get us brainstorming. I'd also like to see the thoughts of people from outside the U.S. since our voting system is so different from any other country and some of these ideas have been implemented in other countries. There are also problems with the way we handle primary elections, but this post is already getting too long. But we could also talk about that if you guys have any ideas.
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Posted 17 days ago , edited 17 days ago
I'll stick with what has been working for all these years, thanks.

I'll go with a popular vote if they require a photo ID and if they make voter fraud punishable by execution.
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Posted 17 days ago
I'm going to be honest, I thought you were going to say some really stupid shit, about this. Honestly, I've mostly been hearing only stupid shit, due to the majority of particular people worried about this issue at the moment. So I was completely surprised that what you said was fairly intelligent, reasonable ideas.

I support the electoral college percentage vote. Except, the Electoral College would be pointless. it would still be based loosely on popular vote vs percentage of the country these people occupy. (That's how it should be, in my opinion.) So, I personally feel this would work. If California is worth 55 votes, and 10% of those go to Trump, Trump gets 5.5 "electoral college" votes. That makes sense, to me. AND, it reduces a lot of question about the system.

Some argue that it should be popular vote. However, I've lived on the beach in California, on the beach in North Carolina, in the city in Texas, and in the country in Texas. These are very different people with varying needs. I don't feel like the vast majority of people in rural deep east Texas should have their entire political system determined by a cluster of people in cities scatter throughout the US. My idea was the withdraw of Federal power with the replacement of State power, but this would also fix the problem.

With the secondary/primary choice votes, it may actually accomplish making the two party system into a positive force, and grant viability to the 3rd parties. For example, we very well could have ended up with Jill Stein or Gary Johnson, had the majority of America voted either one as a second option. To me, that's great.

All in all, I'm fairly fucking impressed. Thanks for this post.
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Posted 17 days ago

PhantomGundam wrote:

Whether you agree or disagree with the results of last week's election, I think many of us have noticed some issues with the way we vote. Low voter turnout, the methods we use to decide the winners, "strategic voting" for candidates you don't feel really deserve the votes they get, and more. It's become even more clear after this recent election that something needs to change if we ever want to prevent such a huge mess from happening again. Let's go over ideas that we as a country might be open to. If you're from another country, feel free to weigh in too. If you don't have time to read through all of these suggestions, skip to the last paragraph.

Methods for casting a ballot




There's no perfect method for voting. Every method is flawed to some extent. I personally find range voting to be the most flawed out of the three I mentioned. However, I think all of them could prove to be more effective than our current First Past The Post system. Especially approval voting. All these methods help give political parties an equal chance since people would be able to vote for the Libertarians or Green Party or some other third-party without fear of helping a terrible candidate come out on top. Any one of these methods would prevent like-minded candidates from splitting the vote and giving someone else the victory only by a plurality. It would become extremely difficult to use strategic voting to prevent one candidate from winning when everyone is able to vote their conscience.

Electoral College




Regardless, whatever change happens to the EC would have to be approved by enough states to make up a majority in electoral votes (270).

Get Out The Vote


Getting voters to turn out for election day is always a difficult task. Voter apathy could lead to someone winning with minimal support from the community just because hardly anyone felt like voting for their opponent.



After reading that great wall of text (I bet Trump would be jealous of how big it is), what do you guys think? I went over a lot of different ideas so we could discuss what changes most of us would like to see. Were any of these suggestions worse than our current First Past The Post system? An improvement? I'd like to see if anyone has any other ideas that sound plausible. Any system is bound to have flaws so don't worry if you're unsure about how well it'd work. I don't agree with these ideas 100%. They're just suggestions to get us brainstorming. I'd also like to see the thoughts of people from outside the U.S. since our voting system is so different from any other country and some of these ideas have been implemented in other countries. There are also problems with the way we handle primary elections, but this post is already getting too long. But we could also talk about that if you guys have any ideas.


First, not everyone is dumb enough to fall for the idea of mob agreement. Some people step back and think about why these founding fathers, who in their own right were extraordinarily smart, designed the college the way they did. And I'm quite sure the reasons are outlined in something they wrote.

None of your suggestions mesh.

Abolishing the electoral college abolishes the republic's fair say in who runs the executive branch of the country. The issues of smaller or lower populated states like Iowa are far different than the issues of overpopulated states such as California and New York. Further, this should be obvious, those states have "newer" citizens. People who migrate through those states often stay and overpopulate it. Lately they've been overpopulating with illegal immigrants and happily continued their practice of no-id required. If you recall there was an issue with dead people registering to vote, now you know why...

Compulsory voting is without question wrong. If people want to trust their neighbors with the decision they should be allowed to do so. Just because they do so, does not mean they forfeit their right to representation.

Percentage is the same issue as compulsory voting. If people want to trust their neighbors with the decision they should be allowed to do so. Just because they do so, does not mean they forfeit their right to representation. And that is and has been a statewide issue. State governments are quite different and as such people of states share a unique position in the country. Many people in Texas, for example, do not vote because they know their state will always vote red. Due to extraordinary efforts to prevent voters from voting this year, it was much closer than usual. See project Veritas videos for details.
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Posted 17 days ago
Is this really a problem?
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Posted 17 days ago

HolyDrumstick wrote:

I'm going to be honest, I thought you were going to say some really stupid shit, about this. Honestly, I've mostly been hearing only stupid shit, due to the majority of particular people worried about this issue at the moment. So I was completely surprised that what you said was fairly intelligent, reasonable ideas.

I support the electoral college percentage vote. Except, the Electoral College would be pointless. it would still be based loosely on popular vote vs percentage of the country these people occupy. (That's how it should be, in my opinion.) So, I personally feel this would work. If California is worth 55 votes, and 10% of those go to Trump, Trump gets 5.5 "electoral college" votes. That makes sense, to me. AND, it reduces a lot of question about the system.

Some argue that it should be popular vote. However, I've lived on the beach in California, on the beach in North Carolina, in the city in Texas, and in the country in Texas. These are very different people with varying needs. I don't feel like the vast majority of people in rural deep east Texas should have their entire political system determined by a cluster of people in cities scatter throughout the US. My idea was the withdraw of Federal power with the replacement of State power, but this would also fix the problem.

With the secondary/primary choice votes, it may actually accomplish making the two party system into a positive force, and grant viability to the 3rd parties. For example, we very well could have ended up with Jill Stein or Gary Johnson, had the majority of America voted either one as a second option. To me, that's great.

All in all, I'm fairly fucking impressed. Thanks for this post.


This. All of this.

The best system seems to be an electoral college percentage vote with a Ranked Choice Voting ballot.
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Posted 17 days ago
I'm okay with electoral college percentage voting, as well. Every system has its flaws, but this would at least address the issue of 'battleground states' being the only ones that really matter. If a state's votes are split up 60-40 (give or take), it means the rest of the election still matters. And it's more worthwhile to vote if you're part of the minority party in a state (liberal in Texas, conservative in California), since you may help snag an extra college vote or two for your candidate as opposed to wasting a few hours of your life standing in line.

I like Ranked Choice ballots, but I don't know if America is in a position where it would do much good. Third parties get so little coverage; Gary Johnson had the most, this election, and I still don't think I recall seeing him on mainstream news except when he asked 'what is Aleppo?'. Which, yes, was embarrassing, but if that's all people really know about you, he's not going to get much more of the vote than he did this time. Range, approval, and other ballots have the same issue, and I think are also just a bit too confusing for most people. I know with Range, you'd have the issue of candidates appearing on the ballot multiple times in some states and it'd be a pain to count the votes correctly while dealing with people potentially checking off a candidate's name multiple times.

( I don't know if this is something in many states, but since I vote in New York, we have candidates listed multiple times for every party that makes them their candidate. I'm not entirely sure why; census, perhaps, or maybe to help fund smaller parties. Regardless, we have things like Trump being on the ballot twice - once for the Republican Party and once for the Conservative Party. If you check both, your ballot is disqualified with our current system. Clinton, I believe, was also on there two or three times but I'm not sure what her other party was besides the Democrats. )
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Posted 17 days ago
I really like the ideas on ranked voting. Giving us more options. allowing us to say yeah this is my favorite candidate and if that happens to be third party they can get the kind of recognition they need. It'll be more based on how much you like each candidate instead of saying " damn if i dont vote for the main parties im gonna lose my vote"
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Posted 17 days ago , edited 16 days ago
Keep it the way it is.
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Posted 17 days ago

HolyDrumstick wrote:

I support the electoral college percentage vote. Except, the Electoral College would be pointless. it would still be based loosely on popular vote vs percentage of the country these people occupy. (That's how it should be, in my opinion.) So, I personally feel this would work. If California is worth 55 votes, and 10% of those go to Trump, Trump gets 5.5 "electoral college" votes. That makes sense, to me. AND, it reduces a lot of question about the system.


Yeah, now that I think about it, it does sort of make the Electoral College redundant. At least it would still solve the issue of votes for losing candidates not having any impact on their state's electoral votes.


All in all, I'm fairly fucking impressed. Thanks for this post.


And thanks for your feedback.


Emtro wrote:

Abolishing the electoral college abolishes the republic's fair say in who runs the executive branch of the country. The issues of smaller or lower populated states like Iowa are far different than the issues of overpopulated states such as California and New York. Further, this should be obvious, those states have "newer" citizens. People who migrate through those states often stay and overpopulate it. Lately they've been overpopulating with illegal immigrants and happily continued their practice of no-id required. If you recall there was an issue with dead people registering to vote, now you know why...


You're right that different states have different issues and that this was what the Founding Fathers wanted the national elections to be like. However, the country is severely different today than how it was when these laws were made. Texas, California, and Florida weren't around at the time. The country wasn't split between democrats and republicans.

The Electoral College has effectively rendered most states meaningless since only a few states have control over who wins the electoral vote. Presidential candidates don't have to campaign around the country. They only campaign in those few states since anyone who votes for them in any other state doesn't matter. There's no way the 5 or 10 largest states all vote one way without the rest of the country also voting the same way so this fear makes little sense with today's politics. If Texas and New York ever go to the same candidate, you can be sure most states would go to them too. What we have now only forces candidates to try to appeal to a few states if they ever want to win. The majority of states have their individual needs ignored just so the candidates could focus on a few states. It goes against the very purpose of the Electoral College in the first place. Whatever happens to the Electoral College, it'll need most states to come to an agreement anyways.

Also, I'm not sure why so many people believe the myth that illegal immigrants are swarming the voting booths. That's silly. They can't register to vote and have their registrations approved as if they were citizens. It doesn't work that easily. Besides, election fraud and voter suppression can happen on both sides, not just in the democrat's side.


Percentage is the same issue as compulsory voting. If people want to trust their neighbors with the decision they should be allowed to do so. Just because they do so, does not mean they forfeit their right to representation. And that is and has been a statewide issue.


I did say that I don't completely agree with everything I said. I was just throwing ideas around to get us thinking. If you feel that the current system doesn't need to be changed, that's fine too.


State governments are quite different and as such people of states share a unique position in the country. Many people in Texas, for example, do not vote because they know their state will always vote red.


Which is partly why I'm trying to find alternative systems. The Electoral College is what makes votes in safe red and safe blue states useless. Under the current rules, it doesn't matter how big or small the margin of victory is. The winner gets all the electoral votes period. Voting democrat in Texas yields no results except in very rare cases. Supporters for a candidate who lost the state by even just 1 vote have no representation.


pansyforyourthoughts wrote:

( I don't know if this is something in many states, but since I vote in New York, we have candidates listed multiple times for every party that makes them their candidate. I'm not entirely sure why; census, perhaps, or maybe to help fund smaller parties. Regardless, we have things like Trump being on the ballot twice - once for the Republican Party and once for the Conservative Party. If you check both, your ballot is disqualified with our current system. Clinton, I believe, was also on there two or three times but I'm not sure what her other party was besides the Democrats. )


That does make it sound more confusing for voters who don't understand the concept. I imagine the rules for marking the same candidate multiple times listed under different parties would probably be the same as they are now. I don't remember if such votes are invalid or if they only count towards the marked party listed first on the ballot.

It really is weird how we do this in New York. I don't think most other states do this.
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Posted 17 days ago
The electoral college is a really small part of the problem.

Say, for whatever reason, during the election neither Hillary and Trump got at least 270 votes and a 3rd candidate actually won a couple states.

What would happen?

The House of Representatives would vote for who would be president.

https://www.archives.gov/federal-register/electoral-college/faq.html#no270
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Posted 17 days ago
Honestly, I think the truth is, America is too dumb for popular vote and too dumb for cumulative voting

I'd be interested in maybe something like this



But I don't really think that would work either.
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Posted 17 days ago

PhantomGundam wrote:
The Electoral College has effectively rendered most states meaningless since only a few states have control over who wins the electoral vote. Presidential candidates don't have to campaign around the country. They only campaign in those few states since anyone who votes for them in any other state doesn't matter. There's no way the 5 or 10 largest states all vote one way without the rest of the country also voting the same way so this fear makes little sense with today's politics. If Texas and New York ever go to the same candidate, you can be sure most states would go to them too. What we have now only forces candidates to try to appeal to a few states if they ever want to win. The majority of states have their individual needs ignored just so the candidates could focus on a few states. It goes against the very purpose of the Electoral College in the first place. Whatever happens to the Electoral College, it'll need most states to come to an agreement anyways.


This is another point of disagreement then. This is what makes the electoral college meaningful since all states are given 2 votes for senators. The only way to accommodate what you're issue with it is to make those senatorial electoral votes worth like 5 each so all states get 10 votes for their senators. I'm not sure I like that idea but that would be the solution to your problem.
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Posted 17 days ago , edited 17 days ago
Well the only big change I would want to see is a rebalancing of votes. States like California, Florida, Texas, Pennsylvania, etc have too many votes, while others states are just too insignificant in their number of votes (states with 5 or less votes). There are 538 electoral votes and 50 states, votes should be rebalances to between 5 and 15 votes per state. This would be so that a few states can't decide the policies and leaders of the whole.

If you want to change how votes are allocated so that the population actually has a say, then half the state's votes are decided by the electoral representative of the state, the other half are the votes are divvied out by percentage of popular vote of citizens.



Although honestly, I would rather just see the country divided in half. Democrats/Liberals can have the east side, and Republicans/Conservatives can have the west. Clearly the country is too divided to be effectively governed by one person.
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Posted 17 days ago
how about
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