Electoral College: Time For A Change

Terrance McLeod, Staff WriterElectoral college

   The election of the President in recent years has been con- troversial and it’s mainly due to the Electoral College. The one person who can tell you how important the Electoral College is to an election is Al Gore. In 2000 Gore won the nationwide
popular vote but did not get enough Electoral College votes to win the Presidency. That meant that the majority of Ameri- cans wanted al gore as President which you would think is all you need to win but this not the case, being that this is be- cause the popular vote does not actually elect the president.

   The Institution of the Electoral College is what officially elects the President of The United States. The President and Vice President are not elected directly by the voters but rather, elected indirectly by “electors” who are elected by popular vote on a state-by-state basis. Electors are appointed to each state and the Washington D.C. The num- ber of electors in each state is equal to the number of mem- bers of Congress to which the state is entitled. Republicans in a number of states are looking for ways to change how the Electoral College tallies votes. This comes after the Novem- ber election where President Obama won six states that have Republican Governors and Legislatures. As of right now all of the states except for Maine and Nebraska allocate all their electoral votes by the state wide popular vote. This means that whoever wins the state-wide popular vote gets all of the state’s electoral votes, while Maine and Nebraska allocate their votes based on who wins each congressional district. Virginia has a bill that will allow them to change the system to allocate by congressional district. President Obama only won four dis-
image courtesy of huffingtonpost.com
tricts in Virginia but won the state-wide popular vote. The state of Virginia has 11 congressional districts, which means he would have received less than half of the 13 electoral votes the state carries. If each of the six republican controlled states were allowed to allocate there votes like this it is very possible that the president would be Mitt Romney because of the 88 votes combined that those states hold would be split between him and Obama. Romney won more congressional districts than President Obama in each of these states. How the Elec- toral College votes are tallied has always been something of a conspiracy to many Americans, but many Americans do not want it changed. Akeem Hyland, a student at SUNY Oneonta said, “I don’t understand why we don’t just count up the votes that every American casts and decide that way, it just feels like our vote doesn’t count but the Electoral College has been in place for a long time so I guess it works.” Another student Jus- tin Jones said “we should just do away with it, it just seems shady.” The Electoral College system seems to be in need of dire changes and the republicans seem to want these changes.

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