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Historical Presidential Elections in Maps

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Posted

I could be wrong, but I thought part of the reasoning for the electoral college was to appease some of the smaller less populated states. Going to a straight popular vote I think would diminish the importance of votes in less populated states...

I'm no political expert, so take my words as just a frustrated citizen trying to be objective for new reasonable solutions.

Well that's what evolved out of it, but was never the actual intent. That argument falls apart when you ask the question why we should appease people in smaller states by making their vote count more than a person in a populous state.

Land shouldn't have a vote, people should. 1 person = 1 vote, that's my opinion on it.

There are 5,000,000 people in California whose vote simply don't count because they voted for Romney. That's just not right to me.

After 2000 it was impossible to get this point across to the right because the EC worked in their favor. Now that they had a close glimpse of the possibility of the same situation, maybe we can actually get something done.

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Posted

I agree, we need to go to the popular vote. If you are a republican and are voting in Cali like you said, or NY, why even vote? No one in the country should feel like their vote doesn't count. In a popular vote, we may have more people showing up. Same thing with democrats in Texas or whatever. I think I seen only like 60% or something of people vote, that's absurd, but maybe the electoral college IS to blame for a large % of that.

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Posted

how?

My thinking in that statement was that Politicians would start to tailor their agenda to benefit the bigger cities/more populated areas while for example farming policy or other lower population issues would be neglected.

I lurk on this sub-forum quite often but I understand I am not as political savvy as most of you in here, so if I've made in accurate assumptions in my speculations I would understand.

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Posted

The president was originally designed to be nothing but an executive of a federation of independent states. According to various constitutional theory, this is counter balanced by the popular vote derived congress.

The original idea was that the president would be elected expressly by congress with no actual citizen voter input. This was eventually morphed into the current electoral college because of a fear of the populace being distrustful of a president elected by a relatively small group of people who meet together on a regular basis.....IE corruption, and the divisive issue of suffrage rights and the slave population.

While you were correct, somewhat, in that smaller states supported the idea because of them viewing it as a way to maintain a fair shake in the process counter to their smaller population - it was not the primary reason for it's inception.

Thanks... makes sense.

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Posted

My thinking in that statement was that Politicians would start to tailor their agenda to benefit the bigger cities/more populated areas while for example farming policy or other lower population issues would be neglected.

I lurk on this sub-forum quite often but I understand I am not as political savvy as most of you in here, so if I've made in accurate assumptions in my speculations I would understand.

no, you're correct in how it used to be... but the as floppin explained, the structure of government has changed... i wasn't sure if you were talking about the past or I was missing how this would be an effect in modern day gov.

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Posted

That's silly overcomplication. The electoral college is a holdover from when we didn't have good enough communication to count every vote and report them in a timely way.

We do now, so there's absolutely no need for the electoral college in any way whatsoever.

Communication had little to do with it. Originally, the president wasn't sworn in until 6 months or so after the election, so time to count votes wasn't really an issue.

Its a holdover from the founding fathers not trusting the people. In many ways they were right. Voters on both sides still make choices for incredibly stupid reasons. Obama is going to pay my mortgage or Romney is going to keep the democrats from taking my guns come to mind.

Floppin is right, the original plan called for Congress to elect the president, similar to european parliamentary style elections for prime minister. It would be interesting to see how that would work out. Of course, at that time, the president had much less power than he does now.

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Posted

Communication had little to do with it. Originally, the president wasn't sworn in until 6 months or so after the election, so time to count votes wasn't really an issue.

Its a holdover from the founding fathers not trusting the people. In many ways they were right. Voters on both sides still make choices for incredibly stupid reasons. Obama is going to pay my mortgage or Romney is going to keep the democrats from taking my guns come to mind.

Floppin is right, the original plan called for Congress to elect the president, similar to european parliamentary style elections for prime minister. It would be interesting to see how that would work out. Of course, at that time, the president had much less power than he does now.

If they didn't trust the voters then, I wish they could see the voters now.

This country is filled with retards.

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Posted

The electoral college is almost as big a non-issue as the two-party system.

The problems with American politics are an extension of the problems with American culture, not arbitrarily decided by men wearing suits in poorly-lit rooms.

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The electoral college is almost as big a non-issue as the two-party system.

The problems with American politics are an extension of the problems with American culture, not arbitrarily decided by men wearing suits in poorly-lit rooms.

go on

I'm interested in your take

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Posted

go on

I'm interested in your take

Only four presidential elections haven't resulted in the guy with the popular vote winning. The only one most people can name is the most recent one. So, if the question is just whether or not the electoral college works, evidence suggests it does (at least consistently enough that, as I said, it's not crippling the American political system -- it's a non-issue).

Opponents of the electoral college are usually motivated either by partisan changes in the wind or a desire to shift even further toward direct democracy, neither of which are good reasons. Direct democracy is bad for many reasons, but most succinctly because of the following quote:

“A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves largesse from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates promising the most benefits from the public treasury with the result that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy, always followed by a dictatorship. The average age of the world's greatest civilizations has been 200 years.”

- Alexis de Tocqueville

The electoral college also acts as part of the checks and balances of our political system. It's a check against the executive branch to prevent the presidency from falling into bad hands. And giving too much power to any one body (including "the people") can also have bad consequences.

Again, the entire point of the electoral college is that it's not democratic. It's not supposed to be. It's only there to prevent bad presidents from being elected via bad public support. It's a check against public power over the executive branch, and, by extension, the executive branch itself.

Whether or not you like the electoral college probably boils down to whether or not you prefer democracy or republicanism. The former is a sure way to bankrupt your government; the latter, when constitutional and representative, has a lot more staying power. And is more preferable morally to the tyranny of the majority.

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