What's new
US Message Board - Political Discussion Forum

This is a sample guest message. Register a free account today to become a member! Once signed in, you'll be able to participate on this site by adding your own topics and posts, as well as connect with other members through your own private inbox!

Why an Electoral College?

OldLady

Diamond Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2015
Messages
69,076
Reaction score
19,086
Points
2,220
When the Electoral College was conceived, votes had to be counted and collected/reported via horseback or sailing ship. Apparently, our founding fathers wanted someone watching the final voting, so they had representatives come from the states to do the deed. Times have changed.
If the new app created to report the votes of the Iowa caucus works well (which it seemed to last night), couldn't we eliminate the electoral college and go to a straight count of votes for the presidential election? We certainly don't need to wait until December anymore for the results of the popular vote.
Does it have some important purpose I'm not aware of?
 

Rouge Rover

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 27, 2016
Messages
935
Reaction score
120
Points
45
When the Electoral College was conceived, votes had to be counted and collected/reported via horseback or sailing ship. Apparently, our founding fathers wanted someone watching the final voting, so they had representatives come from the states to do the deed. Times have changed.
If the new app created to report the votes of the Iowa caucus works well (which it seemed to last night), couldn't we eliminate the electoral college and go to a straight count of votes for the presidential election? We certainly don't need to wait until December anymore for the results of the popular vote.
Does it have some important purpose I'm not aware of?

Yes, it balances power.
 
OP
OldLady

OldLady

Diamond Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2015
Messages
69,076
Reaction score
19,086
Points
2,220
When the Electoral College was conceived, votes had to be counted and collected/reported via horseback or sailing ship. Apparently, our founding fathers wanted someone watching the final voting, so they had representatives come from the states to do the deed. Times have changed.
If the new app created to report the votes of the Iowa caucus works well (which it seemed to last night), couldn't we eliminate the electoral college and go to a straight count of votes for the presidential election? We certainly don't need to wait until December anymore for the results of the popular vote.
Does it have some important purpose I'm not aware of?

Yes, it balances power.
Any possibility you (or someone else) could explain a bit more? Whose power? We the people can't be trusted?
 

Rouge Rover

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 27, 2016
Messages
935
Reaction score
120
Points
45
When the Electoral College was conceived, votes had to be counted and collected/reported via horseback or sailing ship. Apparently, our founding fathers wanted someone watching the final voting, so they had representatives come from the states to do the deed. Times have changed.
If the new app created to report the votes of the Iowa caucus works well (which it seemed to last night), couldn't we eliminate the electoral college and go to a straight count of votes for the presidential election? We certainly don't need to wait until December anymore for the results of the popular vote.
Does it have some important purpose I'm not aware of?

Yes, it balances power.
Any possibility you (or someone else) could explain a bit more? Whose power? We the people can't be trusted?

No, we can't be trusted, that's why we have the Senate.
 

Toddsterpatriot

Diamond Member
Joined
May 3, 2011
Messages
67,083
Reaction score
14,581
Points
2,180
Location
Chicago
When the Electoral College was conceived, votes had to be counted and collected/reported via horseback or sailing ship. Apparently, our founding fathers wanted someone watching the final voting, so they had representatives come from the states to do the deed. Times have changed.
If the new app created to report the votes of the Iowa caucus works well (which it seemed to last night), couldn't we eliminate the electoral college and go to a straight count of votes for the presidential election? We certainly don't need to wait until December anymore for the results of the popular vote.
Does it have some important purpose I'm not aware of?

couldn't we eliminate the electoral college and go to a straight count of votes for the presidential election?

No.
 
OP
OldLady

OldLady

Diamond Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2015
Messages
69,076
Reaction score
19,086
Points
2,220
When the Electoral College was conceived, votes had to be counted and collected/reported via horseback or sailing ship. Apparently, our founding fathers wanted someone watching the final voting, so they had representatives come from the states to do the deed. Times have changed.
If the new app created to report the votes of the Iowa caucus works well (which it seemed to last night), couldn't we eliminate the electoral college and go to a straight count of votes for the presidential election? We certainly don't need to wait until December anymore for the results of the popular vote.
Does it have some important purpose I'm not aware of?

couldn't we eliminate the electoral college and go to a straight count of votes for the presidential election?

No.
I'm beginning to believe that everyone is as confused about the purpose of this mysterious Electoral College as I am. I'm sure not getting much of an explanation as to its Very Important Purpose.
Are you telling me the whole system is rigged by the parties to ensure someone like Trump doesn't get elected?
 

Toddsterpatriot

Diamond Member
Joined
May 3, 2011
Messages
67,083
Reaction score
14,581
Points
2,180
Location
Chicago
When the Electoral College was conceived, votes had to be counted and collected/reported via horseback or sailing ship. Apparently, our founding fathers wanted someone watching the final voting, so they had representatives come from the states to do the deed. Times have changed.
If the new app created to report the votes of the Iowa caucus works well (which it seemed to last night), couldn't we eliminate the electoral college and go to a straight count of votes for the presidential election? We certainly don't need to wait until December anymore for the results of the popular vote.
Does it have some important purpose I'm not aware of?

couldn't we eliminate the electoral college and go to a straight count of votes for the presidential election?

No.
I'm beginning to believe that everyone is as confused about the purpose of this mysterious Electoral College as I am. I'm sure not getting much of an explanation as to its Very Important Purpose.
Are you telling me the whole system is rigged by the parties to ensure someone like Trump doesn't get elected?

It's to give smaller states a say.
It also makes massive liberal vote fraud less profitable.
Nothing to do with Trump.
 

C_Clayton_Jones

Diamond Member
Joined
Apr 28, 2011
Messages
60,325
Reaction score
18,279
Points
2,250
Location
In a Republic, actually
When the Electoral College was conceived, votes had to be counted and collected/reported via horseback or sailing ship. Apparently, our founding fathers wanted someone watching the final voting, so they had representatives come from the states to do the deed. Times have changed.
If the new app created to report the votes of the Iowa caucus works well (which it seemed to last night), couldn't we eliminate the electoral college and go to a straight count of votes for the presidential election? We certainly don't need to wait until December anymore for the results of the popular vote.
Does it have some important purpose I'm not aware of?

Yes, it balances power.
Any possibility you (or someone else) could explain a bit more? Whose power? We the people can't be trusted?
We're a Constitutional Republic, not a democracy.
 

mvymvy

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 3, 2008
Messages
427
Reaction score
24
Points
51
A constitutional republic does not mean we should not and cannot guarantee the election of the presidential candidate with the most popular votes. The candidate with the most votes wins in every other election in the country.

Guaranteeing the election of the presidential candidate with the most popular votes would not make us a pure democracy.

Pure democracy is a form of government in which people vote on all policy initiatives directly.

Popular election of the chief executive does not determine whether a government is a republic or democracy.
 

mvymvy

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 3, 2008
Messages
427
Reaction score
24
Points
51
It's to give smaller states a say.
. . .

Now political clout comes from being among the handful of battleground states. 80% of states and voters are ignored by presidential campaign polling, organizing, ad spending, and visits. Their states’ votes were conceded months before by the minority parties in the states, taken for granted by the dominant party in the states, and ignored by all parties in presidential campaigns.

State winner-take-all laws negate any simplistic mathematical equations about the relative power of states based on their number of residents per electoral vote. Small state math means absolutely nothing to presidential campaign polling, organizing, ad spending, and visits, or to presidents once in office.

In the 25 smallest states in 2008, the Democratic and Republican popular vote was almost tied (9.9 million versus 9.8 million), as was the electoral vote (57 versus 58).

In 2012, 24 of the nation's 27 smallest states received no attention at all from presidential campaigns after the conventions. They were ignored despite their supposed numerical advantage in the Electoral College. In fact, the 8.6 million eligible voters in Ohio received more campaign ads and campaign visits from the major party campaigns than the 42 million eligible voters in those 27 smallest states combined.

The 12 smallest states are totally ignored in presidential elections. These states are not ignored because they are small, but because they are not closely divided “battleground” states.

Now with state-by-state winner-take-all laws (not mentioned in the U.S. Constitution, but later enacted by 48 states), presidential elections ignore 12 of the 13 lowest population states (3-4 electoral votes), that are non-competitive in presidential elections. 6 regularly vote Republican (AK, ID, MT, WY, ND, and SD), and 6 regularly vote Democratic (RI, DE, HI, VT, ME, and DC) in presidential elections.

Similarly, the 25 smallest states have been almost equally noncompetitive. They voted Republican or Democratic 12-13 in 2008 and 2012.

Voters in states that are reliably red or blue don't matter. Candidates ignore those states and the issues they care about most.

Kerry won more electoral votes than Bush (21 versus 19) in the 12 least-populous non-battleground states, despite the fact that Bush won 650,421 popular votes compared to Kerry’s 444,115 votes. The reason is that the red states are redder than the blue states are blue. If the boundaries of the 13 least-populous states had been drawn recently, there would be accusations that they were a Democratic gerrymander.

Support for a national popular vote is strong in every smallest state surveyed in recent polls among Republicans, Democrats, and Independent voters, as well as every demographic group

Among the 13 lowest population states, the National Popular Vote bill has passed in 9 state legislative chambers, and been enacted by 4 jurisdictions.

Now, the 11 most populous states (with over 270 electoral votes), by themselves, containing 56% of the population of the United States, could determine the Presidency.
 

mvymvy

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 3, 2008
Messages
427
Reaction score
24
Points
51
It also makes massive liberal vote fraud less profitable.
The closest popular-vote election count over the last 130+ years of American history (in 1960), had a nationwide margin of more than 100,000 popular votes. The closest electoral-vote election in American history (in 2000) was determined by 537 votes, all in one state, when there was a lead of 537,179 (1,000 times more) popular votes nationwide.

For a national popular vote election to be as easy to switch as 2000, it would have to be two hundred times closer than the 1960 election--and, in popular-vote terms, forty times closer than 2000 itself.

Which system offers vote suppressors or fraudulent voters a better shot at success for a smaller effort?
 

mvymvy

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 3, 2008
Messages
427
Reaction score
24
Points
51
Yes, it balances power.

Because of the current state-by-state winner-take-all method of awarding electoral votes, the indefensible reality is that more than 99% of presidential campaign attention (ad spending and visits) was invested on voters in just the only ten competitive states in 2012.

Two-thirds (176 of 253) of the general-election campaign events, and a similar fraction of campaign expenditures, were in just four states (Ohio, Florida, Virginia, and Iowa).

38 states were politically irrelevant.

There are only expected to be 7 remaining swing states in 2016.

Issues of importance to non-battleground states are of so little interest to presidential candidates that they don’t even bother to poll them.

Over 87% of both Romney and Obama campaign offices were in just the then 12 swing states. The few campaign offices in the 38 remaining states were for fund-raising, volunteer phone calls, and arranging travel to battleground states.

Since World War II, a shift of a few thousand votes in one or two states would have elected the second-place candidate in 4 of the 15 presidential elections

Policies important to the citizens of non-battleground states are not as highly prioritized as policies important to ‘battleground’ states when it comes to governing.

“Battleground” states receive 7% more federal grants than “spectator” states, twice as many presidential disaster declarations, more Superfund enforcement exemptions, and more No Child Left Behind law exemptions.
 

mvymvy

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 3, 2008
Messages
427
Reaction score
24
Points
51
Presidential elections don't have to continue to be about a narrowly focused barrage of attention by the media, candidates, pollsters, strategists, organizers, and ads in the handful of unrepresentative swing states that dominate and determine the general election, while most of the country is politically irrelevant.

In Gallup polls since 1944, only about 20% of the public has supported the current system of awarding all of a state's electoral votes to the presidential candidate who receives the most votes in each separate state (with about 70% opposed and about 10% undecided).

Support for a national popular vote is strong among Republicans, Democrats, and Independent voters, as well as every demographic group in every state surveyed recently. In the 41 red, blue, and purple states surveyed, overall support has been in the 67-81% range -in rural states, in small states, in Southern and border states, in big states, and in other states polled.

There have been hundreds of unsuccessful proposed amendments to modify or abolish the Electoral College - more than any other subject of Constitutional reform. To abolish the Electoral College would need a constitutional amendment, and could be stopped by states with as little as 3% of the U.S. population.

Instead, by state laws, without changing anything in the Constitution, using the built-in method that the Constitution provides for states to make changes, the National Popular Vote bill would guarantee the presidency to the candidate who receives the most popular votes in the country.

Every vote, everywhere, would be politically relevant and equal in every presidential election. No more distorting and divisive red and blue state maps of pre-determined outcomes. There would no longer be a handful of 'battleground' states where voters and policies are more important than those of the voters in 80%+ of the states that have just been 'spectators' and ignored after the conventions.

The National Popular Vote bill would take effect when enacted by states with a majority of the electoral votes—270 of 538.
All of the presidential electors from the enacting states will be supporters of the presidential candidate receiving the most popular votes in all 50 states (and DC)—thereby guaranteeing that candidate with an Electoral College majority.

Most Americans believe that the candidate who receives the most votes should win.

The bill has passed 33 state legislative chambers in 22 rural, small, medium, large, red, blue, and purple states with 250 electoral votes. The bill has been enacted by 11 jurisdictions with 165 electoral votes – 61% of the 270 necessary to go into effect.

National Popular Vote -- Electoral college reform by direct election of the President
 

Toddsterpatriot

Diamond Member
Joined
May 3, 2011
Messages
67,083
Reaction score
14,581
Points
2,180
Location
Chicago
It also makes massive liberal vote fraud less profitable.
The closest popular-vote election count over the last 130+ years of American history (in 1960), had a nationwide margin of more than 100,000 popular votes. The closest electoral-vote election in American history (in 2000) was determined by 537 votes, all in one state, when there was a lead of 537,179 (1,000 times more) popular votes nationwide.

For a national popular vote election to be as easy to switch as 2000, it would have to be two hundred times closer than the 1960 election--and, in popular-vote terms, forty times closer than 2000 itself.

Which system offers vote suppressors or fraudulent voters a better shot at success for a smaller effort?

The current system makes fraud less profitable than a popular vote system would.
 

mvymvy

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 3, 2008
Messages
427
Reaction score
24
Points
51
The current system makes fraud less profitable than a popular vote system would.

It only took 537 votes, all in one state, when there was a lead of 537,179 (1,000 times more) popular votes nationwide, to elect the 2nd place national popular vote getter.

For a national popular vote election to be as easy to switch as 2000, it would have to be two hundred times closer than the 1960 election--and, in popular-vote terms, forty times closer than 2000 itself.

Which system offers vote suppressors or fraudulent voters a better shot at success for a smaller effort?
 

Skull Pilot

Diamond Member
Joined
Nov 17, 2007
Messages
45,446
Reaction score
6,146
Points
1,830
When the Electoral College was conceived, votes had to be counted and collected/reported via horseback or sailing ship. Apparently, our founding fathers wanted someone watching the final voting, so they had representatives come from the states to do the deed. Times have changed.
If the new app created to report the votes of the Iowa caucus works well (which it seemed to last night), couldn't we eliminate the electoral college and go to a straight count of votes for the presidential election? We certainly don't need to wait until December anymore for the results of the popular vote.
Does it have some important purpose I'm not aware of?
The founders thought the hoi polloi to be too stupid to be responsible for choosing a president that's why there is an electoral college
 

Toddsterpatriot

Diamond Member
Joined
May 3, 2011
Messages
67,083
Reaction score
14,581
Points
2,180
Location
Chicago
The current system makes fraud less profitable than a popular vote system would.

It only took 537 votes, all in one state, when there was a lead of 537,179 (1,000 times more) popular votes nationwide, to elect the 2nd place national popular vote getter.

For a national popular vote election to be as easy to switch as 2000, it would have to be two hundred times closer than the 1960 election--and, in popular-vote terms, forty times closer than 2000 itself.

Which system offers vote suppressors or fraudulent voters a better shot at success for a smaller effort?

Currently, fraud in Chicago could help Dems steal Illinois. LOL!
Under a popular vote system, it could help them steal the Presidency, again.
 

Rouge Rover

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 27, 2016
Messages
935
Reaction score
120
Points
45
Yes, it balances power.

Because of the current state-by-state winner-take-all method of awarding electoral votes, the indefensible reality is that more than 99% of presidential campaign attention (ad spending and visits) was invested on voters in just the only ten competitive states in 2012.

Two-thirds (176 of 253) of the general-election campaign events, and a similar fraction of campaign expenditures, were in just four states (Ohio, Florida, Virginia, and Iowa).

38 states were politically irrelevant.

There are only expected to be 7 remaining swing states in 2016.

Issues of importance to non-battleground states are of so little interest to presidential candidates that they don’t even bother to poll them.

Over 87% of both Romney and Obama campaign offices were in just the then 12 swing states. The few campaign offices in the 38 remaining states were for fund-raising, volunteer phone calls, and arranging travel to battleground states.

Since World War II, a shift of a few thousand votes in one or two states would have elected the second-place candidate in 4 of the 15 presidential elections

Policies important to the citizens of non-battleground states are not as highly prioritized as policies important to ‘battleground’ states when it comes to governing.

“Battleground” states receive 7% more federal grants than “spectator” states, twice as many presidential disaster declarations, more Superfund enforcement exemptions, and more No Child Left Behind law exemptions.

The elector system was not established in order to guarantee even campaign spending across the states.

No states are politically irrelevant, they all have votes to cast.
 

mvymvy

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 3, 2008
Messages
427
Reaction score
24
Points
51
The founders thought the hoi polloi to be too stupid to be responsible for choosing a president that's why there is an electoral college

The National Popular Vote bill would end the disproportionate attention and influence of the "mob" in the current handful of closely divided battleground states, such as Ohio and Florida, while the "mobs" of the vast majority of states are ignored.

In the 2012 presidential election, 1.3 million votes decided the winner in the ten states with the closest margins of victory.

Analysts already conclude that only the 2016 party winner of Florida, Ohio, Virginia, Nevada, Colorado, Iowa and New Hampshire (with 86 electoral votes among them) is not a foregone conclusion. So, if the National Popular Vote bill is not in effect, less than a handful of states will continue to dominate and determine the presidential general election.

In 1789, in the nation's first election, the people had no vote for President in most states. Only men who owned a substantial amount of property could vote. Since then, state laws gave the people the right to vote for President in all 50 states and DC.

The Electoral College is now the set of 538 dedicated party activists we vote for, who vote as rubberstamps for presidential candidates. In the current presidential election system, 48 states award all of their electors to the winners of their state. This is not what the Founders intended.

Now, 48 states have winner-take-all laws for awarding electoral votes, 2 have district winner laws.

The current system does not provide some kind of check on the "mobs." There have been 22,991 electoral votes cast since presidential elections became competitive (in 1796), and only 17 have been cast for someone other than the candidate nominated by the elector's own political party. 1796 remains the only instance when the elector might have thought, at the time he voted, that his vote might affect the national outcome.
The electors are and will be dedicated party activists of the winning party who meet briefly in mid-December to cast their totally predictable rubberstamped votes in accordance with their pre-announced pledges.

The U.S. Supreme Court has upheld state laws guaranteeing faithful voting by presidential electors (because the states have plenary power over presidential electors).

The National Popular Vote compact does not abolish the office of presidential elector or the Electoral College. Thus, there would be no change in whatever protection the current Electoral College system might provide in terms of preventing anyone from coming to power in the United States. However, there is no reason to think that the Electoral College would prevent anyone from being elected President of the United States, regardless of whether presidential electors are elected on the basis of the state-by-state winner-take-all rule or the nationwide popular vote
 

mvymvy

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 3, 2008
Messages
427
Reaction score
24
Points
51
The current system makes fraud less profitable than a popular vote system would.

It only took 537 votes, all in one state, when there was a lead of 537,179 (1,000 times more) popular votes nationwide, to elect the 2nd place national popular vote getter.

For a national popular vote election to be as easy to switch as 2000, it would have to be two hundred times closer than the 1960 election--and, in popular-vote terms, forty times closer than 2000 itself.

Which system offers vote suppressors or fraudulent voters a better shot at success for a smaller effort?

Currently, fraud in Chicago could help Dems steal Illinois. LOL!
Under a popular vote system, it could help them steal the Presidency, again.

Again. With the current state-by-state winner-take-all method of awarding electoral votes (not mentioned in the U.S. Constitution, but later enacted by 48 states), we know that as little as 537 votes, all in one state can determine the election.

Under the current state-by-state winner-take-all system, there are huge incentives for fraud and mischief, because a small number of people in a battleground state can affect enough popular votes to swing all of that state’s electoral votes.

In 2004, President George W. Bush had a nationwide lead of 3,012,171 popular votes. However, if 59,393 Bush voters in Ohio had shifted to Senator John Kerry in 2004, Kerry would have carried Ohio and thus become President. It would be far easier for potential fraudsters to manufacture 59,393 votes in Ohio than to manufacture 3,012,171 million votes (51 times more votes) nationwide. Moreover, it would be far more difficult to conceal fraud involving 3,012,171 votes.

The sheer magnitude of the national popular vote number, compared to individual state vote totals, is much more robust against manipulation.
 

USMB Server Goals

Total amount
$260.01
Goal
$350.00

Most reactions - Past 7 days

Forum List

Top