Let’s graduate from the Electoral College

Living through both the 2016 and 2020 elections has made me see problems with the way America elects presidents. I remember being so excited that Hilary Clinton had more votes than Donald Trump until my mom explained to that’s not how presidents got elected. I was more than a little disappointed to learn that Clinton lost the Electoral College but almost 2.9 million people voted for her than Trump. I realized that Americans don’t vote directly for their own president.

The founding fathers were a group intellectual elites who distrusted the common men of America. They wanted people to have an opinion on who would be their president but not actually elect their president in case they disagreed with the popular vote, so they created the electoral college. 

There are many downsides to the Electoral College. The Electoral College disproportionately represents voters, giving some people more power then others depending on the state they live in. People living states with a large population means their vote has less power then a person’s vote in a smaller state. For example, in Wyoming a vote counts four times as much as a vote in Texas. 

The election results are determined by a minority of the population. In 2008, 70.39 percent of the votes casted for president were not factored in to determine the winner of the election. Most states use the winner-takes-all method to determine which candidate gets all of their electoral votes. But, in some states the electors don’t have to vote for who won the popular vote in their state. This makes voting completely pointless if it does not even effect who the electors vote for. 

Maine and Nebraska use a different system to determine who gets what amount of electoral votes. They use the congressional district method which uses the popular vote of each district to divide the electoral votes. This is one method that could be used instead of the winner-takes-all method, and better represents people’s votes. 

The method that is the most democratic and fair is to elect our president by popular vote. This means that every person represents one vote and everyone’s votes make a difference in the election. If we changed to the popular vote method and scrapped the Electoral College, I believe there would be a better voter turnout. If people knew their votes counted, people would be more willing to vote. What is the point of voting for a Republican candidate in California with the Electoral College system? A Republican vote in California is useless because California is overwhelmingly liberal. 

Some people say that without an Electoral College smaller states would have less power, which is true. However, smaller states should have less power than bigger states because they have fewer people in them. 

The recent election was decided by very close votes in swing states even though Joe Biden won over 5 million more votes than Trump. This proves that there is something wrong with the Electoral College system.

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