Electoral College Final Revised[1]

Electoral College Final Revised[1] - Michael Kissane...

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Michael Kissane Professor Richard Hall Should We Abolish the Electoral College? The process which would be used in a electing a president was perhaps one of the most heavily debated issues that our forefathers had to agree upon when developing the US Constitution. After experiencing and suffering under the rule of a king for centuries, they wanted to be sure that this process was well thought out. They all knew what they did not want, but could not really agree on what they wanted. There were those who felt that the only way to elect a president was by a popular vote. Others felt that this would only lead to citizens voting for candidates that they were familiar with from their own state, never giving other candidates consideration. Some felt that the only logical way to elect a president was to have the elected officials from Congress make the choice, taking the decision making process away from the general public. From all of these different opinions a compromise was reached that would decide how we elected the President of the United States for centuries to come. The compromise was the Electoral College (Glennon). Although this process was effective for many years, it has now become outdated and is no longer a useful method of electing a president. Every four years, members of The Electoral College from each state, chooses the President of the United States. Every state has their own rules on how the individuals of the Electoral College, known as electors, are selected. The number of electors from each state is determined by the number of congressman that the state has, plus their two Senators. The larger the population of the state, the more electors they have in the Electoral College. There is nothing in the US Constitution that requires an elector to vote the will of the people, however, most state electors pledge their support to the choice of the general population. When individuals cast their 1
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vote for president, they are really voting for an elector who has pledged their support and is assigned to a particular candidate from a specific party. When the election is over the electors whose candidate receives the greatest number of popular votes in the particular state, are pledged to cast their electoral vote for the assigned candidate. All but a couple of states have a winner take all policy, where the winner would receive all of the electoral votes issued to the state (NARA). The states of Maine and Nebraska can actually split votes among candidates proportionately. Today there are 538 electors who choose the president, which means that a candidate needs 270 to win a majority. In the event that nobody receives the 270 votes needed to be elected, the House of Representatives would select the next President of the United States
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This note was uploaded on 04/07/2008 for the course HOSP 390 taught by Professor - during the Spring '08 term at UMass (Amherst).

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Electoral College Final Revised[1] - Michael Kissane...

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