Electoral system flawed

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Is it me or am I the only one who sees a problem with our election process for president of the United States?

Every four years, the candidates spend fortunes trying to get your vote and to what purpose?

You have a candidate who gets the popular vote, but then loses because he doesn’t have enough electoral votes.

Or it’s very close, and then you have a few states, because they have more population than others, telling the majority of states who will be the next president.

I know the Founding Fathers of this country didn’t intend for a few states to have total control of the elections like they do.

And I understand it’s a preference of the people to live where they want, but why should states such as California, New York or Ohio always be the deciding factor in an election? Last I looked, there are 50 states.

Every election the electoral vote comes under scrutiny, usually by the losing party. Isn’t there a better way to do this? Why not have, say, one vote per state and territory, and let the majority vote determine which candidate receives the vote for that state for the election?

It shouldn’t matter whether you have 100 people in a state or 30 million – equal should be equal. One state, one vote. Then the candidate would have to address every state and its needs, not just the big, fat electoral vote states.

Every election it’s all about the big states. Why should they have more power and say-so than the smaller ones, or less populated ones? Are we not a nation about equality and states’ rights?

We need electoral reform. Every election they talk about it, but it never gets done. Do we not have a representative who has the courage to take this on?

How many times has either candidate come to this state looking for our vote? Probably not as much as Ohio, Pennsylvannia, Virginia or New York. Do we not count, too?

Lynda Andress

Hephzibah

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carcraft
25744
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carcraft 11/03/12 - 03:14 am
6
1
Simply wrong

Only 4 times has a person lost the popular vote and won the election. Everybody understands this is chess and not checkers. Who would care about Iowa if the Electoral College didn't exist? The election would come down to a few populated states and nobody would care about New Hampshire etc. the election would be decided in California, New York, Florida and other densely populated states. The reason candidates don't come to Georgia is because it is safely Republican, no need to for Romney, we are in his column, or a waste of time to come to Georgia for Obama we are not in play! It would be the same way if they were courting the popular vote!

Techfan
6461
Points
Techfan 11/03/12 - 06:31 am
5
1
I've been suggesting an end

I've been suggesting an end to the Electoral College for years. Eliminating the EC would also get rid of the totally ridiculous method of choosing the President and VP if there's an EC tie. There's a possibilty we could have President Romney and Vice President Biden. Under the EC, Wyoming gets 1 vote for every 189,386 citizens, while California gets 1 vote for every 685,307 citizens (Georgia get 1 vote for every 613,450 citizens). If there's a tie, Wyoming's 568,158 citizens get the same 1 vote as California's 37,691,912 citizens. A system where one vote is 66 times as valuable as another? Eventually, we're going to have an election that isn't close, yet a candidate wins the electoral college. It was bad enough when a 1/2 million votes were the difference in Bush and Gore. I think we would have a revolution if a candidate who has 10-15 million more votes loses. We need to get rid of the EC as soon as possible.

Techfan
6461
Points
Techfan 11/03/12 - 06:41 am
6
1
As to car's suggestion that

As to car's suggestion that states would get skipped, I think it would be the exact opposite. Every vote would count. Ga. may be a safe red state but without the EC, the blue votes would count. Now the only time you see candidates in small or safe states is during the primary season. I think candidates would cover more of the country knowing that even in states they'll lose the popular vote, the other votes might be the difference in the election. It also would encourage more people to vote. I guarantee there are people who stay home on election day in safe states because they know their vote doesn't count.

soapy_725
43676
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soapy_725 11/03/12 - 06:52 am
1
0
We could just let the senators vote
Unpublished

Then we could do away with congressmen and women. Or better still do away with the senators and have the 50 state governors vote the majority popular vote of their respective states.

The welfare centers determine the elections. Look at your census maps. Concentration of welfare service equals concentration of population equals Democratic voters.

We are on a snowball head for hell either way. It is not who votes, but who counts the votes. And we know who counts the votes.

Retired Army
17512
Points
Retired Army 11/03/12 - 07:38 am
4
2
The flaw here is that it

The flaw here is that it requires an amendment to our Constitution and ratification by 3/4 of the states. No way are the small less populus states going to give up that power.

Originally intended to protect smaller states from being overwhelmed by larger states, it is now devolving to just the opposite and we're pretty much stuck with it. With the exception of Florida the large population states get very little attention from Presidential candidates. Witness Texas, California and New York all motherlodes of electoral votes and pretty much safe year after year.

InChristLove
22472
Points
InChristLove 11/03/12 - 08:30 am
6
1
Why do people have to be so

Why do people have to be so ugly?

I'm sure whether Mrs. Andress missed a day or two in eight grade has no bearing on the concerns and questions she has regarding our electorial voting system. Many have the same concerns and questions and feel something needs to change.

Techfan
6461
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Techfan 11/03/12 - 08:40 am
2
1
Theoretically, a candidate

Theoretically, a candidate could win the Presidency with 11 votes, even though everyone in every other state voted against him/her.

Techfan
6461
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Techfan 11/03/12 - 08:48 am
4
0
It should be one person-one

It should be one person-one vote, not one state-one vote.

carcraft
25744
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carcraft 11/03/12 - 08:57 am
5
0
The Electoral College was set

The Electoral College was set up to prevent a tyranny of the majority! The founders hated the idea of majority rule. That is Why America has a representational form of government and is not a true Democracy. Originally Senators were appointed by State legislatures and not elected.

carcraft
25744
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carcraft 11/03/12 - 08:58 am
1
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Techfan-Please expalin your

Techfan-Please expalin your 11 vote win, I don't see it!

pearlthesquirrel
786
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pearlthesquirrel 11/03/12 - 09:03 am
0
0
4 times....
Unpublished

Yea, when I read L.A.'s third paragraph / sentence, it does come off like she says it happens every 4 years. This scenario has only happened 4 times:
2000...Bush / Gore...the "hanging chad" incident.
1888...Harrison / Cleveland
1876...Hayes / Tilden
1824...Adams / Jackson

nofanofobama
6820
Points
nofanofobama 11/03/12 - 09:08 am
1
1
car is right. Except it would

car is right. Except it would come down to the large urban areas of the larger populated states. While not perfect it's the better of the two. You want your vote to count the most stick with the current system. Do you want ny city and the largest cities to vote their candidates in and the smaller towns and rural areas to be left without representation. That's the popular vote.

seenitB4
86692
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seenitB4 11/03/12 - 09:19 am
2
2
Smoking something?

I think they were smoking pot when they came up with the EC...jmo

effete elitist liberal
3112
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effete elitist liberal 11/03/12 - 09:30 am
3
1
say what???

"why should states such as California, New York or Ohio always be the deciding factor in an election?" Lynda, they're not! The three states with the greatest population are California, Texas, and New York. The candidates have largely ignored all three. Of the largest population states, only Florida is "in play." Ohio is 7th. The other states likely to play key roles this year are Colorado (22nd), Iowa (30th), Nevada (35th) and New Hampshire (42nd). Your idea would require setting aside the 14th Amendment's guarantee of Equal Protection--ain't gonna happen....

Bizkit
31244
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Bizkit 11/03/12 - 09:54 am
3
0
Well the 14th amendment

Well the 14th amendment didn't quite cut it as American indians were excluded but the Voting Right's Act did finally protect indians and african-americans right to vote.However you still have to be a "citizen" so it isn't unreasonable to ask you demonstrate such. I agree with all because the 14 amendment was really to address post Civil War issues. As car explained it did serve the purpose he posited, however I think Tech is correct in that the populations are changing and the need for this method is likely becoming obsolete. Thus we may need to entertain addressing change. To maintain "equal protection" we may need to modify our method. But I disagree that having a prez of one party and a vice prez from another is a bad idea. Perhaps forming juxtaposed unions is the only way to break grid lock-force them to work together and compromise.

Bizkit
31244
Points
Bizkit 11/03/12 - 10:03 am
2
0
The problem with a simple two

The problem with a simple two party system is it will naturally evolve into a divided population. I see little productivity to be produced by such a strategy. Ole Abe was correct a house divided will not stand. I think rather than trying to modify the constitution then we just end the two party mentality-which isn't in the constitution. No need to change the constitution-just break the back of both parties-why do you think there are so many independents-they are sick of either party. A two party system is obsolete, ineffective, and presents issues in a binary fashion. Time to get with the times.

Curiousone1
34
Points
Curiousone1 11/03/12 - 10:10 am
2
0
Electoral College

As author of this letter, maybe I should make myself clearer....yes, I did go to school, high school, college, etc, etc.

Also, when you vote for your candidate, you aren't even voting for him (or her, if that were the case). You are voting for a individual who will caste his vote supposedly for the candidate that you voted for. He (or she) doesn't even have to vote like you did. Normally they do, but I am sure there have been cases that they didn't. The Founding Fathers of this country thought popular vote would be best, but decided that the average citizen was just not educated enough to make those decisions, so they decided the people would elect an individual who would represent them and caste a vote for a candidate in congress in early January, who would be then place his hand on a Bible and the become President on the 20th of January.

Four times a president has won popular vote and lost because of the EC. My one state-one vote was only a suggestion. I am sure there are more huru gurus out there that can come up with a fairer way. But, what is fairer than a vote of the people by the people...I can live with popular vote.

ralphinga
1228
Points
ralphinga 11/03/12 - 10:13 am
1
0
Minority Rules

'One state, one vote. Then the candidate would have to address every state and its needs, not just the big, fat electoral vote states', is being proposed by the writer as somehow being 'more' equal. So Wyoming's vote has the same weight as Texas? I don't get it.

Humble Angela
41338
Points
Humble Angela 11/03/12 - 11:15 am
4
2
Carcraft. Techfan's eleven
Unpublished

Carcraft. Techfan's eleven vote scenario is if the 11 states with the most electoral votes only had one single person vote, and the rest of the country voted for the other candidate, then the guy with 11 votes would win. Never mind that it ain't ever gonna happen.....reality is not a requirement for the left. Voter turnout may be bad, but I'm pretty sure we can get more than one voter per state.

Bruno
780
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Bruno 11/03/12 - 11:28 am
3
0
Wrong

"The Founding Fathers of this country thought popular vote would be best," This is wrong. In fact they purposely set this country up as a representative republic rather than a democracy. In 1787, the delegates to the Constitutional Convention decided on this system of indirect election of the president. Long debates took place about how to make sure the best candidate would be chosen as president. Some delegates supported a direct election by citizens. Others favored having Congress choose the president. Still others thought that state legislatures should make the choice.

We are not a two party system as evidenced by numerous other parties.

Carcraft is hitting on all cylinders and is correct in every point. Candidates would only go to and pander to areas with large populations. The popular vote would only lead to a large group of people being able to force their will on the smaller groups. It would for all intents and purposes devolve into mob rule. The founders saw this and guarded against it.

Darby
25496
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Darby 11/03/12 - 11:56 am
3
0
Does Carcraft...

...not understand that his comment is a sprited defense of the lady's letter? In a tight race where every vote counts, there would be NO STATES (Can you say Rhode Island?) where the candidates would not feel compelled to campaign. There would be no more Red or Blue states.
With regard to Iowa, they are ONLY important because of the "first in the nation" caucus scenario. Carcraft says "the election would be decided in California, New York, Florida and other densely populated states"... He's kidding right?? That's exactly what's happening NOW!!!!
And Bruno, sad to say but you have fallen into the same trap of simplistic but tragically faulty logic.

Curiousone1
34
Points
Curiousone1 11/03/12 - 11:52 am
3
0
Again, I was only saying the

Again, I was only saying the one state - one vote would be based on that states election. Whoever won the election in that state would get the one vote. You would effectively have 50 votes plus DC and any territories that had a vote. It is based on popular vote for the states. It would be possible then for it to be based on the majority as you are going by the people who voted in every state. Every vote would count then. You could have an election with 30 states voting for and 21 against (based on a 50 state + DC). But it would at least be by popular vote of the country and not by EC. Or what the hey, like I said, somebody else come up with a better way, just go with the popular vote and have faith that the right man wins. And, it's a fact, the majority of the people during the revolutionary war and after, could barely read and write, they(the Founding Fathers of this country) were not going to leave it up to a bunch of what they thought were illiterates to elect a President. I know it's not perfect, but we can change things if we try. Can't never did anything.

Bruno
780
Points
Bruno 11/03/12 - 12:33 pm
1
0
Why should DC, a city, get

Why should DC, a city, get its own vote? Are there any other cities that would under your 'system'? Change isn't always good.

Curiousone1
34
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Curiousone1 11/03/12 - 01:05 pm
1
0
Cause DC has 3 EC now

Cause DC has 3 EC now

Curiousone1
34
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Curiousone1 11/03/12 - 01:30 pm
2
0
Every state gets 1 for each

Every state gets 1 for each senator (2 each state ) + 1 for each rep. in the House. DC is a district on its on....should remember we all voted for it many years ago for them to have a voice too. They have reps too so they get 3 EC votes.

IF each state had to be courted by the delegates then candidates would all have to go to every state to get votes. I know Georgia has voted Republican for a long time, but it is not inconceivable for us to go the other way. If I were a Republican (and I am), why would I vote if I know my vote is not going to matter and, I do vote every election, but it seems no matter how often I vote it is always the big states that the candidates court and tip the balance. They don't care about the states, they just want the EC and the fastest way to the White House is the big EC states, you don't nee the rest. Why do they automatically think that the people in California, or Vermont, or Washington will always vote Democratic.....do the Republican in those states give up and say,"oh well , why do I vote if my state is always going to vote Democratic". The candidates are not going to those states, they are giving up on votes, giving up on a state. And the voters are giving up and not voting, cause no one one is seeking their vote. That is so sad, no voice.

If you look at the votes from last election, it was almost 50/50 in about every state. There were exceptions, but just a small amount of votes and any given state could have tipped the scales and election the other way.

Votes shouldn't be bought, or bartered, or something automatic....it's a personal thing. And I should be convinced beyond a doubt that you are the candidate that should be my leader.

Candidates talk to me...to all of us....let us make the decision is all I am asking. I don't think Hancock, Adams, Jefferson, Franklin, Washington, and all the others intended or imagined the outcome of all that is the USA today. I think they imagined better, what does that old piece of paper in the museum say " a government of the people, by the people" ? I don't think that is what we have now.

carcraft
25744
Points
carcraft 11/03/12 - 01:43 pm
1
1
Darby, New York and

Darby, New York and California are Democrat, and certain areas of other states (can we say urban) will vote for Obama. Some rural areas will vote for Romney. Is Romney going to run to every hamlet in rural areas to garner 0.05% of the vote when he can go to large metropolitan areas in Texas and get a bigger bang for the buck? I haven't yet heard of Romney running to Camak, Sparta, Hawkinsville etc. as a strategy to counter Atlanta support of Obama. Take Pennsylvania, Obama will carry Philly, Romney will get some rural areas but Romney’s big hope is the suburbs ( if I have read some election information correctly) that are attached to large metropolitan areas. The population dense areas and states will get the candidates attention and the less populated states and areas will be ignored, states like Iowa won’t count!

carcraft
25744
Points
carcraft 11/03/12 - 02:07 pm
0
1
Darby, New York and

Darby, New York and California are Democrat, and certain areas of other states (can we say urban) will vote for Obama. Some rural areas will vote for Romney. Is Romney going to run to every hamlet in rural areas to garner 0.05% of the vote when he can go to large metropolitan areas in Texas and get a bigger bang for the buck? I haven't yet heard of Romney running to Camak, Sparta, Hawkinsville etc. as a strategy to counter Atlanta support of Obama. Take Pennsylvania, Obama will carry Philly, Romney will get some rural areas but Romney’s big hope is the suburbs ( if I have read some election information correctly) that are attached to large metropolitan areas. The population dense areas and states will get the candidates attention and the less populated states and areas will be ignored, states like Iowa won’t count!

OpenCurtain
10049
Points
OpenCurtain 11/03/12 - 02:08 pm
2
0
carcraft - so far has the best factual explaination

Major cities (liberalhood) would rule the day.
Think of all the demographics that drastically differ between Urban rural.
Then think how the cities would dictate to the rural areas to support the city.

Pretty much a real BIG Augusta vs. South Side scenario

Bruno
780
Points
Bruno 11/03/12 - 02:28 pm
1
0
Population of California is

Population of California is approx. 37,691,912.
Population of Montana is approx. 998,199.

So if you boiled it down to each state getting one vote (which is nothing more than a modified way of figuring the electoral college, btw) you would end up having a person from Montana's vote worth 1/998,199 while a person from California's would be worth 1/37,691,912 IF the state carried the candidate who the person voted for.

Though I know it does, I don't understand why DC gets any votes in the EC at all. It seems disingenuous to argue to change the system because you think that it is out of date but not to change things in the system because that is the way it is now.

Darby
25496
Points
Darby 11/03/12 - 03:10 pm
3
0
Carcraft, OpenCurtain...

....the big cities rule the process now. Going to the popular vote is the only way to balance things out. Nobody is suggesting that candidates need to visit Hephzibah to get their vote, but they would find it necessary to campaign in the smaller states, especially when the race is close as it this year (and let's not forget 2000). If the system had been fair and based on the popular vote, Gore would have won. I would have wanted to shoot myself, but that's just the truth.

Under the current system, the smaller states are forgotten or taken for granted. Under the current system, the millions Republican voters in New York and California know before the even go to the polls that their vote will count for nothing in the presidential race. While the same goes for Democrats in Georgia, that still doesn't make it right. If it's going to be one man one vote, shouldn't that vote count? Under the electoral system it does not. If you are a Democrat in South Carolina, you have to depend on Democrats in New York to carry your water for you. The reverse applies to a Republican in California.

Or we could come up with a hybrid system, where electoral votes are divided in each state according to the popular vote. That could work and would come close to honoring the intentions of all American voters..

The system we have now favors the politicians, not the people. It allows the candidates to "game" the process while neglecting the real issues.

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