Electoral College: America's Retrograde Institution

March 14, 2013
By Anonymous

When voters go into the voting poll every four years to elect our president most of them think the decision is in their hands. Voters think that they are directly electing our president and that the USA is one of the most democratic countries in the world. Voters don’t realize that they don’t elect their president directly. Instead there is something called the Electoral College. This institution is who really elects the president. This is why our country is not a direct democracy. The citizens of this nation do not elect the president even though they are the ones who are directly affected by the decision.

The Electoral College is an institution made up of 538 members. These members are responsible for choosing the president of the United States of America. The members of this institution are usually of the elite and are very affluent within their social circles. The identities of these members are unknown. Each state gets a certain amount of members based on population. Therefore if a state has a large population they will have a large amount of electoral votes. The electoral college chooses our president because in reality the popular doesn’t count at all. The presidential candidate must win a majority of the votes of the electoral college to win the presidency. The majority of votes is 270. Once the candidate has won these votes they are the elected president. Most states use a winner takes all basis. This means that the winner of the state will take all the electoral votes. Other states don’t follow this rule. A voter can change their mind when they are asked to vote. A voter can also abstain from voting. Many voters in the past have done this. In conclusion, the electoral college is the sole institution that decides the president of the United States.

The Electoral College has many weaknesses. Even though we are led to believe that this is a solid institution, it’s more corrupt than we can imagine. One of the weaknesses of the electoral college is that a candidate that wins the popular vote may not win the presidency because of the electoral vote. This is because of the winner takes all feature of the electoral college. When a candidate wins a state they win all the electoral votes. This is what happened in the 2000 election between Al Gore and Bush. Another weakness of the electoral college is that if no candidate receives the majority of the electoral votes then the House of Representatives will elect the president. This is a weakness because the biggest decision for a nation has to go through not only the electoral college but also to the House. The electoral college has many more weaknesses. The worst part is that Americans have been enabling this because they do not ask for a change. Overall, the electoral college presents many weaknesses that need to be overcome.

In my opinion, the electoral college should be abolished because it enables corruption in this country. The electoral college hinders what a real democracy should be, one where the people elect the president. The governed should have the sole right to elect their president.There should be no third parties involved. Why should a chosen group elect the president? What clue do they have the people want? It’s ridiculous that in this time we have this sort of a system. This way of electing the president is simply a joke. This doesn’t make a direct democracy or make us go forward instead. The whole system is corrupt and the people are not doing anything about it. Another reason why the Electoral College should be abolished is that it doesn’t make it easy for a third party to be recognized. The Republican and Democratic parties control our government and this institution makes it almost impossible for any third party to emerge on the scene. This makes our government very weak. Other parties can have great ideas but they will never heard by the citizens. The Electoral College is like a slap in the face to democracy. It not only makes a mockery of democracy but it also treats the governed as complete idiots. It’s doesn’t make any sense that 538 people decide the fate of millions. Honestly, if the electoral college is abolished we would have a much fairer government. We would have a government where the ideas of many great people will be heard.

The Electoral College is a group of 538 members who really elect the president of the United States. This institution makes a complete joke of the great nation we are and the even greater nation we could be. The electoral college hinders any possibility of a direct democracy. Americans must take action now. We cannot let the big guns take advantage of us. We have been taken as a joke for too long and it’s time we finally stand up and abolish this completely absurd and corrupt institution.

The author's comments:
My first submitted work.

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This article has 4 comments.

toto said...
on Mar. 18 2013 at 6:33 pm
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.

toto said...
on Mar. 18 2013 at 6:31 pm
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 presidential elections. No more distorting and divisive red and blue state maps. 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 now are just 'spectators' and ignored after the conventions.                                                 When the bill is enacted by states with a majority of the electoral votes– enough electoral votes to elect a President (270 of 538), all the electoral votes from the enacting states would be awarded to the presidential candidate who receives the most popular votes in all 50 states and DC.                                                     The presidential election system that we have today was not designed, anticipated, or favored by the Founding Fathers but, instead, is the product of decades of evolutionary change precipitated by the emergence of political parties and enactment by 48 states of winner-take-all laws, not mentioned, much less endorsed, in the Constitution.
  The bill uses the power given to each state by the Founding Fathers in the Constitution to change how they award their electoral votes for President. Historically, virtually all of the major changes in the method of electing the President, including ending the requirement that only men who owned substantial property could vote and 48 current state-by-state winner-take-all laws, have come about by state legislative action.                                                                                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 virtually every state surveyed in recent polls. Americans believe that the candidate who receives the most votes should win.                                                                               The bill has passed 31 state legislative chambers in 21 states with 243 electoral votes. The bill has been enacted by 9 jurisdictions with 132 electoral votes - 49% of the 270 necessary to go into effect.                                                                   NationalPopularVote                                                                                 Follow National Popular Vote on Facebook via NationalPopularVoteInc

on Mar. 17 2013 at 10:23 pm
This should have been published! At least an Editors Choice!

on Mar. 17 2013 at 10:19 pm
Really enjoyed reading this article! Finally, another teen who is aware of this insanity :)


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