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The Electoral College: Passing The Test Of Time

1456 words - 6 pages

Many Americans have questioned the accuracy of the Electoral College. Rightfully so, as three different presidents have won the popular vote but did not win the election. The Electoral College is outlined in the Constitution and is the current system that elects the president of the United States. Contrary to popular belief, the president is not elected by the people. Instead, a certain number of electors per state vote for him or her. The number of electors is equal to the number of representatives and senators per state. Whoever wins the majority of the 270 Electoral votes, wins the election. This system makes possible to win the popular vote, but lose the election. Despite those three times, the current system has remained successful. Keeping the Electoral College coincides with the founding father’s intent, provides a certain winner, and encourages widespread campaign efforts.
The United States of America defines itself as a Republic. An elected leader and elected officials govern the country, whereas in a democracy, the power resides entirely in the people. Aindru Collgan from the Huffington Post reports, “it is time that we put an end to this misconception about democracy. America is a republic”. The U.S. is often portrayed as a democracy, where the people have the power, when it is in fact, a republic. The foundation of this country was built on the idea that elected officials would take on the responsibility of governing so the people would not need to. John Samples wrote, “James Madison’s famous Federalist No. 10 makes clear that the Founders fashioned a republic, not a pure democracy”. The founding fathers intended America to be a republic, not a democracy. They feared that the majority may have malicious intentions and could bring the country to ruin, simply because they were the majority. The past political leaders also, “feared that without sufficient information about candidates from outside their state, people would naturally vote for a ‘favorite son’ from their own state or region,” (Kimberling). The founding fathers carefully considered the problems of their time when forming the Electoral College. Although times have changed, the issue of excluding uneducated votes remains.
Many criticize that the Electoral College was formed 225 years ago and that it is outdated. Before the invention of the T.V. or Internet, word did not travel quickly enough. This reason largely contributed to the formation of the Electoral College. If the presidential election was based on the number of votes a candidate receives, individuals may vote for a name that he or she recognized rather than the person who is best qualified for the job. Although there are ample resources available today, not every voter utilizes those resources to get educated about whom he or she may vote for. LZ Granderson warns that, “In an effort to win over ignorant voters, political campaigns are no longer targeting the movable middle as much as the easily misled.” Voters...

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