"The Electoral College: Problems and Solution" Problems: undemocratic, outdated, etc. Solution: Direct Popular Election

Essay by joyous09College, UndergraduateA+, April 2002

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The Electoral College: Problems and Solution

The process of electing the President of the United States is one surrounded by mystery. Prior to the 2000-year election, most Americans would look dumbfounded at the mention of the illusive Electoral College. Now, the majority is simply dumbfounded as to why this institution is still intact. There are many inherent and excessive flaws related to the Electoral College and the process in which it elects America's most important figure. The Electoral College is undemocratic, outdated and permits inaccurate elections, and can most effectively be replaced by the simple procedure of direct popular election.

The Electoral College is the process in which the United States elects its President. In November on Election Day, U.S. citizens do not actually vote for their president. Instead, they vote for a slate of electors who are supposed to cast their ballots for a particular candidate. The number of electoral votes is allocated according to the size of each state's Congressional delegation.

That is, every state has as many votes in the Electoral College as the total number of its Senators (two) and Representatives (based on population) in Congress (Otchet 37). States have chosen to allocate their electoral votes by winner-take-all--the candidate who wins the most votes in a state, no matter what the margin or how small the percentage, wins all the state's votes (Anderson 1). The candidate who receives the most electoral votes becomes President. However, if no candidate receives a majority of electoral votes, the House of Representatives chooses the winner but each state (including the District of Columbia) only has one vote. Our framers distrusted democracy and saw the Electoral College as a deliberative body able to correct bad choices made by the people. In addition to the framers distrust of the popular will, the...