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Author: Subject: Is the Electoral College fair ???

Sublime Peach





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  posted on 10/24/2012 at 06:37 AM
Interestingly there is already much talk about the winner of the popular vote not winning the election. I thought the Electoral College actually made it more fair for all people? I don't even know why they show the tally on the popular vote when it has no bearing on the election what so ever. The swing states are what matters at this point, not population centers.

Let me guess, there will be a BIG push to get rid of the Electoral College if this happens and to have our Elelctions decided by the popular vote. The machine is already making alot of noise in this direction.



 

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Peach Master



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  posted on 10/24/2012 at 08:11 AM
No ...some votes are worth more than others. In theory, you could win the election with only 22% of the popular vote ... http://www.upworthy.com/i-didnt-realize-the-failure-rate-for-us-elections-w as-this-high?c=o98

 

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True Peach



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  posted on 10/24/2012 at 11:05 AM
I don't know???? Ask Al Gore if it is fair or not because without it we would havenever been forced to endure 8 years of W Bush/Cheney and the aftermath they left in their wake.

 

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  posted on 10/24/2012 at 12:14 PM
Its absolutely fair, and we need more checks and balances. If we did not have it, the candidates would spend all of their time in NYC or populated metropolitan areas.

The wants and needs of those voters in Wyoming, Alaska, and basically the whole mid-section of the country are no less important than those of people who live in cities. If we did away with the electoral college a large swath of the country would be voiceless.

quote:
Ask Al Gore if it is fair or not


Count me out when it comes to popular vote. Al Gore wanted to change the rules because he lost. It was like complaining about losing a basketball game even though you hit more foul shots.

 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 10/24/2012 at 12:16 PM
I agree. No problem with the electoral college. And it wasn't that long ago that states like New York and California were very much in play. Things change.

 

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Zen Peach



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  posted on 10/24/2012 at 12:26 PM
quote:
Ask Al Gore if it is fair or not


How about let's not.

 

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  posted on 10/24/2012 at 12:51 PM
i think i read that a long time ago the electoral college did help even things out between large and small states. now there is a large gap between the large and small states and what a vote is worth. i believe the electoral college can be easily fixed if anyone really wanted it fixed.
 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 10/24/2012 at 01:06 PM
Is the Electoral College fair ???

Fair?...I don't know, but it certainly is "Outdated".

 

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Universal Peach



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  posted on 10/24/2012 at 01:17 PM
The concept is fine, but I do agree with others in that it could probably use a face lift.
 

Ultimate Peach



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  posted on 10/24/2012 at 05:37 PM
It beats mob rule which is what pure democracy brings followed by an unending cycle of autocracy.

 

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Universal Peach



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  posted on 10/24/2012 at 09:11 PM
I have a feeling that come November 7th, a lot of Romeny supporters will feel like the Electoral College isn't fair, just like a lot of Gore supporters felt that way in 2000.

Personally, I think it's a valid way to make sure that small states don't get totally left out of the political process in this country. The county I live in has more people in it than Alaska, but I don't think that means Gwinnett County should have more political clout in US politics than an entire state.

I think Romney will win the popular vote in this election, with around 51-52% of the vote.

I think Obama will squeak out a victory in the electoral college, as long as he can win Ohio, and the polls seem to indicate he still has a pretty solid lead in that state. I say he gets between 275-281 electoral votes.

I could be wrong about either or both of those things, but you heard it here first......


 
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Universal Peach



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  posted on 10/25/2012 at 12:39 AM
I don't think you're going that far out on a limb with your prediction.My gut say's Obama's got it.I am still voting for Romney, as I stated before, it's more of a anti Obama vote than a pro Romney vote and to vote green (which I have done in the last two elections) is to vote Obama.
 

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  posted on 10/25/2012 at 05:42 AM
I have never understood why all states have 2 senators. Seems to me the small population states like Rhode Island and Alaska should only get one while the large population states like California and New York should get 3 or 4.

 

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Zen Peach



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  posted on 10/25/2012 at 05:59 AM
quote:
I have never understood why all states have 2 senators. Seems to me the small population states like Rhode Island and Alaska should only get one while the large population states like California and New York should get 3 or 4.


Its my understanding that this is exactly why the Electoral college exists......

 

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Zen Peach



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  posted on 10/25/2012 at 11:29 AM
quote:
I have a feeling that come November 7th, a lot of Romeny supporters will feel like the Electoral College isn't fair, just like a lot of Gore supporters felt that way in 2000.

Personally, I think it's a valid way to make sure that small states don't get totally left out of the political process in this country. The county I live in has more people in it than Alaska, but I don't think that means Gwinnett County should have more political clout in US politics than an entire state.

I think Romney will win the popular vote in this election, with around 51-52% of the vote.

I think Obama will squeak out a victory in the electoral college, as long as he can win Ohio, and the polls seem to indicate he still has a pretty solid lead in that state. I say he gets between 275-281 electoral votes.

I could be wrong about either or both of those things, but you heard it here first......




There is virtually no way that can happen. If Romney wins 52 percent of the popular vote he is almost certain to win 270 or more electoral votes. Regardless of what state polls say right now. Recall that Bush and Gore were separated by 500,000 popular votes, less than one half of one percent. What happened in 2000 had not happened for onver 100 years prior and it is unlikely to happen again. If somehow it does, I still support the electoral college. Why? Because we are 50 sovereign states and the states elect the president. Eliminating the electoral college would undermine the federalism which makes our nation unique and has served us well for hundreds of years.

 

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Zen Peach



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  posted on 10/25/2012 at 11:31 AM
quote:
I have never understood why all states have 2 senators. Seems to me the small population states like Rhode Island and Alaska should only get one while the large population states like California and New York should get 3 or 4.


Because that is what was agreed to when the Constitution was created. The large states have more power in the house (And also more power to elect the president) while smaller states have disproportionate power in the Senate. That is the bargain that was agreed to and the only way the Constitution would have been approved. It is just another one of the many checks and balances placed into this brilliant system that the framers came up with.

 

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  posted on 10/25/2012 at 05:28 PM
quote:
quote:
I have never understood why all states have 2 senators. Seems to me the small population states like Rhode Island and Alaska should only get one while the large population states like California and New York should get 3 or 4.


Because that is what was agreed to when the Constitution was created. The large states have more power in the house (And also more power to elect the president) while smaller states have disproportionate power in the Senate. That is the bargain that was agreed to and the only way the Constitution would have been approved. It is just another one of the many checks and balances placed into this brilliant system that the framers came up with.

I believe it was intended that the primary purpose of the "representatives" in the Lower House was to represent and advocate on behalf of their constituents, and thus each representative came from a roughly equal district in terms of population. The Upper House, the Senate, had the primary function of representing their state in in the larger national issues (i.e. defense, trade, foreign affairs, etc.) and thus each state was given equal representation. Of course the original intent has long been obscured in the more than 200 years of evolution of our political system.

 

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  posted on 10/25/2012 at 08:08 PM
quote:
quote:
quote:
I have never understood why all states have 2 senators. Seems to me the small population states like Rhode Island and Alaska should only get one while the large population states like California and New York should get 3 or 4.


Because that is what was agreed to when the Constitution was created. The large states have more power in the house (And also more power to elect the president) while smaller states have disproportionate power in the Senate. That is the bargain that was agreed to and the only way the Constitution would have been approved. It is just another one of the many checks and balances placed into this brilliant system that the framers came up with.

I believe it was intended that the primary purpose of the "representatives" in the Lower House was to represent and advocate on behalf of their constituents, and thus each representative came from a roughly equal district in terms of population. The Upper House, the Senate, had the primary function of representing their state in in the larger national issues (i.e. defense, trade, foreign affairs, etc.) and thus each state was given equal representation. Of course the original intent has long been obscured in the more than 200 years of evolution of our political system. [/quote

At first only a single house legislature was intended as in Great Britain. The smaller states naturally wanted an equal number of reps so that each state was totally equal regardless of size. The larger states insisted it be by population. Ultimately a compromise was reached with a two house legislature. As a further compromise towards those who distrusted direct democracy, the House would be elected by direct vote and the Senate by the state legislatures. This was of course later changed by Constitutional Amendment. That was the single biggest change to the nature of our political system, the direct election of Senators. And of course we have many more states.

 

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Universal Peach



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  posted on 10/25/2012 at 08:40 PM
I'm not sure why you consider that such an unlikely outcome dougrhon. Consider the 2004 election...

National Results

Bush: 62,040,610
Kerry: 59,028,439

Ohio Results

Bush: 2,859,768
Kerry: 2,741,167

A little math shows you that if Kerry won another 120,000 votes in Ohio, he would have won the election despite the fact that he would still have lost the national popular vote by almost 3 million votes.

Obama won Ohio in 2008, is an incumbent President, and is a better candidate with a much better organization than Kerry. I don't think it's unreasonable to think he would outperform Kerry's 2004 performance in Ohio. Obama can do worse there than he did in 2008 and still carry the state.

I fully expect Romney to carry a lot of "red states" with large margins of victory, which is one reason why I think he can win the popular vote and still lose the election. You don't get bonus electoral votes for winning big in a state.

I realize this kind of "split election" has been rare in American history, but it happened twice within 12 years in 1876 and 1888, with both Rutherford B. Hayes and Grover Cleveland winning the Presidency while losing the popular vote.

I think we're due

 
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  posted on 10/26/2012 at 04:03 AM
No, it's not fair. I suspect that the electoral college won't matter in a few years. The National Popular Vote Bill now has half what is needed to be enacted. Basically, if enough states sign on to account for enough electoral votes to win the presidency, then all the electoral votes for the states that have agreed to participate will go to the candidate that wins the national popular vote regardless of how voters in the state voted. So far 8 states (including California) and Washington DC have signed on. If enacted, then no longer will candidates get to spend all their time pandering to a dozen or so swing states and finally all votes will be treated equally. If Romney wins the popular vote and Obama wins the presidency due to the electoral college (a strong possibility), then I figure there should be enough uproar to get enough additional states to sign on.

Oh, and for those who do think it's fair. Would you still feel that way if one of the members of the electoral college votes his own conscience rather than the way he/she is suppose to vote based on the voters of that state? That is possible. Some states have laws to put an electoral college voter in jail for not voting the way that he or she is pledged, but that doesn't mean that it couldn't happen.

http://www.nationalpopularvote.com/index.php

 

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  posted on 10/26/2012 at 07:11 AM
I appreciate your passion, 2112, but the states are semi-sovereign entities, and how they vote AS A STATE should matter. I realize this means states like Alaska get slightly disproportionate clout compared to their overall population, but I'm okay with that.

You do have a good point about the individual electors "going rogue." That is a pretty sloppy loophole, and I would be in favor of some kind of reform to tidy up that part of the equation and prevent that from happening.

 
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Zen Peach



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  posted on 10/26/2012 at 11:10 AM
quote:
I appreciate your passion, 2112, but the states are semi-sovereign entities, and how they vote AS A STATE should matter. I realize this means states like Alaska get slightly disproportionate clout compared to their overall population, but I'm okay with that.

You do have a good point about the individual electors "going rogue." That is a pretty sloppy loophole, and I would be in favor of some kind of reform to tidy up that part of the equation and prevent that from happening.


The rogue elector thing I agree should be reformed. A vote for the candidate within a state must go to the candidate. The states are not semi-sovereign. They are fully sovereign except to the extent specifically limited by the Constitution by powers given specifically to the Federal government.

I understand your point Rob that it COULD happen. And it could have happened several other times as well when it didn't. There is a reason. Votes in swing states tend to ultimately follow the popular vote. Sure Ohio if it goes to Romney will likely be closer than his overall popular victory. But if Romney actually gets 52 percent or more of the popular vote, I fully expect him to win Ohio and most of the other swing states as well, even if they are closer. I could be wrong and will be here the next day to admit if I am.

 

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  posted on 10/26/2012 at 05:25 PM
I tell you what, Doug, maybe 52% is a little high. If Romney hits that mark, he probably will win.

Both now and in 2004, you had a fairly unpopular incumbent President (Bush/Obama) running against a challenger (Kerry/Romney) who is an experienced politician and not totally hopeless, but at the same time not tremendously inspiring, even to many members of his own party. I really think that is the closest analogy to this election, at least in modern times.

If Obama wins the popular vote, I think he's got it made. It's hard for me to see him winning over 50% of the nationwide vote and not carry Ohio, which is really what this comes down to, in my opinion. I think Romney will take Florida and Virginia, just as Bush did in 2004, and none of the other swing states have as many electoral votes as Ohio, so that is the big prize.

I see Obama winning every state Kerry did except New Hampshire (Obama doesn't have the Mass connection both Kerry and Romney have) and winning Ohio and Nevada, which Kerry lost. If he can pull that off, 4 more years.

If not, like you said, I'll be happy to admit I was wrong. We'll all find out in two weeks...

 
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Zen Peach



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  posted on 10/27/2012 at 02:17 PM
It is fair because The US is a republic, not a democracy.

changing the constitution is risky business

 

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Zen Peach



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  posted on 10/27/2012 at 10:35 PM
quote:
I tell you what, Doug, maybe 52% is a little high. If Romney hits that mark, he probably will win.

Both now and in 2004, you had a fairly unpopular incumbent President (Bush/Obama) running against a challenger (Kerry/Romney) who is an experienced politician and not totally hopeless, but at the same time not tremendously inspiring, even to many members of his own party. I really think that is the closest analogy to this election, at least in modern times.

If Obama wins the popular vote, I think he's got it made. It's hard for me to see him winning over 50% of the nationwide vote and not carry Ohio, which is really what this comes down to, in my opinion. I think Romney will take Florida and Virginia, just as Bush did in 2004, and none of the other swing states have as many electoral votes as Ohio, so that is the big prize.

I see Obama winning every state Kerry did except New Hampshire (Obama doesn't have the Mass connection both Kerry and Romney have) and winning Ohio and Nevada, which Kerry lost. If he can pull that off, 4 more years.

If not, like you said, I'll be happy to admit I was wrong. We'll all find out in two weeks...


We will. I think you are making a lot of assumptions in comparing it to 2004. I don't think it especially resembles that year at all. I think in its nature it more resembles 1992 except for the absence of the third party candidate. I certainly agree that whoever wins the popular vote is extremely likely to end up winning the electoral college and the presidency as well. The thing that should worry Obama and his supporters is that virtually no poll, even those putting Obama at a tie or ahead, has him with 50 percent of the vote. It is a well known truism that where an incumbent is running for re-election, a majority of the undecided virtually always break for the challenger. This was true in 2004 as well when Bush was ahead the final week by more than he actually won by. Just as there was no reason to believe (As I said and was ridiculed for) that the polls in early September were immutable. There is simply no reason to believe that the final vote in these swings state will not fall into line with what political science, historical trends and common sense says will happen. That is the basis of my prediction.

 

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