TED Conversations

This conversation is closed.

Should Americans eliminate the Electoral College and elect their presidents through simple majority vote?

Given that some presidents have won without persuading the majority of Americans, and the huge deal of money spent only on swing states I ask myself that question

I have always thought that it is unfair that republicans in California or Democrats in Texas are not taken into account just because people around them think differently.

Time for change?

Share:

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.

  • Oct 23 2012: I would say in short, yes. To be more specific, I feel like the entirety of our system of representation should be overhauled. The current system, even through a direct popular vote, wouldn't fix the issue of an election won by majority, simply because the addition of another candidate (let alone multiple) makes a majority vote much harder and in some cases nearly impossible to achieve. For a history on this, look at the election of John Quincy Adams. In modern terms, if Ron Paul were put up for election alongside the two candidates already running, it wouldn't be all too surprising if none of the three candidates got more than 50% of the vote.
    So I would prefer to see a system like IRV (Instant Runoff Voting), wherein the people can vote for multiple candidates in order of preference. With such a system multiple candidates could run for office, and if no majority is held, the votes that counted towards the candidate with the least votes are recounted to the next highest preference until a majority is seen. This allows for a breakdown of the two party system, presenting the people with more freedom of choice, and would still allow the majority to win, without having to rely on archaic tie-breaker style rules written into our laws. It would likely take several cycles before the two major parties really suffer any losses, but as voters catch on we could break out of this system into a much more open and direct one. So with that, not only would Democrats in Texas be heard, but so would Green Party members, as well as any Libertarians in California and so on.
    • thumb
      Oct 23 2012: Niles

      How would that system guard against the tyranny of the majority?
      • thumb
        Oct 23 2012: that majority would be a better representation of the populous, then our current system which is a tyranny of senior citizens. Which is not a true representation of the populous, most younger citizens don't feel there vote counts. So they don't vote. And sadly the are not 100% false for thinking this
        • thumb
          Oct 23 2012: The last election had a record turn out apparently because of the novelty and ACORN.

          This poll does not show your contention of a senior tyranny in the last POTUS election?

          http://www.ropercenter.uconn.edu/elections/how_groups_voted/voted_08.html#.UIbz7VL4Jmk

          In general we have tried every idea under the sun since the 1700's. How about trying what the constitutions says? The framers and their work imo opinion was an anomaly in history and when their directions were followed the U.S. flourished which includes everyone in the whole world. Prospering and flourishing is the point is it not?
      • thumb
        Oct 23 2012: Personally I am tired of the older class deciding how I live my life once there gone because all current politics does today is put a band aid on the situation and the kick the can down the road for the next group to band aid. Personally you shouldn't be in politics after 60 -65 and there should be term limits 4 to 8 years in each level max(local, state,federal). When your that old you don't have as much investment in the future as a 30 year old would.
        • thumb
          Oct 23 2012: Term limits sound great but don't work, we have them here in Calf and you can see the results.
      • thumb
        Oct 23 2012: Ok well how often have we had a african american man running for president? And a women running for VP? I am not sure that the last election is the best pick for your statistical analysis of poll stats.
      • thumb
        Oct 23 2012: here is some facts on youth turn out

        http://www.ehow.com/about_4623699_voting-statistics-youth.html

        as well as how many people actual vote that can vote, which barely goes over 50% of that actual people who can vote.

        http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0781453.html


        So our current number of people coming out to vote represent less then half the voting population on average. Once again because they feel there vote does not count.
        • thumb
          Oct 24 2012: What does this have to do with the tyranny of the seniors?
      • thumb
        Oct 23 2012: How don't term limits work? I am sorry I don't live in Cali
        • thumb
          Oct 23 2012: No I'm sorry I do live in Cali.

          Because the legacy of the former politician is continued through his assistants. The proof is Calif is as F'ed up ever.
      • thumb
        Oct 23 2012: So the problem is more that when there are term limits the politicians them self change, but the staff of the former...former politicians remain the same? I can definitely see how that is a major problem. And would look less like a republic... although I have not watched that video is very long and I dont have the time to watch it right now. So you are correct we might not have the same definition of what a republic is. I am going with general terms that are along the lines of for/representation of the people


        And yes Cali is pretty much messed up but you guys are also very progressive which is a good thing. Personally it seems more like and ego thing as an outsider. Everyone's got an opinion and they think there opinion is better then the others. Which is ultimately the fundamental flaw or all politics not matter what country or state you look at
        • thumb
          Oct 23 2012: Yes to the first paragraph. Look to my first post on this thread it might help with the definition of a U.S. Republic.

          Do you see a connection between "messed up" and "very progressive"

          Not sure what you mean by the ego thing? If you mean me I prefer the Joe Friday philosophy except for the Willfully ignorant which try my patience.
      • thumb
        Oct 25 2012: no the ego in politics not you
      • thumb
        Oct 25 2012: Oh that only 50% of the population that can vote does and the majority of that is older folks, not the youth as defined as 18-30.

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.