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Juan Donado

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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?

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  • Oct 26 2012: I have read so much about the EC lately but fail (still) to understand how there is a better representation of individuals through the EC as many assert, compared to a popular vote. I am an Oregon resident and I have never voted in Presidential elections. Why? Because my vote does not matter *because* of the EC. In 2012, Obama will win Oregon and Romney will not. Regardless of who I vote for, my vote does... not... matter. Millions in the USA feel the same as I do. Show me a conservative in Oregon and I'll introduce you to a liberal in Texas. And the media wonders why there's low voter turnout, *this is why.* Regardless of the debates about whether or not the USA is a "true democracy" or a "representative republic" these are tangential to the real issue which is that statistically, millions and millions of people do not vote, and one of the many reasons why is that a percentage of non-voters feel that their vote simply does not count, because it doesn't in an EC for the majority of politically concerned non-voters. If there were a popular vote, I would be voting in every single election because at least I'd know there would be a check mark for an official I want to see in office. Until then, I deliberately neglect my civic duties as a voter and US citizen because it's an utter waste of my time, all due to the geographical area in which I happen to live and work and pay taxes. One could assert that it's a form of taxation without representation in a way, when one's representation is determined solely by the majority, that's just another form of mob rule, cloaked under the guise of democracy.
    • Nov 8 2012: Hey Age,

      I get your frustration, but here's two things to think about: First of all, you should still vote. I'm in Massachussetts, which is also going to go blue no matter what, but I still vote because there are a lot more offices than just the presidency--this year there was a very close senate race as well as 5 referendums, some of which passed and others failed--for which your vote does certainly count.

      Secondly, if we did away with the EC, I hate to say it, but your vote would count for less than it does now, because it would get lumped in with all of the votes from huge population centers like New York City. To put it in perspective, NYC alone has a population of 8 million people (New York state has 20 mil).
      South Dakota has 800k
      North Dakota has 700k
      Montana has almost 1mil
      Oregon has almost 4mil
      Idaho has 1.5mil


      All of those states added together barely come to one NYC, and they come to less than half of one New York State (add in Washington state, and you're still lagging far behind). Right now, by the electoral college, Oregon= about 1/4 of New York. That may sound bad, but by popular vote, Oregon would equal less than 1/5th of New York. All of the states listed above currently equal 4/5 of a New York by the EC, but by population, they'd only equal a little over 3/10 of one.

      In other words, a vote in Oregon is a lot more valuable now than it would be if we got rid of the Electoral College. And what that means is not just that candidates would have no reason to appeal to Oregonians if we nixed the Electoral College, but that every single viable candidate would have to come from New York or LA. Because a New Yorker would automatically have enough in-built supporters to dwarf any candidate from any other state. So unless you like the idea of every president being the former Mayor or Governor of New York for the rest of time, you should be pretty happy the Electoral College is in place.

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