• This is a political forum that is non-biased/non-partisan and treats every persons position on topics equally. This debate forum is not aligned to any political party. In today's politics, many ideas are split between and even within all the political parties. Often we find ourselves agreeing on one platform but some topics break our mold. We are here to discuss them in a civil political debate. If this is your first visit to our political forums, be sure to check out the RULES. Registering for debate politics is necessary before posting. Register today to participate - it's free!
  • Welcome to our archives. No new posts are allowed here.

Electoral College

What do you think about the electoral college?

  • Keep it as it is.

    Votes: 9 36.0%
  • Scrap it and determine winners through popular vote.

    Votes: 12 48.0%
  • Keep it but reform it somehow. (explain your thoughts)

    Votes: 4 16.0%

  • Total voters
    25
T

The Real McCoy

What do you think about the electoral college? If you choose option 3, explain how you would like to see it changed.
 
Last edited:

aps

Passionate
DP Veteran
Joined
Sep 25, 2005
Messages
15,675
Reaction score
2,979
Gender
Female
Political Leaning
Liberal
I say we scrap it. The 2000 election is a perfect example. Gore wins the popular vote and Bush wins the electoral college vote. I think it should be based upon who received the most votes.
 

Deathhound

New member
Joined
Dec 3, 2005
Messages
15
Reaction score
0
Location
Southeast Missouri
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Slightly Liberal
I really don't know all that much about the electoral college, but I say scrap it just the same. I just really don't like the idea of someone else voting for the the president in the place of the general public.

It hasn't happened often that a president has been elected despite the popular vote being against him, those times were enough.

I live in a rural community, the kind that stand to suffer from a direct election, and I got to tell you, im not the least bit concerned with that. If I don't like it, I could at least just move to the city. With the system we have now, entire states are ignored, so I really don't care either way. (As far as that's concerned)

Im proud of this country, and I would like to be proud of our elections.
 

tecoyah

Back
DP Veteran
Joined
Sep 30, 2005
Messages
9,782
Reaction score
3,418
Gender
Undisclosed
Political Leaning
Undisclosed
Deathhound said:
Im proud of this country, and I would like to be proud of our elections.
Pretty much sums it up for me as well
 

Chris

Member
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
120
Reaction score
0
Location
Ontario, Canada
Gender
Undisclosed
Political Leaning
Slightly Liberal
I can appreciate that the electoral college system has good underlying intentions, the problem is that it simply doesn't do what it is supposed to effectively. Smaller states are still largely ignored in campaigns (ie Alaska, Idaho, Maine, Wyoming, etc), and swing states simply take the place of large urban centers (ie: Florida, Ohio, etc).

I won't deny that the electoral college does offer some benefits, but they are far out weighed by the down sides IMO. According to various surveys most Americans would favor a direct popular vote over the electoral college despite the short comings of this system. I say let the people decide.

If you're unsure of how the electoral college system actually works, you should check out the link below.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/U.S._Electoral_College
 

Deathhound

New member
Joined
Dec 3, 2005
Messages
15
Reaction score
0
Location
Southeast Missouri
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Slightly Liberal
Coincidentally, I checked out Wikipedia on the issue right after I read the first post of this thread. Before I read the article, I wasn't even sure exactly how the electoral college was setup. I had originally thought that the electoral college wasn't people at all, but just a system of "state direct votes" that translated into how many ever votes each state has. That's a kind of system that I wouldn't like either, but I find the real electoral college to be even more appalling.
 

JustMyPOV

Member
Joined
Sep 5, 2005
Messages
143
Reaction score
0
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Slightly Liberal
I also suggested scrapping it. It's absurd to go against the will of the majority in the election of the one person who is supposed to represent the interests of the country as a whole. Nobody's vote should have greater weight than anyone else's.
 

cnredd

Major General Big Lug
DP Veteran
Joined
Jul 5, 2005
Messages
8,682
Reaction score
262
Location
Philadelphia,PA
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Slightly Conservative
People seem to have a problem understanding that the President is not, and should not, be elected by a will of the people...

It is the will of the states...Otherwise California would have more weight than every other state...If a candidate campaigned and won ONLY in the top ten populous states, he could ignore the other 40 and still win...That would be a total lack of representation to the least inhabited ones...

People will claim that certain states get ignored anyway, but that's just because of the present political climate...If you named 5 swing states now, they could very well be different from 5 swing states three elections from now...

But the underlying statement from above still holds...The President is NOT to be elected by the people...never was...
 

M14 Shooter

Banned
DP Veteran
Joined
Sep 30, 2005
Messages
2,622
Reaction score
68
Location
Toledo-ish OH
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Very Conservative
cnredd said:
People seem to have a problem understanding that the President is not, and should not, be elected by a will of the people...

But the underlying statement from above still holds...The President is NOT to be elected by the people...never was...
This is correct.
The People are represented by Congress.
The President, as head of state and head of government, does not represent the people.

That why the people dont have the right to vote for President.
 

M14 Shooter

Banned
DP Veteran
Joined
Sep 30, 2005
Messages
2,622
Reaction score
68
Location
Toledo-ish OH
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Very Conservative
Chris said:
I can appreciate that the electoral college system has good underlying intentions, the problem is that it simply doesn't do what it is supposed to effectively. Smaller states are still largely ignored in campaigns (ie Alaska, Idaho, Maine, Wyoming, etc), and swing states simply take the place of large urban centers (ie: Florida, Ohio, etc).
This isnt a function of the size of the state, but the way that state leans. WY ND SD MT AK - these are all easy wins. OH FL WI PA MN IA (etc) are visited often because they could go either way.
 

cnredd

Major General Big Lug
DP Veteran
Joined
Jul 5, 2005
Messages
8,682
Reaction score
262
Location
Philadelphia,PA
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Slightly Conservative
M14 Shooter said:
This isnt a function of the size of the state, but the way that state leans. WY ND SD MT AK - these are all easy wins. OH FL WI PA MN IA (etc) are visited often because they could go either way.
And that may and/or will change at any time...That's why the political affiliation of a certain state is irrelevant...
 

M14 Shooter

Banned
DP Veteran
Joined
Sep 30, 2005
Messages
2,622
Reaction score
68
Location
Toledo-ish OH
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Very Conservative
cnredd said:
And that may and/or will change at any time...That's why the political affiliation of a certain state is irrelevant...
It may change over time, but not quite 'at any time'.
But the point still stands - the states you mention arent 'ignored' because they're small.
 

LaMidRighter

Klattu Verata Nicto
DP Veteran
Joined
May 19, 2005
Messages
30,534
Reaction score
10,682
Location
Louisiana
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Libertarian - Right
JustMyPOV said:
I also suggested scrapping it. It's absurd to go against the will of the majority in the election of the one person who is supposed to represent the interests of the country as a whole. Nobody's vote should have greater weight than anyone else's.
This all depends on how you define the majority. In other words, urban areas will have a different need and opinion than rural areas, however, because some cities such as New York, Los Angeles, Atlanta, and Detroit individually have greater populations than some regions, they would dictate who won an election. So, would it then be fair to the less populous regions of the country to be literally ignored by a presidential administration just because they are smaller in population? the short answer is no. Rural areas would suffer because of who they are and all because the places with more people would dictate federal policy, this is exactly why the electoral college was set up and why we should continue to use it.
-On a side note, Gore would have been president had the popular vote been the only requirement and I personally don't want someone left of the Clintons dictating federal policy, Hillary's first reign was bad enough. As well, we saw how bad ol' Billy was at handling terrorism, would you really have rathered Gore handling 9/11?
 

Deegan

Banned
DP Veteran
Joined
Aug 1, 2005
Messages
5,528
Reaction score
2
Location
Chicago
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Conservative
This is a perfect system, and one that gives each state a voice. I don't see any reason to change this system, certainly not because a few cry babies can't get over the past results. Now, I could see a few states that could get less points, and others more, but the system works just fine as it is.
 

M14 Shooter

Banned
DP Veteran
Joined
Sep 30, 2005
Messages
2,622
Reaction score
68
Location
Toledo-ish OH
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Very Conservative
LaMidRighter said:
-On a side note, Gore would have been president had the popular vote been the only requirement
This is not a foregone conclsion.
Had the popular vote decided the election, there would have been a recount in every state, with the campaigns trying to eek out every last vote.

So, instead of 1 FL debacle, there wousl have been 50.
 

LaMidRighter

Klattu Verata Nicto
DP Veteran
Joined
May 19, 2005
Messages
30,534
Reaction score
10,682
Location
Louisiana
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Libertarian - Right
M14 Shooter said:
This is not a foregone conclsion.
Had the popular vote decided the election, there would have been a recount in every state, with the campaigns trying to eek out every last vote.

So, instead of 1 FL debacle, there wousl have been 50.
Never thought of that. The country would still be rebounding from an event of that magnitude. Still is as of the electoral result in some ways.
 

M14 Shooter

Banned
DP Veteran
Joined
Sep 30, 2005
Messages
2,622
Reaction score
68
Location
Toledo-ish OH
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Very Conservative
LaMidRighter said:
Never thought of that. The country would still be rebounding from an event of that magnitude. Still is as of the electoral result in some ways.
Nah.
The only people keeping the sunject alive are Sore Losermen.

Suffice it to say that had Ohio gone the other way by 200k votes, giving Kerry the EC win but a 3 million popular vote deficit, those presently complaing about the EC would be touting its virtues.
 

LaMidRighter

Klattu Verata Nicto
DP Veteran
Joined
May 19, 2005
Messages
30,534
Reaction score
10,682
Location
Louisiana
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Libertarian - Right
M14 Shooter said:
Nah.
The only people keeping the sunject alive are Sore Losermen.
All their backers too. I think that's one of the reasons for most of the tactics used against the president currently, then again, the most extreme of Democrats will do anything to control this country and get their way, the nuts on my side as well.

Suffice it to say that had Ohio gone the other way by 200k votes, giving Kerry the EC win but a 3 million popular vote deficit, those presently complaing about the EC would be touting its virtues.
I agree. I would have accepted the result myself, but that's because I believe the EC is the most efficient and fair system for choosing a president, it isn't perfect, but has worked very well for over 200 years.
 
T

The Real McCoy

While I'm far from an Electoral College guru, I voted option #3 and here's my proposal:

Keep the electoral college but instead of shelling all the state's votes out to the candidate if they gains a 51% majority in that state, the electorate votes should be divided within the states. Maybe have different districts in each state (similar to congressional districts with 50-some for California and 1 or 2 for states like Wyoming.) For each in-state district the candidate gains a majority of votes, they would gain 1 elecoral vote. This would give states more say in the election... for example, New York: upstate NY has a conservative majority but because of the heavily liberal influence from the city, New York is brushed off and assumed as a given for Democratic candidates.

Any thoughts on this idea?
 

M14 Shooter

Banned
DP Veteran
Joined
Sep 30, 2005
Messages
2,622
Reaction score
68
Location
Toledo-ish OH
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Very Conservative
The Real McCoy said:
While I'm far from an Electoral College guru, I voted option #3 and here's my proposal:

Keep the electoral college but instead of shelling all the state's votes out to the candidate if they gains a 51% majority in that state, the electorate votes should be divided within the states.
Any thoughts on this idea?
I did the math in the 2000 election.
Bush picked up a couple EVs because he did better in some of the red states than Gore did in some of the blue states.

So, it doesnt really solve any 'problems' exposed by the 2000 election.

In any event, each state would have to decide to do this, and some already do.
 

Navy Pride

DP Veteran
Joined
Jul 11, 2005
Messages
39,883
Reaction score
3,070
Location
Pacific NW
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Very Conservative
The elctoral college must be kept..........It makes people who vote in small state equal with prople who vote in large population states........

If you did not have the electoral college there would be no need for politicians to campaign in the small population states........They could just campaign in California, New York, Illinois, and Pennsylvania and be elected president..........

I can see why Liberals would love to scrap the Electoral College though.....Its because those states have big cities which usually vote liberal and its no coincidence that Kerry carried the above states in 2004 and that Gore carried them in 2000...........
 

GarzaUK

That European Guy
DP Veteran
Joined
Jan 28, 2005
Messages
3,682
Reaction score
625
Location
Belfast, Northern Ireland
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Centrist
I thought if the electoral system was scrapped it would be said that the Democrats would never get into office.

You Americans polarize EVERYTHING, it's crazy lol. Every subject is Democrat vs Republican, Liberal vs Conservative.

Maybe the electoral seats per state should be carved up.

Example

California - 50 seats (I'm def wrong)

Democrat 60% - gets 60% of those 50 seats
Rep. 40% - gets 40% of those seats.

Just to make things more complicated. :smile:
 

LaMidRighter

Klattu Verata Nicto
DP Veteran
Joined
May 19, 2005
Messages
30,534
Reaction score
10,682
Location
Louisiana
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Libertarian - Right
GarzaUK said:
I thought if the electoral system was scrapped it would be said that the Democrats would never get into office
. Honestly, we only use it for the presidency, but I think that the Republicans would never win because urban centers almost always vote Democrat, and since we have four or five major cities that pretty much nullify about three states just by themselves, it makes me like the EC even more.

You Americans polarize EVERYTHING, it's crazy lol. Every subject is Democrat vs Republican, Liberal vs Conservative.
I really want to talk to the other side, and some people on it are open minded, but once you find the extremists you have a better chance of changing a wall's mind, so it would be wiser to argue with it instead.

Maybe the electoral seats per state should be carved up.

Example

California - 50 seats (I'm def wrong)

Democrat 60% - gets 60% of those 50 seats
Rep. 40% - gets 40% of those seats.
that idea has been kicked around, under that scenario, then the Democrats never win another presidency

Just to make things more complicated. :smile:
I like a good challenge.:mrgreen:

http://www.citizinemag.com/commentary/commentary-0411_mileswoolley.htm This page shows visually what I mean by tampering with the methods of the popular vote or splitting by county.
 
Top Bottom