Politics Magazine

The Electoral College: My Bete Noire

Posted on the 28 February 2013 by Erictheblue

Congr District

I indicated, here, that people who think the electoral college should be preserved, but reformed so that electoral votes are won by carrying congressional districts, are either daft or eager to turn the country over to the Republicans.  (Not that these choices are mutually exclusive.)  What these "reformers" propose is that, within each state, a presidential candidate should get one electoral vote for each congressional district won and two electoral votes for winning the statewide tally. 

What would that have meant in 2012?  According to the Cook Political Report, Romney carried 222 congressional districts to Obama's 206, with an additional seven undetermined.  For the sake of argument, let's give those seven to Obama, who also won 26 states (and D.C.).  That gives Obama 213 electoral votes from congressional districts plus 55 more for the states he carried, for a total of 268.  Romney gets 222 from congressional districts plus 48 from states.  That's 270 for Romney, who would be president despite having lost the national popular vote by almost four percentage points.

I will never understand why, in a so-called national election, we feel bound to draw lines around people before counting their votes.  Support National Popular Vote.

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