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Publius_
17 Feb 07,, 13:22
What do you think? Yea or nay?

The Framers designed the electoral system for the presidency with the thought in mind that the executive should be shielded from popular passions... even the whole practice of an entire state's electoral votes going to the candidate who carried the majority of the vote in a state was not something they had in mind.

Is the Electoral College unnecessary? Should the President of the United States be elected by direct popular vote?

dalem
17 Feb 07,, 19:54
I am very much in favor of the Electoral College system.

Very much so.

-dale

Kassad
17 Feb 07,, 20:39
The federal government has become very intrusive with citizens. A 100 years ago the feds had almost no say-so in the daily affairs with the average Joe. The federal government has grown too large and powerful. In charge of the behemoth is a single individual, and I feel that we need to take measures to reduce the fed influence, and give back most of the decision making back to the states.

The states should continue to elect the president, and a national popular vote should never be considered a viable option.

gunnut
17 Feb 07,, 21:25
The federal government has become very intrusive with citizens. A 100 years ago the feds had almost no say-so in the daily affairs with the average Joe. The federal government has grown too large and powerful. In charge of the behemoth is a single individual, and I feel that we need to take measures to reduce the fed influence, and give back most of the decision making back to the states.

The states should continue to elect the president, and a national popular vote should never be considered a viable option.

Well said, sir.

I'm against popular vote for the president as well.

highsea
17 Feb 07,, 21:40
I wouldn't do away with the electoral college, but I'm not sure a little reform isn't in order, i.e. distribution of electoral votes based on percentages of the overall vote for each state.

This would change the way compaigns are run, and would force candidates to pay attention to more than just a few swing states. States would no longer cast all or nothing votes, but each candidate would get a portion of the electoral votes based on how he did in that state. You would have to form electoral districts, etc.

wabpilot
18 Feb 07,, 01:08
Should the President of the United States be elected by direct popular vote?
The Electoral College generally magnifies the margin of victory giving the winner more of a mandate than normally he would have had if there was a popular vote. For example, Bill Clinton never won a majority of the popular vote, yet he had comfortable electoral margins giving him a lot more mandate than his slim victories ever earned him. The normal situation was reversed in 2000 and 2004. Bush lost the popular vote in 2000, but just barely won the Electoral College. In 2004, Bush won the popular vote, but only barely won the Electoral College. Perhaps that was because of his strategy of doing just enough to win. Perhaps it reflects just how well tuned the Electoral College system is.

The current system of electoral voting is not so much a problem as the rest of the Presidential election system. I would like to see a lot of reform there before I worried too much about the Electoral College.

Publius_
18 Feb 07,, 07:59
What are the opinions on electoral votes being cast proportionally? Let's say a state has 20 electoral votes, and the popular vote is 55-45%. 11 electoral votes are cast for the first candidate, and 9 for the second.

sparten
18 Feb 07,, 11:43
Maybe you can tie it to Congressional Districts. Whoever gets the most votes in a distict is automatically given that districts vote in an election.

ZFBoxcar
18 Feb 07,, 15:33
highsea, good proposal. In fact, that is close to the way it was in the beginning, but the constitution left control over electoral procedures to the state legislatures, and they decided to make it all or nothing to increase the significance of their state in the presidential election. As soon as some states started doing that, the rest followed so that their importance would not be diluted. If all states were forced to do allocate their seats by district or proportional representation, then no state would have to bid for power.

Gun Grape
18 Feb 07,, 16:27
What are the opinions on electoral votes being cast proportionally? Let's say a state has 20 electoral votes, and the popular vote is 55-45%. 11 electoral votes are cast for the first candidate, and 9 for the second.

Some states do that. Every state is not an "all or nothing" state..

But that isn't something that can be done on a federal level. Work on reforming the way your state divvies up its votes if you want change.

highsea
18 Feb 07,, 16:40
IIRC there are only 2 states that do not vote "winner take all".

I think Colorado was toying with the idea of proportional electors last election.

The problem with leaving it up to the states is what ZF pointed out- states don't want to dilute their importance in the overall scheme.

wabpilot
19 Feb 07,, 01:06
Maybe you can tie it to Congressional Districts. Whoever gets the most votes in a distict is automatically given that districts vote in an election.That looks a lot like a parlimentary system. Big change from the current republican system. Before we make such a fundamental change, a lot of thought and debate needs to take place.

ZFBoxcar
19 Feb 07,, 02:11
That looks a lot like a parlimentary system. Big change from the current republican system. Before we make such a fundamental change, a lot of thought and debate needs to take place.

Assuming Sparten is not advocating that the president and Congress be elected in the same election, it is not the same thing as the parliamentary system.

Grim
19 Feb 07,, 04:35
I say no. To many reasons why and every one of them is an uninformed / soundbite voter.

sparten
19 Feb 07,, 05:09
I was not actually advocating a parliamentry system.
By linking it to districts you have a much clearer reflection of the popular mandate.

gunnut
19 Feb 07,, 20:01
I'm against apportioning a state's electoral votes according to popular votes.

The reason is simple. The nation was set up as a federal system. The states vote for the president, not the people. Each state has to act as a single voice.

It's like I have divided loyalties to McCain and Hillary. I like 60% of what McCain says and 40% of what Hillary says. But I only have 1 vote. I can't tell the state that I would like to divide my vote 60/40. I have to vote for 1 person or not at all.

ZFBoxcar
26 Feb 07,, 02:54
The reason is simple. The nation was set up as a federal system. The states vote for the president, not the people. Each state has to act as a single voice.

Then why not just have the state legislature or governor allocate the electoral votes?


It's like I have divided loyalties to McCain and Hillary. I like 60% of what McCain says and 40% of what Hillary says. But I only have 1 vote. I can't tell the state that I would like to divide my vote 60/40. I have to vote for 1 person or not at all.

Yeah, but if you were thousands or millions of people like a state, you could divide your votes 60/40. States get their representation in the Senate, I think the presidency should be a unifying office, not a divisive one. All or nothing accentuates the red-blue divide.

crooks
28 Feb 07,, 18:49
What do you think? Yea or nay?

The Framers designed the electoral system for the presidency with the thought in mind that the executive should be shielded from popular passions... even the whole practice of an entire state's electoral votes going to the candidate who carried the majority of the vote in a state was not something they had in mind.

Is the Electoral College unnecessary? Should the President of the United States be elected by direct popular vote?

Of course he should........it's the essence of Democracy, "He with more INDIVIDUAL VOTES wins".

Pretty much every other democracy has it, why not the US?

Kassad
28 Feb 07,, 21:18
The US is a republic.

gunnut
28 Feb 07,, 21:38
Then why not just have the state legislature or governor allocate the electoral votes?



Yeah, but if you were thousands or millions of people like a state, you could divide your votes 60/40. States get their representation in the Senate, I think the presidency should be a unifying office, not a divisive one. All or nothing accentuates the red-blue divide.

The popular representation for the state is the House of Representatives.

I'm not against popular votes for the president. I'm just saying the Constitution says it's not a popular vote. If people really want to change it, they should do it by following the proper procedure like amending the Constitution.

ExNavyAmerican
02 Mar 07,, 18:36
The President of the United States is as his title says. The United States are the 50 political units, and he is president of them; he is not president of the people-if he were, it would make him no more than a monarch. The House of Representatives is the representation for the people, the Senate was originally the representation for the state governments, and the president is head of government and state. It is his duty to head the nation (though not solely), not to represent the people-that is congress' job. And, quite frankly, the founding fathers knew that the average citizen couldn’t effectively choose someone to head the state and government, and they were right. But they couldn’t have him be elected by the congress either, that would make him similar to a prime minister that was bound to congress. The answer was the Electoral College, which gives both the people, and experienced statesmen responsibility to choose the president, but the experienced statesmen have the final say, NOT the average citizens.

So, yes, I firmly believe that we should retain the Electoral College.

gunnut
02 Mar 07,, 19:28
Very well said, sir.

I totally forgot about the federation of states that is the United States. We are really not a single large country, but 50 small ones that banded together very tightly. We're like the EU, except we have a common language, a common military unit, and extra 200 years to work on the system.

Is the president of EU elected by popular votes?