Why In The Hell Does America Insist On Using The Electoral Vote System?

Submitted by: holygod 1 year ago in News & Politics

You've probably seen this video, but its worth a re-watch.

Why do we keep the electoral college? At this point it looks like Hillary will have a quarter of a million more Americans vote for her while Trump won the presidency. Does that not seem insane? For the record he won fair and square. These are the rules we play by. I also would be posting this video today even if Hillary won the presidency and Trump won the popular vote. The system seems unfair no matter who you are. Politics aside, why do we still do this?

If you don't watch the whole video, the punchline is you can mathematically become president while having less than 22% of people vote for you.

There are 90 comments:
Male 5,620
@Squrlz4Ever - "There is only one good defense of the EC, and I haven't seen one person advance it in this thread yet." Actually, I feel there are several good defenses. The first and probably the best I would point out is that fact that America is made up of regions, and a popular vote could result in one region picking the president. The EC requires a presidential candidate to have transregional appeal and support, as no one region has enough electorals to elect a president.
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Male 8,058
Trump Tweeted that the Electoral college was stupid and a sham. So how about the rest of you? ;) The Electoral college is a disaster for Democracy
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Male 1,627
don't listen to this garbage. pargerU has two videos on this topic of much higher quality and is not biased
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Male 10,084
What was biased in this video? Its math. Math I double checked. What does this video say that you think in inaccurate?
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Male 5,191
PragerU? Not biased?! You have got to be kidding. Dennis Prager's videos are conservative propaganda courses, where you can learn all about how global warming is nothing to be concerned about and fossil fuels are (I'm not making this up) "the greenest energy." But let's put aside Prager's propaganda for a moment. Since you're deriding the video here as "garbage" (your word), what exactly do you find wrong with it?
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Male 8,058
The facts and information part ;)
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Male 5,191
From reading the newer comments, it's clear some of you still haven't bothered to watch the video. So I'm going to make this simple and direct it to those who are defending the EC on the erroneous idea that it "prevents the smaller states from being overrun by the bigger states" or some similar acreage-based rationale. Frankly, I don't think you're aware of what you're supporting. So: Please complete one of the following sentences of your choice. If you're a Trump supporter: "I believe that the vote of one Clinton supporter in Vermont should cancel out the votes of three Trump supporters in Texas because...."  If you're a Clinton supporter: "I believe the vote of one Trump supporter in Wyoming should cancel out the votes of four California Clinton supporters because...."  I really want to know how those of you supporting the EC can justify either scenario.
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Male 5,620
@Squrlz4Ever, I watched the video; however, do you not see the faulty logic you are arguing here? You are assuming the video is 100% correct. You are erroneously assuming that the EC is faulty based on the information in the video - it may be; however, that does not mean any suggestion to another system is a better system.
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Male 5,191
Sorry, Elkingo, I disagree with almost everything in your comment here. 1. Your comment is based on the assumption that because information presented in this video is new to you, it's new to others. It's not. I've been reading and writing about the EC for years. None of the information in this video is new. And, like HolyGod, I double-checked the numbers. (I had the Windows calculator open and was doing all sorts of what-if scenarios, beyond those presented in the video.)  2. Where did I or the video make the case that any other system at all is better than the EC? I've never argued that. What I've argued for, and what the video argues for, is a straight popular vote. If you think that's an unproven way to choose a president of the executive branch, you better contact your state legislature: For over 200 years, every United States governor is chosen by the popular vote and that's worked very well. I'd like to see you come to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania and announce you want to replace the popular vote with an elector scheme whereby the vote of a resident in Lancaster will count for the votes of three Philadelphians. You'd be laughed out of the state capital, as well you should be. There is only one good defense of the EC, and I haven't seen one person advance it in this thread yet. I'm wondering whether I should bang out the 250 words needed to explain it because I'm starving for good discourse here and most people have already left the thread.
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Male 5,620
Squrlz - I didn't suggest the information is new. I have heard it from both sides in many elections. What I notice is this: a popular vote may have issues, and simply replacing the EC with it is absurd. What you are suggesting is that because someone shows you math that works the intent is 100% honest. That is extremely faulty logic. It is akin to those videos "mind readers" make that claim that they can take your birthday, math it, and guess what card you point out - nevermind that the math is pre-calculated to make you point to the same card every time. This could be the same. Many have suggested that the "math" work, but others point out that it may have unintentional problems - such as generating a scenario in which every single president from here on out is a democrat.
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Male 10,084
I double checked some of the most drastic stats in the video. They are in fact accurate.
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Male 5,620
That isn't the argument. The argument is the assertion that abolishment of the EC and replacement with any other system is opinion and assumption. You have to assume that EC is faulty and needs replaced based on the math of this video. That, sir, is faulty logic. Remember: Figures do not lie; but liars do figure.
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Male 10,855
I suppose if we're going to keep actual electors than removing the cap would be too drastic of a change. Perhaps just triple the number of electors relative to representatives (100 + 3*435 (plus 9 for DC iirc)). I do understand the concern of the nightmare scenario put forth in this video thus we should try to mitigate that.
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Male 5,191
@Cajun: You want to remove the cap? So... you're proposing that California have a meeting on December 19 of 1,100 electors? In a really really really really big room, I guess. Or maybe a football stadium. It's called the Electoral College for a reason: per the Constitution, there are actual electors who are required to assemble and cast their votes. Electoral votes aren't simply some abstract entity.
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Male 10,855
Again the cap placed on Representatives in the House should not apply to the Electoral College. This means each state gets 2 plus 1 electoral vote for every 30,000 people. We don't want simple majorities of the popular vote deciding the next head of state.
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Male 10,084
Well going to straight popular vote would obviously eliminate several of the problems with the electoral college that this video points out. Whether it raises more is open to interpretation I suppose.
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Male 10,855
"...because even if I win it wasn't simply because more people agreed with my choice." "...because even if I lose I want the other side to face pressure to realign their interests. Without this system there would be less of it."
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Male 5,191
Cajun, I'm not understanding you. First of all, if I may ask, are you a Trump or a Clinton supporter (assuming you're one or the other)? My intention was that people should complete only one of those sentences, based on their allegiance, so that they would be forced to confront their own partisanship. .... Just taking your second sentence, though: Really? If you strongly believed in Candidate A--his platform would clearly help your family financially and in other ways--you'd be willing to allow one vote by a supporter of Candidate B to have the same weight as your vote, your wife's vote, and the vote of your adult son? Because it will cause the other side to "realign their interests" (whatever that means)? That's very generous of you, I guess.
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Male 10,855
I voted for Gary Johnson dude. Simply put "realigning one's interest" is simply referring to the act of bargaining or bending one's own agenda to accommodate those of opposing parties (who must also realign their own interest). This is opposed to simply shoving their own agenda down the throats of the opposing faction. I can certainly understand an issue with the electoral college skewing the result too much, but nonetheless there MUST be a skew.
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Male 10,855
My pleasure, glad to have had this conversation. Cheers! [img]http://i.imgur.com/QJ7Rcge.jpg[/img]
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Male 5,191
@Cajun247: Thanks for the response--and good job. I can't say I agree with all your positions on this, but your reasoning is sound and you've presented some ideas I hadn't considered: namely, that states are subject to the whims of egress and ingress in a way that the nation isn't. Also, your points about Trump having to accommodate some of his opponents' agendas in order to make it to a second term are good (although I'd argue that's not a peculiar benefit of the EC, but simply a reflection of how close the popular vote was). At any rate, your ideas and reasoning are the best in the thread I've come across and were a pleasure to read, so thank you.
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Male 10,855
Because if a Governor (and legislature) enacts bad policies people can leave the state and still reside in America. The threat of such movement alone encourages Governors to bend their own agenda to accommodate all parties. If a President (and, again, the legislature) enacts bad policies then that leaves people with two options either:->Move abroad and thus subject themselves to the laws of another country -OR- ->Wait another 4 years for an opportunity to elect a new President. Since Trump lost the popular vote, if he hopes to become an effective President he MUST compromise with the Hillary voters (and by extension Johnson and Jill Stein) and thus bend his own agenda to move it forward. We still get bad policies for sure but they'd be a lot worse without these checks in place. The President is decided by the electoral college because Federal government policymaking is harder to keep in check and it would be more difficult to do so without it. In summary the Electoral College encourages compromise much more effectively than ability to leave the jurisdiction.
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Male 5,191
Okay. A couple questions for you then. (1) You claim that the EC causes the winning party to bend their agenda to accommondate the agendas of opposing parties? Trump was elected by the Electoral College. Please explain how Donald Trump bent his agenda to accommodate Hillary Clinton's agenda as a result of the EC. I'm all ears. (2) Why MUST (your caps) there be a skew? State governors have been elected by a straight popular vote, with no skew, for over 200 years. Since you are basing your argument on the idea that a popular vote is somehow bad, you must think that there is something fundamentally wrong with how we elect our governors. Please explain why there's something broken with that process. Most observers would say our process for electing governors has worked very well: no one's been complaining about it and no one's been trying to change it. By contrast, people have been complaining about the EC and trying to abolish it for 150 years.
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Male 10,855
Here's another thing, the set of swing states does not stay the same every year. Granted there are definitely incumbents like Ohio, but this time around Iowa was NOT a swing state.
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Male 10,084
But they TREATED it like one in the campaign. Nevada, Virginia, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, Iowa, Florida, Ohio. That's the roster. No candidates go to New York, Texas, California, and most of the small states the electoral college is supposed to make relevant.
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Male 10,855
So they'll be less apt to treat like such next time around.
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Male 10,855
My one and only issue with the EC is the cap on the number of electoral votes. On it's own it's an extension of the cap on the number of representatives which makes sense. Placing the same cap on the number of electoral votes does not make sense and removing it would make the fringe case presented in this video even less likely to occur. Yes I did the math and it would place the number of electoral votes somewhere north of 11,000 .
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Male 517
Obviously because the high population states would run over the low population states if it were strictly by popularity.
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Male 10,084
But they WOULDN'T. Do you understand that Trump got 33% of the vote in California and 37% in New York? Even in the reddest and bluest states they are still fairly divided. Candidates would have to go way more places than they do now.
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Male 342
I propose we change the system. One primary all comers, not divided by party. The two candidates with the most votes face each other in a run off 4-6 weeks later. Side note: Anyone that campaigns for more than a year should be tarred and feathered.
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Male 5,620
Oh come on. 250k out of 120 million is not enough to be significantly different. Yet here we are talking about the popular vote. It isn't enough to make a basis for an argument. You are basically arguing that 25 cents is a significant amount of money out of 120 dollars. It simply is not. It is less than a percentage point. No line of statistical analysis can argue that is different. IF you did rely on the popular vote, you would at best need a re-count. At worst, you would let Ryan Paul become president.
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Male 89
The Electoral vote system was put in for all the wrong reasons but the long term result is that presidential candidates have to win over the majority of the states. Would any candidate ever worry about the ANY of the smaller states? They would all campaign to win the popular vote of the 20 most populous states. So no the weird ass electoral system needs to stay till they can come up with something better. If you want to spend lots of time and effort to help the country get rid of riders. The reason for them is long gone and is the reason that lobby groups are so powerful. but hey we will all be having to learn mandarin or cantonese soon anyway so it does not really matter.
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Male 1,749
HolyGod you cant see the forest for the trees. Just look at a map of the election and it will tell you how a small section of the country could very easily control the country, if 5 count them 5 normally democratic states had not flipped we would have a Democratic president. Which shows that even the hard core Democratic states are fed up with the Democrats.
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Male 1
You know there was a time when I advocated doing away with the Electoral College. I was under the false impression that the EC was the answer to the problem of quickly counting large amounts of votes in a pre-computerized era. I was wrong, I was stupid, and I was misinformed. Turns out, the EC is the only thing keeping this country from being run by mob rule because without it, large population centers like New York City, Chicago and Los Angeles would literally dictate the course for the rest of the country. As of last census, about 51% of our population resides in the 9 most populous states. A presidential candidate could campaign in just those states, ignoring the other 41 and still win the presidency. The EC make sure smaller, less populous states like Montana, Alaska, Wyoming to have a say in the elections. Because without the EC, campaigning in those states wouldn't be worth the cost of the candidate's jet fuel.
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Male 5,191
Welcome to IAB, Bob (or thanks for making your first comment if you're a long-time lurker). Unfortunately, you've chosen to make your first comment in a political thread two days after one of the most contentious elections in U.S. history. Expect fur to fly; don't take any of it personally.  :)
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Male 10,084
Are you fucking with me? So you are saying that candidates could just go to the 9 most populous states to win? So EVERY SINGLE PERSON in the state is going to vote for them? Not EVERY Californian voted for Hillary. Not EVERY Texan voted for Trump. Not even close. So that's total crap. Plus you're saying with the electoral college Alaska, Wyoming, and Montana have a say? You think the candidates went there ONCE in 2016? 2012? 2008? Ever? They already aren't part of the campaign trail. You think New Hampshire should get all the attention it gets from candidates? More than Texas and California combined?
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Male 941
Having the swing states getting all the attention is just an unfortunate side effect of the EC. Both sides, of course, manipulate the system. That doesn't mean the system itself is broken or unfair or outdated.
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Male 10,855
If a candidate pulled 70% of the vote, they'd only need the most populous 17 states. It's only by the time you reach 60% where half of the states would be needed.
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Male 10,084
So what? Again. The states are imaginary lines that divide land. People should vote. People are all that should matter.
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Male 10,855
And they should, but no president should win simply because more people voted for him or her. Such an arrangement would bring us closer to mob rule as the President would only have to listen to the majority instead of compromising and realigning their own interests with those of competing factions. In simplest terms the minority would be royally screwed without it. Now if you're going to bring up other nations then I'll point out that everywhere else people vote for a party. So once again in those scenarios the majority does not have direct control over who becomes head of state, their interests have to be realigned with those of the party they vote for.
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Male 10,084
Are you fucking with me? So you are saying that candidates could just go to the 9 most populous states to win? So EVERY SINGLE PERSON in the state is going to vote for them? Not EVERY Californian voted for Hillary. Not EVERY Texan voted for Trump. Not even close. So that's total crap. Plus you're saying with the electoral college Alaska, Wyoming, and Montana have a say? You think the candidates went there ONCE in 2016? 2012? 2008? Ever? They already aren't part of the campaign trail. You think New Hampshire should get all the attention it gets?
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Male 8,058
And why do the masses have to conform to the lower populations? There should be a middle ground. The EC is needs the winner take all part of it taken away. That would work.
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Male 941
There is a middle ground. Its called using the EC system. It works both ways. Thank about it.
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Male 5,620
Sure sounds great! Dems would no longer start each presidential race with a huge advantage (55 this year in CA!) Hell, we could divide CA into three smaller electoral areas... that way Dems would get about 18 electorals from there, and the second area would get about 18, which would probably go to repubs, and the final one would get about 18 that would also go to republicans. Sounds fair to me!
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Male 1,590
Actually, mst of the problem isn't the electoral system. it's the winner-take-all system for the states. if we got rid of that, there would be no swing states and the electoral votes would be much closer to the popular vote.
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Male 5,191
Since the bar for constitutional amendments in the U.S. is so unreasonably high (another problem, and another topic), what you're suggesting has been proposed as a workaround. Not a perfect fix, but better than what we've got now.
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Male 5,191
Oh, by the way, I pulled the pin on that grenade but (to the annoyance of some, I'm sure), I'm still here. I should've known it was a dud from the label on the box: "Nate Silver is 98% confident that this grenade WILL explode."
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Male 5,620
At this point, suspicions that Nate Silver was biased and gerrymandered the polls are 100% undeniably confirmed.
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Male 5,191
The Electoral College should absolutely be done away with. I have been saying that for years, long in advance of this election (the last time I said it here on IAB was about a month ago, on October 13). Not one person in this thread seems to understand the main, practical reason why the Electoral College was created. It's a commonplace response that the founders feared "mob rule"; yes, they did, but (A) that's not the primary reason that the EC was created; and (B) in practice, the EC does nothing to address the concerns of "mob rule." Let's take A first: The primary reason the EC was created was because in the 1780s, this was a provincial nation. The founders rightly understood that most Americans knew little about politicians outside of their own states and would probably vote for the names they recognized, meaning that elections would be a pointless exercise of citizens voting for local candidates they knew versus candidates from far away states whose names they didn't recognize. Electors, they reasoned, from wider travel, attendance at political events, and correspondence would actually know all the candidates and be able to vote more intelligently. This concern is now obsolete because of these new-fangled inventions you might have heard about called radio, television, and the internet.  ... Now for B: Okay, you say, the geographical thing I understand, but what about mob rule? Weren't the founders concerned about that? And doesn't the EC protect against that? Yes, the founders, particularly James Madison, worried about the "tyranny of the majority," and the EC was partly created to assuage those fears. But does it? Almost from the moment of the EC's creation, the electors have not been, as the founders imagined, wise, knowledgable citizens who convene to discuss who would make the best president, and then vote based on those deliberations. In practice, they've been prominent members of each state's political parties who are chosen precisely because they will discuss nothing and can be counted on to reliably vote for the party's designated candidate. Since the creation of the EC, faithless electors (electors who don't vote for the party choice) are so rare as to be virtually non-existent and no faithless elector has ever changed the outcome of an election by voting against his or her party's designated candidate. Thus, the EC is not a buffer against mob rule: it is simply a malfunctioning moving part that complicates the electoral process and, by making some citizens' votes more valuable than others', undermines democracy.  ....  Anyone who still wants to argue for the EC, based on misconceptions that it ensures that small states aren't ignored or prevents cities from dictating national politics, needs to take their fingers off the keyboard and watch HolyGod's video.
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Male 941
How many people have to say it in this thread before you realize that it is not supposed to be democratic?
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Male 5,191
So your defense of the EC is that you're fine with an electoral process as conceived in the 1780s? Well, you better get busy then and start subtracting out the votes of women, blacks, and men who aren't landholders from this last election. But that would be silly, wouldn't it? Why? Because over the past 200 years, we've come to realize that restricting voting to elite upperclass men, and away from the unwashed masses, isn't very enlightened. I'm stunned at the numbers of commenters in this thread who take the "mob rule" argument at face value, evidently unaware that if this were 1780, they would be considered part of the mob. Generally speaking, as society has progressed, most people want to expand democratic influences--not restrict them or adopt an eighteenth-century mindset.
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Male 941
I'm fine with it because it still works. People take the "mob rule" argument not at face value, but as a sound and logical argument. Now, if MOST people want to expand democratic influences, as you say, then why the hell haven't you and all of them done a damn thing to try to change the system?
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Male 941
I'm not the one bitching about the electoral system, so why would I be doing anything to change it? And if you want to talk about 'nasty attitude' look around at all your liberal buddies.
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Male 5,191
@Umbobo: No, you're not fine with it. The EC, as originally conceived, would have prevented you from voting this past Tuesday because (I think I can safely assume) you don't have a degree from William & Mary, Harvard, or Yale and your family doesn't own 60 acres of land. What you're fine with is the Electoral College as it has been modified by the 12th Amendment, the 15th Amendment, the 17th Amendment, the 19th Amendment, the 23rd Amendment, the 24th Amendement, and the 26th Amendment. The people who have worked to expand democratic influences via those amendments were largely liberals, like myself; and as you can see, we've already done a lot to change the system, thank you very much. Aside from sprinkling the internet with swear words and a nasty attitude, what have you been up to?
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Male 8,058
You are too smart for a cute cuddly squirrel.
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Male 5,191
Dunno about that. Every time I get into a discussion with 5Cats about American government and American politics, he tells me I'm "appallingly ignorant."  :)
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Male 3,579
suprised you havent been called fuckface yet. or stalker
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Male 8,058
Well I've learned I only engage him to a point then ignore him. You just refute him with facts and let it be. He ignores everything that doesn't fit his world view anyways.
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Male 374
Good god. It's like going to Red Lobster and complaining that you can't get a Big Mac. The reason the Electoral College is undemocratic is because the US wasn't designed to be a democracy. It was designed to be a republic.
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Male 10,084
So you like that we have a system that can elect a president who receives less than 22% of the vote? Why is the argument always "that's how it was designed"? So what? That's how it was designed over 250 years ago for reasons that are no longer as important. You know what else they DESIGNED at that time? The 3/5ths compromise. We can make our system better. We're SUPPOSED to change it. That's what the founders wanted.
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Male 374
"So you like that we have a system that can elect a president who receives less than 22% of the vote?" Clearly, I didn't say I liked it. Equally clearly, I didn't say I didn't like it. Abundantly clearly, I said that the electoral system is undemocratic because it was never designed to be democratic in the first place.
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Male 4,253
You make no sense. It was designed so we can change it. Your comment argues with itself. I'm not sure you have quite come to grips with what happened Tuesday night. Take a little time off, go out on your boat and enjoy yourself.
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Male 10,084
How do I not make sense? I'm confused. How does my comment argue with itself?
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Male 10,084
I'm cool with it actually. I told you I'm behind Trump 100%. He's my president. This isn't a liberal / conservative thing. I don't have a boat. I live in the desert. Very few boats in Phoenix.
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Male 4,253
Well that is damn odd, your wife is always saying you have a little dingy.
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Male 1,197
Sure, it can happen, but that's pretty unlikely to happen.  The only time the popular and electoral votes differ are when the race is really really tight, and sometimes not even then.  I live in TX, which is one of the states listed as having a weaker vote, and guess what?  I don't mind.  I still get to vote on my Congressman who is the person who actually represents me.  I still get to vote for my Senator, who represents me.  I still get to vote on all state and local officials, who actually affect my day to day life.  What is the POTUS going to do that is going to affect me?  Other than start a war.  Of course if he starts a war and the country doesn't like it, he could be removed from office by those people other people I vote for.
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Male 3,667
@HolyGod, the point of the electoral college is to limit "mob rule" scenarios while also limiting "state governments forcing their wills upon the people" scenarios. The founding fathers feared a true democracy but also feared that states would elect a leader that would be detrimental to the people. Basically, the electoral college is an amalgamation between these two systems. That's not to say that it couldn't use some reform. Fun fact; states get to determine how their electoral votes are split, if at all. Contact your representatives and let them know you think your states votes should be split
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Male 1,197
Coincidentally, somewhat unrelated, this is why I find people that vote for POTUS based on things like abortion to be completely stupid.  The President CAN NOT just make abortion illegal.  So there are many people out there basing their vote on things the President just can not do anything about.  In order for that law to be passed, it would have to be initiated by Congress and then everyone would have to agree.
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Male 648
I think the EC can stay, but the districts and jerry-mandering need to go. A states votes should be counted as a flat all in one number. I live in Washington, which always goes blue for president. Always. But you'll notice almost every other state governmental office here is red. Do away with the electoral college, and I think Washington goes more Pub than Dem. Which doesn't benefit me as I tend more liberal in some things, but would still be a more accurate representation of the populous as a whole. Isn't that the goal? Also I think more people would actually vote if they knew it counted for something. Turnout would soar. More states become swing states. Democracy happens.
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Male 41,079
Also Bill Clinton was elected with far less than 50% (44% and 43% iirc) but that's just how it is. A representational system like Italy or Israel would lead to chaos and huge power in the hands of those 'minor parties' who hold enough seats to swing the balance. Like Trimble said: it is like that ON purpose! To prevent a small number of States with huge populations from dictating what the rest of the States can do. They are still well represented in the House and Senate of course, but the Presidential voting is intentionally different. Now... sensible term limits for all politicians! :-) There's a good idea.
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Male 1,197
It works because the President has no real power on his own, he needs the power of Congress.  Each State has equal representation in the senate, no matter the size or population, they get 2 Senators.  House of Representatives gets representation based on population.  More people, more representatives.  Then the Electoral college gets to decide who the president is based on land mass.  I'll admit, if the president had dictator like power, the electoral college system would be a piece of shit, but he doesn't.  He has no real power.  There are things they can do, but if they go too far, Congress, where representation is much more equal, has the power to remove the President.  Change does not happen with the president though, it happens in Congress.  Sure, Congress shouldn't be working on things that they know the President will just Veto and he can kind of guide them if he has their support, getting them to pass bills that he wants, but it only works if all three branches agree on something.
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Male 41,079
At least Americans get to vote for their President! We Canadians have zero say in the matter: whomever is the Party Leader becomes the Prime Minister, even if he/she doesn't get elected! (Which hasn't happened... yet!) Our Prince Justin promised electoral reform, but now that he's in power? he suddenly likes the system that lets him KEEP that power... on the scrap heap with the rest of his promises. :-/
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Male 4,253
It's perfect for a country like ours (the entire US Constitution) a republic made up of fifty individual states. It simply would not work to let a handful of those heavily populated states control everything.
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Male 1,482
EXACTLY.
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Male 10,084
I know that's the sentiment. But can you explain what you mean? In my voting lifetime the states that have had control are Ohio, Florida, Pennsylvania, Virginia, New Hampshire, and Nevada. Plus it isn't as if you can go to California and talk to all Californians. You're still limited to how many people come to your speech or event. It isn't all that much easier to get 15,000 people to a speech in Los Angeles as it is in Bismark. The only difference would be every single one of those people would matter. Currently none of them do. I don't see this as a partisan issue. I'm just blown away that we prioritize geography over people. Isn't it "we the people"? Are you saying that if everyone moved out of Wyoming except for one guy he'd still get 3 electoral votes? Why do we silence the republicans in California or the democrats in West Virginia? Shouldn't their vote matter too?
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Male 8,687
Simple, the system was never designed to be 'by popular vote', so arguing that it 'should' be is asinine. Our founders did not trust a true democracy, the tyranny of the majority. Remember, we are a Republic, not a democracy. You want it to be by popular vote? There an amendment process to go through to change it. Hop to it. The reality is it was designed so that a very few cities would not decide the fate for the entire country. You are not voting for President, but for which candidate will receive your state's votes. One look at the results by County demonstrates why the electoral college is still the best way to go.
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Male 10,084
You didn't even watch the video did you? You know how I can tell that? Because it absolutely and irrefutably destroys your "few cities decide the fate" argument.
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Male 5,191
@Umbob: You know what? People disagree on here. It happens all the time. This isn't the first time Grendel and I have had a disagreement, and it probably won't be the last. I've taken him at his word here and apologized. So far as I can tell, it's done. By contrast, throwing gasoline on a recently extinsguished fire isn't going to help anything.
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Male 941
Holy shit guys, Grendel just gave an absolutely perfect explanation of why it works, and it had to be turned into a race issue? There was not a damn thing said that should have made you think it had anything to do with race. Grendel, damn good explanation.
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Male 5,191
@Grendel: All right. I'll take you at your word and believe you when you say you weren't thinking of race when you invented "Detroita" as a place where "no one produces anything nor accomplishes anything." I apologize for the accusation. I'm hoping you can understand how easy it was to misread your comment, considering that Detroit is 83% black/African American.
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Male 8,687
Squrlz...A 'dog whistle' is a term made up by liberals so that they could 'deem' something racist when their opponent would not oblige them by actually saying something racist. I work in a productive part of the country. Guess what? Whites are in the minority around here. The work force demographics aligns with the population demographics. We don't care if you're a 'white worker' or a 'black worker', we only worry about if you're a 'good worker'. Yes, I picked Detroit for a reason: It was a once proud, productive city. A bastion of the American Dream. Now it's shit. Detroit is now synonymous with failure and decline. Over 50 years of Democratic (and sometimes Communist) rule has done that. Detroit was one of the Model Cities for the Great Society and War on Poverty. Higher and more taxes followed. Their Credit Rating fell to Junk Status. The middle-class fled, Those who were able to leave, left. Rather than trying to attract business Detroit actively harasses businesses (you can chalk that up to the dominance of Unions in Detroit).
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Male 5,191
@GrendelRiiiiiiiight. I'm sure race never entered your mind when you described "Detroita" as a place where "no one produces anything nor accomplishes anything." Ain't dog whistles fun? (Incidentally, you're confusing imply and infer.)
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Male 8,687
HG, here's a little factoid...there are over 3,000 counties in the US....one half of they US population live in 244 of them...so 8% of the counties (which, strangely enough are around the largest cities) would rule the other 92% (that's 2,763 counties, btw).
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Male 8,687
Actually Squrls, race did not enter the equation. I did not infer any race. I stated Productive, Administratice and mooches. I used Detriot because it is a formerly great, productive city that has fallen into ruin due to decades of democratic rule. The fact that you assumed race was involved says more to your biases than mine.
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Male 10,084
@Grendel "if you look at the County-by-County results, you will see LOT of red and VERY LITTLE of blue" Yes. Because 81% of Americans live in urban areas. Those red areas you see are vast spaces of nothingness full of fields and mountains. Why are we talking about geography? Shouldn't people be all that matters? Who cares where they live? Like the video says, the top 100 cities only represent 19% of the population. So how would "a very few cities decide the fate for the entire country"?
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Male 5,191
Wow, Grendel. Even to a squirrel's ears, the dog whistling there is pretty obvious. Why not dispense with the polite camouflage, say what you really think, and posit that there are three states: "Hard-Working Whites," "Washington Bureaucrats," and "Lazy Black People"? ~Squrlz shakes his head~
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Male 8,687
Actually, if you look at the County-by-County results, you will see LOT of red and VERY LITTLE of blue, that it is pretty much only the large cities she won...and in the process got slightly more of the popular vote. So, that pretty much proves my argument. Let's simplify it. There are only three states that make up the Union, let's call them "Productivana", "Administrana" and "Detroita." Productivana is where all the manufacturing and farming and provides all foods and products to the union. They have a population of 1 million. Adminstrana is where the government is and has a population of 1 million. Adminstrana dosn't produce anything, but oversees production goals and distribution, and polices the rest. Detroita is where no one produces anything nor accomplishes anything, but they consume everything prodcued in Productivana. Detroita has a population of 3 million. Now, with an electoral college, all three states have the same say on how the union is run, and the system works pretty well as all three states' needs are met. But, with a popular vote, Detroita would run the government every election...probably not to the best possible outcome of Productivana and Adminstrana.
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Male 10,084
BTW, 4 years ago Trump said "The electoral college is a disaster for democracy".
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Male 10,084
I know people are going to come and think that I'm posting this because I'm bitter. I'm really not. 16 years ago I voted for Bush. I stayed up wanting Bush to win. However, when Gore won the popular vote and still lost I thought it was ridiculous, even if I was happy "my guy" won. I've just never heard a single good reason to keep the system. Somebody educate me.
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Male 2,389
I think it's time for a break....
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