01 Dec The Electoral College and the Constitution
The Electoral College and the Constitution
George N. Skidis, Jr.
The Electoral College is the only option to give states equal representation, regardless of each state’s population. This is the same reason we have only two senators. The framers of the constitution were a lot smarter than the yahoo’s who have been in office recently. We should protect the Electoral College at all costs.
Electoral votes are allocated based on the most recent U.S. Census. The census determines how many Representatives each state can send to the House of Representatives. The current allocations are based on the 2010 Census. They are effective for the 2012, 2016, and 2020 presidential elections. The next census will be in 2020 at which time the Electoral College votes will be recalculated based upon population.
- Illinois has 18 representatives and 2 senators and is thus allowed to cast 20 electoral votes.
- Florida has 27 representatives and 2 senators and has 29 electoral votes.
- Wyoming has 1 representative and 2 senators and has 3 electoral votes.
Why the Electoral College
The Electoral College was created as a compromise between those at the Constitutional Convention who wanted the president of the United States elected by popular vote and those who wanted Congress to select the president. Instead, electors corresponding to the number of representatives and senators each state had in Congress would elect the president.
Three Major concerns at the Constitutional Convention
First, what happens if the president were to be selected by a popular vote? This first major concern was concerned with the difficulty of transmission of information about the candidates to voters throughout the country. The lack of information would lead voters in larger states to prefer local politicians with which they were familiar. Today the communications aspect is no longer relevant. Even the President Elect Tweets today. The problem is discerning the truth from propaganda and spin.
The second major concern was that a vote by Congress alone could tragically upset the governmental balance of power and lead to corruption and political bargaining. A group called the Committee of Eleven proposed the compromise of the Electoral College. Each state would have a total number of electors corresponding to its two senators and the amount of its members in the House of Representatives. The number of representatives sends to the House of Representatives is based on the state’s population at the time of the census. Each state, through its legislature determines how their Individual electors are chosen.
The Electoral College also answered the third major concern. The goal was to limit the power of the Federal Government. To maintain a balance of power between the legislative, executive and judicial branches of the federal government, members of Congress and government employees can not be allowed to be electors.
Electors meet in their home states away from the Federal Government. This is to even further remove the threat of an all powerful federal government and its potential intervention from the table.
The Constitutional Convention agreed upon the compromise. This is how the Electoral College system was written into Article II, Section 1 of the Constitution.
If the Electoral College is ever removed, all future presidents will be elected by Florida, New York, California and Ohio based upon the population density of those states. The will of the other 46 states would thereafter become irrelevant in national elections.