By: Tara Thompson
The electoral college was established by Article II, Section 1, Clause 2 of the U.S constitution; notified by the 12th and 23rd amendments. And till the 1800s many states would have the legislators select electors. Now 48 states give their votes to the winner of the statewide vote.
One of the best examples of the effect of the electoral college is the 2016 election. Hillary Clinton won the popular vote by almost 3 million votes, though Trump ended up winning because he won the electoral vote. This begs the question, why does the state vote matter more than ours? The peoples’ vote should matter more. The president’s decisions affect us more than those already in charge, we should be able to choose who’s leading our country.
The way this system works, makes it seem like most of our votes don’t even matter, which is kind of true. According to Jesse Wegman from New York Times: “ If a candidate wins the popular vote in a state, even by a single vote, they get all of that state’s electoral votes. This means that every election, 80 percent of American voters, roughly 100 million people, get ignored.” If more people knew about this statistic, more people would want to get rid of it. Knowing that most of their votes don’t even matter will discourage people from even voting in the first place, but if we get rid of this ridiculous way of voting all our votes would actually count for something.
We could so easily abolish this rule of voting, states have the power to award their electors however they want. Jesse Wegman has also said: “there is already a movement brewing among states to agree to award their electors to whichever candidate wins the national popular vote. When enough states join in this interstate compact, it’ll mean that the popular-vote winner will always become president.” It’s clearly not that hard to change so why has it taken so long to change? The people who wrote this into the constitution argued for days about it and when they settled on an answer not many were happy with it.
The use of the electoral college has been used for over two centuries. It might have been needed back in the 1800s but times have changed. We no longer need this rule system in place, it’s outdated and carries dead votes. If we want our world to change, the first thing we need is a leader who everyone agrees is worth having, not a whole controversial scandal divided by half and half. If people care about who runs our country, let’s make it more accessible to give them our vote, to be able to decide fairly among the country. Together we could get rid of this old fashion law and make a new one that more fits modern times.