Revamping the Electoral College

by Andrea Stickley

Widener University Political Science Major

The current Electoral College should be abolished and a new one instituted in America. While the foundations of our current Electoral College are very strong and make sense, some tweaking needs to occur to make the system better. The main issue is the possibility of a presidential nominee winning the popular vote, but not getting enough votes from the Electoral College to become president. This shouldn’t be allowed to happen. There is a reason that one candidate receives the most votes from the people- because the voters believe that person would make the best president out of the candidates. The whole purpose behind the founding of America was that the people would be represented by who they felt had their best interests at heart; hence, the presidential nominee who receives the most votes in the popular election. When this isn’t allowed to happen, it brings into question why someone is president that most of the people don’t have faith in.

The other problem with our current Electoral College is that it basically eliminates a third-party candidate from having a chance at winning. This comes back to Duverger’s Law and the fact that with a winner-take-all method implemented in states to delegate votes in the Electoral College it doesn’t allow a third-party candidate to ever receive votes really, despite the possibility of winning a percentage of the popular vote. With a plurality system in place, it doesn’t place any emphasis on the smaller parties, leading to a two-party system essentially. America is supposed to be about the minority and representing them and giving them a voice, but with this method of voting, it is repressing the smaller parties and what they stand for. Especially in these times when other parties are starting to gain more support, they need to have a chance to gain votes in the Electoral College and make an impact in the election.

This isn’t to say that everything about the Electoral College is bad. There are some positives to it, such as having the people elect who becomes part of the Electoral College and the fact that it is based off of the number of representatives a state has in Congress. The problem becomes when candidates receive votes from the Electoral College that they shouldn’t because it doesn’t reflect the popular vote. The key is to give the American people what they want, which means making sure that whoever receives the most national votes should win the election in the Electoral College, too. That’s the main issue.

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