There is one college in America that only graduates one person at a time and only every 4 years. It’s the Electoral College, and some people want to close it down. In fact, all 480 Democrats running for President say they want to get rid of it, but there are some Republicans who support that as well. And you may think that it’s an archaic and outdated process that needs to be retired along with 8 track tapes and AM transistor radios. But like a lot of things in our Constitution created by the Founding Fathers, there is a reason they created a representative republic and not a pure democracy. So before you say, let’s “kill the college,” let’s understand why we have one.
The founders feared a tyranny of the majority-a nation in which some voices were drowned out and drummed out of the process. It was the rationale of having 3 separate, but equal branches of government, the legislative, executive, and judicial along with a complicated but brilliant set of checks and balances. And instead of having a President elected strictly by a popular vote, they intentionally created the Electoral College by which the President is actually elected by electors in each of the states, based on the votes of the people in that state which have specific electoral votes based on the size of their population and Congressional representation. It’s therefore possible for a candidate to receive a larger number of votes and still not be President. And years ago, when I was much younger and of course knew everything, I too thought it was time to ditch the Electoral College. But I got older, wiser, and personally was on the ballot in 2 Presidential elections, and found myself amazed at just how smart those Founders were!
The most gifted political cartoonist alive today is a friend of mine, Michael Ramirez, a 2x Pulitzer Prize winning syndicated cartoonist for the Las Vegas Review-Journal and Creators Syndicate and his brilliant map of what the election would like without the Electoral College (MAP) shows that the President would be elected by voters in about 4 states, with the rest of America rendered virtually voiceless and vote-less. And that means that candidates would never visit most of the states nor would voters in those states see or hear any of the political messages from the candidates or parties.
Democrats whine that Hillary won the popular vote, but they fail to tell you that she primarily won big in 2 mega-liberal, solidly Democrat states, CA and NY. Her margin of popular vote was completely in those 2 states. In fact, the actual voting map of the 2016 election shows that President Trump won overwhelmingly in the majority of counties across the US, but lost on the fringes of the east and west coasts. (Map) The founders were wise beyond their own understanding. By creating the Electoral College, a person who wishes to be President has to win a combination of states throughout the nation and that forces the candidate to visit many states and personally meet farmers, schoolteachers, factory workers, construction crews, office workers, and unemployed Dads and Moms. A system that only focuses on only the 4 most populated states means Presidential candidates would do 2 things: go to high dollar donor events and hobnob with the swells who have all the money, and take that money and spend it advertising in those 4 states. Most of America would never see a candidate, hear an ad, or see volunteers mobilize in their communities. And you’d pretty much be letting CA and NY and to a lesser degree FL and TX elect your President. You wouldn’t really matter. With the Electoral College, a candidate has to figure out how to win enough states to arrive at the magic 270 Electoral College votes. And it actually means that ALL of America matters in the election of the President. SO when you hear it said “Let’s get rid of the Electoral College,” ask what other of your protections written into the Constitution would they want to get rid of as well. Then just say “NO!”