The Debate Between the Popular Vote and Electoral College
By: Brody Beaver
One of the greatest surprises to the previous election is not that Donald Trump won the presidential candidacy, or is one of the five presidents to lose the national popular vote. Instead, it’s the fact that 2 of the last 3 presidents have lost the popular vote yet still became president, which has inspired controversy between the popular vote and electoral college across the nation.
Wesley Martin, a Sinclair Community College political science professor, believes that the popular vote should not be the new form of voting in America and would be a difficult objective. “Some people think the electoral college is outdated and the founding fathers did not take into consideration today’s issues,” Martin said.
According to a National Public Radio (NPR) political article, Americans are in favor of making the popular vote the national standard for the election, influencing Americans to want an amendment made to the Constitution. A poll of 1,021 adults across the United States showed that 49 percent of people in the U.S. are in favor of the popular vote based off a poll on presidential elections by Gallup.
As article written by the Washington Post says, the implementation of the popular vote will provide a sense of equality throughout the country, giving each voter an equal amount of power. In our current electoral system, the ratio between the population of state and the number of electoral votes is unequal.
Wyoming, has over 586 thousand residents in which they only receive three electoral votes, which “weighs 3.6 times more than an individual California’s vote,” reported by the Washington Post. Approximately 39 million residents reside within the state of California giving the state a total of 55 electoral votes.
The National Interest, argues that the electoral college is a method that fairly determines the winner of a presidential election. The perspective of their article shows, if the current election system is replaced with one solely based off popular vote, areas with a large amount of citizens will ultimately decide the winner of the election and will ignore the needs of the rural citizens.
“America’s presidential election process preserves federalism, prevents chaos, grants definitive electoral outcomes, and prevents tyrannical or unreasonable rule,” the National Interest said, commending the success of the electoral college.
Though, some Americans question the Founding Fathers, believing they did not intend for the Constitution to last this long and did not take into consideration the changing times.
Issues such as ethnicity and the right to vote were not specifically addressed in the Constitution, but were important factors to be addressed after being questioned. The fight for the right of women’s suffrage ended in 1920 after the 19th amendment was in effect.