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house Bill H. Joint Res. 103

Abolishing the Electoral College: Should the Popular Vote Determine the Presidency?

Argument in favor

The Electoral College is outdated and unnecessary, and the winner of the nationwide popular vote should be the president.

David's Opinion
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12/19/2016
The "electoral college prevents just a few cities from determining the President" argument is a nice sound byte that has no basis in logic. The citizens of the United States of America are voting for a President. The vote of an American who lives on a farm does not count more than a vote of an American that lives in Atlanta, yet that is your argument. Every person deserves exactly the same proportion in the vote for President. It is that simple.
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Murphy's Opinion
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12/19/2016
2.6 million people might as well have stayed home this election. The wasted votes and the fact we have had two presidents in 16 years elected without a true popular mandate is ludicrous. Everyone's vote should hold the same weight, as the president will be a direct reflection of the American people on the world stage.
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Steven's Opinion
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12/19/2016
It's not right when a candidate beats the other by 2.8 million POPULAR votes and still lost the election.
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Argument opposed

The Electoral College is an important safeguard against an unfit president taking office and a constitutional amendment won’t pass.

TuckerWantsLiberty's Opinion
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12/19/2016
Democracy is tyranny of the majority - 51% of the population can force its will on the other 49%. Being a republic does a better job of protecting the individual from the majority (not a perfect job, but a better job) by giving them outsized voice relative to their number. That's not a bug, it's precisely the point. Being a republic means that a candidate must win coalitions of different types of people (the proxy for which is winning different states), rather than enough of one kind to rule out all others. Now I ask the pro-direct-democracy folks: what is so magical about a majority? If there are 4 Nazis and 3 Jews in a group, why should the number determine who gets power? It shouldn't. If the population of pro-slavery states outnumbers the population of anti-slavery states, should the pro-slavery states be able to determine policy? No? Well good. The reason they couldn't was because of the electoral college and more specifically because of the Senate, the portion of government where representation is unrelated to population. There's nothing inherently moral about being a greater number. The Constitution sets up checks and balances between those given power to prevent any potential tyrants from collecting too much of that power, and the electoral college is a check on the power of a tyrannical majority.
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David's Opinion
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12/19/2016
If the Electoral College didn't exist, candidates would ignore all but the largest cities. With the Electoral College, there is a chance every now and then, that the little guys get a say in who our president will be.
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croffey's Opinion
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12/19/2016
There need to be modifications, surely. But the electoral college is a safeguard, not only against a foreign power placing a puppet in office, but also against a few densely populated regions controlling the fate of the country, with no regard to the needs of the more scarcely populated states. It ensures that the needs of the state of Montana are as important as the needs of the state of Massachusetts. Abolishing it is not the answer unless it is paired with other election reforms to maintain balance of importance among the states.
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    The "electoral college prevents just a few cities from determining the President" argument is a nice sound byte that has no basis in logic. The citizens of the United States of America are voting for a President. The vote of an American who lives on a farm does not count more than a vote of an American that lives in Atlanta, yet that is your argument. Every person deserves exactly the same proportion in the vote for President. It is that simple.
    Like (184)
    Follow
    Share
    Democracy is tyranny of the majority - 51% of the population can force its will on the other 49%. Being a republic does a better job of protecting the individual from the majority (not a perfect job, but a better job) by giving them outsized voice relative to their number. That's not a bug, it's precisely the point. Being a republic means that a candidate must win coalitions of different types of people (the proxy for which is winning different states), rather than enough of one kind to rule out all others. Now I ask the pro-direct-democracy folks: what is so magical about a majority? If there are 4 Nazis and 3 Jews in a group, why should the number determine who gets power? It shouldn't. If the population of pro-slavery states outnumbers the population of anti-slavery states, should the pro-slavery states be able to determine policy? No? Well good. The reason they couldn't was because of the electoral college and more specifically because of the Senate, the portion of government where representation is unrelated to population. There's nothing inherently moral about being a greater number. The Constitution sets up checks and balances between those given power to prevent any potential tyrants from collecting too much of that power, and the electoral college is a check on the power of a tyrannical majority.
    Like (184)
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    2.6 million people might as well have stayed home this election. The wasted votes and the fact we have had two presidents in 16 years elected without a true popular mandate is ludicrous. Everyone's vote should hold the same weight, as the president will be a direct reflection of the American people on the world stage.
    Like (138)
    Follow
    Share
    If the Electoral College didn't exist, candidates would ignore all but the largest cities. With the Electoral College, there is a chance every now and then, that the little guys get a say in who our president will be.
    Like (101)
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    There need to be modifications, surely. But the electoral college is a safeguard, not only against a foreign power placing a puppet in office, but also against a few densely populated regions controlling the fate of the country, with no regard to the needs of the more scarcely populated states. It ensures that the needs of the state of Montana are as important as the needs of the state of Massachusetts. Abolishing it is not the answer unless it is paired with other election reforms to maintain balance of importance among the states.
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    It's not right when a candidate beats the other by 2.8 million POPULAR votes and still lost the election.
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    The electoral college is right for a large nation. Do we really want California and New York to decide all presidential elections?
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    As Countable member "wsdraperv" said: "We are NOT a democracy, thank God. We are a representative republic. Get over it. Democracy is two wolves and a sheep voting over what's for lunch. It's a rough outcome for the sheep every time." I also like Countable member Tucker's opinion: "Democracy is tyranny of the majority - 51% of the population can force its will on the other 49%. Being a republic does a better job of protecting the individual from the majority (not a perfect job, but a better job) by giving them outsized voice relative to their number. That's not a bug, it's precisely the point. Being a republic means that a candidate must win coalitions of different types of people (the proxy for which is winning different states), rather than enough of one kind to rule out all others. Now I ask the pro-direct-democracy folks: what is so magical about a majority? If there are 4 Nazis and 3 Jews in a group, why should the number determine who gets power? It shouldn't. If the population of pro-slavery states outnumbers the population of anti-slavery states, should the pro-slavery states be able to determine policy? No? Well good. The reason they couldn't was because of the electoral college and more specifically because of the Senate, the portion of government where representation is unrelated to population. There's nothing inherently moral about being a greater number. The Constitution sets up checks and balances between those given power to prevent any potential tyrants from collecting too much of that power, and the electoral college is a check on the power of a tyrannical majority."
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    The Electoral College was not intended as a rubber stamp. If it shan't perform its duty, abolish it.
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    The electoral college is an outdated system. The divisiveness of this election aside, the Electoral College reduces people's power in government. If you are a liberal in a conservative state, or a conservative in a liberal state, your vote simply does not count. •Even President Elect Trump agrees that the system should be changed. •
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    An election could be won by a few large cities and not representative of the whole nation. We are a republic not a democracy a democracy is mob rule or a minority rule through manipulation to force mob rule. The last 8 years proves that point clearly. We were governed against the will of the people by a radical minority group. Besides some far left thinkers out there would have other nations voting in our elections if the could. Change nothing and except this election or change it and regret it when the shoe is on the other foot.
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    If the Electoral College is to be maintained, then it should be permitted to work as intended. Members should not sign loyalty pledges nor should votes be bound to state majorities that are often unfairly impacted by gerrymandering. Electors should be selected in the manner originally intended and should be free to meet to discuss the outcome of the election and to vote freely in keeping with the principles of our constitution and to protect both the constitution and our rights as citizens of a democratic republic. State representation in the college should also be proportionate to each state's population.
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    There is a reason for this process. This gives each state an equal footing in the election process so just the major cities in this country can't dictate what the entire country should have. Do a little fact finding on the electoral process and you will see what our founding fathers had intended. Anyone who says the electoral college is obsolete probably think the constitution is obsolete as well since that was written back then also. If you also look at history this election is only the 4th presidential election where the popular vote did not win the election, four out of 45. The first was 1876, 1888, 2000, and now 2016. Also let's look at where the popular votes came from....they came from the states that Hillary did win the electoral vote. So I guess if you don't win by the rules...let's change the rules?!?
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    The electoral college is a system that- like the slavery compromise- should belong in the past. Equal state representation exists already. It's called Congress. The president represents the will of the people and unfortunately the electoral college perpetuates the idea that only a selected few truly matter in this country. Equal vote to all.
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    The idea of a safeguard was useful in a time when most of the public did not graduate high school. Today we have the vast majority of voting Americans with a high school diploma, and most with a college degree. People are educated, and know how they vote. The electoral college gives small states more power than the larger states in determining the presidency
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    The original point of the Electoral College was to establish the role of the president. Congress is the voice of the people and so is directly elected by people. The President is the leader of a federation of independent states, and should be elected by those states. That's the philosophical grounding of the notion. Without the electoral college system, a President could be elected with a plurality rather than an outright majority. Americans live in a geographically immense, wildly diverse nation where people who live in highly depopulated regions grow most of the food. Without the electoral college forcing candidates to focus on these areas, the American president would fail to represent a group of united states, but would instead represent whichever city-based candidate could generate a mere plurality.
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    Paul Finkelman said it better than I ever could: "The EC is deeply undemocratic...under the present system, 46 percent of the population can outvote 54 percent of the population."
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    Winston Churchill said it best "The best argument against democracy is a five minute conversation witht the average voter." This applies just as much now if not more so as it did back then. If your argument is that the electoral college is old and outdated then you must also discredit democracy as its roots extend all the way back to ancient Greece in Athens. The electoral college is put in place to serve as a hedge against a mass of ignorant or mislead voters. If you don't believe we have a republic and still think it is a democracy then this quote is for you. Upon ratification of the US Constitution Benjamin Franklin was asked as to what kind of government the nation now had. Franklin replied "A republic, if you can keep it." I emplore you to keep it, it has brought us this far and we have the oldest Constitution by far in the history of the world.
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    The electoral college exists to make sure that those who live in rural or less populated areas are still represented fairly at the polls, and the densely populated areas don't decide the election.
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    No. A very red state like Texas or a very blue state like California shouldn't swing the election because of the sheer number of people in them. The electoral college works by there being 51 (counting D.C.) small elections whose results determine the big election. Just because someone wins by a landslide in one of the small elections shouldn't change the big election and without an electoral college candidates will focus on and only care about urban centers and where the numbers are rather then winning states and therefore better representing all people.
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