Much has been written about the Electoral College in the aftermath of the election. Many call it outdated and want it abolished. Before we act too rashly because of our politics, we should at least understand the importance of it.
First, the founders didn’t trust popular majority, with good reason. They were afraid of one region gaining too much power because of its population, and becoming like the kingdom they had just fought to rid themselves of. They wanted a system that would produce a balanced democracy and create moderation and compromise.
Secondly, the Electoral College requires a candidate to have trans-regional appeal. A presidential candidate cannot just rely on a few states or a few parts of the country to get elected. If the election were determined strictly by popular vote, candidates would just focus on California and New York. The rest of the country would be forgotten. Just look at how Chicago controls Illinois. Surely that’s not what we want for our country.
Moreover, the Electoral College creates national cohesion. It incentivizes Washington D.C – both the president and the Senate – to craft policy that meets the needs of smaller states as well as larger ones.
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If people truly believe majority-rule is the fairest way to run government, then why do we require a supermajority to amend our Constitution instead of a simple 51 percent? And why does a state like Wyoming (population 600,000) have the same number of senators as California (population 38 million)? Equality matters.
Mallory Hayes, Belleville