The Electoral College

Over the years and especially in the last two presidential elections, the Electoral College has played an important role in our country's voting system.Most of the eligible voters in the United States believe that the popular vote determines our country's leader, and fail to realize how our election system actually works.By understanding what the Electoral College is, how it works, what changes it has gone through for it to act the way that it does in America's voting system, as well as other possibilities of voting, we can then see the importance and balance the college brings to voting in the United States.
The Electoral College is simply votes, made by electors, determined by the number of senators and representatives that each state receives.The Electoral College was established by the founding fathers as a compromise between election of the president by Congress and election by popular vote (NARA). Our country's founding fathers wanted to make sure we had checks and balances.They didn't want to have states that were heavily populated to dictate who the President would be.They knew back then that there would be states that would get more populated then others and so to make sure that each state has its fair share they developed the Electoral College.Members of Congress and employees of the federal government are prohibited from serving as an elector (FEC.GOV).This is to maintain the balance between the legislative and executive branches of the federal government. In most states the popular vote determines which candidate receives that states electoral votes.For a presidential candidate to win the election they must receive at least half or two hundred seventy electoral votes.While our votes do not necessarily elect the president, our votes do elect the electors that place votes for a party's candidate.This applies to all states with the exception of Maine and Nebraska.These t…

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