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Old 11-10-2008, 10:07 AM
 
302 posts, read 515,478 times
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I think the electoral vote needs to be revamped. Electoral votes need to be awarded by percentage of votes. If a state votes 60/40 for one candidate or 49/51 it does not seem right that the votes of the ever so slight minority are completely ignored. It's the winner take all that gums up the works leaving people to give up the idea of voting in a state where they will be ignored.
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Old 11-10-2008, 10:23 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimboburnsy View Post
You're probably taking me a bit too seriously, but...



As I see it, the concentration of a state's political sway in urban areas is a problem. Agricultural interests are incredibly under-represented and incredibly important. This nation's power is inextricably linked to its capacity for affordable and plentiful produce and livestock so why should a 3rd or 4th tier city in a primarily rural state be the seat of political power? Anyway, I'm not sure you could call the influence granted to rural areas "tremendous" exactly, just increased. My thinking was to make jerrymandering more difficult, diffuse concentrations of power and give a real voice to emerging political platforms.

As for the senate, I have to agree that the current system is well executed but it virtually guarantees the perpetuation of 2-party politics. The Republicans are no longer conservative and the Democrats have become outwardly and ridiculously socialist. I want to see an opportunity for dissenting parties; I'm very tired of voting for the lesser of two evils. While the strengthening of the dominant party is possible, how many of the "I don't want to waste my vote" Democrats and Republicans will cast their votes differently? I think the numbers would be significant nearly across the board.




I actually agree about the presidential election. It was more of an afterthought than anything else. I think that the electoral college is a dinosaur that has outlived its necessity and saying "3) Electoral College is Eliminated" just sounded too sparse.
I'm confused, then. The Electoral College is the weighting that is designed to assist rural areas. But you want to just dissolve it, and then change the House of Representatives. You don't think it would be a tremendous change, but the House is designed to give proportional representation according to population to the different states. By giving each state ten regions, you are eliminating proportional representation in the legislature altogether. As I read your proposal, Rhode Island would have ten Representatives and three Senators. And so would New York and California and Alaska. Each state would be equally represented in Congress regardless of population. That is a tremendous change.

The Electoral College does give an opportunity for rural voters to be heard by the candidates. It does give a weighting to the less populated states. So it's still quite functional. The issue people seem to have is that it can go against popular vote. But the winner-take-all system isn't inherent to the electoral college. The electors can be proportioned on the state level according to popular vote. It's the state laws people have an issue with, NOT the electoral college.
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Old 11-07-2011, 03:54 PM
 
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Gore won the popular vote and Bush won the electoral vote, and many argue that had Gore won the election the recession we are in would not be implimented. We have to look at history to predict the future, and history has proven that every time a president wins the election by electoral vote without popular consensus, it blows up in their faces. Only four times has this happened: Bush, Harrison, Hayes, and John Quincy Adams; and every time either their administration has failed or they were vengefully defeated the second time running. The evidence, in and of itself, is that the people know what is best for them, and to violate that is a clear violation of the very democracy on which this nation was founded.
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Old 11-07-2011, 05:17 PM
 
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Originally Posted by rifleman View Post

PS: In Canada, their simple popular vote system has, yes, allowed more than two parties, which the two dominant parties down here seem intent of suppressing. "Wastes your vote!" etc. I con't think so! I think we really need another, or a couple, more parties here. Otherwise it's too black and white (blue or red? how about off-green?).

.
Rifleman, I am curious as to a few things of the Canadian system. From your post, it appears that the majority vote wins. However, living across the border in NY, I have noticed that your little parties seem to merge together, split apart, create needs for new elections, etc. Is this the case or do I miss the way the system works?
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Old 11-07-2011, 05:29 PM
 
4,135 posts, read 9,147,751 times
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Originally Posted by mwruckman View Post
The Founding Fathers created the Electral College to provide a way for a coalition pf small or big states to win the Presidency.

The Electoral college has a bias towards the Red states
because the Senate weights California the same as Wyoming or Alaska.
California is not weighted the same as Wyoming or Alaska. You are weighted by number of residents -- and the person who represents you votes basically with the larger number in the district -- but doesn't HAVE to. There are states which must all vote the same [NY being one of them] while some states split electoral votes [a better system]. I am in a very RED area of a very BLUE state. My state gives all votes to the majority of the state --- in this case, basically, NY is always blue due to NYC. Ergo, we essentially have no real vote; our congressperson is lumped in with the majority [ blue] vote, no matter what the district votes..

IMHO, time to dump the electoral congress at least in the concept of your congressperson voting as a group. Your rep SHOULD vote for the area they represent; mine would often have had to "go red", but has had to "go blue" as the state does.

I would like my congressperson -- at least, if the Electoral Congress continues to exist -- to be obligated to vote as the district votes. [that is obligated as opposed to choosing to vote]. Districts are gerrymandered for "red/blue" vote -- and now will be the new 10 year gerrymandering, based on the 2010 census.
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Old 11-08-2011, 08:49 AM
 
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Originally Posted by BuffaloTransplant View Post
California is not weighted the same as Wyoming or Alaska. You are weighted by number of residents -- and the person who represents you votes basically with the larger number in the district -- but doesn't HAVE to. There are states which must all vote the same [NY being one of them] while some states split electoral votes [a better system]. I am in a very RED area of a very BLUE state. My state gives all votes to the majority of the state --- in this case, basically, NY is always blue due to NYC. Ergo, we essentially have no real vote; our congressperson is lumped in with the majority [ blue] vote, no matter what the district votes..

IMHO, time to dump the electoral congress at least in the concept of your congressperson voting as a group. Your rep SHOULD vote for the area they represent; mine would often have had to "go red", but has had to "go blue" as the state does.

I would like my congressperson -- at least, if the Electoral Congress continues to exist -- to be obligated to vote as the district votes. [that is obligated as opposed to choosing to vote]. Districts are gerrymandered for "red/blue" vote -- and now will be the new 10 year gerrymandering, based on the 2010 census.
What would really be interesting is to see an election where no candidate gets a majority of Electoral College votes. In such a case, the House would choose the new President, selecting from the top 3 recipients of EC votes, with each delegation getting one vote, and a majority (or 26) required).

It would be interesting to see representatives from one party, who were elected by a district voting for the Presidential candidate from the other party, have to decide how to vote. While the majority of districts vote for candidates from the same party, of the 435 districts there are always a few dozen which split their tickets, so to speak.

Those representatives would have interesting choices to make, especially in states where their voted decided how the state delegation would vote.
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Old 11-08-2011, 10:31 AM
 
5,092 posts, read 4,384,368 times
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Originally Posted by BuffaloTransplant View Post
IMHO, time to dump the electoral congress at least in the concept of your congressperson voting as a group. Your rep SHOULD vote for the area they represent; mine would often have had to "go red", but has had to "go blue" as the state does.

I would like my congressperson -- at least, if the Electoral Congress continues to exist -- to be obligated to vote as the district votes. [that is obligated as opposed to choosing to vote]. Districts are gerrymandered for "red/blue" vote -- and now will be the new 10 year gerrymandering, based on the 2010 census.
In Presidential elections you actually vote for one of several slates of non-office-holding party apparatchiks. These become the members of the EC and cast their ballots for their party's candidates for President and Vice President.

Originally, the authors of the Constitution had planned for the President to be elected by the House of Representatives and the Vice President to be elected by the Senate (this is also why the VP is the President of the Senate). However, some more democratically minded attendees of the Constitutional Convention thought that having congress select the members of the Executive Branch gave too much power to the Legislative Branch. The compromise was the Electoral College - made up of people who had no other power or connection with the rest of the federal government and therefore supposedly not beholden to the National Legislature.

It's interesting that BuffaloTransplant is proposing the original idea of Presidential Elections.
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Old 11-08-2011, 10:34 AM
 
5,092 posts, read 4,384,368 times
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Originally Posted by BuffaloTransplant View Post
Districts are gerrymandered for "red/blue" vote -- and now will be the new 10 year gerrymandering, based on the 2010 census.
As the shape and political make-up of congressional districts isn't part of the Presidential Election process, gerrymandering isn't much of an issue in Presidential Elections. However, it does help the entrenched political class maintain their position.
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Old 11-08-2011, 10:39 AM
 
5,092 posts, read 4,384,368 times
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Originally Posted by Gibbous Moon View Post
What would really be interesting is to see an election where no candidate gets a majority of Electoral College votes. In such a case, the House would choose the new President, selecting from the top 3 recipients of EC votes, with each delegation getting one vote, and a majority (or 26) required).
That's actually happened before. I might be wrong, but I think it occurred at least three times. The most famous one happened in 1820, when Andrew Jackson won a plurality of the popular vote but was denied the Presidency when a majority of the House of Representatives voted instead for John Quincy Adams.

In reference to my previous post, it's also why a non-majority presidential election in the Electoral College gets decided by the House of Representatives and why a non-majority vice-presidential election gets decided by the Senate.
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Old 11-08-2011, 11:39 AM
 
400 posts, read 222,745 times
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Originally Posted by djmilf View Post
That's actually happened before. I might be wrong, but I think it occurred at least three times. The most famous one happened in 1820, when Andrew Jackson won a plurality of the popular vote but was denied the Presidency when a majority of the House of Representatives voted instead for John Quincy Adams.

In reference to my previous post, it's also why a non-majority presidential election in the Electoral College gets decided by the House of Representatives and why a non-majority vice-presidential election gets decided by the Senate.
1824, actually-- Andrew Jackson got the most popular votes and the most Electoral College votes-- and still lost. However, it should be noted that there was no true national popular vote then, as some states did not permit their electorate to vote for President.

It also happened in 1800, but the Electoral College was subsequently overhauled by Amendment XII.

But in this day of mass, instant media it would be a very different than in 1824, towards the end of the Era of Good Feeling where there was only one major party and all four Presidential candidates that year who received any Electoral College votes were from the same party, the Democratic-Republicans.

It's also worth noting that the House that would select the President in such a case is the incoming House, not the outgoing House-- in other words, the House that was just elected.
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