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Should the Electoral System be Replaced with the Alternative Voting System?

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posted on May, 28 2011 @ 10:57 AM
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reply to post by AnteBellum
 


Interesting and clever scheme. I especially like the fact that there can be no 'spoiler' candidates. But ~I wonder if the general public could grasp the concept (do they really need to?).




posted on May, 28 2011 @ 11:16 AM
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reply to post by AnteBellum
 


We need to keep the electoral college. There has been such an erosion of states rights that absent the electoral college, states with low population would have absolutely say in the governance of the country. Were the federal government limit its role to that intended by the constitution, it would be one thing, but that is not about to happen.

One of the reasons we have succession movements within in some states, California and Washington are two that come to mind is because large areas of the state are tired of essentially not having a voice in the government since at the state level, it is a popular vote model. Were you to move to a national popular vote model you would see succession movements at the state level all over the place.
edit on 28-5-2011 by dolphinfan because: (no reason given)
edit on 28-5-2011 by dolphinfan because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 30 2011 @ 08:13 AM
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I believe we need to reform our voting system.



posted on May, 30 2011 @ 08:22 AM
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Originally posted by pyrodude
What is it that you detest so much about the electoral college?


Uhmmm, the 100% vetted milktoaste crap-candidates they unfailingly offer us?

Bone against versus Bone? In the words of one beneficiary of the Electoral College (Scion of House Bush):

"fool me once, shame on me. Fool me twice shame on you-- Can't get fooled again!"



posted on May, 30 2011 @ 09:31 AM
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reply to post by dolphinfan
 

We need to keep the electoral college. There has been such an erosion of states rights that absent the electoral college, states with low population would have absolutely say in the governance of the country.
In a straight popular voting system, they would have as proportional a say as they do now.


Were the federal government limit its role to that intended by the constitution, it would be one thing, but that is not about to happen.

I'm not sure what this has to do with the electoral system involved in choosing our executive president.


One of the reasons we have succession movements within in some states, California and Washington are two that come to mind is because large areas of the state are tired of essentially not having a voice in the government since at the state level, it is a popular vote model.

Do you mean secession movements? And, again, how would a straight popular vote change the outcome significantly from the current electoral process? You don't see how it would be fundamentally flawed that, in a two candidate race, the person who has fewer popular votes wins the election because of an outmoded method of selection?


Were you to move to a national popular vote model you would see succession movements at the state level all over the place.

Evidence of that?

It seems like you're arguing more for a system of proportional representation, which really only works on a congressional level.



posted on May, 30 2011 @ 12:56 PM
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reply to post by iterationzero
 


The electoral college allocates votes to the candidate based on population with a floor ensuring that all states have some vote. A national popular vote would erode the right of the states to have some say in the outcome of the election. The founders assumed that, designing a republic, there would be various lifestyles and mores within the different states, all of which should be taken into account by the chief executive. The electoral college assumes that.

An extreme example.

California changes its state constitution to allow it to assume limitless amounts of debt. They take on that debt and begin to hand the money out to everyone who lives there. People flock to California, which continues to take on debt and hand out cash. The election comes around and who ever is most supportive of California's policy wins the election, because the majority of folks live there (or say in a couple of other states that assumed the same policy).

As it pertains to general life on the ground, who is president should not matter. The chief executive is not supposed to do very much within our system of government and as such, living in Wyoming and enjoying the lifestyle should not be impacted by what happens in California. Unfortunately, the executive branch has grown into a massive, intrusive, liberty consuming beast. The electoral college at least makes the candidates listen to the folks in Wyoming. They may not care what they say, but they will at least listen to them to win the states electoral votes.

You want to get rid of the electoral college then take the federal government, cut it by 80% and get it back to the extremely limited functions envisioned by the founders. Absent that we need it to ensure parts of the country get some voice



posted on Jun, 5 2011 @ 11:18 AM
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Many people wrongly believe the presidential election system we have today is in the Constitution, and think that any change would need an amendment. But state-by-state winner-take-all laws to award electoral college votes, are an example of state laws eventually enacted by states, using their exclusive power to do so, AFTER the Founding Fathers wrote the Constitution, Now our current system can be changed by state laws again.

Unable to agree on any particular method, the Founding Fathers left the choice of method for selecting presidential electors exclusively to the states by adopting the language contained in section 1 of Article II of the U.S. Constitution — "Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors . . ." The U.S. Supreme Court has repeatedly characterized the authority of the state legislatures over the manner of awarding their electoral votes as "plenary" and "exclusive."

The constitution does not prohibit any of the methods that were debated and rejected. Indeed, a majority of the states appointed their presidential electors using two of the rejected methods in the nation’s first presidential election in 1789 (i.e., appointment by the legislature and by the governor and his cabinet). Presidential electors were appointed by state legislatures for almost a century.

Neither of the two most important features of the current system of electing the President (namely, universal suffrage, and the 48 state-by-state winner-take-all method) are in the U.S. Constitution. Neither was the choice of the Founders when they went back to their states to organize the nation's first presidential election.

In 1789, in the nation's first election, the people had no vote for President in most states, only men who owned a substantial amount of property could vote, and only three states used the state-by-state winner-take-all method to award electoral votes.

The current 48 state-by-state winner-take-all method (i.e., awarding all of a state's electoral votes to the candidate who receives the most popular votes in a particular state) is not entitled to any special deference based on history or the historical meaning of the words in the U.S. Constitution. It is not mentioned in the U.S. Constitution, the debates of the Constitutional Convention, or the Federalist Papers. The actions taken by the Founding Fathers make it clear that they never gave their imprimatur to the winner-take-all method.

The constitutional wording does not encourage, discourage, require, or prohibit the use of any particular method for awarding the state's electoral votes.

As a result of changes in state laws enacted since 1789, the people have the right to vote for presidential electors in 100% of the states, there are no property requirements for voting in any state, and the state-by-state winner-take-all method is used by 48 of the 50 states. States can, and frequently have, changed their method of awarding electoral votes over the years. Maine and Nebraska do not use the winner-take-all method-- a reminder that an amendment to the U.S. Constitution is not required to change the way the President is elected.

The normal process of effecting change in the method of electing the President is specified in the U.S. Constitution, namely action by the state legislatures. This is how the current system was created, and this is the built-in method that the Constitution provides for making changes.



posted on Jun, 5 2011 @ 11:19 AM
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A "republican" form of government means that the voters do not make laws themselves but, instead, delegate the job to periodically elected officials (Congressmen, Senators, and the President). The United States has a republican form of government regardless of whether popular votes for presidential electors are tallied at the state-level (as has been the case in 48 states) or at district-level (as has been the case in Maine and Nebraska) or at 50-state-level (as under the National Popular Vote bill).

The powers of state governments are neither increased nor decreased based on whether presidential electors are selected along the state boundary lines, along district lines (as has been the case in Maine and Nebraska), or national lines.



posted on Jun, 5 2011 @ 11:20 AM
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candidates, after the primaries, do not reach out to all of the states and their voters. Candidates have no reason to poll, visit, advertise, organize, campaign, or care about the voter concerns in the dozens of states where they are safely ahead or hopelessly behind. The reason for this is the state-by-state winner-take-all method (not mentioned in the U.S. Constitution, but since enacted by 48 states), under which all of a state's electoral votes are awarded to the candidate who gets the most votes in each separate state.

Presidential candidates concentrate their attention on only a handful of closely divided "battleground" states and their voters. In the 2012 election, pundits and campaign operatives agree already, that, at most, only 14 states and their voters will matter. Almost 75% of the country will be ignored --including 19 of the 22 lowest population and medium-small states, and 17 medium and big states like CA, GA, NY, and TX. This will be more obscene than the 2008 campaign,, when candidates concentrated over 2/3rds of their campaign events and ad money in just 6 states, and 98% in just 15 states (CO, FL, IN, IA, MI, MN, MO, NV, NH, NM, NC, OH, PA, VA, and WI). Over half (57%) of the events were in just 4 states (OH, FL, PA, and VA). In 2004, candidates concentrated over 2/3rds of their money and campaign visits in 5 states; over 80% in 9 states; and over 99% of their money in 16 states.

2/3rds of the states and people have been merely spectators to the presidential elections.

Policies important to the citizens of ‘flyover’ states are not as highly prioritized as policies important to ‘battleground’ states when it comes to governing.

Because of the state-by-state winner-take-all electoral votes laws in 48 states, a candidate can win the Presidency without winning the most popular votes nationwide. This has occurred in 4 of the nation's 56 (1 in 14 = 7%) presidential elections. The precariousness of the current state-by-state winner-take-all system is highlighted by the fact that a shift of a few thousand votes in one or two states would have elected the second-place candidate in 4 of the 13 presidential elections since World War II. Near misses are now frequently common. There have been 6 consecutive non-landslide presidential elections (1988, 1992, 1996, 2000, 2004, and 2008). 537 popular votes won Florida and the White House for Bush in 2000 despite Gore's lead of 537,179 popular votes nationwide. A shift of 60,000 votes in Ohio in 2004 would have defeated President Bush despite his nationwide lead of over 3 million votes.



posted on Jun, 5 2011 @ 11:22 AM
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The small states are the most disadvantaged group of states under the current system of electing the President. Political clout comes from being a closely divided battleground state, not the two-vote bonus. The reason for this is the state-by-state winner-take-all method (not mentioned in the U.S. Constitution, but enacted by 48 states), under which all of a state's electoral votes are awarded to the candidate who gets the most votes in each separate state.


None of the 10 most rural states (VT, ME, WV, MS, SD, AR, MT, ND, AL, and KY) is a battleground state.
The current state-by-state winner-take-all method of awarding electoral votes does not enhance the influence of rural states, because the most rural states are not battleground states.

12 of the 13 lowest population states (3-4 electoral votes) are almost invariably non-competitive, and ignored, in presidential elections. Six regularly vote Republican (Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, North Dakota, and South Dakota),, and six regularly vote Democratic (Rhode Island, Delaware, Hawaii, Vermont, Maine, and DC) in presidential elections Despite the fact that these 12 lowest population states together possess 40 electoral votes, because they are not closely divided battleground states, none of these 12 states get visits, advertising or polling or policy considerations by presidential candidates.

Senator Robert E. Dole of Kansas, the Republican nominee for President in 1996 and Republican nominee for Vice President in 1976, stated in a 1979 floor speech:
“Many persons have the impression that the electoral college benefits those persons living in small states. I feel that this is somewhat of a misconception. Through my experience with the Republican National Committee and as a Vice Presidential candidate in 1976, it became very clear that the populous states with their large blocks of electoral votes were the crucial states. It was in these states that we focused our efforts.
“Were we to switch to a system of direct election, I think we would see a resulting change in the nature of campaigning. While urban areas will still be important campaigning centers, there will be a new emphasis given to smaller states. Candidates will soon realize that all votes are important, and votes from small states carry the same import as votes from large states. That to me is one of the major attractions of direct election. Each vote carries equal importance.
“Direct election would give candidates incentive to campaign in States that are perceived to be single party states.

In the 13 lowest population states, the National Popular Vote bill already has been approved by nine state legislative chambers, including one house in, Delaware, the District of Columbia, and Maine and both houses in Hawaii, Rhode Island, and Vermont. It has been enacted by the District of Columbia, Hawaii, and Vermont.

Anyone concerned about the relative power of big states and small states should realize that the current system shifts power from voters in the small and medium-small states to voters in a handful of big states.

The 11 most populous states contain 56% of the population of the United States. Under the current system, a candidate could win the Presidency by winning a mere 51% of the vote in just these 11 biggest states -- that is, a mere 26% of the nation's votes.



posted on Jun, 5 2011 @ 11:25 AM
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The National Popular Vote bill would guarantee the Presidency to the candidate who receives the most popular votes in all 50 states (and DC).

Every vote, everywhere would be politically relevant and equal in presidential elections. Elections wouldn't be about winning states. Every vote, everywhere would be counted for and directly assist the candidate for whom it was cast. States have the responsibility to make their voters relevant in every presidential election. Candidates would need to care about voters across the nation, not just undecided voters in a handful of swing states.

The bill would take effect only when enacted by states possessing a majority of the electoral votes--enough electoral votes to elect a President (270 of 538). When the bill comes into effect, all the electoral votes from those states would be awarded to the presidential candidate who receives the most popular votes in all 50 states (and DC). The bill would thus guarantee the Presidency to the candidate who receives the most popular votes in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

The Electoral College that we have today was not designed, anticipated, or favored by the Founding Fathers but, instead, is the product of decades of evolutionary change precipitated by the emergence of political parties and enactment by 48 states of winner-take-all laws, not mentioned, much less endorsed, in the Constitution.

The bill uses the power given to each state by the Founding Fathers in the Constitution to change how they award their electoral votes for president. Historically, virtually all of the major changes in the method of electing the President, including ending the requirement that only men who owned substantial property could vote and 48 current state-by-state winner-take-all laws, have come about by state legislative action.

In Gallup polls since 1944, only about 20% of the public has supported the current system of awarding all of a state's electoral votes to the presidential candidate who receives the most votes in each separate state (with about 70% opposed and about 10% undecided). Support is strong among Republican voters, Democratic voters, and independent voters, as well as every demographic group surveyed in virtually every state surveyed in recent polls in closely divided battleground states: CO - 68%, FL - 78%, IA 75%,, MI - 73%, MO - 70%, NH - 69%, NV - 72%, NM-- 76%, NC - 74%, OH - 70%, PA - 78%, VA - 74%, and WI - 71%; in smaller states (3 to 5 electoral votes): AK - 70%, DC - 76%, DE - 75%, ID - 77%, ME - 77%, MT - 72%, NE 74%, NH - 69%, NV - 72%, NM - 76%, OK - 81%, RI - 74%, SD - 71%, UT - 70%, VT - 75%, WV - 81%, and WY - 69%; in Southern and border states: AR - 80%,, KY- 80%, MS - 77%, MO - 70%, NC - 74%, OK - 81%, SC - 71%, VA - 74%, and WV - 81%; and in other states polled: CA - 70%, CT - 74%, MA - 73%, MN - 75%, NY - 79%, OR - 76%, and WA - 77%.

The bill has passed 31 state legislative chambers, in 21 small, medium-small, medium, and large states, including one house in AR, CT, DE, DC, ME, MI, NV, NM, NY, NC, and OR, and both houses in CA, CO, HI, IL, NJ, MD, MA, RI, VT, and WA. The bill has been enacted by DC (3), HI (4), IL (19), NJ (14), MD (11), MA (10), VT (3), and WA (13). These 8 jurisdictions possess 77 electoral votes -- 29% of the 270 necessary to bring the law into effect.

www.NationalPopularVote.com...



posted on Jun, 6 2011 @ 06:48 AM
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reply to post by AnteBellum
 


I think we should do a live vote system like american idol. we could eleminate the house and the senate, and replace it with us.



posted on Jun, 11 2011 @ 11:40 AM
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The Electoral System should have never been created to begin with. The only purpose is to keep people from voting with the thinking that everyone is too stupid to vote.

All voting should be done by popular vote for better or worst



posted on Jun, 12 2011 @ 03:15 AM
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reply to post by AnteBellum
 


Naa, seems to easily corrupted. The only problem with the Electoral College is the fact that it isn't automatic and that there is still "electors".

Perfect balance between big urban areas and smaller rural. You have to remember that the United States of America is just that. Each state agreed to give up some powers to a central government by treaty, hence Federal.

Meaning technically each state in the Union is a sovereign nation. So the USA is nothing more then a
Federation of 50 Interdependent, but Sovereign States.



posted on Jun, 12 2011 @ 03:21 AM
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Originally posted by jatsc
The Electoral System should have never been created to begin with. The only purpose is to keep people from voting with the thinking that everyone is too stupid to vote.

All voting should be done by popular vote for better or worst


No, that would lead to states like California and New York lording over the other States in the union. Which would lead to my home state and possibly other states fighting to leave the union or just Civil War.

I think people who aren't smart enough to realize the nature of the "Country" they where born in shouldn't be allowed to vote. The USA is kind of like the EU on steroids. Actually the Articles of Confederation(first attempt at unifying the 13 colonies after the Revolution) are more similar to the EU then anything else.



posted on Oct, 2 2011 @ 01:46 PM
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reply to post by iterationzero
 


There is a petition on the White House petitions site to propose an amendment to allow or mandate instant runoff elections - if you agree, sign it. It is at wh.gov... .
While you are at it, also look up the petition among those at whitehouse.gov... to abolish the electoral system.

Ultimately, this will only happen if people are educated about it, and most people aren't. Although I believe that it would be a better system than we have (Bush would not have been elected), the main problem is that real education and rational thinking seem to be in short supply in the United States of America. How do we fix that?





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