posted on Dec, 22 2011 @ 11:14 PM
reply to post by moniker
I am not an American, but lived there for a few years and consider myself to be reasonably familiar with their political system, so venture to answer
1. As for voting in the US, I understand that you first have to register as agreeing with a certain party in order to be allowed to vote for
it. So what is then the point of actually voting? Using an extract from that party affiliation database should be enough.
False. You need not be registered with any party to vote for a candidate of that party. However, they have a system called 'primaries' to select the
candidate, from among those wishing to, that will represent a party. In order to be able to vote in a primary, you must be registered with the
state election commission
as a member of that party. Even this is not a requirement in many states.
2. I also understand that the citizens do not actually vote directly for a candidate, but that their vote is simply being used to give an
indication for who the real voters should vote. My understanding is that those voters (whoever they are) are being called "the electors", and that
they could potentially vote totally different from what the ordinary citizens indicated in their votes.
I think you are referring to the election of the President. Yes, contrary to popular belief, the US President is not
directly elected by the
people, but by an electoral college. The memebrs of the electoral college are nominated by the states. The convention
, not law, in most states
is to let the people for a Presidential candidate and the one polling the most votes in the state gets to nominate all
the electors from the
state. There is one state which in 2004 decided to distribute the electors according the percentage vote received, but I am not sure if that is in
effect yet. Since the electors are nominated by the candidate winning the popular vote in that state, it is extremely unlikely, although not
impossible, that they will vote for a different candidate in the electoral college.
3. My understanding is also that there are only 2 parties to choose from. Although being 100% more than in North Korea, that is still not a
very wide selection of party agendas to choose from.
Your understanding is completely wrong. There are more than a dozen registered political parties in the US and there is no limit on what the number
can be. But historically the two parties Republican and Democratic have dominated the political dialogue and all but these two garner insignificant
percentage of vote.