Is changing the Presidential election process the right thing to do?
There have long been those who support doing away with the Electoral College, the system for which the United States has always elected its President. Lately, the discussion has become more vociferous, and some of the Democrats who have announce their candidacy in 2020 seem to be willing to accept a change to the system, if not downright calling for a revision.
A lot of the recent noise results from the fact that Hillary Clinton would be President today had the US used a system of whoever wins the plurality of the votes cast to determine its Commander-In-Chief. But is that the way the Founding Fathers envisioned the process to play out?
You will have to argue they did not favor a winner-take-all approach, because a great deal of effort was put in to make the Electoral College a part of our Constitution, thereby ensuring it would be extremely difficult to change on a whim, or because of one party not being happy with the outcome.
Now, according to news reports, Colorado has decided to pledge its electoral votes to the winner of the popular vote in upcoming Presidential elections. Personally, if I were a citizen of Colorado, I would be incensed that no matter how I and my fellow citizens voted, my Electoral College vote may be decided by the more populous regions of the country, thereby negating any of our votes.
Talk about being disenfranchised! Even if Colorado voters selected one candidate by 90 percent of the vote, the electors could possibly be forced to go against their wishes and pledge to the other candidate. The outcome of the election would likely be decided by the nation’s largest population centers, currently left-leaning hubs, but one day that may change.
Or perhaps the fly-over and industrial states of the South and Midwest will band together and override the East and West coasts and turn out in large enough numbers to sway Colorado’s votes to the right. I certainly can’t speak the minds of the voters of Colorado, but I would hate to think my vote was wasted.
Citizens of every state need to have their voices heard and their votes counted. It shouldn’t matter that you live in a sparsely-populated state, or a small state, or the largest and most populated state in the nation.
The framers of the Constitution recognized that fact, even if they could hardly have imagined the 13 states at the time becoming 50 in total, or a population nearing 350 million people. They felt the President should be a representative of the entire nation, a nation made up of adequately represented states.
Of course, they never could have conceived our citizens would be so inadequately informed as to elect a President based on good looks, race, gender, or cool-looking TV ads and posters.
Or did they? Maybe they were afraid one day the President would be elected in a celebrity popularity contest, or by someone rich enough to sway the voters, and that fact frightened them. If only there was a way to allow informed electors to decide the fate of the nation and select the President, with guidance from their constituency, with each state taking a part in the process.
Maybe, something like the Electoral College?