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Saturday, January 01, 2005


1) I am not infected with the Blog-o-Virus (as I call it), and have little interest in going to anyone else's blog. Quite frankly, I'm posting here under threats sufficient to convince me to, threats, I will add, only a friend can make and get away without me pushing the issue. All arguments should be posted here, rather than elsewhere, for ease of access, among other reasons.

2) Electoral Vote VS. Popular Vote

Electoral College critics point out the elections of 1824, 1876, and 1888 in their arguments to prove the system doesn't work. In those three elections
the candidate who won the Electoral College vote, did not win the popular vote. Besides forgetting the 50 other elections where the Electoral College agrees with the popular vote, critics conveniently ignore the factors that caused these three situations.

The link goes on to explain the factors which played into the first three points where the popular vote and the Electoral College do not agree. The next link deals with the fourth one.

3) Election 2000 (Article)

Quote from that link, which is likely a better phrasing of what I've been trying to say:

In this most recent election [2000], we have seen a candidate win a majority of the popular vote, but his faction failed to kindle a nationwide base. The voting base for the party came from 21 of the 51 available states. With the exception
of New Mexico, all of the states were highly urban with large populations. In terms of sheer numbers, these states possess the numbers to oppress the others in matters resolved by popular vote. Clearly our founding fathers set out to guard against just this type of majority rule, whether the issue is taxation, national defense, or the election of the chief executive, the rights of the smaller states must be protected. This protection, offered by a representative republic, has helped to ensure the strength and survival of our nation by reducing the amount of interstate conflict that marred the original Articles of Confederation.

This is what I have been attempting to say. Does it decrease the per-person value in the more populous states? Yes. That IS the idea, you know. To make it so the smaller states/population centers have a chance to have equal rights, equal representation in the president. Do you remember what I said about "Majority Rule, Minority Rights"? The Electoral College is fundamental to preserving that aspect of American representational democracy. The country is too diverse to let a single topic determine the next president -- so the president-elect must have gotten an across the board support, instead of support from high population centers only. By forcing the issue to those without the population weight, it means there is a more equal application of the end result.

What you advocate is like saying that, at a pizza party, if someone doesn't like anchovies on their pizza, and everyone else does, it should be wrong for them to order a pizza without anchovies just for that person. They should be glad all they get to do is pull off the anchovies, and still contend with the taste of it having been cooked on there. After all, that would be being "completely equal", right? Does it really work that way? Is that even truly fair?

Perhaps the difference in opinion stems from a difference in the usage of "equal". I am referring to equitable, and you are referring to equality. Whereas I am referring to the end result of it being fair in terms of the end result being less biased than a popular vote would cause, you are referring to precise exactness of the method.

But the existance of "Majority Rule, Minority Rights" means that we cannot let the majority dictate the rules without the minority having a chance to have input. The Electoral College is the best option we have at evening out the heft of voting blocks. It's the most fair option.

As you continually are harping on, the President is the representative of the people. The only two people in the entire country to be voted on by the entire country are the President and the Vice President. They should be more the representative of the ENTIRE country, instead of a select few areas.

As for Ohio -- is that the fault of the Electoral College? I think not. It is the fault of poor planning, poor resources distribution, and would have existed no matter what voting system was being used. Votes UNCAST are still votes UNCAST, no matter how you try to phrase it, and it would have been just as detrimental to the popular vote as to the Electoral College. The candidates have no control over that side of things, no one does except for the state at fault.

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