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Open question to the board. Can someone educate in exactly how the election system works? (In depth)


mr pickle
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I have no idea how the whole "electoral college" thing works, and how it interacts with the popular vote, or exactly what you are voting for....and I'm about to apply to Law School...the state of our educational system is shameful. Can anyone help me out with an intelligent and concise overview of the electoral process?

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mr pickle (4/12/2008)
I have no idea how the whole "electoral college" thing works, and how it interacts with the popular vote, or exactly what you are voting for....and I'm about to apply to Law School...the state of our educational system is shameful. Can anyone help me out with an intelligent and concise overview of the electoral process?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Electoral_College

A brief synopsis.

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deathdawg (4/12/2008)
I despise the delegates/electoral college process. Popular vote, true democracy.

The President was never meant to be a representative of the people.  The Presidency was supposed to be the Government's representative to the world.  There is still no provisio in the Constitution for the people to vote directly on the President.  And I don't think they should be able to.

The People's representatives to the Federal Government were supposed to be the Congress - hence the House of Representatives. 

The State's representatives to the Federal Government were supposed to be the Senators.  That's why in the Constitution there was no provision for the people to vote directly on Senators.  The 17th Amendment gives the people that right.

Out government bears little resemblance to the confederation of states of which it was conceived.

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alfred e. neuman (4/12/2008)
deathdawg (4/12/2008)
I despise the delegates/electoral college process. Popular vote, true democracy.

The President was never meant to be a representative of the people.  The Presidency was supposed to be the Government's representative to the world.  There is still no provisio in the Constitution for the people to vote directly on the President.  And I don't think they should be able to.

The People's representatives to the Federal Government were supposed to be the Congress - hence the House of Representatives. 

The State's representatives to the Federal Government were supposed to be the Senators.  That's why in the Constitution there was no provision for the people to vote directly on Senators.  The 17th Amendment gives the people that right.

Out government bears little resemblance to the confederation of states of which it was conceived.

In some ways I am thankful of that, in others not so much.

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alfred e. neuman (4/12/2008)
deathdawg (4/12/2008)
I despise the delegates/electoral college process. Popular vote, true democracy.

The President was never meant to be a representative of the people. The Presidency was supposed to be the Government's representative to the world. There is still no provisio in the Constitution for the people to vote directly on the President. And I don't think they should be able to.

The People's representatives to the Federal Government were supposed to be the Congress - hence the House of Representatives.

The State's representatives to the Federal Government were supposed to be the Senators. That's why in the Constitution there was no provision for the people to vote directly on Senators. The 17th Amendment gives the people that right.

Out government bears little resemblance to the confederation of states of which it was conceived.

Spot on, and I agree. If citizens only took as much interest in local politics and control, instead of centralization of power and responsibility, facilitated by massive and expensive national popularity contests, we'd be much happier with our governance.

Somewhere along the way, we forgot about the 10th amendment.

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lax32 (4/12/2008)
The two sentence version-

Each state has a number of delegates based on population, and whoever wins the popular vote for the state gets all of its delegates. The candidate with the most delegates win and the overall national popular vote means nothing.

So theoretically, if 1 person shows up to vote for Obama in california, and 1 million show up to vote for McCain in Utah, and that was the entire voter turnout in the country, then Obama would win the election? ....that's insane.

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mr pickle (4/12/2008)
lax32 (4/12/2008)
The two sentence version-

Each state has a number of delegates based on population, and whoever wins the popular vote for the state gets all of its delegates. The candidate with the most delegates win and the overall national popular vote means nothing.

So theoretically, if 1 person shows up to vote for Obama in california, and 1 million show up to vote for McCain in Utah, and that was the entire voter turnout in the country, then Obama would win the election? ....that's insane.

In 2000 Gore had more votes than Bush and Bush got to be President.

It is INSANE!!!

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mr pickle (4/12/2008)
lax32 (4/12/2008)
The two sentence version-

Each state has a number of delegates based on population, and whoever wins the popular vote for the state gets all of its delegates. The candidate with the most delegates win and the overall national popular vote means nothing.

So theoretically, if 1 person shows up to vote for Obama in california, and 1 million show up to vote for McCain in Utah, and that was the entire voter turnout in the country, then Obama would win the election? ....that's insane.

Yep.

The electoral voters also don't have to vote for whoever got the popular vote. Although I don't think its ever been done in history (although it might have happened once or twice around the Civil War and I know many voters have threatened to vote for someone else but never did), the electoral college voters could vote in whatever candidate they wanted to into the white house regardless of who voted for them. So in theory every single person in America could vote for one person and then the electoral college could put some guy nobody ever heard of into office.

The system was put in place because they were unsure if democracy would work so they created the electoral college as a failsafe so someone messed up didn't even up in office.

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I am currently taking an American Federal Government Class, and it is by far one of the best classes I have taken. I have learned some much I never knew.

2 Classes everyone should take,

English Comp. (Learn how to write)

American Federal Gov't (Learn about our Gov't which in turn will help you choose a candidate)

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lax32 (4/12/2008)
mr pickle (4/12/2008)
lax32 (4/12/2008)
The two sentence version-

Yep.

The electoral voters also don't have to vote for whoever got the popular vote. Although I don't think its ever been done in history (although it might have happened once or twice around the Civil War and I know many voters have threatened to vote for someone else but never did), the electoral college voters could vote in whatever candidate they wanted to into the white house regardless of who voted for them. So in theory every single person in America could vote for one person and then the electoral college could put some guy nobody ever heard of into office.

The system was put in place because they were unsure if democracy would work so they created the electoral college as a failsafe so someone messed up didn't even up in office.

Okay. Here's my next question. Why do we(the people) stand for this? It's a rediculous system. No one cares about "state power" anymore, at least in the general public. Why don't we get rid of it? Is it just the stay in a rut nature of bueracracy?

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mr pickle (4/12/2008)
lax32 (4/12/2008)
mr pickle (4/12/2008)
lax32 (4/12/2008)
The two sentence version-

Yep.

The electoral voters also don't have to vote for whoever got the popular vote. Although I don't think its ever been done in history (although it might have happened once or twice around the Civil War and I know many voters have threatened to vote for someone else but never did), the electoral college voters could vote in whatever candidate they wanted to into the white house regardless of who voted for them. So in theory every single person in America could vote for one person and then the electoral college could put some guy nobody ever heard of into office.

The system was put in place because they were unsure if democracy would work so they created the electoral college as a failsafe so someone messed up didn't even up in office.

Okay. Here's my next question. Why do we(the people) stand for this? It's a rediculous system. No one cares about "state power" anymore, at least in the general public. Why don't we get rid of it? Is it just the stay in a rut nature of bueracracy?

It's because the American public is too divided to ever stand together to accomplish something. Black/White/Other, Gay/Straight, Man/Woman, Republican/Democrat, North/South, East/West, Pro-Abortion/Pro-Life, Pro-Iraq War/Anti-Iraq War, and so on and so forth.

The pathetic citizenry of this country is the reason you will never see a revolution in this country. People are either too stupid, too lazy, or too obedient to ever make any real change in the United States. It's actually pretty sad when you think about it.

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mr pickle (4/12/2008)
lax32 (4/12/2008)
mr pickle (4/12/2008)
lax32 (4/12/2008)
The two sentence version-

Yep.

The electoral voters also don't have to vote for whoever got the popular vote. Although I don't think its ever been done in history (although it might have happened once or twice around the Civil War and I know many voters have threatened to vote for someone else but never did), the electoral college voters could vote in whatever candidate they wanted to into the white house regardless of who voted for them. So in theory every single person in America could vote for one person and then the electoral college could put some guy nobody ever heard of into office.

The system was put in place because they were unsure if democracy would work so they created the electoral college as a failsafe so someone messed up didn't even up in office.

Okay. Here's my next question. Why do we(the people) stand for this? It's a rediculous system. No one cares about "state power" anymore, at least in the general public. Why don't we get rid of it? Is it just the stay in a rut nature of bueracracy?

Just like everything else, nobody cares until they are screwed over by it.

Nobody cared about the credit problem until the great depression hit.

Nobody really cared about Vietnam until they got drafted.

Nobody really cared about airport safety or islamic extremists until 9/11.

Nobody cared about the problems with OPEC until gas prices went up.

Nobody cares about eating healthy or obesity until they have a heart attack.

Nobody cared about Hitler or Japan going around committing genocide until Pearl Harbor.

I could go on until you get the point. The only time this would ever get dealt with is if the electoral college chooses someone who didn't actually win (or the president declares martial law and stays in office). Of course if that happens is probably already too late.

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Alfred, cap, you gents have got it right. This is not a Democracy, and the President nor the Senate were to be elected directly by the people. It is so nice to finally see people from this board have brains. I have debated this before on this board only to be called name. But I state again this country is not, in fact our founding fathers were afraid of a democracy. This country is a republic. The electoral college was develped because the founders did not trust the people to be informed. They were right.  

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