The Instigator
AbcedarianMufti
Pro (for)
Tied
0 Points
The Contender
Rational_Thinker9119
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points

In the United States, the Electoral College should be abolished.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/3/2017 Category: Politics
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 870 times Debate No: 98653
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (1)
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AbcedarianMufti

Pro

Full Resolution: In the United States, the Electoral College should be abolished.
Definitions:

Electoral College: A body of people representing the states of the US, who formally cast votes for the election of the president and vice president.

Round 1: Acceptance only
Round 2: Opening arguments (no rebuttals)
Round 3: Rebuttals/Counter arguments
Round 4: Rebuttals and conclusion (no new arguments)
Rational_Thinker9119

Con

I accept.
Debate Round No. 1
AbcedarianMufti

Pro

The Electoral College should be abolished for the reason that it is an undemocratic system. The United States, and all other nations should strive for a more democratic system. This is supported by the following arguments

1:The Electoral College is a winner-take-all system on the state level.
In the Electoral College, a candidate needs not win people over to their side, merely states. In this system, the minority of voters inside of a state can easily be disregarded. For example, in Oklahoma, the winner of the state was Donald Trump. Yet, Donald Trump only won 949,136 votes, or 65.32% of that population. That means that the other roughly 35% of the state's population might as well stay home. In a strictly popular vote system, every vote matters. This means that the system in place is extremely bad for states where the population is not majorly on one side or the other. Take, for example, Michigan, which was won out by 0.3 percent. Michigan ignored 49.7% of its own population. That is extremely undemocratic and does not belong in a nation that prides itself on its democracy.
http://www.politico.com...

2: The Electoral College is unfavorably skewed towards smaller states.
The Electoral College works on the system of adding two votes to each state before including population into the mix. Because of this, smaller states are unfairly boosted up so that each person inside of the state has their vote worth more. For example, according to population, Alaska should get one electoral vote, but instead gets 4. California, by contrast, should get 52, but instead gets 55. By using simple mathematics, we can determine that each Alaskans vote is 3 times larger than it should be, whereas Californians is 1.05 times larger than it should be (55/52). As a result, an Alaskan's vote is roughly 2.9 times more important than a Californians. In a democratic system, each vote should count as just one vote. Yet, the Electoral College sets up a scenario where states are rewarded for low population with proportionally higher popular votes.
http://state.1keydata.com...

3: The Electoral College does not allow electors to vote for people from their home state.
In the first words of the Twelfth Amendment, "The electors shall meet in their respective states and vote by ballot for President and Vice-President, one of whom, at least, shall not be an inhabitant of the same state with themselves." Or, in other words, Electors cannot vote for people who come from their own states. This means that certain candidates are practically ineligible by birth in larger states. For example, if someone lived in California, then that state's electors would be obligated to vote for someone else, even if the person won their home state. Not only does the Electoral College disagree with the idea of home states, it actually bans them. Even if this part of the Electoral College is not practiced right now, the potential for it to be used in the future remains an omen of issues that the Electoral College presents.
The Constitution

4: The Electoral College relies on a First Past the Post System
The First Past the Post System, (or Plurality Voting), is a voting system with simple rules. Everyone votes for one person, and the person with the most votes wins. However, there are other systems out there that are more democratic in their approach. For example, Single Transferable Vote systems use a ranking system. This negates what is known as the Spoiler Effect. For example, in the year 2000, Ralph Nader ran, and won a sizable amount of votes. This was enough to cause a shift that led to Al Gore losing the Presidential race. A more recent example might have been Gary Johnson skewing the election, taking votes from certain candidates.
http://www.cbsnews.com...

5: First Past the Post systems are against Third Party Candidates.
Although it might seem the Single Transferable Vote system is strange, it definitely helps have a more balanced system. First Past the Post incentivizes a two-party system because of what is known as Strategic Voting. Essentially, Strategic Voting is a theory that claims that populations will tend towards two parties over time under First Past the Post because unfavorable candidates are seen as impractical to vote for. Think about a candidate such as Ralph Nader or Gary Johnson. A part of the populous could have agreed, and yet decided that a more practical candidate is the solution. The Electoral College intensifies this problem by not only having Strategic voting on a national level, but on a state level. Now, people not only vote against their interests because of the nation's undemocratic system, but because of the winner take all system of the states implemented by the Electoral College.
http://science.sciencemag.org...

6:The Electoral College allows for minority presidents
Presidents that develop a minority of the votes may sound like an issue not found in America, but it is an issue. In 10.6% of past elections, the losing candidate became president because of the Electoral College. In fact, in the past 5 elections, since 2000, almost half of the elections have been handed over to the more unpopular candidate. Due to the importance that the presidential election holds, it seems that a 40% failure rate of the system should not be tolerated. In a democracy, the country should be able to agree on whether or not the process is fair, even if some people don't like the outcome. The Electoral College goes against the most fundamental principle of democracy.
http://www.bradford-delong.com...

7:The Electoral College creates swing states
Swing States are an issue in American politics. Essentially, states that have relatively large voting margins can be safely ignored, regardless of population. Because of this, swing states are states that are inflated in importance due to the fact that some states will tend towards certain parties. For example, in New York Hillary Clinton won by 58.8% of the population. That near 60-40 split made it so that Neither Donald Trump nor Hillary Clinton needed to campaign or listen to that state. The same issue comes with 40 of the 50 states. Just ten states were undecided by the time an election comes around. In any other system, where people are prioritized above the states, those 40% of Republicans, Libertarians, and Green Party members, would have a voice in New York.
http://www.politico.com...

8:The Electoral College does not include territories.
Not all American citizens live in the United States. Puerto Rico, for instance, has 3.5 million residents, none of whom are a part of the presidential election. That would put its population above 11 of the actual states. Guam, America Samoa, and the Virgin Islands, are all territories that are a part of the country. Yet, the Electoral College denies the existence of more people outside of the states. This is perhaps the most undemocratic part of the Electoral College. In this instance, it ignores the facade of being democratic in some light to completely ignoring some people who could vote. This is an issue that needs to be addressed, and cannot be addressed under the Electoral College.
http://everything-everywhere.com...

In summary, The Electoral College should be abolished because of the undemocratic way that it functions. It creates a disparity that cannot be solved under the Electoral College, and protects a voting system that needs to be changed. I thank the con for accepting, and turn the stage to him.
Rational_Thinker9119

Con

Introduction
------------------

I will be arguing against the abolishing of the Electoral College as it is too important to give up.

1. The Electoral College Gives More Counties/ States A Voice

Half of the US populates 146 counties out of the 3000 that exist in the country [1]. With the Electoral College, every state has at least 3 electors [2]. This means that presidential candidates who tend to the needs of more counties/ states than just the ones with the highest population will more likely get elected, then reelected again. If the most probable alternative to the Electoral College was to be in place, which is victory by popular vote, then a handful of states could essentially decide the election which clearly would not be fair to the other states who may have different views and needs than the most populated states. Therefore, the Electoral College gives more counties and states a voice than the likely alternative. The United States of America includes the word "United" for a reason. If a handful of states had an overwhelming amount of voting power with regards to a presidential election compared to the vast majority of states then that would cause resentment and divide the country up in a horrendous way. Since the Electoral College keeps things more fair and balanced than its most likely alternative, and would enforce what the "United" States of America stands for, then this section clearly paints a picture as to why we should not abolish the Electoral College.

2. Errors Remain Local

In 2000 the presidential election was absolutely terrible as it involved a recount in one state which took multiple weeks to settle [3]. If we needed a nationwide recount due to errors pertaining to a popular vote nationwide then this would drag out an election unnecessarily.

3. Abolishing The Electoral College Would Be A Waste Of Time And Resources

This reason ties in to the last one. It would be very difficult to amend the constitution in a way that gets rid of the Electoral College, just as it would be very difficult to amend the constitution in a way which makes it so citizens don't have the right to bear arms. To get a constitutional amendment one would need a 2/3 vote in the Senate and The House/ 38 states need to be on board [4]. To abolish the Electoral College one would have to change the constitution dramatically to this point would cost an asinine amount of time and money to campaign and pander to the right people. Since such a task would require a massive amount of resources and precious time that would be better spent elsewhere (such as fixing the economy or combating pollution). Abolishinng the Electoral College in favor of something like a popular vote would not be a good idea; the ends do not justify the means (especially considering the fact that the popular vote usually matches up with the winner decided by the Electoral College anyway; there have only been 2 instances where this hasn't been the case since 1888 [5]).

4. Abolishing The Electoral College In The US Is Philosophically Unsound

Abolishing the Electoral College in favour of a win by popular vote would make no sense, as there are State laws as well as Federal laws. This necessitates a deeply rooted fact that the US isn't just a hunk of land with a bunch of people living in it governed by only one set of rules. If that was the case then an argument for a popular vote to elect the president may be able to get off the ground. However, at the end of the day, the US is 50 states which are significantly independent of one another. In California for example, marijuana is legal [6], in Texas you can end up in jail for even a small amount [7]. The point being is that it would make no sense to get rid of the Electoral College in the US because the Electoral College is based on a state by state race, which makes sense as each state is significantly independent of another. Even though they exist under one umbrella, there is not sufficient integration as certain state laws differ from others so dramatically. However, if the presidential election was won by popular vote then it completely disregards the fact that there are states. This makes no sense based on what the United States of America actually is. So even if it could be argued that victory by popular vote is better than the Electoral College in general, or with regards to other countries, it would be make no sense to argue that this is true for the United States specifically. The Electoral College acknowledges the sovereignty of each state, and gives all states involved in the election more of a fighting chance (which ties into my first reason to keep the Electoral College).

5. An Obvious Victor

In elections where the votes are too close to call the Electoral College makes it so there is an obvious victor. John F. Kennedy defeated Richard M. Nixon on November 8, 1960 in one of the tightest elections in which 68 million voters went to the polls. Both sides accused the other of fraudulent acts but because Kennedy had more Electoral votes then he was the clear victor and a national recount was avoided [8].

6. Abolishing The Electoral College Would Tear Apart Federalism

The Electoral College represents Federalism [9], so if we get rid of it then we might as well get rid of the Senate. In fact, there might as well not be any states at all. That is not what the forefathers intended.

7. The Electoral College Aided In The End Of Slavery

As Allen Guelzo and James Hulme, a Civil War professor and Attorney write:

"... It was the Electoral College that made it possible to end slavery, since Abraham Lincoln only earned 39% of the popular vote in the election of 1860, but won a crushing victory in the Electoral College. This, in large measure, was why Southern slave owners stampeded into succession in 1860-61. They could do the numbers as well as anyone, and realized that the Electoral College would only produce more anti-slavery Northern presidents." [10] [11]

Something that was so instrumental in abolishing something as awful as slavery clearly has its usefulness, and should not be abolished. This ties back to my "An Obvious Victor" section, because when the popular vote is so close the Electoral College will decide the clear winner without wasting any more valuable time.

8. The Electoral College Removes Incentive For Candidates To Rig Elections

If you have an overwhelmingly blue state and overwhelmingly red state the incentive to try to rig the election decreases as as the state-wide winner is what counts, not the popular vote over all, and we basically know how things will turn out anyway in certain states. However, if a popular vote was implemented, the incentive would strongly remain in these scenarios to stuff ballot boxes.

In Conclusion
--------------------

I have presented 8 powerful reasons showing that we should not abolish the Electoral College, and look forward to rebutting my opponent's arguments.

Sources
------------

[1] http://www.businessinsider.com...

[2] https://www.archives.gov...

[3] https://www.google.ca...

[4] http://www.lexisnexis.com...

[5] http://www.history.com...

[6] http://statelaws.findlaw.com...

[7] http://statelaws.findlaw.com...

[8] http://www.sciencebuzz.org...

[9] http://digitalcommons.liberty.edu...

[10] https://www.britannica.com...

[11] https://www.google.ca...
Debate Round No. 2
AbcedarianMufti

Pro

I will be refuting my opponent's points and making no excess claims

1:The Electoral College gives smaller states too much of a voice.
My opponent claims that the Electoral College helps smaller states out by giving them a voice. However, the fact of the matter is their voices are too large. As I discussed in my second point, the smaller states are too powerful. In fact, it is theoretically possible to win 50.19% of the Electoral College, but only win 21.91% of the popular vote, because smaller states benefit so greatly. This is an incredibly disproportionate system, and one that needs to be solved in order for the United States to continue to call itself a democracy.

2: Single Transferable Voting, as opposed to First Past the Post, solves recounts
If a recount is called, then obviously it was a close popular race. This means under a First Past The Post system, it would be hard to determine the winner. However, in Single Transferable Voting, recounts do not happen because races are no longer polarized into the two parties, forcing a recount. Instead, third party candidates have their members vote on their candidate, showing who they prefer out of the two main parties. Also, the idea of a close election can occur in the Electoral College. Within this system, since there is an even amount of electors, it is possible to have a tied race. There are provisions to deal with these circumstances, but to claim that the Electoral College cannot cause close races, is false.

3:Amending the Constitution before has occurred
First, I would like to point out as the topic states 'should', the argument here is about our obligation, and not whether or not it would occur. However, this process to amending the Constitution would take the same amount of effort required to repeal Prohibition, which was also a part of the Constitution. Resources required would not be an issue, since 'should' and not 'will' is the word in the resolution. In the last statement, my opponent makes an argument that is vital to the round. They state twice since 1888, the popular vote and the Electoral College have disagreed. This is a large and severe problem in the election system. Yet, my opponent seems flippant about this point. Imagine if, by some strange quirk in the rules, there was a sport where the losing team could win. Would anyone still want that rule, or rather would the people solve the problem and make the system more fair for everyone. The issue is here, the presidency is much more important than a sports game. It can, in some instances, determine the course of history. Imagine how different the world would be if Al Gore was given the presidency. Regardless of whether or not his politics are the same as your own, it would be massively incorrect to state he would be the same president as George Bush.

4: The Electoral College is a Federal Law
My opponent claims that the fact that State laws exist prove that there needs to be an Electoral College. Yet, my opponent misconstrues the Electoral College with a state-by-state popular vote. It is not the case. The Electoral College is not unjust because it separates the state votes, it is unjust because those states are not awarded proportionally. If there was a popular vote state by state, sovereignty of each state would still be kept. Federalism is not what opponents of the Electoral College disagree with, but the simple fact that the Electoral College does not hold one person to one vote. Instead, it allows people in smaller states to reign supreme over the people in the larger states.

5:This is in fact an argument for removing the Electoral College
In cases such as the case my opponent brought up, the Electoral College took a race that could go either way and handily handed the presidency to a president who won more electors than he should. Another example could be in 2000, where George Bush lost the popular, but because he won more small states, he won the presidency. This is a clear example of an abuse of the Electoral College. A system as vital to America as voting should not have this much abuse surrounding the system. This is a system that needs to be abolished.

6:This is a Straw-man fallacy
My opponent claims that removing the Electoral College is akin to dismantling one of the three branches of government. Although both of them come from similar thought process, the fact remains that the Electoral College is an ineffective and undemocratic system and does not delegitimize the Senate, which is a part of bicameralism as well as Federalism. Also, it is unwise to blindly follow any person, even the founder of a country. The fact that the forefathers never intended for people without property, non-white men, and women to vote shows that although they should be respected, they should not be blindly followed, especially when it comes to voting.

7:This is another logical fallacy
My opponent claims that the Electoral College helped get an unpopular candidate into office, even though most people disliked him. Yet, the inverse is also true. If Jefferson Davis lost the popular, yet won the Electoral, then that would create more slavery. The fact that Lincoln was a good president is irrelevant, because another candidate, such as George Bush, was an example of a bad candidate becoming elected. Imperialistic ventures such as the Iraq war were only possible because of the Electoral College. Therefore, the case that it happened to elect the right president one time is luck of the draw.

8:No Evidence, and Undemocratic
As stated, my opponent supplies no evidence that the Electoral College Rigs elections, so we can assume that it is incorrect. Also, this is an incredibly undemocratic way of looking at the system. If the argument that rigging elections is a bigger problem than essentially removing a person's vote, then that is a dangerously authoritarian way of looking at the Election. In short, that is the issue with the Electoral College. The issue is that the idea that not all votes matter in a state, or that some states should have their people count for more. These are issues that cannot be addressed by the con, because the Electoral College at a fundamental level is designed to tilt the scales in favor of smaller, more rural states.

In Conclusion: Now that I have sufficiently shown my arguments outweigh his arguments, I now turn the stage over to the con and thank him for the excellent points he provided.
Rational_Thinker9119

Con

-Introduction

In this round I am going to rebut my opponent's initial arguments in favor of abolishing the Electoral College, and also refute my opponent's rebuttals to my case.

- Rebuttals To My Opponent's Arguments

1. My opponent argues that if a candidate wins a state by a little over 50%, this means the other votes don't don't matter and the people might have well has stayed home. This logic is akin to saying that if I fire 3 bullets and only 1 hits and kills the target that the other 2 bullets might as well have stayed in the chamber. This logic fails because the more bullets I fire means the better chance of killing the target. Therefore, because the additional shots fired increased the chances of killing the target, they mattered, even though those bullets weren't the ones that actually caused the target to die. Thus, Pro's logic here does not succeed.

2. Pro claims that the Electoral College gives too much voting power to people of smaller states, but neglects the fact that this is done to counter the unfairness regarding states that that have a higher population than others. Since the increased voting power is justified in the name of the fairness I have mentioned, it cannot be used as a good reason to abolish the Electoral College. Pro says it's theoretically possible to win 50.19% of the Electoral College and only 21.19% of the popular vote, but forgets yet again if the winner was decided by popular vote then the election would be decided by a handful of large states meaning presidents would have no reason to sufficiently address concerns of smaller states to win elections (such as the water crisis in Flint Michigan). Since a president ignoring the vast majority of states would clearly more of a problem than smaller states having slightly more voting power, my opponent's arguments in this regard fall flat. Also, Pro says the Electoral College shouldn't be called a democracy; this is false. The Electoral College only fails to embody pure democracy, but it is still democratic none the less, and my opponent has failed to show in anyway this is not to be desired.

3. The argument about the law regarding electors not being able to vote for candidates from their home state fails for 2 reasons:

(i) The law exists for a good reason, to prevent biased voting

(ii) This isn't even practiced, as my opponent admits

Thus, Pro's reasoning here can be disregarded.

4. My opponent has argued that the First Past the Post system is less democratic (which he hasn't proved), but hasn't argued that this in any way shape or form out weighs the benefits of keeping such a system (such as simplicity). Therefore, this line of argument from my opponent has not supported the resolution.

5. Pro argued that the First Past the Post systems are against third party candidates. This is irrelevant, as no third party candidate has ever won an election and probably won't ever. So, there is really no practical downside here. It would be like saying a certain action hurts the chances of me teleporting. It doesn't matter, as I have never teleported before and probably won't ever anyway (me teleporting is much more unlikely than a win from a third-party, but the analogy is sound regardless).

6. America has democratic aspects but it was never founded on principles of pure democracy so it really is futile to argue about how much the country sways away from democracy. Yes, the Electoral College allows for candidates who lose the popular vote to still win the election, but this isn't a "failure" as my opponent alludes to because if the popular vote was the most important thing to worry about then the election would be decided by a handful of large states. Thus, my opponent once again fails at supporting the resolution.

7. The concept of swing-states does have its issues (as Pro rightfully points out), it also has benefits as well (such as the fact that voters in toss up states have more incentive to pay attention to an election and make an educated vote than voters in states that are not swing-states). Because my opponent has not shown why the downsides outweigh the benefits, he has not supported the resolution with his line of reasoning.

8. The people in territories cannot vote in the Presidential election my opponent is correct. However, for the most part residents of the US territories don't pay federal income tax either and therefore should not be eligible to chose how they are represented at a federal level. Also, people living in the territories of the US are not considered US citizens, but US nationals.

- Refuting My Opponent's Rebuttals

1. Part 2 of the previous section in this round addresses this rebuttal.

2. My opponent claims that a Single Transferable Voting solves the problem of the delay caused by recounts, but it actually creates a more of a delay because of the complexity of the voting calculations involved. The ends of implementing this system do not justify the means. Thus, this rebuttal from Pro fails.

3. We only "should" amend this aspect of the constitution if the resources and time required are worth it, which they aren't because as I have argued the Electoral College is a better system. With prohibition it was different because because the ends justified the means; humans should be able to chose what substances they can put in their body. This false comparison from Pro is not a sufficient rebuttal.

4. My opponent has not rebutted the fact that abolishing the Electoral College is unsound philosophically, and I have not confused the Electoral College with a state-by-state popular vote. Pro merely restates his position that smaller states have an advantage over larger ones which is false. It puts them on the same level because larger states have a higher population which, if the winner was decided by popular vote, would mean larger states would decide elections and smaller states would get left in the dust.

5. Having an obvious victor does not equate to electoral abuse but electoral efficiency. My opponent begs the question throughout the debate by assuming that victory by popular vote is better in order to claim that anything that goes against it is a "failure". This is circular reasoning.

6. I never committed a straw-man fallacy, I just pointed out that if Pro is to be consistent with this logic then there are undesirable consequences. Also, what I mentioned with regards to what the forefathers wanted was with regards to central parts of the Constitution, so his remarks about how the forefathers intended terrible things like slavery are moot points.

7. Pro's rebuttal to this is sound, actually, I will concede this point. This, however, is not enough to tip the scales in his favor.

8. Pro engages in a straw-man. I ever said that the Electoral College rigs elections, just that the lack of the Electoral College provides more incentive to rig elections. Pro ignored my reasoning for this.

- Conclusion

Pro consistently argued that the Electoral College is less democratic than the alternatives. While this is correct it is irrelevant as the US was never meant to be a pure democracy (just meant to have democratic aspects), and it has not been argued sufficiently that a pure democracy is to even be desired; it is just erroneously assumed by Pro. While I commend Pro for having much knowledge on the subject his actual case is lackluster at best I'm afraid. My opponent's case was dismantled with relative ease, while only one of his rebuttals to my case was sound (which still leaves my other reasons for keeping the Electoral College unscathed). Therefore, it is without a doubt the case that the resolution has been negated.
Debate Round No. 3
AbcedarianMufti

Pro

I am going to rebut my opponent's case and defend my own.

Defense

1. The example my opponent provides is a flawed example. Elections, unlike bullets, are mutually exclusive. A more apt example might be a coin flip or a dice roll, where more votes is equal to more weight on that side of the coin or dice. Votes can sway the Election one way or the other, but those who vote against the majority are wasting their time.

2.My opponent claims that larger states states in fact have more power in the popular vote because the larger states would decide all of the elections. This appears to be a reasonable concern until we look at the population distribution of the United States. Even if a candidate got the top 100 cities to unanimously vote for them, from titanic New York City all the way down to mighty Spokane, the elector would only receive 19.4% of the vote, not nearly enough to win the popular vote.Also my opponent claims that making the smaller states power makes it more democratic. This is clearly false. A democratic system has equal representation, not disproportionate representation.

3. My opponent makes two claims here, that the law prevent biased voting and that it is not practiced. However, since an objective court could prosecute electors on this issue, the hypothetical is the issue here. Also, my opponent still claims that removing democratic pillars for a good reason is just, but that is simply not true. Democracy is the best system, and should be incorporated in all possibilities.

4.My opponent claims that FPTP systems are better because of their simplicity. Simplicity is not a measure of effectiveness, and this argument should be disregarded. A simpler system is not always a better one.

5. My opponent misses the point of my fifth point. The reason (at least partially) for no third party victors in US history. The example of teleportation is not effective because teleportation is not a part of physics, and the laws of the universe would have to rewritten for it to occur. The Electoral College is not as major as these laws.

6.My opponent claims that the US shouldn't focus on being too democratic since it was never based on pure democracy. Yet, those democratic aspects that they mention are the aspects being damaged by the Electoral College. My opponent again claims the large states would remain supreme, but this is the same argument he made previously, and should be disregarded with the same evidence of population distribution.

7. My opponent claims that people in swing states have an incentive to be more educated voters because their votes are more important in an election. This means my opponent agrees, some people are more important than others in the Electoral College. This is a fundamental issue that cannot be stated enough. The breakdown of democracy comes from the idea that some people are more important than others. This line of reasoning goes against all of democracy.

8.My opponent claims since the territories don't pay federal income tax, they shouldn't get a vote. Yet, not only territories don't pay that tax. In 2013, 43% of households didn't pay federal income tax, mainly the working poor, the elderly, and veterans. They all have their right to vote, and unless they are suggesting taking away their vote, this argument doesn't come into play. Also, only American Samoa or Swain"s Island have non-citizenship, the rest the territories grant citizenship.

Attack

1.My opponent cross applies his argument so cross apply my attack from my second point.

2.My opponent yet again conflates simplicity and effectiveness, and also claims, that the STV is too complex. STV is a simple system that simply shifts one candidate for a ranking system. For example, say in this last election someone loved Gary Johnson but knew he was going to lose. Instead of voting for a candidate they don't like, but one that could win, they could show their support for Gary by making him the top vote.

3. My opponent claims the Electoral College is good because the end justifies the means. This is not the same as their original argument, that it would take too much effort. This is therefor a new argument and should be treated as such. If the end justifies the means, end not being the correct one in 40% of the last 5 elections, shows the means bring the wrong ends. They also claim prohibition was unjust but refuse to see that the argument about Prohibition was the precedent for removing amendments to the Constitution

4. My opponent makes the same claim that the smaller states need the boost for it to be fair. Cross apply my previous attacks on this argument,while also seeing yet again the Electoral College is inherently anti-democratic by making some people count for more than others.

5.In the obvious victor argument my opponent claims that when the votes don't match the electorate, that is good because it is efficient. Yet, my opponent still shows the ugly side of the Electoral College in this statement, since that efficiency comes at the expense of democracy. That is the core aspect of this debate, whether or not it is better to have a democratic system or an efficient one (even if the system isn't actually efficient). In my round 3 speech, point 2, I also point out how close election can occur in the electoral college, which shows that the argument about higher efficiency isn't even necessarily true. It doesn't take a stretch of the imagination to imagine a race where someone won the popular vote, but lost the Electoral College. If the system is so efficient, then these problems would not occur.

6. My opponent claims they never committed a straw man, but that was the whole point of their sixth point. Their argument was the pro was against Federalism, and that is why the Electoral College is bad under the pro. Yet, as I have shown, the issues is not with its Federalism, but with the inequality and ineffectiveness of the system. In terms of the debate about the founding fathers, I never mentioned slavery, but only that they didn't believe in voting as a right in America for most people. The idea of voting is a Constitutional issue, via the 14 and 19th amendments, and so both points still remain.

7. My opponent conceded this point, while stating that this is not enough to tip the scales towards the pro. Yet, this is absolutely enough. Beyond Lincoln, there are four others who lost the popular and won the Electoral. (J. Q. Adams lost both but became president) Rutherford B. Hayes was president during the passage of the Chinese Exclusion Act, Benjamin Harrison was one of the most inactive presidents ever, Bush started the War on Terror, and Trump; who hasn't actually has a presidency to judge yet, but in the election cycle constantly enforced the ideas of Stop and Frisk as well as purposeful torture and killing of Middle Eastern Civilians. None of these, save for Lincoln, were good presidents, and so we have to see that this fundamentally shows by itself why the Electoral College should be abolished.

8. My opponent claims that I engaged in a straw man when I claimed the Electoral College doesn't stop rigged elections, but makes them systematic. Yet, there was no straw man, I simply showed there was proof to fulfill the burden. Also, I mentioned how undemocratic that way of thinking is, and my opponent has no response because it is inherently stripping some people of equal voting rights.

In his voting points, my opponent admits the Electoral College is less democratic, and asks why that is so wrong. Yet, the democratic aspect of equal voting rights is at stake here, and that is indeed a part of the democracy of America. Also, my opponent claims that my case was "lackluster" because it was "dismantled." They confuse attacking an argument with defeating it, as I have shown none of their attack stick when under close inspection. His voting issues are flawed.

Vote Pro b/c it:
1. Upholds Equal Voting Rights
2.Is more Efficient
3.Helps the country be better
Rational_Thinker9119

Con

- Introduction

I am going to once more tear down my opponent's arguments and rebuttals and show why my case remains firmly unscathed.

- Regarding My Opponent's Initial Arguments

1. A coin analogy wont work as it does not embody Pro's original sentiments about how once a 50% threshold of votes is reached the others do not "matter". The fact remains that more people that vote for a specific candidate, the higher the chances of that candidate winning. Regardless of whether or not every vote is directly responsible for a win, every vote still counts from a probabilistic standpoint. Ergo, Pro's arguments here still fail.

2. I never once stated that giving more power to smaller states makes it more democratic, just that it makes it more fair from a holistic standpoint. Also, my opponent cited no sources or reasoning for his 19.4% calculation so it can be disregarded. I provided sources for my claim that half of the country populated only 146 out of the 3000 counties in the country in my first round. If half the population resides in only 4.86 % of the the counties, then if the winner was decided by popular vote, and everyone from those 146 counties voted one way hypothetically, a candidate could get half the votes just from just 4.86% of the counties that exist in the whole country. Since deciding the winner by popular vote isn't fair to the vast majorities of counties in the US, it should not be implemented as a replacement to the Electoral College which works so well.

3. An objective court could prosecute electors for biased voting if there was proof of such conduct. However, it is next to impossible to prove as biased electors could conjure up multiple reasons for the bad vote. Also, there is no reason to think the non-practice regarding my opponent's issue will not continue in the future so his concerns are unfounded. Pro still hasn't shown why a pure democracy is better than the Electoral College, just stating "Democracy is the best system" doesn't cut it.

4. Most of the time simplicity is a form of efficiency, especially considering how long it would take to calculate votes if the FPTP was abolished. Pro has not proven that his reasons against the FPTP system outweigh the efficiency of easily calculated votes. His argument still fails.

5. Pro argues against my teleportation example because the universal laws would have to be re-written to make it possible. This is false, teleportation is possible in this universe via quantum entanglement. Either way, third-party candidates have an little chance of winning presidential elections anyway, so if the Electoral College makes it even harder for that to occur there is no practical difference as the outcome would most likely be the same regardless.

6. My opponent's calculation involving population distribution this round wasn't backed up by anything; mine was. Pro implies that the democratic aspects the Electoral College embodies are exactly what it hurts but offered no argument for this. My opponent's baseless assertions can be graciously ignored.

7. I never implied that some people are more important than others, just that some voters have more motivation to make an educated vote than others. Since my opponent straw-manned my position he fails to establish any relevant point.

8. One of the main reasons those 43% of households don't pay federal income tax is because they didn't make enough income to qualify. This isn't the same as being exempt from income tax because they live in a territory; my opponent is drawing a false equivalence. So, Pro's objections miss the mark once again.

- Regarding My Initial Arguments

1. This objection has been addressed in this round already.

2. Pro claims the STV is still a simple system but it is not; all one needs to do is look at what happened in New Zealand in 2004. It took over a month to calculate the votes because of the complexity involved in vote calculations. As New Zealand party MP Nick Smith writes:

"STV is a system designed for political scientists and mathematicians not voters... The local government elections were a disaster and an international embarrassment."

The STV is not practical in any sense.

3. A rebuttal is a form of arguing so one cannot rebuttal without making a "new argument". Either way the no new argument rule only applies to this round according to the rules outlined. My opponent also once again states that if the Electoral College doesn't match with the popular vote that it is not "correct", in order to argue for deciding the winner by popular vote. However, this assumes already that deciding the victor by popular vote is correct. Since Pro assumes his conclusion to argue for it, this amounts to nothing more than begging the question and circular reasoning.

4. The Electoral College is not anti-democratic, it is just less democratic than other potential election methods. This is not necessarily a bad thing though, because a pure democracy would force us to deem a handful of counties and states as more important than most of the country. That is unacceptable, because issues like the water crisis in Flint, Michigan would go largely ignored.

5. My opponent says that the efficiency comes at the price of more democracy. However, a pure democracy isn't the greatest thing since sliced bread like my opponent implies, as majority of the country is vastly uneducated on political issues. So, leaving important choices like who becomes the president to the majority of Americans is more scary than anything. Therefore, just because an election done via the Electoral College doesn't match with the popular vote doesn't mean it wasn't successful. If anything, in many cases, it could be considered a good thing.

6. What my opponent fails to realize is that the idea of the Electoral College is inherent to American Federalism, so his reasons for wanting to abolish the Electoral College are irrelevant to my point here. It still stands that we might as well get rid of Federalism and states in general if we get rid of the Electoral College, because the Electoral College is the only system which can embody those principles accurately.

7. My opponent argues that the Electoral College has caused more bad presidents to win the election than good. Thus, in his mind, this point alone shows why the resolution has been proven. This fails for two reasons:

(i) It is debatable whether or not the presidents he mentioned were actually bad presidents

(ii) It invokes a quantity over quality logic which is flawed

With regards to (i), Benjamin Harrison for example did much good, like forcing Chile into paying reparations to Americans. The War on Terror stopped many terrorist cells from causing harm to American cities. Also, what Trump said before he got elected does not dictate what he will actually do once president.

With regards to (ii), it could be argued that abolishing slavery trumps whatever bad a handful of presidents might have done.

Therefore, based on (i) and (ii), Pro's logic falls flat.

8. Again, just because X is not as democratic as Y, that doesn't mean X is less desirable by default. This is a false axiom Pro uses in many of his arguments that simply hasn't been shown to be true.

- Conclusion

"Equal voting rights" would mean a handful of counties and states would have half of the voting power, and it would be a crime to ignore the needs of the majority of states because they have less people; this would be catastrophic. My opponent simply doesn't realize that the US was never meant to be a pure democracy, and there is no reason to assume a pure democracy is to be desired.

Because all of Pro's arguments were defeated sufficiently, while 7 of my argument were not torn down properly; one must be compelled to vote Con.

I thank Pro for the enlightening debate.
Debate Round No. 4
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by SocialisimAreCool 1 year ago
SocialisimAreCool
of course it is bad. it shows white america is doing whitelash against the women and lbtq folk who need more help!!! trump is a racist who should die!!!
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