The Instigator
RavenDebater
Con (against)
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0 Points
The Contender
benschroeder43
Pro (for)
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0 Points

Is the Electoral College still necessary?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/3/2016 Category: Politics
Updated: 9 months ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 356 times Debate No: 86026
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (2)
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RavenDebater

Con

Overview: With the elections coming up fast, the age old question surfaces again. Is the Electoral College still necessary? With multiple presidents winning the election, despite losing the popular vote, the Con firmly believes that the Electoral College is no longer needed in the election process.

Positions:
Pro will be arguing...That the Electoral College is necessary for the election process
Con will be arguing...That the Electoral College is not necessary for the election process

Structure:
The first round will be exclusively for opening statements, as well as the express acceptance of all terms and conditions. No new arguments can be made in the last round. No other constraints will be set or enforced.

Rules:
  • A forfeited round means a forfeited debate.
  • All sources must be cited, both in each debaters speech, and links somewhere in their speech document.
  • No conduct rules will be enforced, but a polite demeanor, and at least reasonably passable grammar is expected.

Terms:
Electoral College is defined as...The body of 538 electors, responsible for the election of the President, and Vice President of the United States of America.

Personal Definition - information gathered from:

http://www.archives.gov...


Necessary is defined as...
So important that you must do it or have it : absolutely needed

Definition courtesy of:

http://www.merriam-webster.com...

---

I look forward to an interesting debate.

benschroeder43

Pro

I would like to firstly thank RavenDebater (Con) for allowing me to participate in this debate, which I gladly accept. I do hope that we both learn valuable information from this debate. I would like to wish Con good luck, and may the best debater win.

The resolution is as follows: The Electoral College is necessary for the election process.
I will be arguing that the above statement is true.

Terms:
Electoral College is defined as "a body of electors chosen by the voters in each state to elect the president and vice president of the U.S." by dictionary.com (http://dictionary.reference.com...)

Necessary is defined as "absolutely needed:required" by Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary (http://www.merriam-webster.com...)

The election process (for the President of the United States (POTUS) ) is the process by which the president is elected.

The U.S. Constitution is a document officially maintained and followed by all parts of the U.S. Government. It also contains ground level rules and laws, which may be amended, are to be enforced, and (by the President of the United States) enforced. All government processes are to occur under strict regulation of the most currently amended version of the constitution to be official and legal. Information about the U.S. constitution was gathered from http://www.archives.gov...

Once again, I would like to thank Con for allowing me to debate, I wish them luck, and may the best debater win.


Debate Round No. 1
RavenDebater

Con

First, I would like to take a minute to thank my opponent for accepting this debate, I look forward to an interesting round. The terms and definitions provided in his first speech align with mine, and I am grateful for the additional background knowledge Pro has provided.


In this speech I will be arguing two main points. First, I will be arguing reasons why the electoral college is an obsolete system. Next, I will explain how the existence of the electoral college today undermines the democratic process, both on the individual and state level. In my later speeches I hope to develop these arguments, as well as provide an outline for a superior system of election.


But first, let’s review the reasons why we do not need the electoral college in this day and age. At the time that the electoral college was first created, it was a necessary evil. Before computers, radios, or even telegrams, the United States needed a way to elect a president within a reasonable timespan. The electoral college was thought up to simplify the process and keep American democracy functional (if a bit distorted, but we’ll dive into that later). However, modern society has progressed quite a bit since the days of our founding fathers. And with computers, electronic data bases, and models for advanced democratic processes being prevalent, the electoral college is a relic that continues to drag on the country. As I will highlight later in my speech, the electoral college is no longer needed for the democratic process, and this harmful formality has no place in our modern political system.


The history of the electoral college can be found here:


http://uselectionatlas.org...


Next, I want to dive into the meat of my argument: how the electoral college harms the democratic process. I will be arguing two main points on this subject. The first will isolate how the electoral college undermines a core principle of modern democracy: the one vote for one person system. Second, I will argue how the electoral colleges take all system completely nullifies the vast majority of votes.


One man, one vote. This is a driving principle that has been behind democracy since the days of Athens. However, the electoral college has distorted this seemingly simple policy into a system that places the vote of someone in a battleground at a significantly higher value than someone in, say, Kansas.


The basics of determining electoral votes for each state follows something like this:


“Every state gets one electoral vote for each member of its delegation to the House of Representatives (this by itself would be a rough measure of its population) and each state also gets two “bonus” electors representing its two senators.” (Source: https://www.minnpost.com... )


This system is convoluted and flawed and has had startling effects on our political system. Take California and Wyoming for instance. A vote in Wyoming is worth nearly four times that of a vote in California under the electoral college system (Source: https://www.minnpost.com... ) Our democrasy is being fundementially flawed by this system, and in the interests of fairness, it needs to be abolished.


This brings me into my second point, that the all or nothing system that the electoral college relies on means that a president can, and in many cases has, win an election despite having the minority of the popular vote. In most states, a candidate who gets fifty one percent of the popular vote is rewarded one hundred percent of the electoral vote. This not only totally disregards the votes of the minority, but makes it quite simple for the loser of the popular vote to win the election. The most recent case of this was back in 2000. Some statistics about that election are shown below.


“To win the Electoral College in 2000, Bush needed only 21,835,615 votes out of a total of 105,396,641 votes.” (Bush got 26,353,058 Votes)


Source: http://www.fairvote.org...


This source highlights the problem with the American election system. The article later goes on to state that nearly eighty percent of all votes cast in that election could be essentially discarded, and the election results would remain unchanged. Sadly, this has not gotten better in recent years, in 2008, the percentage of useless vote remained at a staggering seventy percent.


In conclusion, the electoral college is not only a useless attachment to our democracy, but a detrimental harmful one.


I thank my opponent once more for accepting this debate, and eagerly await his response.

benschroeder43

Pro

Given that I must argue that the Electoral College is indeed necessary for the election process, I will refer directly to where that is stated: Article II, section 1 of the U.S. Constitution. (http://www.archives.gov...) Although the electoral college process may not be necessary and can be seen as tedious today, it is a part of the U.S. Constitution, and therefore, until further investigated and ammended, must be followed.

By this logic, the Electoral College is indeed necessary for the presidential election process, as stated in the consititution. Until it is ammended, the election of a president must follow the rules set by the constitution, the Electoral College being one of those.

However, this is only one way to argue my point, and I am sure Con would like to hear more than this simple argument. The Electoral College is a method which prevents "tyranny of the majority," the idea that the majority will consistently receive benefits and legislation in their favor, thus hurting the theoretically less-represented minority.

The electoral college adds yet another barrier between the people and the executive power. In effect, this prevents the popular vote (the majority) from always overwhelming the minority vote, thus giving the minority group more representation.

From the constitutional argument, the Electrol College is necessary for the process of the election of the president to occur. From the hypothetical point of view, it is neccessary as a barrier between the majority and the executive power, thus preventing the minority to be left unrepresented and therefore unprotected.
Debate Round No. 2
RavenDebater

Con

RavenDebater forfeited this round.
benschroeder43

Pro

benschroeder43 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
RavenDebater

Con

RavenDebater forfeited this round.
benschroeder43

Pro

benschroeder43 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
RavenDebater

Con

RavenDebater forfeited this round.
benschroeder43

Pro

benschroeder43 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 5
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by RavenDebater 10 months ago
RavenDebater
@dsjpk5

It has happened four times in our nations history. 2000 was the most recent. You can see the entire list here:

http://www.factcheck.org...
Posted by dsjpk5 10 months ago
dsjpk5
Besides George W Bush, who else won the presidency without winning the popular vote?
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