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The Contender
Con (against)

Should the Electoral College be abolished?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/19/2017 Category: Politics
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 281 times Debate No: 99129
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (2)
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Should the electoral college be abolished? I believe so. There have been many instances when people were extremely disappointed with the results of presidential elections because the candidate they voted for acquired the popular vote, but because of the electoral college, the candidate (most of the time not sufficiently qualified to be president) that most citizens did not want to be president.. was. Including the election of 2016, Donald Trump became president, and being a strong Democrat in the Republican state of Montana, I felt it wrong to protest and thought my voice would be washed out by all the cheering from the Republicans. Hillary got the popular vote, but.. I digress. Because of the electoral college, Donald Trump (Certainly not qualified to become president) became our President of the United States. Hey, it's just something i wanted to rant about, so if you have a different opinion, I'd love to hear it. I don't want this to be some crazy thing, just a little debate, so don't throw any hate. Thanks


I would like to thank my opponent for offering this debate. While I understand his frustration with the electoral college, I also understand the reasoning behind the Founders' inclusion of the electoral college in our election process. With my worthy opponent's permission, I will go ahead and launch into arguments here in the first round.

1: A quick reading of the US Constitution, Article 2, Section 1 indicates that the President is to be elected by the States, not by the People. Thus, Constitutionally, the popular vote is not only meaningless, but totally unnecessary. The States were originally given the power to choose, within each State, how their Electors were chosen. If a state decided to allow a popular vote, then the popular vote would matter in that State (but only that State). However, if a State mandated that the Governor of the State, with the ratification of the legislative body of that State, should choose the Electors for that State, then there would be no need to even hold a Presidential election in that State.

There have been two Amendments to the Constitution that effect the Electoral College: Amendment XII and Amendment XXIII. Neither of these impact the method of selecting Electors. They impact how Electors are to vote (Amendment XII) and allow for Washington DC to have Electors. This means that the method of selecting Electors within each State is still up to the legislative body within each State to determine.

Why is this important? Why would the Founders want the States to be the ones who elected the President, and not the People? That is because the founders represented 13 independent "nations" who had decided that their continued freedom and prosperity might best be served by forming more than an alliance with each other. If they were all constituent States of one unified Federal government, then they could unify for the common defense, but still operate independently when in peace time. Notice I say a Federal government, not a National Government. The difference, to most, may not be apparent, but it is eminently significant. Nationalism is the consolidation of power at the national level at the expense of the States or local governments. Federalism, on the other hand, is the States giving limited power to the Federal government and maintaining limitations on that power. Federalism was the basis on which the US Constitution was written. Notice that all the powers given to the governments, both State and Federal, come from the People. "We the People of the United States..." Notice too that the 10th Amendment, which was part of the "Bill of Rights" which was demanded by the States before they would ratify the Constitution, mandates that all power not specifically given in the Constitution is reserved to the States or the People thereof. That means that things like healthcare, agriculture, transportation, education, and the environment (for which there is no power given to the Federal government in the Constitution) are the responsibility of the individual States. The Federal government has no business becoming involved in any of those aspects of American life. (1)

It may appear that I am digressing from the topic, but this is very important in establishing that the Electoral College is still relevant today. If we were to allow a national popular election to elect the President, almost half of the States would become irrelevant to the selection process. "Direct election was rejected not because the Framers of the Constitution doubted public intelligence but rather because they feared that without sufficient information about candidates from outside their State, people would naturally vote for a "favorite son" from their own State or region. At worst, no president would emerge with a popular majority sufficient to govern the whole country. At best, the choice of president would always be decided by the largest, most populous States with little regard for the smaller ones." (2) A brief review of the 2010 census of the United States shows that there were 308,745,538 people in the US. The State of California had 12.06% of that total with 37,253,956 residents. Texas was second with 8.14% or 25,145561 residents, and New York was third with 6.27% or 19,378,102 residents. On the bottom end, we have Wyoming with only 0.0018% or 563,626 residents, DC with 0.0019% or 601,723 residents, Vermont with 0.002% or 625,741 residents, and North Dakota with 0.0021% or 672,591 residents. Given this kind of disparity, it would be totally financially irresponsible for any Presidential candidate to spend any time campaigning in any of the 22 States (and DC) with the lowest population. These 22 States (Wyoming, DC, Vermont, North Dakota, Alaska, South Dakota, Delaware, Montana, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Maine, Hawaii, Idaho, Nebraska, West Virginia, New Mexico, Nevada, Utah, Kansas, Arkansas, Mississippi, and Iowa) combined have less population than California, only 11%. In a popular election, they would never see an advertisement, much less see the actual candidates in their States.

I think this is enough to get us started. I defer to my worthy opponent to offer his arguments, and rebut any point I have made that he thinks in error.

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Debate Round No. 2
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Debate Round No. 3
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by FollowerofChrist1955 1 year ago
You should attend this debate:
Atheism- A lost reality! A hopeless, helpless cause!
Posted by Fernyx 1 year ago
Unless you want Cali and Texas to decide every election and nullify states like NH and Rhode Island, the electoral college is the best idea. It can be reformed, however abolishing it is a terrible idea.
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