The Instigator
MayorJesse
Pro (for)
Losing
10 Points
The Contender
natelex7791
Con (against)
Winning
12 Points

The Electoral college should remain the method of electing presidents in the United states.

Do you like this debate?NoYes+0
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Vote Here
Pro Tied Con
Who did you agree with before the debate?
Who did you agree with after the debate?
Who had better conduct?
Who had better spelling and grammar?
Who made more convincing arguments?
Who used the most reliable sources?
Reasons for your voting decision
1,000 Characters Remaining
The voting period for this debate does not end.
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/11/2007 Category: Politics
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,774 times Debate No: 231
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (1)
Votes (8)

 

MayorJesse

Pro

The Electoral College requires candidates to balance priorities based on differing state interests. James Madison warned of the oppression of the majority, whereby a majority of the population pushes a singular interest upon the whole. By dividing up the process of electing through the states, Presidential hopefuls must align themselves with multiple constituent groups. Furthermore, the Electoral college promotes personal contact through stump speeches. If we removed the Electoral college, politicians would stay in high population areas (New York, California, DC, Chicago) and continue to try rounding up all the votes in those areas. Instead, with the current process, a candidate rounds up a secure majority within a state and moves on to another state, where they must tackle new issues and a new constituent base. Lastly the current system promotes campaigning in moderate or split states (such as here in WI), thus successful candidates must support a more moderate stance, if we were lead by presidents on the political periphery then policy changes would be more extreme from one administration to another.
natelex7791

Con

I believe the electoral college should be eliminated for several reasons. My thesis is that the electoral college doesn't fully represent the people and thus is undemocratic. Firstly, presidential hopefuls attempt to get elected by attempting to beat the system. Candidates can ignore states because they feel they won't be able to win votes. Instead, they target swing states. When all is considered, this doesn't help to elect the best candidate nor does it gauge the whole countries opinion. In california, there is no reason for a republican party supporter to vote. Similarly, there is no reason for a democratic party supported to vote if they live in Texas. Their votes don't matter. In fact, the only place where anyone's vote matters are in swing states. But really, someone's opinion in Iowa matters equally with someone's opinion in New York, yet each and every person in Iowa is glorified during election time. They are heavily educated by presidential hopefuls through intense campaigning initiatives. As someone who lives in Massachusetts, I never see adds run for presidential hopefuls during the election. I see them during primaries, but not the election. Thus, Massachusetts will always vote democratic no matter who the candidate because people aren't educated on why to vote any other way. Thus, there is simply a lack of education. This happens everywhere that politicians don't think is worth their time because it isn't as good of an investment of their time. In a sense, it says that people in those states aren't as important. This is not democracy. Why is this? This happens because there isn't a popular vote. If there was a popular vote, every voter would be heavily educated on the candidates so everyone can make an informed decision instead of only the people who happen to live in "swing" states. Thus, the United States is entrenched in a perpetuating cycle of self defeating campaigning behavior in which voters never question their political leanings, and furthermore always vote based of those unquestioned leanings, leading to the election of people like George W Bush. It seems obvious that if Al Gore had gone into States that typically voted republican and showed people who they were actually voting for, it would've made a big difference. To many, Bush was simply a republican candidate. That must stop, and that is accomplished through a popular vote.

All of what I said only scratches the surface. Technically, the electoral college fails as well as what the ideological problems with the electoral college are. Since the electoral votes of each state equal the number of Congressmen and Senators from that state, small states have a much larger percentage of the electoral vote than larger states. Nor does every ballot carry the same weight. In 2003, one electoral vote in Wyoming corresponded to 167,081 persons, and to 645,172 folks in California. Thus, the electoral college doesn't proportionally weigh people's votes. In fact, it is more heavily weighing people from smaller states, which in the case of Wyoming, is considerably less effected by what the federal government does than is the case of California for a multitude of reasons.

Many people side with the electoral college for ideological reasons based on the assumption that the electoral college appeals to the state. This, unfortunately, isn't true.As I said in the first paragraph, most states, even the largest states, are simply ignored in the campaigning process. But additionally, candidates rarely talk about local issues. In fact, it would do very little good for the campaigning process to focus on local issues. The national election is about national issues. As it is now, the election process is about national issues, except that the only people who are considered of interest for these issues are those in battleground states.

Because it is clear that the United States must be represented in it's entirety, fairly and equally, I must stand in strong negation of the pro's advocacy for maintaining the Status quo and the blatant disregard for democracy and justice that it stands for.
Debate Round No. 1
MayorJesse

Pro

quite the Jeffersonian, unequal representation is inherently undemocratic. To bad Jefferson didn't get his way and we now have a senate that unequally represents the public. Must've worked well because the European Union mimicked this formula when calculating seats for their governing houses.

Lets see your next argument is that hopefuls try to "beat the system," aren't they really using the best strategy within the system? I mean if a football player runs a punt-fake, are they really beating the system? aren't they just good strategists? Also hey remember 1982 and 1986, yeah a majority of California voters put Regean in the white house.

So your next beef is that you get attention during the primary but not in the final election. Well here in Wisconsin I haven't seen one ad, not one. That's my point, some states influence the primary, some the final election. It makes candidates have to be more versatile and it sends them through more electing "filters," forcing them to get elected on many issues with a wide spanning support group.

In regards to people voting for party, yes that is true, it's called an information shortcut. Voters use them a lot. This requires the parties to maintain a certain image. When that image falters (such as with Bush), the party loses (look at the republican seat losses in 2006). Regardless of how the electoral college system works, voters will use information shortcuts. Oh and ps. the most effective campaign ads are specifically negative ads which make reference to opponents voting records, that seems like pretty valuable information for the voting public.

You are certainly right that large states get the shaft on the deal, just like they do in the senate. But let us remember that it is extremely rare that the winner of the electoral college doesn't win the majority (or plurality in some cases). More than changing the result, the electoral college tends to alter the strategy of campaigning. And that is good for a majority of Americans and hurts a few.
natelex7791

Con

natelex7791 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
MayorJesse

Pro

Participatory democracy is great for those who participate.

The electoral college promotes grass roots localized campaigns.

Get involved.
natelex7791

Con

natelex7791 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by policydebategod 9 years ago
policydebategod
I'm voting for natalex when this round is over.
8 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 8 records.
Vote Placed by U.n 1 year ago
U.n
MayorJessenatelex7791Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:--Vote Checkmark3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:10 
Reasons for voting decision: Forfeiture.
Vote Placed by Tatarize 9 years ago
Tatarize
MayorJessenatelex7791Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Vote Placed by afeinberg 9 years ago
afeinberg
MayorJessenatelex7791Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Vote Placed by silentrigger1285 9 years ago
silentrigger1285
MayorJessenatelex7791Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Vote Placed by sagarous 9 years ago
sagarous
MayorJessenatelex7791Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Vote Placed by james94 9 years ago
james94
MayorJessenatelex7791Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Vote Placed by CongressmanDrew 9 years ago
CongressmanDrew
MayorJessenatelex7791Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Vote Placed by wheelhouse3 9 years ago
wheelhouse3
MayorJessenatelex7791Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30