Clicker QuestionWhich would you prefer – to amend theconstitution so that the candidate who receivesthe most total votes nationwide wins theelection, or to keep the current system, inwhich the candidate who wins the most votesin the Electoral College wins the election? a. Amend b. Current
Clicker QuestionWhich step comes last? a. Reapportionment b. Census c. Redistricting
Clicker QuestionWhich step comes first? a. Reapportionment b. Census c. Redistricting
Clicker QuestionWhich step comes second? a. Reapportionment b. Census c. Redistricting
Clicker QuestionThe number of a state’s electoral votes is determined bya. Number of members in the House of Representativesb. Percentage of registered voted that voted during the last election.c. Number of members it has in both chambers of Congress.d. state’s proportionate share of the overall national population
Clicker QuestionIn the 2000 presidential race, George Bush won Missouri 50 percent to 47 percent. How many of Missouris eleven electoral votes did Bush get in 2000? a)six b)seven c)nine d)eleven
The Electoral CollegeElectoral College Important Numbers 55 3 House + Senate + 3Article II
The Electoral CollegeWhy do we have the Electoral College?Options for Electing a President1. Indirectly By “Experts” –Let Congress or State Legislatureschoose the President.REJECTED! – NOT ENOUGH DEMOCRACY2. Directly by Citizens – Let citizens vote directly for the president. REJECTED! – NOT ENOUGH QUALITY Solution: Involve both “Experts” and Citizens. Legitimacy and Quality
How does the System Work? (OVERVIEW)1. Prior to election day, each party within a state chooses aslate of electors that are important figures within their politicalparty.2. On Election Day, we vote for a party’s slate of electors thathave pledged to vote for the presidential candidate we prefer.3. The Popular Vote is then CONVERTED into the Electoral Vote.(Maine and Nebraska are Different)4. In December, the electors gather in their respective statecapitols to cast ballots for president and vice president.In January, Congress convenes, opens the ballots received fromeach state, and announces the official outcome.
The Electoral CollegeHow does the System Work?1. Prior to election day, each party within a state chooses a slate ofelectors that are important figures within their political party.Required to Pledge? Not in Georgia…26 States and the District of Columbia (3) havesome form of law or binding pledge to vote for thecandidate with which they are affiliated.Georgia, however, does not.“Faithless Electors” •Electors who do not vote for their party’s designated candidate. •Since the founding of the Electoral College, there have been 156 faithless Electors. •71 of these votes were changed because the original candidate died before the day on which the Electoral College cast their votes. •Three of the votes were not cast at all as three Electors chose to abstain from casting their Electoral vote for any candidate. •The other 82 Electoral votes were changed on the personal initiative of the Elector.
The Electors… Number Given to Each State = Size of Congressional Delegation GEORGIA, with 14 House districts, has 16 Electoral College votes. (Remember, you add 2 for the Senate) Largest State = California with 55 electors Smallest States = 7 states +D.C. have 3 electorsHow are they Chosen?•Electors are typically long-timeparty activists who are selected bytheir state party organization as areward for their loyalty to the party.
The Electoral CollegeThe Electoral CollegeAll the electors from ALL of the states make up the Electoral College•The Electoral College consists of 538 members 435 (House) + 100 (Senate) + 3 (D.C.) = 538CONSTITUTIONALLY, to win a presidential election, a candidatemust receive a MAJORITY of the Electoral Vote. 538/2 = 269 (Majority = 270)
2. On Election Day, we vote for a party’s slate of electors that havepledged to vote for the presidential candidate we prefer. This is the POPULAR VOTE
The Electoral College3. The Popular Vote is then CONVERTED into theElectoral Vote. How’d that happen?
The Electoral CollegeFrom Popular Vote to Electoral Vote48 states award electors based on the Winner-Take-All System. Thus, 50% +1 Vote = 100% of ElectorsPopular Vote (National = 53% to 46% Obama)In the 2008 election, 52% of Georgia voters chose McCain while 47%of Georgia voters chose Obama.Electoral Vote (National = 68% to 32% Obama)ALL 15 of Georgia’s electoral college seats were then awarded toJohn McCain.
The Electoral CollegeMaine (4) and Nebraska (5)Maine and Nebraska awardelectors through a moreproportional process.HOW? Each state selects electors at the congressionaldistrict level and then awards the 2 “extra” electors to thestatewide popular vote winner.
Clicker QuestionWhat do you think about the Nebraska/ Maine system? a)I love it, lets do it! b)Might Work here. c)No way, never!
2008 Electoral College Vote The Electoral CollegeWhat’s misleading about this map? Hint: Should McCain have won?
2008 Electoral College Vote(Scaled to # of Electoral College Votes)
2000 – Bush vs. GoreSo, how is it possible that Al Gore won thepopular vote (by almost 544k votes) andyet lost the electoral college vote(271 to 266)?A Winner-Take-All system means that any extra votes (those beyondwhat is necessary to win) are “SURPLUS” in the sense that they do notaffect the winner’s electoral vote result for that state.Example: Gore only needed 3.2M votes to win New York but hereceived 4.1M…That’s 900,000 “extra” votes that increased hispopular vote total but did not change his electoral vote total.
Clicker QuestionHad the entire country used the Nebraska/ Maine system in 2000, Al Gore would have been president. a) TRUE b) FALSE
The Electoral CollegeConcerns about the Electoral College1. Does everyone’s vote count the same? Wyoming – 71,242 votes per elector California – 199,378 votes per elector2. How does this process affect voter turnout? Battleground States vs. Safe States3. Reinforces 2-party system Democracy = Choice
Number of Presidential Candidate Visits (September 26th to November 2nd, 2004)
Advertising Money Spent ($ =1 million) (September 26th to November 2nd, 2004)
The Electoral CollegeOther Ways?Congressional District Approach?We could all change to the Maine/Nebraska model – Strangely, if thishad been done in 2000, Bush would have won by a larger electoralmargin (Small states tend to be Republican + large states like CA andNY would be split)Proportional Voting?In 2008, Georgia would have awarded 8 electors to McCain and 7electors to Obama.Had this been used in 2008 (in TX, CA, GA, FL, OH, PA, and WI), McCainwould have picked up an additional 45 electoral college votes.
Georgia 2008 Had Georgia used the Maine approach, Obama would have picked up between 3 and 5 of our electoral college votes.
Clicker QuestionWhat does the Constitution require to beelected President? a. A Plurality of the Popular Vote b. A Majority of the Electoral Vote c. A Plurality of the Electoral Vote d. A Majority of the Popular Vote
Clicker QuestionWould you approve or disapprove of anamendment to the Constitution which woulddo away with the electoral college and basethe election of a President on the total votecast throughout the nation? a. YES b. NO
Historical Support APPROVE DISAPPROVE NO OPINION June 1944 65% 23% 13%January 1977 73% 15% 12% Nov. 1980 67% 19% 15% June 2008 74% 21% 5%