View Poll Results: Should Congress create an amendment to get rid of the Electoral College?

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  • Yes

    20 39.22%
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    22 43.14%
  • Yes, but it could never get passed.

    6 11.76%
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Thread: Amendment to get rid of the Electoral College?

  1. #191
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    Re: Amendment to get rid of the Electoral College?

    Quote Originally Posted by Harshaw View Post
    OK. You're talking about the EC; fine, my mistake.

    But it doesn't follow that the EC delegation being equal to the number of Representatives and Senators means the Constitution regards "the States" as some kind of hybrid of its legislature AND its people. It was simply one of the many compromises meant to balance the interests of BOTH the People AND the States.
    I am mostly making this argument against the idea of one EC vote per state for precisely those reasons. As the EC numbers are meant to balancing the the State (meaning the state legislature/government) and it's people.

    Not every State is represented equally, as per the constitution, and that is because there is no primacy of state govenremnt/legislature over the people.

    The people can vote directly for their legislature, and if it does not execute their will, they will be voted out. (theoretically. It doesn't seem to work as well in practice)

    If a Legislature wishes, it need not consult its people on the matter at ALL, and that's absolute.
    Absolutely. But then the legislature opens itself up to being removed from office. They are supposed to execute the will of the people, so taking a vote is the best way to determine that, but not necessarily the only way to.

    My main point is that all states are not viewed equally, at least with respects to choosing the president. The actual number of people in each state dictate the total value of each State legislatively.

    Not all states are equal. But all state legislatures are viewed as equal.

  2. #192
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    Re: Amendment to get rid of the Electoral College?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tucker Case View Post
    Absolutely. But then the legislature opens itself up to being removed from office. They are supposed to execute the will of the people, so taking a vote is the best way to determine that, but not necessarily the only way to.
    That's a practical issue, not a Constitutional one. The fact that it took decades for the popular vote to be the method of determining Electors negates your idea that the Constitution inherently views the States as hybrids, because the People had little to no say in selecting Electors.



    Not all states are equal. But all state legislatures are viewed as equal.
    And each of them has two votes in the Electoral College.
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  3. #193
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    Re: Amendment to get rid of the Electoral College?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tucker Case View Post
    I am mostly making this argument against the idea of one EC vote per state for precisely those reasons. As the EC numbers are meant to balancing the the State (meaning the state legislature/government) and it's people.
    If the people mattered here, then they's be given a say in the election of the electors. The current EC allocation isnt so much about the people of the states or their will, but the relative power (economic, political, etc) of the states among themseves.

    Currently, we hold that all people are equal regardless of their power. There's no reason to have a seperate holding for the states. That is, if one person = one vote is sound, then one state = one vote is as well.

    Not every State is represented equally, as per the constitution,
    Only in the EC, and not becaise of any deference to the will of their people. See above.

  4. #194
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    Re: Amendment to get rid of the Electoral College?

    Quote Originally Posted by Goobieman View Post
    No... the people and the states are seperate legal/political entities/concepts.
    Thus, you cannot reach the above conclusion.

    Since, according to article II section I, the votes made in the house to determine the president will be made by the house according to state, with the representation of the state having one vote between them, my conclusion is the only one that can be valid.

    If the representatives of a state, as a whole, can represent that state as a whole, they must each represent some fraction of their state. Since that fraction is determined by their respective state's population, The people of each state must therefore be considered a part of that State

    That's the only logical conclusion one can reach given the evidence presented in the constitution.

    It is the idea that each state is equal is what cannot be reached with the evidence within constitution.

  5. #195
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    Re: Amendment to get rid of the Electoral College?



    No, it's not. It's the conclusion you choose to reach, but that doesn't make it the only logical conclusion, especially when you're the only person I'm aware of who's ever made the argument (that the Constitution views "the States" as hybrids).
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  6. #196
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    Re: Amendment to get rid of the Electoral College?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tucker Case View Post
    Since, according to article II section I, the votes made in the house to determine the president will be made by the house according to state, with the representation of the state having one vote between them, my conclusion is the only one that can be valid.
    Seems to me that a constitutionally-mandeated one state = one vote situation supports MY position, not yours. It doesnt matter how many people CA has, the delegation from CA has exactly the same power as the delegation from WY.

    It is the idea that each state is equal is cannot be reached with the evidence within constitution.
    The -only- place that it is not is in the electoral college, which as previously noted, has nothing to do with the idea that the people of that state are somehow represented. The NUMBER of people might be used as a simplified quantifier, but the will of those people is irrelevant, and the electors are not voting on their behalf.

  7. #197
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    Re: Amendment to get rid of the Electoral College?

    Quote Originally Posted by Goobieman View Post
    If the people mattered here, then they's be given a say in the election of the electors. The current EC allocation isnt so much about the people of the states or their will, but the relative power (economic, political, etc) of the states among themseves.
    Correction, the people DO matter, and that's why states with more people have more votes.

    The will of the people is another matter entirely. I'm focussing on the concept that all states are equal. Clearly that isn't the case, otherwise they would all have the same number of votes in the EC.

    They do not the same number of votes.

    Let's ask the most important question:

    If all state's are equal, why don't the states all have the same number of votes in the Electoral College?

    Occam's Razor indicates that the simplest explanation is usually correct. The simplest explanation is: The States are not equal in value.

    Currently, we hold that all people are equal regardless of their power. There's no reason to have a seperate holding for the states. That is, if one person = one vote is sound, then one state = one vote is as well.
    That's a false analogy, and therefore the logic is unsound. The value of a state is determined by it's total number of people. Value is not intrinsic to the state, but is derived from the value of the people within the state. All of the people within a state are added together to determine the final value of that state.

    That's why the EC votes are distributed as they are. This isn't about the will of the people, it's about the value of the state.

    The people are equal, the states are not. Thus, to implyu that because people are equal, then states are equal is illogical because the state's value is determined by it's total number of people.


    Only in the EC, and not becaise of any deference to the will of their people. See above.
    It's not about the will of the people. It's about the existence of those people.

  8. #198
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    Re: Amendment to get rid of the Electoral College?

    Quote Originally Posted by Goobieman View Post
    Seems to me that a constitutionally-mandeated one state = one vote situation supports MY position, not yours. It doesnt matter how many people CA has, the delegation from CA has exactly the same power as the delegation from WY.
    In a tie-breaker. In all other aspects, California has more value. If the representatives from California ALWAYS had to vote as one entity, then it would be different, but they only do this in this rare circumstance.


    The -only- place that it is not is in the electoral college, which as previously noted, has nothing to do with the idea that the people of that state are somehow represented. The NUMBER of people might be used as a simplified quantifier, but the will of those people is irrelevant, and the electors are not voting on their behalf.
    It means that proportionally, they are represented. It is not about their WILL being represented, it's about THEM being represented.

    Obviously, the founding fathers did not feel all states were equal in this respect.

    They are only equal if there is need for a tie-breaker vote.

  9. #199
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    Re: Amendment to get rid of the Electoral College?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tucker Case View Post
    Correction, the people DO matter, and that's why states with more people have more votes.
    As noted before, this inequality, based on more power = more votes, is invalid.

    I'm focussing on the concept that all states are equal. Clearly that isn't the case, otherwise they would all have the same number of votes in the EC.
    They do not the same number of votes.
    If all state's are equal, why don't the states all have the same number of votes in the Electoral College?
    This has been addressed.
    And remember, the ONLY place the states are inequal is the electoral college. You're trying to use the exception to prove the rule.

    That's a false analogy, and therefore the logic is unsound. The value of a state is determined by it's total number of people.
    Yes. An invalid determiner. See below.

    Value is not intrinsic to the state.
    It is, just as the value of the individual is intrinsic to the individual.
    You seem to keep forgetting that the states are entities unto themselves, seperate from their people. One entity - state or person - having more power than another based on the number of anything undermines the entire concept behind our form of government.

    but is derived from the value of the people within the state. All of the people within a state are added together to determine the final value of that state.
    This is no different than arguing that the value of a person is derived from the money/power he has. Unsupportable.

    That's why the EC votes are distributed as they are. This isn't about the will of the people, it's about the value of the state.
    Yes. And that's why the one person/state = one vote concept must pervail.

    The people are equal, the states are not. Thus, to imply that because people are equal, then states are equal is illogical because the state's value is determined by it's total number of people
    .
    Which, as noted, is an invalid determiner, found only in the ecxeption to an otherwise consistent rule. To remain consistent with the remainder of the Constitution, the EC must be one state/vote.

  10. #200
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    Re: Amendment to get rid of the Electoral College?

    Quote Originally Posted by Harshaw View Post


    No, it's not. It's the conclusion you choose to reach, but that doesn't make it the only logical conclusion, especially when you're the only person I'm aware of who's ever made the argument (that the Constitution views "the States" as hybrids).
    Alexander Hamilton Pretty much argues along the same lines in FEDERALIST No. 68:

    "All these advantages will happily combine in the plan devised by the convention; which is, that the people of each State shall choose a number of persons as electors, equal to the number of senators and representatives of such State in the national government, who shall assemble within the State, and vote for some fit person as President. Their votes, thus given, are to be transmitted to the seat of the national government, and the person who may happen to have a majority of the whole number of votes will be the President. But as a majority of the votes might not always happen to centre in one man, and as it might be unsafe to permit less than a majority to be conclusive, it is provided that, in such a contingency, the House of Representatives shall select out of the candidates who shall have the five highest number of votes, the man who in their opinion may be best qualified for the office. "

    I added the bold myself.

    The reason for the EC is not to give the power to the States, it's to ensure that those who do vote for president "will be most likely to possess the information and discernment requisite to such complicated investigations" in oder to make sure that "the office of President will never fall to the lot of any man who is not in an eminent degree endowed with the requisite qualifications."

    Making it one state one vote does not do this. The reason the states have unequal votes is that the EC was meant to be "selected by their fellow-citizens from the general mass".


    Edited to add: Link to Federalist #68: Federalist Papers: FEDERALIST No. 68
    Last edited by Tucker Case; 07-23-09 at 02:23 PM.

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