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Thread: My alternative to our current presidential election system(

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    My alternative to our current presidential election system(

    I am not going to claim I invented the wheel or created fire, just an alternative proposal.

    Lets begin with what stays the same: Every four years we have the primaries and the general election. The primaries are spread out between February and June, and each state gets to decide when they take place. The General Election happens in November and everybody votes at once.

    Now lets move to the changes. To sum it up simply: In order to win the nomination or presidency outright, you need to win both the national popular vote AND the most presidential contests. If there's a split between the two, then you move into a tiebreaker round. The tiebreaker round depends on whether it's a primary or general election. For the primary, each district, including Washington D.C, gets to vote on who should be the next Republican/Democrat nominee. So for example, California has 53 districts, therefore the California Republican/Democrat party appoints electors to cast their ballots for the Republican/Democrat nomination. Their choices will only be TWO candidates. They either pick the candidate with the most popular votes or the most presidential contests won. For the general election, we do the same thing, only we look at which political party won each district. So if in Minnesota, the Republican nominee won 3 districts and the Democrat won 5, then the Minnesota GOP would appoint 3 electors, and the Minnesota Democratic party, would appoint 5 electors.

    So why is this better? Here's my thinking:

    (1) Each vote cast gets treated the same. It doesn't matter where you live. Every vote is a 1:1 ratio.
    (2) Each state gets treated the same.
    (3) It's simpler and more transparent. No superdelegates. No electors voting for anybody they want. Under a proportional system, we have to worry about decimal point controversies.
    (4) Republicans in California and New York get their votes counted, so does Democrats in Tennessee and Alabama.
    (5) Electors are only there for tiebreaker purposes, and only limited to the two most popular candidates.

    Any questions?

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    Re: My alternative to our current presidential election system(

    Quote Originally Posted by BrotherFease View Post
    I am not going to claim I invented the wheel or created fire, just an alternative proposal.

    Lets begin with what stays the same: Every four years we have the primaries and the general election. The primaries are spread out between February and June, and each state gets to decide when they take place. The General Election happens in November and everybody votes at once.

    Now lets move to the changes. To sum it up simply: In order to win the nomination or presidency outright, you need to win both the national popular vote AND the most presidential contests. If there's a split between the two, then you move into a tiebreaker round. The tiebreaker round depends on whether it's a primary or general election. For the primary, each district, including Washington D.C, gets to vote on who should be the next Republican/Democrat nominee. So for example, California has 53 districts, therefore the California Republican/Democrat party appoints electors to cast their ballots for the Republican/Democrat nomination. Their choices will only be TWO candidates. They either pick the candidate with the most popular votes or the most presidential contests won. For the general election, we do the same thing, only we look at which political party won each district. So if in Minnesota, the Republican nominee won 3 districts and the Democrat won 5, then the Minnesota GOP would appoint 3 electors, and the Minnesota Democratic party, would appoint 5 electors.

    So why is this better? Here's my thinking:

    (1) Each vote cast gets treated the same. It doesn't matter where you live. Every vote is a 1:1 ratio.
    (2) Each state gets treated the same.
    (3) It's simpler and more transparent. No superdelegates. No electors voting for anybody they want. Under a proportional system, we have to worry about decimal point controversies.
    (4) Republicans in California and New York get their votes counted, so does Democrats in Tennessee and Alabama.
    (5) Electors are only there for tiebreaker purposes, and only limited to the two most popular candidates.

    Any questions?
    Hmmmm, let me think.

    NO! I am content with the system specifically designed by the Founders to insure that the leader of our Federal government is selected by a method which represents the most States.

    The populace is represented where it counts most...the House where popular votes elect the people who decide how much we get taxed, and how it is supposed to be spent.
    Last edited by Captain Adverse; 03-31-20 at 07:40 PM.
    If I stop responding it doesn't mean I've conceded the point or agree with you. It only means I've made my point and I don't mind you having the last word. Please wait a few minutes before "quoting" me. I often correct errors for a minute or two after I post before the final product is ready.

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    Professor BrotherFease's Avatar
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    Re: My alternative to our current presidential election system(

    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Adverse View Post
    Hmmmm, let me think.

    NO! I am content with the system specifically designed by the Founders to insure that the leader of our Federal government is selected by a method which represents the most States.

    The populace is represented where it counts most...the House where popular votes elect the people who decide how much we get taxed, and how it is supposed to be spent.
    Not sure what your criticism is. My system requires you both the popular vote and the most states. The system benefits both the small states AND large states. It's much more simpler.

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    Re: My alternative to our current presidential election system(

    Quote Originally Posted by BrotherFease View Post
    Not sure what your criticism is. My system requires you both the popular vote and the most states. The system benefits both the small states AND large states. It's much more simpler.
    The criticism is first, that primaries are political party contests. That means the party membership is selecting their overall candidate...not the person everyone, including NON-party members might want to vote for.

    Second, the Electors are supposed to represent the overall vote in each State, and have nothing to do with Party, but rather with the choice by the most people in that particular State between any and all qualified candidates.

    Now a State can chose winner take all, or as in two States, proportional apportionment. But it remains a popular choice having nothing to do with who won the most primaries aside from their current purpose of selecting that Party's candidate.
    If I stop responding it doesn't mean I've conceded the point or agree with you. It only means I've made my point and I don't mind you having the last word. Please wait a few minutes before "quoting" me. I often correct errors for a minute or two after I post before the final product is ready.

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    Re: My alternative to our current presidential election system(

    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Adverse View Post
    The criticism is first, that primaries are political party contests. That means the party membership is selecting their overall candidate...not the person everyone, including NON-party members might want to vote for.

    Second, the Electors are supposed to represent the overall vote in each State, and have nothing to do with Party, but rather with the choice by the most people in that particular State between any and all qualified candidates.

    Now a State can chose winner take all, or as in two States, proportional apportionment. But it remains a popular choice having nothing to do with who won the most primaries aside from their current purpose of selecting that Party's candidate.
    Explaining how the current system operates does not address your problem with my alternative.

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    Re: My alternative to our current presidential election system(

    Quote Originally Posted by BrotherFease View Post
    I am not going to claim I invented the wheel or created fire, just an alternative proposal.

    Lets begin with what stays the same: Every four years we have the primaries and the general election. The primaries are spread out between February and June, and each state gets to decide when they take place. The General Election happens in November and everybody votes at once.

    Now lets move to the changes. To sum it up simply: In order to win the nomination or presidency outright, you need to win both the national popular vote AND the most presidential contests. If there's a split between the two, then you move into a tiebreaker round. The tiebreaker round depends on whether it's a primary or general election. For the primary, each district, including Washington D.C, gets to vote on who should be the next Republican/Democrat nominee. So for example, California has 53 districts, therefore the California Republican/Democrat party appoints electors to cast their ballots for the Republican/Democrat nomination. Their choices will only be TWO candidates. They either pick the candidate with the most popular votes or the most presidential contests won. For the general election, we do the same thing, only we look at which political party won each district. So if in Minnesota, the Republican nominee won 3 districts and the Democrat won 5, then the Minnesota GOP would appoint 3 electors, and the Minnesota Democratic party, would appoint 5 electors.

    So why is this better? Here's my thinking:

    (1) Each vote cast gets treated the same. It doesn't matter where you live. Every vote is a 1:1 ratio.
    (2) Each state gets treated the same.
    (3) It's simpler and more transparent. No superdelegates. No electors voting for anybody they want. Under a proportional system, we have to worry about decimal point controversies.
    (4) Republicans in California and New York get their votes counted, so does Democrats in Tennessee and Alabama.
    (5) Electors are only there for tiebreaker purposes, and only limited to the two most popular candidates.

    Any questions?
    If I were going to cha ge things, I would prefer a system where we select our top 5 choices and add the weighted voting.

    So a candidate that was nobodies favorite, but everyone’s second choice might win.

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    Re: My alternative to our current presidential election system(

    Quote Originally Posted by Simpletruther View Post
    If I were going to cha ge things, I would prefer a system where we select our top 5 choices and add the weighted voting.

    So a candidate that was nobodies favorite, but everyone’s second choice might win.
    National Popular Vote, done through a preferential ballot system?

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    Re: My alternative to our current presidential election system(

    So if I'm understanding this correctly, then a candidate in the general election would have to win both a plurality of states and a plurality of the national vote. If they don't then it basically goes to looking at how each district voted and appointing electors accordingly to each party. So under this scenario, Trump would have been elected because he won 30 states but lost the popular vote and thus it would have gone to a tiebreaker and in the tiebreaker Trump won 230 districts compared to Clinton's 205 so Trump would still have been elected. This would also have elected Romney if Obama had won 1 fewer state than he did in 2012 (say for example Florida) because it would have been a 25-25 split for states even though Obama would still carry both the EC and popular vote by comfortable margins. This also seems like it could severely impact the any party if the party has a voting base that makes it either very difficult to win a majority of state contests or win a plurality of the popular vote. And having it look at individual districts could cause elections to be determined by gerrymandered districts that favor one party over another even if a majority of the state or the majority of the country voted for the other party. Proportional vote allocation seems more closely to what you were getting at to make elections more fair.

    I think I'm most confused by the primary structure and how the candidate who has won the most presidential contests plays into the primary. It sounds like the electors could only vote for whichever candidate has either won the most popular votes or contests in other states thus far in the primary. This sounds like it would cause issues with preventing any third candidate from winning a primary in either party and it would prevent any candidate, such as say Joe Biden using the 2020 primary as evidence, from being able to win a primary if two other candidates have already accrued more votes and won more states. I'm also confused as to how the first state(s) in the primary plays into this as the only candidates eligible to vote for would have to be determined either by polls or you would have the first state(s) be massive king-makers in the primary by very rapidly determining which two candidates the rest of the states will be able to vote for.

    Also would there be any sort of early voting for elections because you said that everyone would vote all at once which leads me to believe that you could only vote in person on Election Day.

    Also correct me if I misinterpreted your proposed system.

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    Re: My alternative to our current presidential election system(

    Quote Originally Posted by BrotherFease View Post
    Explaining how the current system operates does not address your problem with my alternative.
    I told you very clearly in my very first post why I disagreed with your non-new, but already posited one person one vote national popular vote initiative.

    The only thing you changed was the vague "one who won the most contests." I may have mistakenly thought that meant "primary" contests, but perhaps you meant "most votes in each State?" Or even perhaps "most votes in each District?"

    That already exists in either "Winner take all" for most States, or "Proportional" in those two States who give electors based on congressional districts won and the 2 "senate" electors to the overall popular vote winner. In that case States already have that option, but only two have chosen it.

    However, your 1 person 1 vote is the national popular vote initiative, basically, whoever gets the most popular votes wins ALL State's electors.

    That would mean the same problems already raised, i.e., candidates would focus all their attention and all their promises on those States with the largest populations, leaving the majority of States on the sidelines.
    Last edited by Captain Adverse; 03-31-20 at 08:24 PM.
    If I stop responding it doesn't mean I've conceded the point or agree with you. It only means I've made my point and I don't mind you having the last word. Please wait a few minutes before "quoting" me. I often correct errors for a minute or two after I post before the final product is ready.

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    Re: My alternative to our current presidential election system(

    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Adverse View Post
    That would mean the same problems already raised, i.e., candidates would focus all their attention and all their promises on those States with the largest populations, leaving the majority of States on the sidelines.
    I still don't really understand this view. Candidates wouldn't necessarily be focused on campaigning in the largest population centers or states, they'd be campaigning to win the most voters, and voters come from everywhere. If a candidate could get more voters from low population states to vote in favor of them, then those votes would still count and could negate any votes that the other candidate is trying to win from a few high population areas. If anything in this scenario, it would become a battle of getting turnout from all segments of society, with democrats trying to squeeze as many votes out of urban cores and republicans trying to maximize margins in rural areas and the suburban areas in between would be a political battleground. In other words, it's effectively the exact same setup as today just it's no longer limited to X swing states that determine the outcome of the election for the entire country. And our current electoral setup basically disregards 2/3 of all states with only 16 being within 10% in 2016 - which is only about 32% of states. Our current setup already has the problems you listed, I don't see how trying to fix it would be a bad thing.

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