Electoral College: Tyranny of the Majority Essay

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With a Presidential election year upon us, the United States’ national election process will once again take its place at center stage of American politics. 200 years after the Electoral College’s creation, it still serves its intended purpose, but the increasing social and political awareness in America has caused a need to look at reform in this process. The question that should be asked by every citizen as they participate in the vote next year is if the Electoral College enables the wishes of the people to be truly represented? Reforming the practice of choosing the American President, though, would have Constitutional implications and the political philosophy of our country would be subject to much discussion. Through analyzing the …show more content…
The method for choosing its chief executive, the President, is deeply rooted in this free republic spirit. Many difficult problems had to be accounted for when formulating how America should choose its leader. Republicanism was important in preventing the “tyranny of the majority” that direct democracy could generate (Longley). The fears of the Framers to place ultimate governmental powers into a single set of hands, as they had learned from British rule, was a major factor in the creation of the Electoral College. Though they placed little faith in the American public’s ability to rationally choose the President (Janda 54), they did not want to place this duty solely into the hands of the state’s legislators either. The fear was that the President would become so indebted to the states that elected him that his federal authority would be undermined (Kimberling). A compromise was sought at the Constitutional Convention and an indirect election of the President, by the people, but through the legislators, was enacted in Article II, 12th amendment in 1804. The current process regarding the Electoral College gives the states a certain number of electors, equal to the number of delegates they have in the House of Representatives, and an additional two electors representing the two members of the Senate from each state. When a citizen casts their vote at a local voting booth, they are not voting directly for the President, but are voting for a state elector who

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