Editor's note: The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.
Teetering upon the winner-takes-all concept, the constitutionalized process deemed as the determining factor of who will hold the position as the presiding Chief of State is in disarray.
Relatively defined by the National Archives and Records Administration as a “compromise between election of the President by a vote in Congress and the election of the President by a popular vote of qualified citizens,” the Electoral College is slowly but surely becoming dismissed and dismantled by your 2020 presidential candidates.
As tensions rise between both political parties as to who will take the seat of the presidency, people like myself are wondering how this will be decided.
Consisting of 538 hand-selected voters, the Electoral College is meant to allow each state to be heard in presidential elections, especially those smaller states via those electors. In conjunction, acquiring half, approximately 270, of those electoral votes grants that candidate presidency.
Now although this diluted explanation of the electoral process may seem simple and fair, it is nothing of the sort.
In essence, the Electoral College allows the elector of that state to perhaps vote for the candidate of their choice, rather than the guaranteed candidate the majority or minority in the state aligns with. However, the alternative to this dilemma isn’t to change the elector, but to change the system.
Guaranteeing presidency to the candidate who receives the most popular votes across all 50 states, the National Popular Vote has been sought out by many politicians since the unfortunate 2016 presidential selection.
To break it down, during the 2016 presidential election Hilary Clinton; Democratic, and Donald Trump; Republican, became a spectacle of the Electoral College, as the votes attained managed to outweigh the National Popular Vote. Therefore, Trump won the Electoral College by 306 votes, meanwhile, Clinton received 232 votes.
According to the Pew Research Center election results, Clinton won the popular vote, “Our tally shows Clinton won 65.8 million votes (48.25%) to almost 63 million (46.15%) for Trump.”
Occurring as a rarity, this is the fifth presidential election in U.S. history where the presidential candidate won the National Popular Vote but did not win the Electoral College. The electoral college has caught on-going flack as democratic politician’s, in particular, are scrambling for a way to rid of the system.
From Beto O’Rourke, Bernie Sanders, to Pete Buttigieg and Elizabeth Warren, these presidential candidates have recently expressed their lack of favor for the outdated system. However, this should not be a shocker, as their constituents and own party is very much so in agreeance.
A recent poll by Pew Research Center Poll displayed, “55 percent majority support picking presidents by popular vote, compared to 41 percent who prefer keeping the Electoral College. A solid 75 percent of Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents support amending the Constitution so the candidate who receives the most votes nationwide wins,” whereas, “A majority of Republicans prefer the electoral college regardless of whether they live in a red state, a blue state or a battleground.”
As of recent, 16 states including California, District of Columbia, Maryland, and New York are straying away from being undermined by the electoral college under the National Popular Vote bill. Once states acquire 270 electoral votes, the bill will be in full effect.
As the road to 270 narrows, there’s a winding upheaval in the Electoral College as the National Popular Vote movement emerges and will likely trickle into the 2020 presidential election. Yet, will it have a different effect this time around?