2 Introduction: The Electoral College One of the least understood parts of our government, yet it is one of the most important…From last time we were together…Why did we choose this method instead of popular vote?Why not have the Congress do it?
3 Logistics of the Electoral College Remember – 270Logistics of the Electoral CollegeTotal available votes = 538= 538Electors are determined by the number of Representatives, plus the number of SenatorsMinimum number a state can have is 3Representation is based on population, therefore, electors are based on population.Where are these 3 electoral votes from?
4 More on the Electoral College It’s a WINNER-TAKE-ALLIf you get the majority of the popular vote in a state then you get all of the ELECTORAL VOTES for that state.Remember it takes 270 electoral votes to win
5 Congressional District Method: Exceptions to the winner-take-all… Maine and Nebraska2 electors (at-large) go with the popular vote winnerAll of the other votes are divided among the Congressional DistrictsThat is…If Forsyth’s 9th District voted for Candidate A, Candidate A would get “our” 1 electoral vote, regardless of what the rest of the state voted.
6 More on Nebraska & Maine WHAT’S THE TOTAL FOR THIS “STATE”???More on Nebraska & MaineEach Congressional District calculates their popular votesThe candidate with the popular vote in EACH DISTRICT gets the E.C.V. for that particular districtPopular Vote for the entire state get 2 BONUS E.C.V.sAAAB+2
7 Choosing ElectorsElectors are chosen on the same day in every state: the Tuesday after the first Monday in November…what’s significant about this date? (NOVEMBER 6, 2012)When voters go to the polls in November, they are voting for an elector NOT the President.Ideally, this elector will vote for their choice in January…NOT a requirement
8 Electoral College Breakdown If you were running which states would you focus on?Why?Know this
12 2004 Election (Wave = visit) ($ = money) Focus on Swing States – by-products of the winner-take-all format
13 Counting the Electoral Votes These electors are chosen by votersThese electors then report to the state capital to cast their 2 votesWhen? – Monday after the second Wednesday in December (DEC. 17, 2012)Who are the 2 ballots for?> >This is basically a formality < <We actually know the night of the election who won the election
14 Counting the Electoral Votes The electoral ballots are sent to the President of the SenateOn January 6th they are tallied with a Joint Session of CongressAnd the winner is “formally” announced
15 The trail of your vote….. You vote for “Candidate X” (their electors) Georgia’s 15 electors in 2008: Six were women and three more were minorities (African-American, Asian-American and Latino).The trail of your vote…..You vote for “Candidate X” (their electors)X Electors“Officially” Cast Electoral Votes in the state’s capitalY ElectorsElectoral College votes are collected and counted in the D.C.POTUS is “formally” announced
17 CHECKPOINT How many electoral college votes does Georgia have? How do they determine the number of electoral votes that a state has?How many electoral votes do you need to win the Presidential Election?
18 The “What Ifs” of the Electoral College What if no one gets 270?Election goes to the House of Representatives (1800 & 1824)Each State gets one vote – 26 to win itWhat if the House vote has not been decided by Jan 20th?Vice President will preside until the President is determinedWhat if no one received 270 for Vice Presidency?Senate will determine the VP and then they will preside until the President is determined
19 Popular-Vote vs. Electoral College Vote Red or Blue…Who should be elected?This happened in 2000
20 Flaws in the Electoral College System 1) Winner of the popular vote may not win the electoral college vote> This has happened 4 times (See next Slide)2) Electors are not required to vote for “their” candidate> “Faithless electors” on 11 occasions3) Election might be decided by the House> This has happened twice> Look out for a 3rd party candidate to take a chunkTEA PARTY???
22 Proposed Changes District Plan – Proportional Plan – Direct Plan – > Each district within a state would cast their “own” electoral voteProportional Plan –> Percentage of electoral votes for the state based on percentage of popular vote from that stateDirect Plan –> Popular vote winner, wins the officeNational Bonus Plan –> 102 electoral votes would be awarded automatically to the winner of the popular vote. These votes would be combined with the other electoral votes that the candidate won.
23 Strengths of the Electoral College It’s a “known” systemIn most cases it identifies a winner quickly and certainlyMost of the reforms would have “loop-holes” too
24 2008 Presidential Election by State 2008 Presidential Election by StateRepublicanDemocrat
30 One last thing… A timeline to sum it up Decision to run – meets 3 qualificationsElectors cast votes, mail to D.C.InaugurationNational ConventionsPrimaries, Caucus, State ConventionsElectoral votes are countedElectionDebate & Campaign