What is the Electoral College?

If you"re a United states citizen, 18 years of age or older, you probably think you deserve to vote because that presidential candidates in the national election. That"s partly correct. Once citizens cast their ballots for president in the well-known vote, they selected a slate of electors. Electors then actors the votes that decide that becomes president of the united States.

Usually, electoral votes align v the popular vote in one election. But a variety of times in our nation"s history, the human being who took the White home did not obtain the most famous votes.

The founders thought that the use of electors would offer our country a representative president, while avoiding a corruptible nationwide election. The documents of the commonwealth Convention of 1787 report that,

...he members of the general Convention...did indulge the expect by apportioning, limiting, and confining the Electors within their particular States, and by the guarded way of giving and transmitting the ballots of the Electors come the chair of Government, the intrigue, combination, and corruption, would be effectually shut out, and also a complimentary and pure election of the president of the United claims made perpetual.

The discussions on the fostering of the commonwealth Constitution, explains what can seem choose a convoluted system to voter today:

every state shall appoint, in together manner together its legislature may direct, a number of electors equal to the whole number of senators and also members of the home of to represent to which the state may be entitled in the legislature.

yet no human shall be appointed an elector that is a member that the legislative branch of the unified States, or who holds any office of benefit or trust under the united States.

The electors shall meet in their corresponding states, and vote by ballot for 2 persons, of whom one, at least, shall not be an inhabitant of the exact same state with themselves.

national political chart & map the the united States.

In 1796, Federalist john Adams was chosen the nation"s 2nd president, and Thomas Jefferson, that the Republican Party, was chosen vice president. Top top December 28, 1796, Jefferson created a letter to Adams, observing, "The windy & the files have been much lived in lately in placing us in a point of the opposite to every other. Ns trust through confidence that much less of it has been feeling by oneself personally." how did your political distinctions actually impact their leadership?

Initially, electors actors votes for candidates there is no designating even if it is they to be voting because that president or evil president. The flaws in this device became apparent in 1800 when Thomas Jefferson and also Aaron Burr each received 73 electoral votes. It take it the house 36 votes prior to the tie was broken and Jefferson took office together president.

In 1804, 12th Amendment to the constitution made sure that electors designate your votes because that president and vice president, but the 12th Amendment leaves in ar a tie break system developed by the Constitution through which the house of Representatives division a tie top top presidential electoral votes and the Senate division a tie on vice presidential electoral votes.

In some elections, the Electoral College has voted presidents into office by very slim margins, as was the instance in 1960, as soon as John Kennedy defeated Richard Nixon by fewer than 120,000 well-known votes. Electors have also failed to poll for the candidates to whom they were pledged, as was the situation when one elector pledged for Michael Dukakis voted rather for vice-presidential candidate Lloyd Bentsen.

United claims presidential election 2012, outcomes by state, November 6, 2012

While these electoral methods may seem weird to united state now, it may seem also stranger that the founders didn"t provide a procedure by which to nominate presidential candidates.

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They seemed to suppose that candidates would certainly be as obvious and also unanimous selections in the future as George Washington had remained in their time.