Alright, last time we discussed the way the numbers are decided for the House and the Senate. This is also how many electoral votes there are for the President and VP, with the addition of 3 for the District of Colombia, a recent phenomenon. I’ll have to get into DC representation in another post, but just know for now, that there are those 3. Now you understand why I made you read about the numbers of reps, right? At this point, there are 435 representatives in the House, and 100 in the Senate (unless one has passed away and not yet been replaced…that type of thing). But, the number of electors is based on the number of reps and senators, presuming they are fully staffed, and those for DC, which makes for a total of 538.


Initially, whoever got the most electoral votes was president and second most was VP. Can you imagine Obama having to deal with McCain as his VP? Cracks me up to think about it! Right. Moving on…


This idea of one vote per citizen was rejected during deliberations, as was having the congress doing the voting (pretty happy about that rejection, right about now, and I don’t think I even have to address why that was nixed), and it all comes down to the numbers.


If the “one man, one vote” thing were to be instituted, or if the electoral college was set up differently, the top most populous states would elect the president and the rest of the country would be left thinking, “What just happened?” and most likely, “Oh, garbage.”


Let’s take the 2,000 election as an example of the collection of power from very narrow concentrations of power in the “one man, one vote” results. From


“If the national tally of the popular vote is transferred proportionally into a vote by the House of Representatives, the results would have been 210 Members voting for Gore, 209 for Bush, and 16 Members voting for others; Gore, therefore, would have narrowly won a vote in the House based on the will of the population.

However, if the State by State votes are transferred to the Senate, since Bush won 30 States and Gore 20, the Senate vote would have been 60 for Bush and 40 for Gore; Bush, therefore, by a large margin, would have been the choice of the States.

In short, Gore narrowly won the popular vote by winning heavily populated and narrowly concentrated urban parts of the nation (Gore carried only 676 counties, located primarily along both coasts and along the Mississippi River) while Bush was the overwhelming choice of the States and of the more geographically diverse regions of the country (Bush carried 2436 counties β€” nearly four times that of Gore β€” spreading virtually from coast to coast). The electoral college wisely weighs these competing interests in the selection for a President.”

Clearly, Bush won, when one takes into consideration the entire country.


The electoral college forces the votes to be taken state by state, and it allows the power of each voter to be heralded across the entire nation. Do you want your vote to count? Or do you want big cities and populous states to rule everything? I’d rather not be railroaded, thank you, and thus stand firm in my conviction to the brilliant system of the electoral college.


**This post was updated on 11/17/12 due to an oversight that was brought to my attention by an alert reader.**