November 14, 2016

The pro-white bias of the electoral college and how to fix it

Center for Economic Policy Research - In addition to the problem of winner take all logic, there is also the issue that people in large states are explicitly underrepresented in the Electoral College. While votes are roughly proportionately distributed, since even the smallest states are guaranteed three votes, the people in these states end up being over-represented in the Electoral College. For example, in Wyoming, there is an electoral vote for every 195,000 residents, in North Dakota there is one for every 252,000, and in Rhode Island one for every 264,000. On the other hand, in California there is an electoral vote for every 711,000 residents, in Florida one for every 699,000, and in Texas one for every 723,000.

The states that are over-represented in the Electoral College also happen to be less diverse than the country as a whole. Wyoming is 84 percent white, North Dakota is 86 percent white, and Rhode Island is 74 percent white, while in California only 38 percent of the population is white, in Florida 55 percent, and in Texas 43 percent. White people tend to live in states where their vote counts more, and minorities in places where it counts less. This means that the Electoral College not only can produce results that conflict with a majority vote, but it is biased in a way that amplifies the votes of white people and reduces the voice of minorities.

It is worth noting that there is a fix to this problem which does not require a constitutional amendment or even action by Congress. The organization, National Popular Vote, has been pushing states to pass legislation whereby their electoral votes will go to the winner of the national popular vote. This switch does not happen until states representing a majority of electoral votes have passed the same legislation. At that point, the winner of the popular vote will automatically be the winner of the electoral vote.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Pass a constitutional amendment, or start a civil war. The Founding Fathers foresaw the tyranny of the majority. The red state folks are understandably not excited about having George Soros, Hillary Clinton, or even Sam Smith tell them what they should think or how they should live, even though liberals know they are so much smarter than the poor, ignorant unwashed below them. It is now apparent after the election that you've learned nothing, and are probably incapable of learning anything. Devolution is a strange process to watch. How did "liberal" America become so stupid?

greg gerritt said...

One person, one vote is the definition of democracy.

Paul Jeanmard said...

Please if the situation were reversed with the Trump the popular vote winner and Clinton the Electoral vote winner, we wouldn't be hearing a peep about changing. Anyone on Trumps side talking about this would be branded an enemy of America and wanting to subvert the Constitution and democracy.

If the law mentioned is passed, it will only be honored when the "right" candidate wins. I expect if the wrong person wins the popular vote, it will all of sudden be found unconstitutional or ignored for the "good of the country"

Anonymous said...

Not to put too fine a point on it,but the framers birthed the country as a republic,with democratic features.Toward that end one finds seeming oddities like the electoral college.

Steverino said...

May I suggest a modified Electoral College. Rather than have each state's(and D.C.'s)electors total their reps and senators, which in effect give California and Texas, for example, a disproportionate advantage over the other states, have two electors from each, in accordance to each state's two senators(since they actually represent the state's). Then, the candidate who gets 34% of a state's vote gets one elector. The candidate who gets 51% of a state's vote gets two electors. If two candidates get at least 34% but less than 51%, each get one elector. Not too likely two leading candidates will each get less than 34% of any state's vote. In the event there is a tie in total electoral votes, than the popular vote will serve as a tie breaker. This way you are utilizing both elements of a EC and popular vote.

Anthony Meyer said...

Sam Smith has clearly never read the Constitution and is in fact describing the very reason the electoral college exists. He is attempting to turn it on its head and act like the founders intended it that way. They did not... the electoral college was designed specifically to reduce the influence of more populous states while increasing the influence of small states that would otherwise be ignored, the black/white argument is a straw man intended to confuse you into supporting the idea that more populous states are more diverse and should rule the less populous states. The Founders did not design the electoral college around race relations they designed it around the idea that all states should play an important role in selecting the president not just the most populous ones.

His tripe about the majority of states passing a law that would make all electoral college votes go to the winner of the popular vote is a fantasy because our nation does not have a single presidential race but rather we have 50 and electoral votes are awarded on a winner take all basis based upon the popular vote in each of the fifty states.

Sam Smith is clueless when it comes to the Constitution... he should retract this.

P.S No one is forcing minority's to live in the most populous states... If they actually think this is a problem they can move to Wyoming and benefit from living in a small state.

Anthony Meyer said...

The Author has never read the Constitution and is in fact describing the very reason the electoral college exists. He is attempting to turn it on its head and act like the founders intended it that way. They did not... the electoral college was designed specifically to reduce the influence of more populous states while increasing the influence of small states that would otherwise be ignored, the black/white argument is a straw man intended to confuse you into supporting the idea that more populous states are more diverse and should rule the less populous states. The Founders did not design the electoral college around race relations they designed it around the idea that all states should play an important role in selecting the president not just the most populous ones.

His tripe about the majority of states passing a law that would make all electoral college votes go to the winner of the popular vote is a fantasy because our nation does not have a single presidential race but rather we have 50 and electoral votes are awarded on a winner take all basis based upon the popular vote in each of the fifty states.

Sam Smith is clueless when it comes to the Constitution... he should retract this.