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Author Topic: How can we change the electoral college system?  (Read 6129 times)

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Offline DelightfullyMAD

Re: How can we change the electoral college system?
« Reply #75 on: September 06, 2017, 11:29:01 PM »
I hold no love for both parties, either.  The Democrats have tended to align more often with my preferences than the Republicans over the years, but have become progressively (no pun intended) worse.

I do understand why the EC was created, but it's hardly accurate now.  80.7% of the country's population is urban, regardless of their political leanings.  Even Portland isn't 100% liberal, nor is Salt Lake City 100% conservative.  But the election of a president isn't local, it's national.  The general consensus of the population has to be taken into consideration for that election.  Localities can be represented more accurately in state legislatures of even in the House of Representatives, but the Presidency must be elected from a majority of the voters of the entire nation.  If that means certain populations rarely see one of their picks get elected, so be it.  It doesn't just go for rural voters.  Rural voters are only one minority that has been represented many times in the recent past.  Carter, the Bushes, Clinton...I'd consider them rural candidates more often than not.  Obama lived in Chicago but came from Kansas and Hawaii, which I'd call a rural upbringing.  When was the last time we had a President from New York or Los Angeles...or Dallas or Milwaukee for that matter?

I don't mind conservatives winning elections.  I just want it to be fair.  The alternative is one-party rule.  If Democrats ended up winning the Presidency for decades, as it did early in the nation's history, so be it.  It eventually went through growing pains of its own, being led by different factions within the party.  I think you're right, DelightfullyMAD, about both parties going through--at the very least--a metamorphosis.  The factions within both parties are at a point where they are very fractious.  That is driven primarily by societal and cultural causes, but the whole idea of having only two major parties decide all is itself fracturing, and I think that's a good thing.

Yeah, it's definitely my hope too.  Honestly, I used to lean far more left when I was younger, which is pretty common, and now lean more right on a number of matters that even just a few years ago I would have likely disagreed with myself on.  At the risk of placing myself in a restrictive descriptor, I would say I am probably a centrist with a slight lean to the right.  Though, to be honest, I find that adhering to such concepts as 'Left', 'Right' and other limiting descriptors is just that; limiting.  Very few people, outside of the mob mentality imposed by association with a larger group, would I think identify thoroughly to the right or left on all issues, but more and more these days both sides of politics are becoming increasingly cult-like in that you are required to adhere to the entire dogma of whatever side you are on.  If you are on the Left, you must be Pro Choice, you must be anti capital punishment, and of course the opposite is true for the Right.

This was something the founding fathers actually wrote about, both warning against the formation of political parties, and also recognizing their inevitability.  If it were up to me at all, I would love to just do away with the concept of parties entirely, and simply have politicians run entirely on their own merits and ideas, and let the people decide who is best based on that.  With parties, we find that many people will simply vote for their affiliated party, regardless as to whether or not they actually agree with or even like the candidate being trotted out.  Nowhere was this more clear than our last election, with literally the two most unpopular options being given to us, and all of us pretty much forced to just 'vote for our party'.  Nearly all of my friends who are more on the Left absolutely hated Hillary and were absolutely aghast that she was their option, but they voted for her anyways because they were Democrat, and thus needed to vote for her (not that Trump was an appealing alternative...).

I myself really try to just vote for who I think would be best.  At times that means I vote Democrat, other times it means I vote Republican, and yet other times I vote Third Party (mostly Libertarian).  I hate the psychological and ideological restrictions that the whole party concept places on us, and I do try, in my own small, ineffectual way, to not be constrained.

As for times changing, I absolutely agree with you.  I definitely think that the EC is no longer entirely relevant, I just disagree that just making it a pure popularity contest is necessarily the best way to go about it.  Again, I am not well versed in the intricacies of the political machine, but I do know that the EC was specifically set up so that we wouldn't have a pure democratic system, as the founders were actually very critical of pure democracy as a political system.  I certainly do not idealize the founders, and recognize that times have changed in such a way that they could never have envisioned, but I do agree in general that a pure democracy has it's own flaws and shortcomings that I think a lot of people don't really recognize.

Also, thanks for engaging with me.  It's been quite a bit of fun :)