American Literature Honors- 5th Period
8 Sept 2013
The Political Impact of the Electoral College
On Election Day in 2000, candidate Al Gore was ahead of his rival George. W. Bush in the popular vote, while Bush led in electoral votes. In the final moments of the election, a recount of Florida votes worked in Bush’s favor, and he ultimately won the election. Although George Bush lost the popular vote, the electoral vote allowed him to win. This election is a prime example of the effectiveness and priority of the Electoral College, though many people question whether the Electoral College should be abolished for the newly announced National Popular Vote Plan. Despite these beliefs, the Electoral College should not be reformed for the National Popular Vote Plan due to multiple reasons. To assess the importance of the Electoral College, we must first go back in time to the origin of this great country called America.
Contrary to modern perceptions, the Founding Fathers did not want to build a directly democratic form of government. Instead, the Founders purposefully created a republican democracy that would incorporate a spirit of compromise and consideration into decision-making. Their reasoning for this type of government was simple: to create a republican government, organized on federalist principles, which would allow delegates to enable large and small sovereign states to live peacefully alongside each other. In the words of Tara Ross, author of The Electoral College Should Not Be Abolished, “Such a form of government, the Founders believed, would allow them to achieve two potentially conflicting objectives: avoiding the ‘tyranny of the majority’ inherent in pure democratic systems, while allowing the ‘sense of the people’ to be reflected in new American government.” (Ross 2) The Founding Fathers had studied the history of many failed democratic systems, and they strove to create this specific type of government. However,...
Cited: Detweiler, George. “Plans to Reform the Electoral College Would Harm Small States.” The Presidential Election Process. Ed. Tom Lansford. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2008. Opposing Viewpoints. Rpt. From “Assault on the Electoral College: A Plan to Give the Presidency to the Candidate with the Most Nationwide Votes Would Make Less-populous States Irrelevant in Presidential Elections.” The New American 22.13 (26 June 2006): 33-34. Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Web. 10 Sept. 2013.
Ross, Tara. “The Electoral College Should Not Be Abolished.” Democracy. Ed. Mike Wilson. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2006. Opposing viewpoints. Rpt. From “The Electoral College: Enlightened Democracy.” Legal Memorandum. 2004. Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Web. 29 Aug. 2013.
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