The Importance Of The Electoral College
By Donnie Swaggart & Justin Nicholson
Since so few people seem to know what the Electoral College is, we feel we must explain it to our readers. We will pick up with Part II of “Does the Bible Promote Socialism or Capitalism?” next month.
One of the most important institutions in the United States of America is the Electoral College. Now, the Electoral College isn’t a physical location; it’s a process. It is one of the more controversial topics in our country. What is it and why do we need it? Why can’t we just go by the popular vote and abolish the Electoral College altogether?
Following the 2016 presidential election, this question was raised once again after Donald Trump beat Hillary Clinton in the Electoral College, even though she won a majority of the popular vote. Those who complain about the “unfairness” of this result often call for the abolishment of the Electoral College. What these people haven’t considered are the implications of their proposal and the genius of this system established by our Founding Fathers more than two centuries ago.
At the Constitutional Convention in 1787, our Founding Fathers were determined to prevent the intrinsic dangers of what James Madison called “the tyranny of the majority.” So, they constructed a system of government replete with checks and balances that would safeguard the rights of both the majority and the minority.
One of the pivotal debates at the convention focused on how the new republic would fairly elect a president. At the time, no other country on the planet directly elected its leader, so the delegates at the convention were wading into uncharted territory. Moreover, there was a deep-rooted distrust of executive power since the United States had just fought its way out from under the British Crown. They didn’t want another dictator on their hands. Some delegates insisted on a popular vote to elect a president; others argued that Congress should handpick a leader. James Madison stood up from his chair and suggested a compromise.
Madison proposed electoral “intermediaries.” These intermediaries would not be chosen by Congress, nor would they be elected by the people. Instead, each state would appoint “electors” who would cast the official ballots for each presidential election. The Constitution says: “Each state shall appoint, in such manner as the legislature thereof may direct, a number of electors, equal to the whole number of senators and representatives to which the state may be entitled in the Congress.”
Your independent vote still counts, but you’re basically telling the electors whom you wish for them to select on the official ballot. These electors are obligated to support the presidential candidate that the voters of their respective states have supported. This process came to be known as the Electoral College.
Alexander Hamilton defended the Electoral College in Federalist 68. He argued that it was important for the people of the country as a whole to have a majority of the power in choosing their president, but it was also necessary that intermediaries make the official selection. Hamilton also insisted that this process would produce a greater amount of stability, and that “an intermediate body of electors will be much less apt to convulse the community with any extraordinary or violent movements, than the choice of one who was himself to be the final object of the public wishes.”
The greatest argument for the Electoral College is that it prevents big-city populations from dominating the election of a president. Were it not for the Electoral College, presidential candidates could act as if small town Americans didn’t even exist. They could spend all of their time and resources campaigning in New York, California, Texas, and Florida. Who would care what the people of Iowa think? Or Wyoming? Or forty-four other states for that matter? Because of the Electoral College, presidential candidates are forced to spend just as much time campaigning in the cornfields of Iowa as they would in a 20,000-seat arena in New York. The Electoral College empowers states as a whole, not population centers.
In a sense, America’s founders were looking out for the people in “flyover country” long before there were airplanes to fly over them. The people in these small towns don’t get enough attention as it is, but without the Electoral College, they’d be completely at the mercy of the majority.
Every four years, around election time, there are whispers of revamping the system and moving toward a direct, national popular vote. However, the Electoral College has operated smoothly for more than 200 years because it accomplishes its intended purposes. The process prevents tyranny, prohibits chaos, and delivers conclusive results. The Founding Fathers carefully designed a well-balanced system for electing an American president—and it works!
That’s why each believer in what the elites would call a “flyover state” must vote and vote for the candidate that is pro-life, pro-marriage as God intended it, and pro-Israel. America, wake up. Our very way of life is at stake, our religious freedoms are at stake, and our First and Second Amendment rights are dangerously close to being taken from us. America, vote right. America, vote conservative. And never forget we will all have to stand before the Lord and give an account of how we voted.
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