[EM] Re: Electoral College

Alexander Small asmall at physics.ucsb.edu
Sun Jan 27 19:15:08 PST 2002

In response to Jurij Toplak's suggestion that the EC protects federalism:

The American concept of federalism is that (1) powers should be divided
between national and state governments and (2) the popular will should be
balanced against equal representation of each state.

The equal standing of the House and Senate in legislative matters achieves
the second goal.  However, in some matters, like treaties and nomination of
judges, power is shared between the President and the Senate.  It is hence
desirable that Presidential elections select whichever candidate best
represents the popular will, to preserve the state/federal balance.

We can debate which election method best ascertains the popular will, but
the Electoral College is clearly a poor proxy for the popular will in any
election that is either close or has 3 candidates.

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