When we vote for the president of the United States, we are actually voting for a slate of our state’s presidential electors that have pledged to cast their votes for a presidential candidate. Each state’s presidential electors are equal to the number of representatives it is entitled to in Congress. All but two states award all of their presidential electors to the party candidate who receives a majority of the votes cast in the state on a “winner take all” basis.
This means that unless a vote is for the candidate receiving the most votes within a state, that vote is effectively disregarded as null and void and does not help in a national tally the candidate for whom it was casts. “Winner take All” is not required by the constitution and in nearly half of the states where it is applied, it is not even based on state law.
Lecturer Asa Gordon will provide a historical context and report on recent developments in a Civil Action to reform and “Democratize the Electoral College”. The Civil Action seeks a Federal court order for proportional allocation of a state’s presidential electors to reflect the popular vote split for presidential candidates in states without a “Winner take all” provision in the state’s election law.
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