The Electoral College is a medium established by the founding fathers between the United States Congress and the people in order to agree on a new president. It replaced direct ballots in order to prevent a tyrant. The process involves five hundred thirty eight electors, which consist of two senators for each state and one person for each member in the House of Representatives.
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Together, these people decide the next American president by majority vote.
This essay will examine the Electoral Colleger’s structure as well as itr’s rationale and impact on the government and its citizens throughout the development of the nation.
The foundations of the Electoral College lie within the idea of preventing tyranny– a concept that America has strived to keep out of the government, as seen through its history with Britain. Another concern of the founding fathers is that the citizens wouldnt be involved or informed enough to make the appropriate decision. Although only qualified citizens are allowed to vote, the average American does not have the same experience as a senator or representative of the House would have. For these reasons, the Founding Fathers made the executive decision to give the States the authority to appoint educated and experienced electors to vote on behalf of citizens that share their views. The concept of an Electoral College was opposed by an anonymous source in Federalist Paper No. 72, and was famously argued for by Alexander Hamilton in the Federalist Paper No. 68.
The founding fathers were afraid, not only of tyranny, but of the extremes of democracy. James Madison was worried about what he coined factions, which are populations of people with common interests which might potentially harm others, or even the nation. As a solution, Madison proposed a republic and integrated representation within the government. The function of the Electoral College is to preserve the essence of the American citizens, while ensuring that a president is chosen by men most capable of analyzing the qualities adapted to the station, and acting under circumstances favorable to deliberation, and to a judicious combination of all the reasons and inducements which were proper to govern their choice. (Miller) Although this was the original intention in creating the Electoral College, today, this process is a formality at most due to the loyalties of most electors and those bound to vote according to the popular vote, decided by the people. President Trump, a modern day figure,
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