We elect our President via the Electoral College. States get a vote for each Representative and each Senator. Representatives are somewhat proportional to population but every state has two Senators. This creates a huge imbalance in the power of your vote.
Population per Electoral College vote. Red states have less influence, green states have more (Source: US Census Bureau, 2016 forecast population by state)
If you live in Texas that's 733,226 people per elector. In Wyoming it's just 195,167. Occasionally this has consequences.
Presidents we could have avoided.
As well as sacrificing one person one vote there are other issues with the Electoral College.
Presidential candidates largely ignore states where the outcome is nearly certain. If you live in a solid Republican or Democrat state then you will be taken for granted.
Originally the Electoral College was supposed to be a safeguard against the electorate making a horrible mistake. You might have good reason to believe that it no longer serves this purpose.National Popular Vote
We could fix the imbalance with an amendment to the Constitution. This would require a two-thirds majority in both houses of Congress and ratification by three-quarters (38) of the States.
Luckily there is another option. The National Popular Vote Interstate Compact (NPVIC). The plan is quite simple. Each State passes legislation that promises to throw its Electoral College votes behind the popular vote winner. This only comes into force when enough States have enacted the NPVIC to have a majority in the Electoral College (270 votes)
You might be surprised to learn that the National Popular Vote already has 165 Electoral College votes. Adding Florida, Michigan, Ohio and Texas would be enough to switch to a popular vote. They are also all states that are among the least well represented by the current system.
Most Americans support the National Popular Vote (78% of Democrats, 60% of Republicans and 73% of Independents):
For future presidential elections, would you support or oppose changing to a system in which the president is elected by direct popular vote, instead of by the electoral college? (Source: Washington Post, 2007)What can I do?
You can make a difference. Please do at least one of the following:
- Share this page with your friends on Facebook and Twitter with a personal message asking them to take action.
- Call your Senators and Representative and ask them to support the National Popular Vote.
- Call your State representatives and ask them to support the National Popular Vote.
- Donate to the National Popular Vote (this site has no affiliation with National Popular Vote Inc.)
National Popular Vote progress. States shaded green have enacted the NPVIC, totalling 165 Electoral College votes.
(Originally published on democracy.vision).