Opinions & Editorials

I want the Electoral College gone

WRITTEN BY: Bryce Olds, Staff Writer

Photo courtesy of Flickr

The very aggressive voting ads lately have got me thinking about two things. The first is ‘Instagram I already registered to vote almost three years ago leave me alone,’ and the second is that the American people didn’t decide the last election, the Electoral College did. 

Most people know that the Electoral College is responsible for the official decision of the election, since the person who wins the majority of the 538 votes wins the election. Out of all the elections in U.S. history, the electoral college has only gone against the popular vote five times, but its existence causes many issues that don’t show up in that stat. 

My biggest issue with the electoral college is it causes American votes to differ in value. For example, I’m from Upstate New York, I am a progressive and I usually have the same opinion as the majority of the state. I’m from such a small area that if I voted by absentee ballot it wouldn’t be as effective as if I registered as a voter here in Ohio and voted liberal, and this is one of the unspoken effects of the Electoral College. 

Because New York is very progressive and Ohio could vote either blue or red, my blue vote matters more here than it does in New York.. That should not be the case. 

My vote should have the same impact no matter where I’m living in the U.S., but because of this system, it doesn’t. This problem applies to states with smaller populations as well. People from less populated states like Rhode Island, Vermont, North and South Dakota and Montana are not represented the same as people in highly populated states like Flordia, Texas and California. 

This leads me to my other big issue with the Electoral College, campaign trails. Campaign teams know that the swing states like Ohio, Michigan, North Carolina and Pennsylvania are much more important than states with a smaller population than states like New York and California that are guaranteed to vote one way, so the campaign teams don’t send their candidates to any other states except the crucial swing states.  

For example, when Trump was campaigning in 2016 his campaign held 128 rallies during the general election season. Of those 128 rallies, 110 of them were held in a key swing state, and I don’t need to remind you he was one of the five cases of a president winning by Electoral College and not popular vote. 

My point here isn’t that candidates should visit every city in every single state, but rather candidates shouldn’t be allowed to scope out the same 13 states over and over again for an entire campaign and the win the election.

The goal of elected officials, especially the president, isn’t to just appease one group of people, but to be a mediator and voice for all. I don’t see how we can elect a candidate like that with this system in place. This system plays more like a game than what we should be using to decide who our head of state is. 

 To end this article, I want you to understand this most importantly: your vote does matter. Those Instagram ads, while maybe a bit aggressive, are telling you something important. You should absolutely use the voice and power you have to vote for the people who represent you and your morals best. The point of this article isn’t to oppose that idea, but what I am saying is that the system does need deeper reform. 

But since we’re in a swing state and the system isn’t getting reformed any time soon, go cast that vote.        

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