Donald Trump winning the presidential election in 2016 caused Democrats across the country to hate the Electoral College. The country has been using the Electoral College for centuries as it ensures that all states are able to contribute toward the election process. Otherwise, the popular vote would mean that only California, NYC, and a few other heavily populated areas would be voting for the president.
The problem is that Trump won the vote with the Electoral College while Hillary Clinton won the popular vote. If the Electoral College wasn’t around, Clinton would be the President of the United States right now.
The Democrats see getting rid of the Electoral College as the solution to prevent Trump and other Republicans from ever setting foot inside of the Oval Office ever again. The problem with that, however, is that most of the country wants the Electoral College around because they want their vote to count.
Elizabeth Warren has been a huge advocate of getting rid of the Electoral College. She has announced plans that, if elected president, she would like to see it gone completely by the 2024 election, meaning that she would be the last president elected by it.
The Massachusetts Senator released a video on social media on Sunday night discussing her goal of removing the Electoral College within her first term.
She was very open and honest about her goals, identifying that she wants to be elected and become the last American president who is elected by the Electoral College. She made this announcement amidst applauding supporters. Warren went even further by identifying that her goal is not simply to be elected as president. She is planning for a second term already, too. In the video, she said that her second term will be elected by direct vote, correcting herself to announce the popular vote.
Warren believes that getting rid of the Electoral College would allow democracy to work properly. She says to call her “old-fashioned” but she thinks the person who gets the most votes should win the election.
The problem is that Hillary Clinton won the popular vote with a little over 65 million voters while Trump only had 62 million votes. However, Trump won more states, including Florida, Texas, Tennessee, Montana, and many others. However, these are not the most heavily populated areas. California, New York, Nevada, and other states voted for Clinton. Due to their heavy populations, Clinton won the popular vote.
By Warren saying what she is saying, she is essentially saying that she thinks the states with the largest populations should decide who the president of the United States should be. The reason that the Electoral College was created in the first place was to make it fair. It’s the same reason why every state has two senators and why every state gets the number of representatives that they do based on population. It’s all about checks and balances, but Warren doesn’t believe that checks and balances are part of a democracy, obviously.
As Trent England, the director of Save Our States project explained, the Electoral College makes it difficult to win the presidency. He explains that the Electoral College requires a geographic balance to protect Americans so that their voices are not ignored.
In many instances, a candidate will win both the popular vote and the Electoral College vote. This is why, in most election years, it isn’t a big deal. However, there have been a few occasions where the president was elected based solely on the Electoral College as opposed to the popular vote – and Trump was one of those instances. With not getting Hillary Clinton in the White House in 2016, it is one of the top reasons why Democrats want to get rid of the Electoral College once and for all.
Elizabeth Warren may not be able to get her timeline, however. Using electors to pick the president is part of the Constitution. This would require a constitutional amendment, something that doesn’t happen easily. There are built-in safeguards to ensure that highly populated states don’t get to call all of the shots. In order for Warren to get her way, it would require two-thirds support from the Senate or state legislatures. Then, it would need three-fourths of the state legislatures to approve it for ratification.
While there are some people who would like to see the Electoral College be killed off once and for all, it would be extremely difficult – which means that Warren is spouting yet another improbable things that she will do if elected simply to get people on her side.