What's the point of voting for the presidential election?
The president is decided by the electoral college, and even if they tie, I believe the president is then decided by the House of Representatives. So why should we vote? And why are there so many ads that want us to vote?
Only two times in history has the House broken a tie, James Madison, and I can't remember the other at the moment. At no other time in American history have the electors of the electoral college ever independently chosen the President; each one has, with insignificant minor exceptions, followed the direction of the State rules and the voter's choice.
So, if you want the electors to actually choose the President, don't vote.
The electoral college does ultimately decide the election, but that is a terrible reason for not voting in this or any other election.
The electoral college simply reflects the overall population of each state. This is based on the overall number of Representatives each state has, as well as the two Senators. For example, California has 53 Representatives and two Senators, giving it 55 electoral votes. The same goes for every other state. The electoral college makes it somewhat easier to count millions of votes.
Obviously this system does not always work out very well (although, on the whole, the electoral system is not that bad). Look at Bush vs. Gore as an example. That is all the more reason to vote, for someone, anyone, on election day. Your vote will be counted, and it may help to carry the electoral district you live in.
That is why people should vote, and it is why so many people encourage others to vote.
I can understand voting for other offices, where our votes actually decide who wins. But I'm not getting what voting for the presidential election actually accomplishes, besides having our vote "counted".
Our votes do decide who wins in a Presidential election. If a majority of people vote in one state or district, that state or district is said to have been "carried" by a certain candidate. And you seem to be forgetting the popular vote.
I'm still not getting it. In the 2000 election, Gore won the popular vote, but Bush got more electoral college votes, so he won. So we don't decide the president in the presidential election, the electoral college does. What exactly do our votes do?
Our votes are counted by the electoral college, and the electors vote based on the majority of votes cast in their own state. That is why our votes count. The mathematics don't always add up in each state, which is what happened in 2000.
Ok I'm starting to remember now. So whichever candidate gets the most votes in a particular state will get all of the electoral college votes from that state, since most states follow a winner-take-all system, correct?
Correct. The only exceptions to the electoral system are the states of Nebraska and Maine. Nebraska experienced a split electoral vote for the first time in 2008, when one district was carried by Obama.
It is our patriotic duty. If we give up our right to vote because we don't directly vote for who becomes president, then we only lead ourselves to give up more rights without choice.
It is your duty and a privilege to vote in any and all elections as a citizen. However, you should be an educated voter. Don't just blindly vote along party lines. As for all the rock the vote stuff, I wish I knew why they have so many of them. You should vote only after educating yourself on the candidates.
Voting is a privilege denied to many across the world. If you don't want to vote for the presidential election, that is fine, but just remember that in some countries people don't even get a choice. You should vote to support democracy, unless a dictatorship would be your preference.
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