Electoral college overrides popular vote

January 5, 2017

 Daily Herald, Fence Post letter –  Nancy J. Thorner

posted: 1/4/2017 1:00 AM

Electoral college overrides popular vote

Our Founding Fathers were brilliant, as they foresaw the concentration of population in some states over others as something to account for in the Constitution. The final tally indicated that Trump lost the popular vote by 2.8 million, but he beat Clinton by 3 million votes outside of California and New York, two liberal states where Hillary would have won no matter what.

Should those who live in states with much smaller populations just roll over and say: “We don’t care if the presidential candidates ignore us entirely, as the wisdom and judgment of California and New York are far superior to our own?”

As such, our Founding Fathers established the electoral college as a process, not a place, in our constitution as a compromise between election of the president by a vote in Congress and election of the president by a popular vote of qualified citizens.

Each state’s entitled allotment of electors equals the number of members in its congressional House delegation plus two more for its senators. Trump won 60 percent of those elections: a decisive majority in the only tally that counted to win the presidency. How then is it that in the wake of an election that was constitutionally decided, there were mobs in the streets, petitions on the internet and email containing death threats, all aimed at trying to dissuade members of the electoral college from doing their sworn duty?

Those who are still whining over Trump’s victory simply don’t understand the difference between a republic and a democracy. The founders understood that a republic could weather all sorts of internal conflicts, but a democracy could easily morph into a mobocracy. If we hadn’t dropped ethics, civics and American history, from the school curriculum, perhaps today we wouldn’t find ourselves hip-deep in arrogant, ignorant, celebrities.

Nancy J. Thorner

Lake Bluff

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