Abolishing the Electoral College is closer than you think

How to pass the National Popular Vote Compact for less than the cost of one vanity Senate campaign

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The Electoral College is a historic relic in our constitutional system. It's basically never worked as intended. The original idea in the Constitution was to have state legislatures select a well informed deliberative body of electors to actually gather to choose a president and to have the second-place vote getter become vice president. The runner-up becoming VP was such a disastrous idea it barely lasted a decade before we changed it with the 12th amendment. By the end of the 19th century, all states gave up on having legislatures choose the electors, creating the very type of direct elections the system was meant to avoid.

In recent times, the Electoral College has only become more problematic with each passing election cycle. First and foremost, it constantly risks handing the presidency to the candidate who received fewer votes. On top of that, the Electoral College creates terrible incentives, both for campaigning and governance. Candidates put all their energy and resources into a handful of swing states. Once in office, presidents have little political reason to solve problems in deep red states or deep blue states. For example, it was widely reported that Donald Trump paid little attention to the massive wildfires this year because California is a blue state. Yet Trump won more votes in California than he did in Texas.

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