University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill
The "Mystery" of the Electoral College
If you could solve one of history's greatest mysteries, what would it be and why?
Growing up a vegetarian with hippy parents, reading feminist and pacifist literature, and listening to Jimi Hendrix and the Beatles has shaped me into a very politically charged person. Thus, while I admit that the Great Pyramids are amazing and Sir Walter Raleigh’s Lost Colony is intriguing, the mystery I would most like to solve is “Why, throughout all American history, have we not abolished the outdated system of the Electoral College?” In our nation’s turbulent political beginning, the question of how to elect a President was difficult to answer. Alexander Hamilton proposed a plan that was drafted into the Constitution, known as the Electoral College. The plan was enacted to prevent the election of a President by popular vote. Hamilton, and others, thought that this decision was too important to be decided by an uneducated people. Therefore, a system was implemented in which “electors” from each state cast votes on behalf of their respective states. The candidate with the largest number of electoral votes becomes President.
This system creates serious flaws in our election process. Four times in the history of the Electoral College has a President been elected who did not receive the plurality of votes cast by the American...
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