I suspect most of us have recently learned more than we ever wanted to know about the electoral process in this country. I vaguely remember the elector appointment controversy surrounding Gore/Bush in 2000 but “rigged” primaries have somehow avoided real scrutiny.
It seems obvious the populist segments of both parties have now identified what they consider to be fundamentally flawed systems even though the origins of the Electoral College and the system as a whole can be traced back to the constitutional convention of 1787. Most of us never get past the first 10 amendments when studying the constitution so we have to dig deeper to try to find the current procedures — they’re there (like it or not).
Suffice to say, the popular vote defers to that of the Electoral College, where the numbers of delegates ARE based on states’ populations, based on the most recent census. So the vote of the Electoral College is a legitimate version of, or surrogate for, the popular vote. The emergence of political parties with their rules, national and within each state, simply compounded the confusion and brought us to our current chaotic state.
The rules of both parties do not, in fact, seem truly democratic when scrutinized under current circumstances. The simple truth, however, is that the “founders” never intended that the popular vote would select the president and vice president, so the “anti-rigging” groups need to get over yourselves — assuming you really are constitutional conservatives.
I’ve been trying to explain this as best I can to my grandsons, one 15 and the other 22. It wasn’t easy until it occurred to me to explain the status of the current popularly elected leaders of the state of Alabama. We have a governor threatened with impeachment for allegations of sexual improprieties, the speaker of the House of Representatives indicted on 23 counts of influence peddling for personal gain, and the elected chief justice of the state Supreme Court suspended from the bench for over-ruling the U.S. Supreme Court. I think that captures all three branches of government.
Why would anyone want the people who elected these three sterling choices to elect the president of the United States? Not me! I’ll take my chances on imperfect but relatively well-informed “superdelegates” or party leadership any time.
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