Electoral College

  • Alex Keyssar on the Need to Reform the Electoral Count Act

    The Electoral Count Act imposed after the contested election of 1876 leaves potential loopholes for a minority faction to override the will of voters and hijack the electoral college. Is proposed bipartisan legislation enough to fix it? 

  • Time to Amend the Constitution

    by Don Fraser

    Significant changes are needed to the Constitution in order to preserve any semblance of democratic government. 

  • The Electoral Count Act is Broken; History Shows it Always Has Been

    by Erik B. Alexander and Rachel Shelden

    Much of what we know about the Congressional resolution of the 1876 presidential election is wrong. Rather than a behind-the-scenes compromise, the election was decided in a context of severe vote suppression and partisanship.

  • America's First Peaceful (Just Barely!) Transfer of Power

    by Akhil Reed Amar

    While the selection of Thomas Jefferson as the third president in 1801 (after an electoral college deadlock) is touted as a crucial peaceful transfer of presidential power from one party to another, the transition was far more fraught with peril than most realize. 

  • The Filibuster That Saved the Electoral College

    Powerful Southern conservatives Strom Thurmond, Sam Ervin, and James Eastland led the 1970 filibuster that stopped the Senate from approving a constitutional amendment to elect the president by the popular vote. 

  • How to Ensure This Never Happens Again

    by Beverly Gage and Emily Bazelon

    A menu of democratic reform initiatives ranging from strictly defining the electoral vote process to abolishing the electoral college: reforms needed to stop the temptation to undemocratic rule and authoritarianism.

  • Josh Hawley Dodges Question During Fox News Grilling on Election Challenge

    Senator Josh Hawley's demands that Congress intervene in the electoral vote certification depends on ignoring that A: Congress formed such a commission in 1877 after three states failed to certify their vote and B: the resulting compromise forfeited the politial and civil rights of Black Americans. 

  • Shut the Door on Trump by Ending the Electoral College

    by Peniel E. Joseph

    The electoral college has long worked hand in hand with Black disenfranchisement to distort the American political process. It's time to abolish it in favor of a system where every vote counts. 

  • Why Getting the Most Votes Matters

    Times Editor Jesse Wegman examines the unique absence of majoritarian principle in the election of the American president and argues it goes against the most basic understanding of political fairness. 

  • Of the 700 Attempts to Fix or Abolish the Electoral College, this One Nearly Succeeded

    by Gillian Brockell

    The most serious effort to abolish the Electoral College followed George Wallace's third party bid in 1968, when both major parties realized that a spoiler candidate could throw the election to the House of Representatives and extort political concessions for electoral votes. Southern conservatives, happy with the leverage the system gave them, blocked the amendment in the Senate.

  • American Democracy Was Never Supposed to Work

    by Richard Kreitner

    "Merely ousting Trump is not enough without addressing more fundamental weaknesses in our political system, especially an outdated Constitution that continues to serve a minority of wealthy and white citizens and to curb any movements that might threaten their wealth and power."

  • The Never-Ending Crisis of the Electoral College

    by Bruce Bartlett

    "The inane system our founders developed to choose the president is an anti-democratic remnant of the slavery era that only benefits the GOP"--a longtime political observer endorses the National Popular Vote Compact as a way to circumvent the Electoral College without a constitutional amendment.