Should we favor Electoral College or popular vote?

Patrick Corso, Staff writer

The Presidential Electoral College is, by definition, a group of presidential electors required by the Constitution every presidential election to elect the President and Vice President of the United States.

A presidential candidate needs 270 electoral votes to win the election, and it is predicted that Joe Biden will win the 2020 election with 290 electoral votes, according to the website 270toWin. However, there are a few flaws of the Electoral College.

The first is being “undemocratic,” because candidates can win elections even if they do not win the popular vote with the public. Another criticism is how votes of losing candidates are canceled in each state.

The states that are toss-ups include Maine, North Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Pennsylvania, Texas, Ohio and Iowa. If we go back to the 2016 election, according to the article “Why Rural America Voted for Trump,” published in The New York Times, it seems that political analysts noted topics such as ignorance, racism, nationalism, as well as the declining of middle class families being the reasons people in rural areas decided to vote for him.

Trump’s response to the coronavirus pandemic in the United States is likely the reason why voters are favoring Biden over Trump.

According to Vox, Donald Trump appears to have a three percent chance of winning the election based on FiveThirtyEight’s model. Other models suggest a 20 percent chance is more likely.

Shifts in party support since Trump took office could make him irrelevant to voters. Trump lost the popular vote by 2.1 percent in 2016, but had a 2.9 percent Electoral College edge. Joe Biden, on the other hand, appears to be winning the national popular vote by 8.6 percent.

Since he appears to be ahead in the tipping point state of Pennsylvania by 4.8 percent, the Electoral College could end up giving Trump only 3.8 percent. For decades, there have been polls that show large amounts of Americans preferring popular vote systems instead of the Electoral College.

In a poll conducted by Gallup in September, 61 percent of voters want it done away with, while 38 percent want to keep it. In order for that to take effect, Congress would have to pass an amendment.

Is the Electoral College system worth it? We have to wait and see how it will have an effect during this election cycle.