Electoral College Essay

Submitted By bigtroops
Words: 609
Pages: 3

Obeso 1
Jeremy Obeso
Professor Patty Johnson
American Institutions 125
21 March 2014
United States Electoral College The Electoral College in the United Staes is an institution that oversees the election of both the President and the Vice President of the United States of America every four years. Though commonly thought to have been elected by the voters themselves, the election actually is controlled by "electors" chosen on a state-to-state basis in accordance with the popular vote. These "electors" are chosen in proportion to each and every state as well as the District of Columbia. The amount of electors per state is in line with the number of Congress members to which each state is given. In addition, the District of Columbia is given the same number of electors as the least populous state (3), as granted by the Twewnty-Third Amendment. The 435 members of the House of Representatives, 100 Senators and the three electors from the District of Columbia collectively total the 538 electors. Electors are most commonly known to pledge one particular presidential and vice presidential candidate, though it is not unlikiely to see electors that are unpledged. There are two ways that electors are chosen. Theres the "winner takes all" form of deciding upon electors which is used by all states except for Nebraska and Maine, where all electors pledged to the presidential candidate with the most votes become electors for that state, and then theres the "congressional district method" which is done by selecting one elector in each congressional district by the popular vote and selecting the two remaining electors by a statewide popular vote. By law, there is no elector forced to honor his pledge, however there have been few cases where an elector has finalized his vote in contrary to his pledge. The Twelfth Amendment gives specifics on on how a President and Vice President are elected and requires that each elector cast only one vote for the President and one for the Vice President. The candidate officially chosen to take office for either President or Vice President is the candidate that receives the absolute majority of electoral votes, which is currently 270. In the case that the Elecrtoral College fails to elect a President or Vice President, the Twelfth Amendment describes what happens. If there is no majority vote to either side of