Electoral College

* In 1787 the founding fathers created the Constitution of the United States. Within that document was the framework for a government for “we the people” and the framework for the Electoral College. The Electoral College was created because the founding fathers did not trust the judgment of the people when it came to selecting a president and vice president…“we can not leave the future of the country in the hands of ignorant farmers”. That is why we have two elections to elect a president and vice president.

General Election…Millions of people vote to elect a president and vice president. It takes place on the Tuesday following the first Monday of November in years divisible by four. The candidates getting the most votes win.

Electoral College Election…Electors, 538 representatives elected by the people, vote on the first Monday after the second Wednesday in December following the General Election. The candidates getting 270 votes win. The Electoral College’s results override the results of the General Election.

* There is no Constitutional provision or federal law requiring electors to vote in accordance with the popular vote in their states. Some states have such requirements. The Supreme Court has not specifically ruled on the question of whether pledges and penalties for failure to vote as pledged may be enforced under the Constitution. No elector has ever been prosecuted for failing to vote as pledged.

* The United States Constitution contains very few provisions relating to the qualifications of electors. Article II, Section 1, clause 2 provides that no senator or representative, or person holding an office of trust or profit under the United States, shall be appointed an elector. As a historical matter, the Fourteenth Amendment provides that state officials who have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the United States or given aid and comfort to its enemies are disqualified from serving as electors. This prohibition relates to  post-Civil War.

* There are no formal requirements for becoming an elector. Electors are often selected to recognize their service and dedication to their political party. They may be state elected officials, party leaders, or persons who have a personal or political affiliation with the presidential candidate. DURING THE 2012 ELECTION CYCLE, AN 18-YEAR-OLD HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT WAS ONE OF CALIFORNIA’S ELECTORAL COLLEGE ELECTORS! THAT ACTION SPEAKS FOR ITSELF!




* Which supports and barriers were in play?

* What were the dynamics?

* Who, or what, won the Tug-of-War?

* Discuss the outcome with your friends and family.

* Use Post #4 as a reference for the dynamics and the relationships between supports and barriers.