Electoral College/Presidential Election Question

<p>Why should anyone vote for President? Do the people's votes actually matter if they use the electoral vote to determine the winner? Then what was the problem with Florida in 2000? I am sooo confused and see absolutely no point in voting for President!</p>

<p>Each state has a certain number of electoral votes. Which ever candidate wins the state's popular vote (votes by the people of the state) will be declared the state's "winner" and thus be given the electoral votes of the state.... so yes your vote counts</p>

<p>Except in states where the winner is obvious (i.e. Bush in Texas, Kerry in Massachusettes).</p>

<p>scubasteve...that's what i thought originally, but then i found out from my civics/government teacher and again from my history teacher that electors can cross party lines...in addition, if that's how it works, why do we even have electors? i thought they would make sure the people didn't make foolish choices...but if they just vote like the people do, there's no point...i'm still confused</p>

<p>It was technically established to make sure the people didnt make foolish choices. However I don't think there has been a case in the last century, maybe even ever, where the electors have overrided the states popular vote. In reality the electors dont have a true "separate" vote. They just basically grant the states electoral votes in accordance with the results from the states popular vote. The cadidate who recieves the most popular votes in a state also recieves all of its electoral votes. Only Main and Nebraska can split their electoral college, however neither state has ever done so.</p>

<p>In modern day America, the electoral college is basically there to balance state representation with population. Highly populated states recieve more votes and lower populated states recieve less. I dont think you will ever see a case where the electorals dont grant the state's votes to the candidate who has won the majority choice of the people in that state.</p>

true, but what would happened if all republicans in texas assumed this and did not come out and vote, and vice versa with dems in mass. Would make for a surprising election lol .... no matter how you cut it... everyone's vote counts</p>

<p>Thanks, scubasteve! That really helps...another question, though: what about all the elections in which the winner did not receive the majority of popular votes but still became President?</p>

<p>Glad to help Lagirl.</p>

<p>I'm a little confused by your next question... but I think you want an explaination for elections in which a candidate receives the national majortiy of the popular vote and does not win?</p>

<p>This happened to Gore in 2000. He recieved a slightly higher perecentage of the nationwide popular vote, and yet did not win the election. How do this happen? Think of it like this. The sysyem we use to elect a President is not set up to to poll the nation as a whole. It is set up to poll each state individually. Some states hold more power than others due to population.</p>

<p>A candidate needs at least 270 total electoral votes to become President. There are a total of 538 electoral votes. The way the votes are distributed (each sate is given 1 vote per senator, the rest are given per representative, which changes with census[population]) a candidate can win just 11 of the following 12 states, and encompass 270 electoral votes:</p>

<p>California- 58 votes
Texas- 34 votes
New York- 31 votes
Florida- 27 votes
Pennsylvania- 21 votes
Illinois- 21 votes
Ohio- 20 votes
Michigan- 17 votes
New Jersey- 15 votes
North Carolina- 15 votes
Georgia- 15 votes
Virginia- 13 votes</p>

<p>The candidate can lose all 39 other states, win just 11 of the 12 listed above and become President. Doing so would result in an obvious loss in the nation wide popular vote, but they won enough of indiviudal state popular votes worth of a total of 270 votes.</p>

<p>This is why campaigns are run so strategically. We know that NY, CA, Illinois, and NJ will almost always go to the Democratic candidate. Just as Texas, NC, Georgia, Virginia will almost always go to the Republican. However states with large numbers of electoral votes such as Ohio, Florida, PA and Michigan can traditionally go either way. This is why candidates devote so much time campaigning in these target states</p>