Which is Right? The Popular Vote or the Electoral College?
CNN has come up with a poll analysis that points out what I have been saying regarding the difference between the popular vote and the electoral college vote. It has happened three times in our history, when the candidate who won the popular vote lost the electoral college vote and thus the Presidency – 1876, 1888 and 2000.
The way it is now, the team of McCain/Palin is leading in the popular vote by about 2%. CNN came up with this figure by averaging the 5 latest poll from 5 different sources. The way the electoral college vote is now, according to CNN, is Obama with 243 votes either firmly in his column or leaning his way. McCain has 189 votes. With 270 needed to win, Obama just needs one of the swing states like Florida to put him over the top. McCain has a lot more work to do. My latest count gives Obama 248, so we are pretty close.
With 8 weeks to go, anything can happen and probably will, so this will change, but it does show that we could have the same thing happen again, with the winning candidate either losing the popular vote or winning by a very small margin and yet having a huge lead in the electoral college.
This is why you will see the candidates spending most of their time in Colorado 9 votes, Florida 27 votes, Indiana 11 votes, Michigan 17 votes, Missouri 11 votes, Montana 3 votes, Nevada 5 votes, New Hampshire 4 votes, North Carolina 15 votes, North Dakota 3 votes, Ohio 20 votes, Virginia 13 votes and Wisconsin 10.
The state by state polls that gives you the best picture of the race because the President is elected state by state, not by the national popular vote. Lots argue that the electoral college is an extremely dated system. Currently there are movements for a national vote to elect the president. But in know way can we hope for a change before this election, or even the next.
There have been many attempts to either abolish the electoral college or to change it some way. The way it is figured out now, each state gets one elector for each senator and congressperson that state has. And that changes with each census every 10 years. Maybe that is the reason why there is such a difference in close elections. Think about it. It has been 8 years now since the last census and lets face it people have moved about. As a matter of fact, it is expected that some of the states with a larger number of electoral college votes will loose some once the next census is counted. So maybe it is not an accurate way to count, but that is the way it is now.
Change, is it does come, will not come fast. Not in time for the next election for sure. It would take a Constitutional amendment and we know how long that would take. One thing for sure, if there is a discrepancy between the popular vote and electoral college this time around, the movement to change the law will get a lot of momentum.