The Electoral College makes most Americans powerless In presidential elections

The Electoral College makes most Americans powerless In presidential elections

Irvine : CA : USA | Oct 28, 2012 at 4:25 AM PDT
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As a resident of California, I have no true voting power in the presidential election. This is the case for most voters based upon the current system of relying on the state-based electoral college to determine who will be the next president of the United States.

There are only 11 states where votes matter for the next election. Individual voters in 39 states and the District of Columbia are not important. The swing states are all that matter.

This is terribly wrong for many reasons, including:

  • The "swing states" have the ability to force promises by the candidates who want their support.
  • The system itself was devised more than 200 years ago based upon antiquated needs.
  • Information about the candidates and their plans are pushed hard in the swing states through advertising and campaign visits but the rest of the country must watch from afar.

For these and other reasons, the system should be changed, but there is another reason that few consider that makes it absolutely insulting to live in a "democracy" that operates like this.

Voter Futility

It isn't just a the antiquity of the system that makes it unworthy. Deep down, those who understand how the system works get filled with a sense of helplessness. There is nothing more unAmerican than knowing that you are powerless to affect change in the country's executive branch of government.

The soul of the country and the way that it has developed over the centuries has brought us closer to the dream of equality amongst the people. Most people barring extreme circumstances have the ability to succeed, to improve, and to make a better life for themselves. Most people have the same basic rights. Most people have a say in their local, state, and national government representation, at least in the legislative branch.

Most people do not have the power to vote meaningfully for the commander-in-chief. Your vote only matters if you're in one of the 11 swing states. Your opinion only matters if you can be heard, and right now the only people being heard are in those 11 states.

There is a desperate need to change this system. The way that the candidates operate will be favorably changed forever. The way that Americans vote will be changed as well. They will no longer feel helpless. Their votes can actually matter if the system is changed.

Today, the majority of Americans will cast meaningless votes in the upcoming presidential election.

If you like to write about U.S. politics and Campaign 2012, enter "The American Pundit" competition. Allvoices is awarding four $250 prizes each month between now and November. These monthly winners earn eligibility for the $5,000 grand prize, to be awarded after the November election.

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US presidential election: Critical swing states
US presidential election: Critical swing states
JD Rucker is based in California City, California, United States of America, and is a Stringer on Allvoices.
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