What is the Electoral College in simple terms?

The United States Electoral College is a name used to describe the official 538 Presidential electors who come together every four years during the presidential election to give their official votes for President and Vice President of the United States. No state can have fewer than three electors.

How does the Electoral College work?

In the Electoral College system, each state gets a certain number of electors based on its total number of representatives in Congress. Each elector casts one electoral vote following the general election; there are a total of 538 electoral votes. The candidate that gets more than half (270) wins the election.

Who picks the Electoral College?

Who selects the electors? Choosing each State’s electors is a two-part process. First, the political parties in each State choose slates of potential electors sometime before the general election. Second, during the general election, the voters in each State select their State’s electors by casting their ballots.

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What is an example of the Electoral College?

The United States Electoral College is an example of a system in which an executive president is indirectly elected, with electors representing the 50 states and the District of Columbia. The votes of the public determine electors, who formally choose the president through the electoral college.

What are 3 major flaws in the electoral college?

Three criticisms of the College are made: It is “undemocratic;” It permits the election of a candidate who does not win the most votes; and. Its winner-takes-all approach cancels the votes of the losing candidates in each state.

Why did they create the Electoral College?

The Electoral College was created by the framers of the U.S. Constitution as an alternative to electing the president by popular vote or by Congress. Several weeks after the general election, electors from each state meet in their state capitals and cast their official vote for president and vice president.

How Electoral College votes are determined?

Electoral votes are allocated among the States based on the Census. Every State is allocated a number of votes equal to the number of senators and representatives in its U.S. Congressional delegation—two votes for its senators in the U.S. Senate plus a number of votes equal to the number of its Congressional districts.

What is the main job of the Electoral College?

The United States Electoral College is the group of presidential electors required by the Constitution to form every four years for the sole purpose of electing the president and vice president.

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How does the 270 electoral votes work?

A candidate must receive an absolute majority of electoral votes (currently 270) to win the presidency or the vice presidency. If no candidate receives a majority in the election for president or vice president, that election is determined via a contingency procedure established by the 12th Amendment.

Can electors vote for whoever they want?

Specifically, the opinion held that electors have a constitutional right to vote for the presidential candidate of their choice and are not bound by any prior pledges they may have made.

Is the Electoral College winner take all?

Voters in each state choose electors by casting a vote for the presidential candidate of their choice. The slate winning the most popular votes is the winner. Only two states, Nebraska and Maine, do not follow this winner-take-all method. In those states, electoral votes are proportionally allocated.

How many states have certified their electoral votes?

Electoral College Certificates and Votes by State

State Number of Electoral Votes for Each State For Vice-President
Alaska 3 3
Arizona 11
Arkansas 6 6
California 55

50 

What is the difference between the Electoral College and the popular vote?

When citizens cast their ballots for president in the popular vote, they elect a slate of electors. Electors then cast the votes that decide who becomes president of the United States. Usually, electoral votes align with the popular vote in an election.

When must electoral vote?

December 14, 2020: Electors Vote in Their States Monday after the second Wednesday in December of presidential election years is set (3 U.S.C. §7) as the date on which the electors meet and vote. In 2020, the meeting is on December 14.

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