(CNN Student News) — The afterward adeptness contains answers to some of the best frequently asked questions about the Balloter College.
Who absolutely elects the admiral of the United States?
When voters go to the acclamation on Acclamation Day, they do not vote anon for a presidential candidate. Instead, they casting their votes for a slate of electors who accept been accustomed the ascendancy by the United States Constitution to accept the admiral and carnality president. The electors are accepted collectively as the Balloter College. At the Constitutional Assemblage of 1787, assembly debated the address in which the admiral of the United States was to be elected. Some argued that the Congress should baddest the president, while added proposals recommended acclamation by the people, the governors of the states or accompaniment legislatures. A accommodation was accomplished in what became accepted as the Balloter College. Technically, it is these electors, and not the American voters, who accept the president.
Why the Balloter College instead of absolute vote by the people?
The Constitution’s framers accustomed the Balloter College as a way to abstain the absolute accepted acclamation of the president. Some of the Constitution’s authors did not assurance the adeptness of the accepted aborigine to accomplish the “right” decision, so they devised the Balloter College as one way of abbreviation the ability of the accepted vote.
How does the Balloter College work?
The Balloter College, as accustomed by the U.S. Constitution, currently includes 538 members: one for anniversary U.S. agent and adumbrative and three for the District of Columbia (under the 23rd Amendment of 1961). Anniversary accompaniment is allocated a cardinal of electors according to the cardinal of its U.S. senators (always 2) additional the cardinal of its associates in the U.S. House of Representatives (based on population, this is accountable to change with the Census every ten years). So, the breakdown of electors is as follows:
100 Senate seats 435 House of Adumbrative seats 3 Washington, D.C. = 538 absolute electors
Since the cardinal of electors per accompaniment varies by population, California holds the best electors with 55. Several states accept alone three electors, which is the aboriginal cardinal a accompaniment can accept based on the blueprint declared above. For any presidential applicant to win, he or she charge accretion a majority of the 538 votes, or the abracadabra cardinal of 270. If no one applicant alcove 270 balloter votes, the acclamation is befuddled into the House of Representatives to be absitively (under the 12th Amendment of 1804). This has happened alert in U.S. history, both in the 19th century, but the book could conceivably become absoluteness in avant-garde times with a accepted third-party applicant acquisition some of the balloter votes and siphoning them abroad from the added two candidates.
How are presidential electors selected?
Article II, area 1 of the Constitution provides that, “No Agent or Representative, or actuality captivation an appointment of assurance or accumulation beneath the United States shall be appointed an elector.” Aside from this disqualification, any actuality is able to be an elector for admiral and carnality president.
The Constitution does not specify procedures for nominating candidates for presidential electors. Thirty-six states appoint their elector candidates by accompaniment affair convention, and ten of the states appoint their electors by accompaniment affair committee. Generally, elector candidates tend to be arresting accompaniment and bounded officeholders, affair activists and added citizens associated with the affair for which they are nominated.
The Constitution larboard the adjustment of selecting electors and of application balloter votes to the States. In the aboriginal years of the Republic, abounding states provided for alternative of electors by the accompaniment legislatures. Back 1864, all states accept provided for accepted acclamation of electors for admiral and carnality president.
In 48 states and the District of Columbia, the presidential applicant who gets the best votes wins all the balloter votes in that state. This is accepted as the “general ticket” or “winner booty all” system. Currently, Maine and Nebraska accommodate the alone barring to the “winner booty all” method, application one balloter vote to the admission accepting the best votes in anniversary of the states’ aldermanic districts, and application the actual two (representing their aldermanic allotment) to the winners of the best votes statewide. This variation, alleged the “direct system,” was added broadly acclimated in the 19th century.
Can a applicant win the accepted vote but lose the election?
Under the “winner booty all” system, it is accessible for a applicant to win several ample states and some abate ones and get the abracadabra cardinal of 270, but accept beneath accepted votes civic than his or her opponent. Accepted vote winners accept bootless to win the admiral on four occasions back the acceptance of the 12th Amendment: in 1824, 1876, 1888 and 2000. In 1824, the balloter vote was breach amid four candidates, necessitating acclamation by the House of Representatives, which chose the accepted vote runner-up. In 1876, due to contested allotment from four states, Congress set up an balloter agency which awarded the acknowledged votes to the credible accepted vote runner-up, consistent in a one-vote allowance in the Balloter College. In 1888, the credible accepted vote runner-up won a adequate Balloter College majority. In 2000, the accepted vote champ absent in the Balloter College afterwards the aftereffect of a contested vote in Florida.
When does all of this booty place?
On the Tuesday afterward the aboriginal Monday of November, in years divisible by four. According to the U.S. Constitution, voters in anniversary accompaniment casting their ballots for the affair slate of electors who represent their best for admiral and carnality president. Whichever affair wins that state’s accepted vote for admiral receives the elector votes for that state.
On the Monday afterward the additional Wednesday of December, by federal law, anniversary state’s electors accommodated in their corresponding capitals and casting their votes, one for admiral and one for carnality president. These balloter votes are closed and transmitted from anniversary accompaniment to the admiral of the Senate, who, on the afterward January 6, opens and reads them afore both houses of Congress. The applicant for admiral who has accomplished the majority of balloter votes (270) is again declared the president.
The new admiral and carnality admiral are affidavit in at apex on January 20.
What are some arguments for and adjoin the Balloter College?
(Sources: The National Archives and the CRS Report for Congress)
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