Reforming the Electoral College

Christopher Hayes

Nate Roberts, in comments to the last post, points out that abolishing the electoral college by constitutional amendment is virtually impossible since you need two thirds of the states to sign on, and there's no reason for small states, who benefit greatly from the system, to abolish it. That's true, but one option, is that instead of abolishing the system, you simply have the states pass laws that award their electors proportionally. So if Bush wins Ohio 49% to 46%, Bush gets 49% of Ohio's electors and Kerry gets 46%. This gets rid of the winner take all madness and forces candidates not to write off densely populated states such as California and New York that are solidly in one column. This is way it works in Maine and Nebraska, where the electors from the state can be split, so it's not such a far out idea.

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Christopher Hayes is the host of MSNBC’s All In with Chris Hayes. He is an editor at large at the Nation and a former senior editor of In These Times.
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