EDITORIAL
Electoral College — legacy of slavery
volume:  
volume 37
issue 6
December 2016

Clinton actually beat Trump by about a million votes. Yet, absurdly, he is the next prez. Twice in the last five presidential elections the popular vote winner lost. Why? Because the Electoral College was written into the U.S. Constitution to undermine democracy and uphold slave-owners power.

When the Constitution was drafted most states granted voting rights to white adult propertied men (four did allow freed slaves the vote), which gave the North more voters. The slave-state “forefathers” refused to agree with one-man-one-vote for presidential elections. So a compromise was reached — count slaves as 3/5 of a person and base the electoral votes on population plus two additional votes per state. The Electoral College was born.

This swung the balance of power strongly in favor of the South and small states. Is it any wonder that four of the first five presidents were slaveholders?

Slavery was officially abolished by the Civil War, but presidential elections are still an undemocratic farce. Today, the U.S. has a winner-take-all reality in 48 states which means a candidate gets all the electoral votes even if they won that state by one vote.

Let’s abolish the Electoral College. It’s a step in the right direction of un-rigging elections.

Also see: Don’t mourn, organize! Donald J. Trump and the year of voting dangerously

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