```The Presidential Election Process
Introduction: The Electoral College
One
of the least
understood parts of our
government, yet it is one
of the most important…
Remember – 270
Logistics of the Electoral College




435 + 100 + 3 = 538
Electors are determined by the
number of Representatives,
plus the number of Senators
Minimum number a state
3

can have is
Representation is based on
population, therefore, electors
are based on population.
Where are
these 3
electoral
More on the Electoral College


It’s a WINNER-TAKE-ALL
– If you get the majority of the
popular vote in a state then
you get all of the
that state.
Remember it takes 270
Congressional District Method:
Exceptions to the winner-take-all…

– 2 electors (at-large) go with the popular vote
winner
– All of the other votes are divided among the
Congressional Districts
– That is…If Forsyth’s 9th District voted for
Candidate A, Candidate A would get “our” 1
electoral vote, regardless of what the rest of
the state voted.
WHAT’S
THE TOTAL
FOR THIS
“STATE”
???



Each Congressional
District calculates their
The candidate with the
popular vote in EACH
DISTRICT gets the E.C.V.
for that particular district
Popular Vote for the entire
state get 2 BONUS E.C.V.s
A
A
A
B
+2
Choosing Electors



Electors are chosen on the same day in
every state: the Tuesday after the first
Monday in November…what’s significant
When voters go to the polls in November,
they are voting for an elector NOT the
President.
Ideally, this elector will vote for their choice
in January…NOT a requirement
Electoral College Breakdown
If you
were
running
which
states
would
you focus
on?
Why?
2004 Election
(Wave = visit) (\$ = money)

Focus on Swing States – by-products of the
winner-take-all format
These electors are chosen by voters
 These electors then report to the state
capital to cast their 2 votes
 When? – Monday after the second
Wednesday in December (DEC. 17, 2012)

Who are the 2 ballots for?
The electoral ballots are sent to the
President of the Senate
 On January 6th they are tallied with a
Joint Session of Congress
 And the winner is “formally”
announced

Georgia’s 15 electors in 2008: Six were women and three more were minorities
(African-American, Asian-American and Latino).
You vote for
“Candidate X”
(their electors)
Electoral
College
collected
and counted
in the D.C.
X Electors
Y Electors
“Officially”
Cast Electoral
state’s capital
POTUS is
“formally”
announced
CHECKPOINT

How many electoral college votes does
Georgia have?
How do they determine the number of
electoral votes that a state has?
 How many electoral votes do you need to win the Presidential
Election?

The “What Ifs” of the
Electoral College
What if no one gets 270?
–
–
Election goes to the House of Representatives (1800 & 1824)
Each State gets one vote – 26 to win it
What if the House vote has not been decided by Jan
20th?
–
Vice President will preside until the President is determined
What if no one received 270 for Vice Presidency?
–
Senate will determine the VP and then they will preside until
the President is determined
Popular-Vote vs. Electoral College Vote
Red or Blue…
Who should be elected?
This happened in 2000
Flaws in the Electoral College System
1) Winner of the popular vote may not win the
electoral college vote
> This has happened 4 times (See next Slide)
2) Electors are not required to vote for “their”
candidate
> “Faithless electors” on 11 occasions
3) Election might be decided by the House
> This has happened twice
TEA PARTY???
> Look out for a 3rd party candidate to take a chunk
Proposed Changes
District Plan –
> Each district within a state would cast their “own” electoral vote
Proportional Plan –
> Percentage of electoral votes for the state based on percentage of
popular vote from that state
Direct Plan –
> Popular vote winner, wins the office
National Bonus Plan –
> 102 electoral votes would be awarded automatically to the winner of
the popular vote. These votes would be combined with the other
electoral votes that the candidate won.
Strengths of the Electoral College
It’s a “known” system
 In most cases it identifies a winner
quickly and certainly
 Most of the reforms would have “loopholes” too

http://www-personal.umich.edu/~mejn/election/
Republican
2008 Presidential Election by Democrat
State
2008 Election Results by county
2008 Election results by population
2004 Presidential
Election
2004 - Election Results
by County
Election of 2000 (Florida)
One last thing…
A timeline to sum it up
Decision to run –
meets 3
qualifications
National
Conventions
Primaries,
Caucus, State
Conventions
Debate & Campaign
Electors cast
to D.C.
Election
Inauguration
Electoral
counted
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