Posts Tagged popular vote

Electoral College Explainer

From The American Mind:

We must remember that presidential elections are not a thing apart from the rest of our constitutional and political system. Our major political parties came into being, and exist today, for the primary purpose of capturing the presidency. Their structure follows the structure of the Constitution because the Constitution apportions electoral votes to the states and requires a majority of electoral votes to win. Each state has a minimum of three electoral votes, with the larger states having more in proportion to the number of seats to which they are entitled in the House of Representatives. The Electoral College, in short, is organized on precisely the same principle as the United States Congress, and for precisely the same reason. Neither institution recognizes population alone as the exclusive measuring rod for democratic legitimacy.

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U.S. Presidential Elections in Perspective

U.S. Presidential Elections in Perspective is republished with permission of Stratfor.”

By George Friedman

The U.S. presidential election will be held a week from¬†today, and if the polls are correct, the outcome will be extraordinarily close. Many say that the country has never been as deeply divided. In discussing the debates last week, I noted how this year’s campaign is far from the most bitter and vitriolic. It might therefore be useful also to consider that while the electorate at the moment appears evenly and deeply divided, unlike what many say, that does not reveal deep divisions in our society — unless our society has always been deeply divided.

Since 1820, the last year an uncontested election was held, most presidential elections have been extremely close. Lyndon B. Johnson received the largest percentage of votes any president has ever had in 1964, taking 61.5 percent of the vote. Three other presidents broke the 60 percent mark: Warren G. Harding in 1920, Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1936 and Richard Nixon in 1972.

Nine elections saw a candidate win between 55 and 60 percent of the vote: Andrew Jackson, Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant, Theodore Roosevelt, Herbert Hoover, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Dwight D. Eisenhower and Ronald Reagan. Only Eisenhower broke 55 percent twice. Candidates who received less than 50 percent of the vote won 18 presidential elections. These included Lincoln in his first election, Woodrow Wilson in both elections, Harry Truman, John F. Kennedy, Nixon in his first election and Bill Clinton in both his elections.¬† Read the rest of this entry »

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