U.S. Electoral College

The U.S. Electoral College is the process by which U.S. Presidents and Vice Presidents are chosen every four years. This process consists of the selection of electors, the meeting of electors, and the counting of votes by congress. The Electoral College was established by the founding fathers in the U.S. Constitution.

2,344 Questions
Elections and Voting
U.S. Electoral College

How many electoral votes are needed to win the Presidential election?

270 is the minimum number required to win at president.

This number is half the total of 538 plus one, i.e a majority.

The number of electoral college members is set by the number of US House Representatives (set at 435 seats since 1911), the number of US Senators (2 per state = 100), plus 3 votes for Washington DC.

(If no candidate gets this majority, the election is decided by the incoming House of Representatives. The House must then choose the president from among the top three candidates recipients of electoral votes in a special election in which each state gets one vote.)

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US Presidents
US Constitution
U.S. Electoral College

What are the disadvantages of the US electoral college system?

The aspects of the system that some people object to are (1) the fact that a person can win the popular vote but lose the election , (2) the 'winner-take-all" method used by most states to cast their electoral vote. and (3) the way in which the electoral votes are divided among the states.

These objections and the ways to try to fix are all quite debatable. Below are some more opinions.

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A major problem is Plurality. A number of votes cast for a candidate that is greater than the number of votes for any other candidate but not necessarily a majority

For ex, a 40% vote can win and the person can become pres

The electoral college is often considered to be an outdated system of popular voting. It requires a state population to select electors to vote for the popular candidate. Electors represent a group of people in the population of the state. The higher the population a state has, the more electors it is allocated to send. In most cases, it is not representative of the United States population as a whole, but rather a handful of critically important "battleground states".

These states include Texas, Florida, California, and New York. Once a presidential candidate secures most of these states, he/she is almost guaranteed a win as these states have the highest population. In most elections, smaller states are given a less important voice in the subject matter as they are usually unconsidered by candidates running for president.

In an example, the 2000 Presidential Election of the United States was one of four that did not reflect the popular vote. There was much controversy over the results of the election. However, such instances do not occur for every single election.

1.Popular vote does not always determine the winner of an election.

2.Larger "swing" states receive the most attention

3.Discourages third parties

4.Discourages voter turnout

5.Favors the smaller less populous states

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US Presidents
US Constitution
U.S. Electoral College

What are disadvantages of the electoral college system?

The electoral college is often considered to be an outdated system of popular voting. It requires a state population to select electors to vote "for them" for a candidate. Electors represent part of the population of the state, and they are selected by their respective political parties. The higher the population a state has, the more electors it is allocated to send. (The number of electors is equal to the number of US Senators and US Representatives for the state.)

The system of winner-take-all that exists in 48 states means that one party will be awarded all of the electoral votes for the state, even if their candidate wins by a tiny margin. This leads to a complex campaign system that concentrates on winning certain key states that might go for either candidate.

The indefensible reality is that more than 99% of campaign attention (ad spending and visits) was showered on voters in just ten states in 2012- and that in today's political climate, the swing states have become increasingly fewer and fixed. Where you live determines how much, if at all, your vote matters. The current state-by-state winner-take-all method of awarding electoral votes (not mentioned in the US Constitution, but later enacted by 48 states), ensures that the candidates, after the conventions, will not reach out to about 80% of the states and their voters. Candidates have no reason to poll, visit, advertise, organize, campaign, or care about the voter concerns in the dozens of states where they are safely ahead or hopelessly behind.

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U.S. Electoral College

Why did the Founding Fathers create the electoral college?

There was considerable debate about how the chief executive was to be selected, but the electoral college was finally settled on as a compromise between those who wanted pure popular vote and those who wanted state legislatures to choose. The popular vote was turned down largely because, due to lack of widespread communications ability, the voters in each state would pick a regional local, not knowing anything about central figures [after the founding fathers would have passed on], so that regionalism multiplied by 13 would always result in the most populous states deciding the presidency. The electoral college at least gave some weighted influence to the smaller states.

This reason for the electoral college has now died with the growth of communications and political parties, and the demise of state sovereignty interests. And, with the increased size of the population and Congress, just 11 states now have enough electoral votes to decide the election, so the advantage has swung away from the smaller states.

Another reason for the College was that if states submitted direct votes, they might possibly be inflated, or manipulated. The electoral college limited the influence of a state or group of states, while still giving some advantage by population. Thomas Jefferson himself benefited from the 3/5 Compromise which used slaves to increase the electoral votes of Virginia and other Southern states.

Fear of Mob Democracy

Some writers of the Constitution felt that the common citizen would be both less-informed and more easily influenced as voters, and so the US Senators were initially chosen by state legislatures. Similarly, the early electors were known representatives of their parties and states (while not being candidates themselves) and were considered less likely to be influenced. Eventually, in all but two states, all electors for a state were from the same party.

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Education
U.S. Electoral College

How did the electoral college system function in 1789?

Surprisingly well.

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Politics and Government
U.S. Electoral College

How many electoral votes does each state have?

The following quantities are applicable to the elections of 2012, 2016, and 2020:

California - 55

Texas - 38

New York - 29

Florida - 29

Illinois - 20

Pennsylvania - 20

Ohio - 18

Michigan - 16

Georgia - 16

North Carolina - 15

New Jersey - 14

Virginia - 13

Washington - 12

Massachusetts - 11

Indiana - 11

Arizona - 11

Tennessee - 11

Missouri - 10

Maryland - 10

Wisconsin - 10

Minnesota - 10

Colorado - 9

Alabama - 9

South Carolina - 9

Louisiana - 8

Kentucky - 8

Oregon - 7

Oklahoma - 7

Connecticut - 7

Iowa - 6

Mississippi - 6

Arkansas - 6

Kansas - 6

Utah - 6

Nevada - 6

New Mexico - 5

West Virginia - 5

Nebraska - 5

Idaho - 4

Hawaii - 4

Maine - 4

New Hampshire - 4

Rhode Island - 4

Montana - 3

Delaware - 3

South Dakota - 3

Alaska - 3

North Dakota - 3

Vermont - 3

Wyoming - 3

District Of Columbia - 3

total - 538

mean - 10.5

median - 8

mode - 3

Note: The top 11 states have a controlling majority (270 votes).

Note: If Puerto Rico is granted statehood (which they officially requested on December 11, 2012) before the 2020 election, the numbers above will remain the same, and Puerto Rico will likely have 7 electoral votes. That would make the total 545 and the median 7.5. Then, assuming that Congress continues to follow the 1929 Apportionment Act, the number of voting members in the House would be brought back down to 435 with the next reapportionment, bringing the total number of electoral votes down to 540 (435 + 102 + 3).

The electoral votes is the total number of congressmen and senators that state has. Check the link below for a full list of states, with the number of electoral votes each state has. The list includes the number of votes for 2008, before the 2010 census, and the list of votes after the census. You will see some changes based on census results. For example, Pennsylvania went from 21 electoral votes in 2008 to 20 votes in 2012.

Each state has electoral votes equal to the total of the 2 representative the state has in the U.S. Senate plus the number of representative the state has in the U.S. House of Representatives. The District of Columbia gets 3 electoral votes. Therefore, the total number of electoral votes is 538 - 100 (senators) + 435 (representatives) +3 (for DC).

Based on the 2010 Census the electoral votes by state were: Alabama - 9, Alaska - 3, Arizona - 11, Arkansas - 6, California - 55, Colorado -9, Connecticut - 7, Delaware - 3, District of Columbia - 3, Florida - 29, Georgia - 16, Hawaii - 4, Idaho - 4, Illinois - 20, Indiana - 11, Iowa - 6, Kansas - 6, Kentucky - 8, Louisiana - 8, Maine - 4, Maryland - 10, Massachusetts - 11, Michigan - 16, Minnesota - 10, Mississippi - 6, Missouri - 10, Montana - 3, Nebraska - 5, Nevada - 6, New Hampshire 4 , New Jersey - 14, New Mexico - 5, New York - 29, North Carolina - 15, North Dakota - 3, Ohio - 18, Oklahoma - 7, Oregon - 7, Pennsylvania - 20, Rhode Island - 4, South Carolina - 9, South Dakota - 3, Tennessee - 11, Texas - 38, Utah - 6, Vermont - 3, Virginia - 13, Washington - 12, West Virginia - 5, Wisconsin - 10, and Wyoming - 3.

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U.S. Electoral College

Which state has the most electoral votes?

California

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History of the United States
US Presidents
US Constitution
U.S. Electoral College

Why does the US have the electoral college system?

The founding fathers wanted everyone (well, property owners and white men) to be able to vote for the president and the vice president, but did not trust the system, so they put the electoral college in to have the final say on the election.

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U.S. Electoral College

What is the Electoral College?

An electoral college is a group of people who formally elect the president of the USA. Their vote happens after the popular vote. There are 538 electors. An elector is chosen by the party and cannot be a senator or representative. Depending on the election rules in the state, the elector's name may or may not be on the ballot below the presidential candidate.

In November of the election year eligible American citizens can vote. This includes Americans that live abroad and Americans who have dual citizenship. The votes are tallied up by state. Which ever party wins that state gets all the electors in that state, except for Maine and Nebraska who split the votes.

In December each states' electors meet in their states capitol and vote for president and vice president. A candidate needs at least 270 votes to have majority.

In theory, the electoral college could switch candidates if enough electors switched sides. As the 2000 and 2016 elections have showed, the popular vote does not decide who receives the majority of electors. In the 2000 election Al Gore had over 500,000 more votes than George W. Bush and in 2016 Hillary Clinton had 800,000 more votes than Donald Trump.
Electoral votes in the U.S. Electoral College determine the President and Vice President of the United States.

Electoral votes in the U.S. Electoral College determine the President and Vice President of the United States. Every state and the District of Columbia are awarded a certain number of electoral votes with which to elect the President. Each state has electoral votes equal to the total of the 2 representative the state has in the U.S. Senate plus the number of representative the state has in the House of Representatives. Since every state has two senators and at least one representative to the House, every state has at least 3 electoral votes. The District of Columbia gets 3 electoral votes. Therefore, the total number of electoral votes is 538 - 100 (senators) + 435 (representatives) + 3 (for DC). A majority is 270 - one more than half of the total number of 538.

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Politics and Government
Nevada
U.S. Electoral College

How many electoral votes does Nevada have?

Nevada has 6 electoral votes.
Nevada has 6 electoral votes.
it had 5 in the 2008 election. it will have 6 in 2012
Nevada controls six votes in each of the U. S. Presidential & Vice Presidential elections of 2012 through 2020.

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Texas
U.S. Electoral College

How many electoral votes does Texas have?

Texas has 38 electoral votes for the US Presidential election. This number was last revised with the 2010 US census, a census which occurs every 10 years. The number is expected to change for the 2024 election, after the 2020 US census results are tabulated.

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U.S. Electoral College

Who votes for Alaska's electoral college?

I am not sure if this answers your questions, but here is some information you might find useful. Alaska Statutes 15.30.020, 15.30.030-15.30.100 states that: 1) each political party (must be a recognized political party in Alaska) selects their electors for President and Vice President. A certified list of electors is submitted to the State Division of Elections by September 1 in a presidential year. 2) states that any qualified voter except a US Senator or Representative or person holding an office of trust or profit under the U.S. may be selected as a candidate for elector. 3) requires a party pledge from the elector 4) states that a vote marked for President and Vice President is considered and counted as a vote for the presidential electors of the party for the presidential electors named under AS 15.30.026. In short, it is the parties who select their electors, but it is the people who decide which electors will cast their vote at the Electoral College.

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Elections and Voting
U.S. Electoral College

What is smallest number of states a candidate needs to win the election?

11 states are sufficient to win the electoral college which requires a simple majority of 270. The fewest states (which would happen to be the most populous) you need are:

California - 55

Texas - 38

New York - 29

Florida - 29

Illinois - 20

Pennsylvania - 20

Ohio - 18

Michigan - 16

Georgia - 16

North Carolina - 15

New Jersey - 14

The Democrat candidate could no doubt substitute Virginia (13) for NC, NJ, GA or MI, since Democrats always win 3 votes from DC.

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US Presidents
US Constitution
U.S. Electoral College

What was the results of the 1816 Electoral College vote?

James Monroe won the 1816 presidential election defeating Rufus King. In the 1816 presidential election James Monroe received 183 electoral votes and Rufus King received 34 electoral votes.

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Elections and Voting
Democracy
U.S. Electoral College

Why do democracies outside of the US hate the Electoral College?

Similar to Charlie N., I have lived in several democracies other than the United States and, like him, I have never heard any remarks of hatred or disgust towards the institution of the US Electoral College. I have actually only ever heard such remarks within the United States, usually from US citizens in states that are disadvantaged by the Electoral College system. Those US citizens generally fall into two categories: those who come from states that are clearly red states or blue states and hold that their votes do not matter because their Electoral votes are already decided AND/OR come from states with large populations and therefore have a lower Electoral College seat to population ratio, so their votes are actually worth less. Since Non-Americans are not affected by these problems, their ire is not similarly stoked.

Perhaps the questioner is confusing the failure to replicate the Electoral College in other democracies to be emblematic of hatred. This is incorrect; this is simply disinterest. The Electoral College was an American invention in order to balance the needs of the smaller states in electing the US President, forcing the President to pay more attention to the smaller states than he otherwise would (since smaller states get proportionally more votes in the Electoral College system). Most other countries prefer to make each person's vote count equally rather than trying to reallocate voting power between different densely-settled and rural regions.

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Massachusetts
U.S. Electoral College

How many electoral votes does Massachusetts have?

Massachusetts appoints eleven of the 538 electors in the elections of 2012, 2016 and 2020.

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Politics and Government
US Presidents
US Constitution
U.S. Electoral College

Who decides the presidency if the electoral college doesn't?

Amendment 12 of the Constitution says f no person receives a majority of the electoral votes for President, the House of Representatives elects the President. In such an election the representatives from each state have one vote among them. A majority of these votes is necessary to elect the President.

This amendment was brought about as a result of the election of 1800, when Jefferson and Burr, candidates of the same party, received the same number of votes. Although it was understood that Burr was the candidate for Vice-President, he could have been named President by the House of Representatives.

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Politics and Government
US Constitution
Elections and Voting
U.S. Electoral College

How does the electoral college work?

In short: US Presidents are not directly elected by the individual voters but by the Electoral College, whose members pledge their votes to the candidate who won the popular vote in their State. In most States, the candidate with the majority of votes statewide receives all of that State's electoral votes; however, some States allow electoral votes to be divided between candidates.

The number of electors is based on the state's population. The states with the greatest population have the most electoral votes. When the voter casts a vote for president, in reality the vote goes to one of the presidential electors designated by the candidate in that state. The number of electors for each state equals the number of senators and representatives that state has in Congress. Although the number can change based on the census. The candidate who receives the most votes receives all the electoral votes in that state. The candidate with a majority of the electoral votes is elected to office. The electors gather in Washington, DC, in December and cast their ballots based on the results of the November election. If no candidate receives a majority of the electoral votes, the election of president is determined by the House of Representatives.

Presidential elections are held on the Tuesday after the first Monday in November every four years. After the results have been tallied, the Electoral College meets on the Monday after the second Wednesday in December to cast their votes. In most elections, the electors will vote for the candidates that the people chose through the popular vote. However, this is not required by law. The Founding Fathers felt that there would potentially be times when the people would not know which candidate would be the best president, and as a result the electors can choose to vote against the popular vote. Today this is rare, but it is possible.

Some states have made laws that require the electors to vote according to the will of the people. Other states have separate groups of electors for each party, and these electors are bound to vote for the their party's candidate. When the votes are tallied, these states send the appropriate electors to the December vote, thus ensuring that the choice the people made is followed. However, not all states have these provisions, so it is entirely possible for an elector to vote for a candidate that did not win the popular vote in her state.The Electoral College is composed of 538 electors who are tasked with the responsibility of deciding the President and Vice-President of the US.

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Indiana
U.S. Electoral College

How many electoral votes does Indiana have?

Indiana has 11 electoral votes.

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U.S. Electoral College

What role did the electoral college play in George Washington's election to the presidency?

He was voted in unanimously by the electoral college in 1789 and again in 1792. he is still the only president to have received 100% of the electoral votes.

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School Subjects
U.S. Electoral College

How many votes are in the electoral college?

Total Electoral College VotesThe answer is 538.

435 comes from the House of Representatives. 100 comes from the Senate. The additional 3 votes are apportioned to Washington DC. Washington DC was assigned the three electoral votes under the 23rd amendment, which gives it equal representation equal to the least populated state in the union. Because every state has two senators and at least one representative, the number of electoral votes given to Washington DC is 3.

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Founding Fathers
US Presidents
U.S. Electoral College

How does the electoral college impact elections?

The electoral college elects the president and vice-president of the US. The electors are elected by popular vote and declare in advance how they will vote if they are elected, so the people choose electors who will vote the way they would vote if they were electors.

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Michigan
U.S. Electoral College

How many electoral votes does Michigan have?

Michigan has 16 electoral votes.

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History, Politics & Society
U.S. Electoral College

How many US electoral college delegates are there for Texas?

Senators+Representatives=Electors, so; 2+32=34

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Maine
U.S. Electoral College

How many electoral votes does Maine have?

Maine has 4 votes Maine has 4 votes
Maine has 4 electoral votes. Each state gets one electoral vote for each of their members of the house of represenatives and senate
Four.

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