Electoral College

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Electoral College

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Electoral College
In 1787, the delegates to the Constitutional Convention decided on this particular system for electing the president. The Electoral College is still in effect today, but some adjustments have been made over the years. The electors voted for two candidates at first. The one with the highest number of votes became president. The one with the second-highest number became vice president. In 1796, political foes were chosen for the two posts -- Federalist John Adams for president and Democratic-Republican Thomas Jefferson for vice president.
There was a tie between Thomas Jefferson and Aaron Burr in the next election. The House of Representatives had to decide who would be president. The fact that the system needed to be adjusted was clear. The 12th Amendment to the Constitution was passed in 1804. Candidates are now nominated to run only for president or only for vice president. Electors vote for president and vice president separately.
How the states elect electors has changed, too. Some states held direct popular elections for the electors in the beginning. The state legislatures made the choice in other states. All the states gradually adopted direct popular elections for electors.
There were no political parties when the Constitution was written. They soon developed, and the party organizations in each state began proposing a slate, or list, of electors who were pledged to vote for their party's nominee. Voters no longer choose individual electors. Voters choose between party slates.
Political parties want winner-take-all elections for electors. This means that the slate that receives the most popular votes wins all the state's electoral votes. All the states except Maine use this winner-take-all system today.
The 1964 presidential election, Lyndon B. Johnson v. Barry M. Goldwater, was considered one of the top…...

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