Joshua Spivak on the Historical Origins of the Electoral College


Once again, we have a popular vote loser taking the White House, and once again we have criticism and fights over the existence of the Electoral College. The reason for why we have the Electoral College is poorly understood – supporters usually make the argument that it was designed to ensure that smaller states weren’t swamped in a presidential vote.

A look at the contemporary discussions in the 1780s and James Madison’s notes on the debate in the Constitutional Convention shows that this is incorrect – the Electoral College was actually created to both separate the powers and combat corruption from both foreign and domestic sources.

And more here.



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