The Takeaway

Your Complete Guide to The Electoral College

November 17, 201646 min
For the second time in 16 years, a candidate who lost the popular vote but won the Electoral College will go on to be the next president of the United States.
For many Americans, the entire Electoral College system remains frustrating and confusing. But today, we're here to help. Here's what you'll find in this special podcast on the Electoral College:
Vikram Amar, dean of the University of Illinois College of Law, explains what the Electoral College system is designed to do and what the framers intended. 
Dr. Gary Gregg, the chair in leadership at the University of Louisville and director of the McConnell Center, says the Electoral College is here to stay, and that's a good thing. "I think the Electoral College has sunk its tentacles deep into the American system in ways we don't give it credit for and we don't think about," he says. 
How do YOU feel about the U.S. Electoral College? Should we get rid of it, or keep it? If we chose presidents based on just the popular vote, would that change how you vote? Takeaway listeners from around the United States share their thoughts today. 

There is a way to get around the Electoral College system as we traditionally understand it without needing a Constitutional amendment. It's something called the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact. New York State Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz has the details. 

The process of redistricting affects nearly every aspect of how we pick our elected officials, from local representatives to the president. We examine how the process actually works, and how changing maps will affect America's political future with Rebecca Tippett, Director of Carolina Demography at the Carolina Population Center at UNC-Chapel Hill
Washington State Senator Mike Padden is one of the only living "faithless electors" in the U.S. There have been 157 in American history — these individuals vote against the Electoral College and with the popular vote or their conscience. Here, he discusses what being an elector actually means, and what he thinks about calls for more faithless electors.

Chat About Your Complete Guide to The Electoral College

For You