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Arguments to retain Electoral College don’t add up | READER COMMENTARY

The logic behind a system that elects U.S. presidents who do not win the popular vote is flawed.
The logic behind a system that elects U.S. presidents who do not win the popular vote is flawed. (Clay Bennett, Chattanooga Times Free Press)

Jonah Goldberg’s arguments for not scrapping the Electoral College seem to argue for scrapping it (“Scrapping the electoral college is bad idea,” Sept. 18). He claims implementing it would require a “wholesale revision of the Constitution." No, it only requires an amendment, which has occurred 27 times. He claims recounts would be a logistical disaster, but they’re only required now because a few hundred votes in a few states can swing the whole election. Then he argues it’s undesirable for the government to answer to “50% plus one of voter." Yet isn’t the government instead answering to 46.1% as in the 2016 election and possibly as low as 25% plus one voter in the future even worse?

Mr. Goldberg further claims if the Electoral College were eliminated, “Candidates would be incentivized to rack up huge majorities among their bases." Sounds like the current campaign to me. With the Electoral College, all presidential campaigning is focused on voters in a few swing states because the candidates know a vote in those states counts much more than a vote in the other states. Eliminating the Electoral College allows each person’s vote to count equally — an idea Mr. Goldberg believes is only held by a “pure-democracy fetishist” — and ensures the president speaks for the majority of Americans.

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Charles Wheatley, Baltimore

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