This One State Proves Why the Electoral College Exists

I voted sticker on American flag.

Written by Robert Eno

The 2016 presidential election is a textbook example of why the Founders, in their infinite wisdom, chose the Electoral College method of electing the president. Their elegant compromise ensures that states with small population still have a say in who is elected president. The results from Election Day 2016 highlight this exquisitely. If you remove anyone of a handful of large population states from the popular vote count, Trump won the rest of the country convincingly.Six days after the election, the race has been called in 48 states and the District of Columbia. Donald Trump has a 290 to 228 Electoral College vote lead. Trump is leading by approximately 12,000 votes in Michigan, and trails by a smaller margin in New Hampshire. If those two states finished where the vote is now, Trump will have 306 Electoral College votes to Hillary Clinton’s 232.

However, Trump is trailing slightly in the popular vote at the same time. Here is where the national popular vote count stands six days after the election.

  • Clinton: 61,039,676
  • Trump: 60,371,193

That is a 668,483 vote difference, or less than 0.6 percent of all the votes cast for president.

The Electoral College was created as a check on large population states. If there was a true popular vote, a handful of states, or even just one, could perpetually pick the president. Today, that state would most probably be California. Here is where the California popular vote stands six days after the election.

  • Clinton: 5,589,936
  • Trump: 3,021,095

That is a difference of 2,568,841 votes. This means that Donald Trump won the rest of the country by about 1.9 million votes. If you look at similar numbers in 2012, Mitt Romney would have lost the popular vote in the 49 states other than California plus the District of Columbia.

In 2016, the Electoral College is acting exactly as designed. In our federalist system of government, the people in vast swaths of this land did not have their voice drowned out by the interests of one state.

It is just that simple.

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