US sen­a­tor pushes to abol­ish elec­toral col­lege af­ter Trump win

The Myanmar Times - - World -

A CAL­I­FOR­NIA sen­a­tor has in­tro­duced leg­is­la­tion to rid the US of its elec­toral col­lege, the sys­tem that al­lowed Don­ald Trump to win the pres­i­dency de­spite Hil­lary Clin­ton’s lead of nearly 1 mil­lion votes.

The mea­sure comes amid calls for re­form fol­low­ing the Novem­ber 8 pres­i­den­tial up­set, but is a long-shot.

“This is the only of­fice in the land where you can get more votes and still lose the pres­i­dency,” said Demo­cratic Sen­a­tor Bar­bara Boxer, who moved the bid on Novem­ber 15.

The US Con­sti­tu­tion spec­i­fies that the elec­toral col­lege ul­ti­mately de­cides the pres­i­den­tial elec­tion, not the pop­u­lar vote.

Each US state is given a num­ber of elec­tors, which cor­re­sponds to the size of the state’s pop­u­la­tion.

In 48 of 50 states, rules re­quire all of a state’s elec­tors to cast their votes for whichever can­di­date wins the pop­u­lar vote there, in a win­ner-takeall sys­tem.

Un­der these rules, the win­ner of the elec­toral col­lege vote does not al­ways cor­re­spond to the can­di­date who won the coun­try’s pop­u­lar vote.

“The elec­toral col­lege is an out­dated, un­demo­cratic sys­tem that does not re­flect our mod­ern society, and it needs to change im­me­di­ately. Ev­ery Amer­i­can should be guar­an­teed that their vote counts,” Ms Boxer said.

Al­though Ms Clin­ton re­ceived nearly 800,000 more votes she lost in the elec­toral col­lege.

The elec­toral vote is at 290 for Mr Trump and 232 for Mr Clin­ton, al­though one state has yet to be called. No mat­ter its turnout, it does not have enough votes to bring Ms Clin­ton a win.

More than 4.3 mil­lion peo­ple have signed a pe­ti­tion on the Change.org web­site ask­ing the col­lege’s 538 elec­tors to elect Ms Clin­ton on De­cem­ber 19, when their votes will be of­fi­cially counted. –

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