The Electoral College: discussions for reform

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Reforming the Electoral College has been put back on the agenda after the 2016 election.


We are collecting articles and will then re- organize them into useful categories. 

FiveThirtyEight: Under A New System, Clinton Could Have Won The Popular Vote By 5 Points And Still Lost.  This article reminds us how complicated this is. Going for 'proportional distribution of votes in the Electoral College sounds, on the face of it 'fairer' -- but the devil is in the detail.  If the distribution is on the basis of proportion of congressional districts won, it could produce results even more out of line with the popular vote.  Worth reading it all! 

 "Virginia’s House of Delegates has taken the first step toward awarding the state’s electoral votes proportionally, rather than via the current winner-take-all system."  (However, it would award the votes on the basis of winning congressional districts.)   

How much of an advantage could Republicans gain in presidential elections by moving states to a system that distributes electoral votes based on the number of congressional districts each candidate wins?

We can check by using Daily Kos Elections’ newly released data that breaks down presidential vote by congressional district. The main takeaway: In an Electoral College in which every state awards its votes by congressional district, Hillary Clinton could have won the national popular vote by 5 percentage points and still lost the White House.

Simply put, the way the country’s congressional districts are drawn maximizes Republican votes. Clinton won the national popular vote by 2 percentage points, but she won only 205 congressional districts, compared to 230 for Trump.1 The median electoral vote (or tipping point state) in the current system was in Wisconsin, which Trump won by less than a percentage point. Trump won the median congressional district, meanwhile, by 3.4 percentage points. "