I believe that many who have advanced Hamilton’s Federalist 68 as a justification for current electors to reject the vote of the people in their state and vote according to their own preference in the Presidential Election. I know that statement will likely stir up the anger of those who are NEVER TRUMPERS and those who dislike the Electoral College but I ask that you hear my entire argument before rejecting what I have to say. Of course, if you are not capable or unwilling to listen to another side of an argument, you will have already turned me off or formulated your counter without hearing my position. That, I believe, is one of the problems in today’s society, we DO NOT LISTEN we REACT.
I believe the Founders were endowed with genius in the adopting of the Electoral College system for electing the President of the United States in contrast to allowing the popular vote of the nation makes that decision. They were adamantly opposed to pure democracies and understood that for us to have a viable long lasting republic the Union of States must be protected and thereby provide the voice of all citizens. The pure popular vote would open the door to pockets of one ideology or another swaying the entire election and deny the several states from their representative voice. It would also, in my view, open the door to greater voter fraud in the sense that it would allow those so desiring to taint the election in a few pockets rather than having to shape that of an entire state. That would be Antithetical to the idea of the Constitutional Republic operating as a Representative Democracy.
Hamilton’s Federalist 68 opened the door to the idea of rogue electors doing their constitutional duty of rejecting a particular candidate based on their view of qualifications. If we would consider that at the time of Hamilton’s writing there was not the massive availability of information as today. Many of the citizens were uninformed of happenings and thus by electing individuals to represent them at the Electoral College they were opting for a situation where those individuals could, would or should be more informed as to what was happening. That condition does not exist today and thereby, in my view, largely negates the argument that an elector has an obligation to vote his conscience or as is usually the case preference negating the voice of the people of his/her state. Today, we have massive amounts of media information and internet availability enabling the average voter to make a rational decision and have as much information as the Elector as to the candidates. That, in my view, is the reason we should consider an Amendment modifying the Electoral College.
I did not say, do away with it and go to popular vote but modify it or alter it so that it is representative of the vote of the individual state and the people’s voice. I would suggest that one possibility might be to mandate that each state awards the electoral votes to the candidate winning their state and avoid the possibility of an elector negating the voice of that state. If we were still in the state, the nation was at the time of Hamilton’s Federalist 68 I would concur that an elector was duty bound to know all they could about a candidate and based on facts cast a ballot that they truly believed was in the best interest of the nation even if that was contradictory to the vote of the state. Again, that condition does not exist today and the public has the availability to the information that the electors have and the elector is no more qualified than the voter to determine who should be president. When an elector today decides that their decision has more validity or weight than the people of their state, they are in error and dangerously close to demagoguery. You may disagree but are you disagreeing based on honestly evaluating what I have said or based on your preference and calling it morality or constitutional duty? There is a difference!
The Electoral College has worked wonderfully through our history and has protected the voice of the individual states preserving the Union of States. No one seems to take issue with the manner in which we choose Representatives. We do not take issue with proportional representation in Congress and have no problem with each state having two Senators regardless of size. That leads me to ask, “Why do we have a problem with the electoral college?” How would we feel if there was a system where someone could negate the vote within a Congressional District and say, “No, I have decided that the candidate who won is not, in my view, qualified and therefore I will negate the vote of the district and choose someone else?” Is that not as or more dangerous than the public voting for someone who is questionable? It is to me. I am 100% convinced that if Mr. Hamilton were to write his Federalist Paper today he would negate the argument that he gave license to ignoring the vote of the people of a particular state.
I am opposed to the popular vote nationally used as the means of electing a president but am fully supportive of the popular vote within each state to decide who is president. That is embodied in the Electoral College System and something that we need to maintain while eliminating the rogue electors following their own desire. One elector that has vowed he will not vote for Donald Trump for moral reasons is working with the organization led by Van Jones. Imagine that, Van Jones is a 9/11 Truther, blamed the election on ‘whitelash’ and has offered incredible racist views, as well as advancing a Socialist if not the Communist view of government is coordinating an effort to prevent Donald Trump from being president. Sorry, but if Van Jones and George Soros are in the mix it muddies the water for me greatly.
God, bless you and God bless America!