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Oklahoma Voices: The Electoral College (Oct 22, 2012)
Many voters will go to the polls November 6th to cast their vote for one of the two men running for President of the United States.  But when they see the ballot they will likely see a list of names they don't recognize. These people are "electors," part of the process called the Electoral College.

Today, University of Oklahoma College of Law professor Lindsay Robertson, and Associate Professor of Political Science Justin Wert explain how the Electoral College became the way the United States elects its chief executive.

“I think the problem might be that the processes that the Constitution sets forth for electing our officials are sometimes misunderstood,” Wert said. “In their language, and in their application, they’re difficult to understand.”

“It’s not entirely a democratic method of electing the chief executive,” Robertson said. “The number of electors is fixed by the number of representatives that a state, or the citizens of a state, have in the House of Representatives, plus the number of Senators, which is a fixed number. So that skews the process in a slightly antidemocratic direction upfront.”

Robertson says another issue concerning voters is running the Electoral College as a winner-take-all operation. If a candidate wins 51 percent of the popular vote in the state, they win 100 percent of the state’s electoral votes.

“That circumstance results in skewing elections in favor of achieving that 51 percent majority in those key large electoral voter states,” Robertson said. “[It] pulls attention away from states that might actually attract attention if we ran our elections on a majority of the popular vote standard.”

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