Electoral College Essay

Electoral College Essay-17
In the contingency election for Vice President, the Senate makes the choice. history, in 1836, did the Senate choose the Vice President, Richard M. Senators do not vote as state delegations; thus, disagreements between the two Senators from a state do not lead to a stalemate.

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The President of the Senate shall, in the Presence of the Senate and House of Representatives, open all the Certificates, and the Votes shall then be counted.

The Person having the greatest Number of Votes shall be the President, if such Number be a Majority of the whole Number of Electors appointed; and if there be more than one who have such Majority, and have an equal Number of Votes, then the House of Representatives shall immediately chuse by Ballot one of them for President; and if no Person have a Majority, then from the five highest on the List the said House shall in like Manner chuse the President.

But if there should remain two or more who have equal Votes, the Senate shall chuse from them by Ballot the Vice President.

At the Constitutional Convention in 1787, delegates had expressed concern that a meeting of a single body in the nation's capital to elect a President opened the door to intrigue and undue influence by special interests, foreign governments, and political factions.

During the debates at the Constitutional Convention, some delegates argued that the diversity and dispersal of the people over an expansive territory militated against direct popular election, for voters would be unable to form a majority behind any one candidate.

In response, James Madison proposed that every individual voter cast three votes for President, at least two for persons from a state other than his own.

The House ultimately voted in favor of Jefferson, but only after thirty-six ballots.

Hence, the Twelfth Amendment, ratified in 1804, also changed this method of choosing the Vice President.

The Framers also accepted Madison's small but significant amendment to add the word "appointed" after the original text requiring a "Majority of the whole Number of Electors" for election.

Thus the basis of what constitutes a majority changes if a state fails to appoint electors.


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