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View Diary: About that Gallup poll (373 comments)

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  •  Blunting the "unwashed masses" was part of it (8+ / 0-)

    But another strong argument for the Electoral College is that it prevents a candidate from winning on the basis of a divisive regional platform.

    The schism between the north and south was apparent even to the framers, and many of the compromises present in the Constitution were placed there to prevent the inevitable Civil War.  The fear was that a candidate running explicitly as a Northerner or Southerner would drive up the vote in their region, possibly with an openly hostile regional platform, and become president with hardly any support in the other region.  That's a recipe for bad governance.  The Electoral College hedged against it by forcing presidential candidates to compete everywhere, instead of just driving up the vote tally in their home area.  We've still gotten regional candidates, but arguably not to the extent we would have otherwise.

    Clearly, Romney's national support is concentrated in one region of the country that thinks and votes differently from all the others.  If these numbers were accurate -- and I'm not entirely certain they are -- and Romney's support was that heavily concentrated in one narrow area of the country, then the Electoral College would do precisely what it is meant to do.  It would grant the presidency to the candidate who had assembled the broadest and most representative coalition.

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