I’ve heard most of the arguments from both sides. The biggest arguments from the “get rid of it” side tend to be Election 2000 and the other 3 elections (1888, 1876, 1824) in which electoral majority won over popular majority.
The biggest argument supporting it (other than from Bush-Cheney 2000 supporters) is that in its absence candidates would probably only focus on population centers like NYC/LA/Miami/etc. and ignore the heartland, or that it would be way too cost prohibitive as they’d have to buy TV ads in every market.
I’m voting for Obama. While I’ll admit the darker side of me really hopes that there’s an upset in which McCain the popular but Obama wins the electoral college just to pay the GOP back for 2000, I think Obama will get them both, so it’s a nice time to have one of those threads in which it doesn’t just look like someone still pissed off over 2000.
I would personally choose to get rid of the electoral college. My main reason is that I think it’s responsible for the high degree of political apathy and “stay at home” voters in most elections.
If you’re a liberal in Alabama or a conservative in NYC then in most years there’s no real reason to vote in presidential collections as you’re screwed. The main reason you should go into the rain or sleet to vote is for local elections. (I do plan to vote for Obama on November 4, but Alabama will be red as it always is.)
In addition to the elections in which the EC overtook the PV, I’d abolish the college for the reasons of elections like 1984 or 1988. It wouldn’t have changed the outcome of either election: Reagan beat Mondale by a landslide, Bush beat Dukakis by millions of votes also, it wasn’t at all contestable, but it’s sickening looking at the maps and seeing that Mondale won Minnesota only when in fact he got millions of votes in NYC alone, or Dukakis with just little bits and pieces of blue when he got more than 40 million votes- it sends a message that “your votes don’t matter” to most of the nation. I think with popular vote people would take much more of an interest, possibly even enough to make a difference in an election.
Anyway, what say you: keep or get rid of the Electoral College?