Anonymous asked in Politics & GovernmentElections · 7 months ago

What percentage of Americans know that it is ONLY 270 people that actually elect the US President? And Why don't Americans care?



5 Answers

  • 7 months ago

    well, that is both wrong, and technically correct.

    yes, ultimately, it's 270 of the 538 votes that elects the president,.........

    but it is NOT simplistically "270" people deciding the election.

    first of's 538 people deciding the election , by their simply takes 270 to win......but 538 people casting their they all vote...........and have a hand in the result.

    Secondly, They do NOT get to vote for "whoever they like". .....they are merely carrying out the results of the state wide those votes DO count.

    But because America is a schizophrenic collection of 50 states, alll with varying laws........some states have different LAWS about what these 538 electors can actually do.

    Some states OBLIGE and BIND the electors to carry of the wishes of the people. They are not voting THEIR choice, but the choice of the STATE.

    However some states ALLOW electors to be "Unfaithful" electors........IGNORING the will of the people, and using their vote to cast their own personal preference,

    If this was allowed , and DONE in all 50 states.........the electoral college would be abolished overnight. the elections themselves, would then indeed become POINTLESS. .....and indeed, only 538 people would decide the outcome.

    That is NOTTTT how it works. MOST states are OBLIGED to do their duty, and carry out the results of the state wide election results.

    I can assure you.............I stayed wide awake in civics class. As a matter of fact, my Civics teacher ran for Congressman to teach us about the process.

    (alas, he lost. )

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  • 7 months ago

    The sitting President doesn't necessarily get the popular vote (i.e. Trump's current situation). However, it essentially means that the majority of states voted in favor of the winning President.

    So, to answer your first question on how many Americans actually know about this: I'm not sure that many understand completely the situation however, I would imagine that most American adults understand that it's not the most votes that wins the Presidential election but the most states (which is essentially the Electoral College in lay terms).

    To answer your second question: Well, the ones that do understand the system would prefer a President elected by the popular vote (source 1 & 2). There just doesn't seem to be that much of a priority set on electoral reform in the US. They have a lot going on and it's not like the system is undemocratic, it's just not based off the popular vote.

    • Tmess2
      Lv 7
      7 months agoReport

      Actually, it doesn't mean that the majority of states supported the winner. States do not have equal electoral votes. In a close race, if one candidate wins the twelve largest states, they will win regardless of the results in the thirty-eight smaller states and D.C.

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  • Anonymous
    7 months ago

    The people in the Electoral College generally do not have a choice in who they vote for. States decide who they vote for.

    The states of Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Wisconsin are "perennial" swing states that have regularly seen close contests over the last few presidential campaigns. The votes in those states are the only ones that really count.

    At the time the electoral college was formed most people were illiterate and few got national news.


    The original reason for the electoral college was to let the elite in states to choose the president.

    The function of the College of Electors in choosing the president can be likened to that in the Roman Catholic Church of the College of Cardinals selecting the Pope. The original idea was for the most knowledgeable and informed individuals from each State to select the president based solely on merit and without regard to State of origin or political party.

    They also believed that political parties were mischievous if not downright evil.

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  • 7 months ago

    271. Trump had 307 electoral college votes. The Supreme Court can decide who the president will be. That's what happened with Bush 43. Gore won the popular vote. The popular vote does NOT elect the president. The electoral college or the Supreme Court does. In 2016, there were only 8 Justices, not 9. That's one reason Hillary conceeded quickly.

    What the percentage is I don't know. Apparently they stopped teaching civics /goverment classes years ago. I thought American history and state history were required as well. I have no idea what they are teaching in USA schools now. I don't have children, grandchildren or great grandchildren. I don't have brothers or sisters either. My older parents were only children. Yes, I DO care. At least I vote, even though If all through all the cracks.

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    • Weasel McWeasel
      Lv 7
      7 months agoReport

      270........makes you President. And when she lost key was clear she was not going to make the 270 threshold.

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  • 7 months ago

    Most Americans slept through their Civics Class , yet they swear that if the US constitution says to do it that way, then it is the perfect way.

    God help America

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