Letter — One person, one vote
To the Editor:
Greg Darak continues to make impassioned defenses of the Electoral College, yet with even slight consideration of his arguments, they fall flat. His most recent letter suggests that Connecticut voters will be ignored due to our population size in comparison with larger states such as California or New York. However, his argument would hold true for the current system where Connecticut has considerably fewer electoral votes than these states as well.
What is important to consider in this argument is what is most fair, and what is the reason the Electoral College exists. In terms of fairness it is hard to argue that anything could be fairer than one person, one vote. In fact every elected government position in our country is decided by popular vote other than the president and vice president. Why is this?
The Electoral College was originally created as a limit to our democracy, to ensure a popular tyrant would not be elected due to the wisdom of an educated group of electors as opposed to voters who could easily be ill informed about candidates from outside their states. (We can now see how well that plan worked out.)
As the party system grew in strength and people were more able to educate themselves on candidates and platforms, the Electoral College was called into question. At the time it was staunchly defended by states such as Virginia, who wanted to ensure their entire population was counted to their voting power, not just their legal voters. In layman's terms they wanted to ensure they got credit for their slave population while not allowing their slaves to vote.
Over time, Americans have recognized that some limits on democracy in our republic have not aged well. States legislatures no longer elect senators; voters do. We no longer limit voting rights by gender or race. It is now time to add the state-by-state, winner-take-all allocation of Electoral College votes to this list of unnecessary limits to our democracy. One person, one vote.