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Letter: Electoral College gives rural states unfair edge

Electoral College gives rural states unfair edge

A recent letter commends the Founding Fathers for creating the Electoral College. Otherwise, the writer says, “At best, the choice of president would always be decided by the largest, most populous states with little regard for the smaller ones.” Ridiculous. States don’t vote. Citizens vote. Isn’t this a representational democracy based on the number of humans and not on the physical size of the states? Each election year the two presidential candidates have been determined long before the actual election in primaries by a small handful of rural ideologues. When the few on their vast acreage tell the many in the cities how the country will be run, that’s called an oligarchy.

Today nine rural states – Montana, Idaho, Utah, Arizona, Wyoming, North and South Dakota, Nebraska and Kansas (all reliably Republican) – between them have 42 electors in the Electoral College, not to mention 18 U.S. senators. Those nine states combined have fewer residents than New York State, which has only 29 electors and two U.S. senators. If “the founders wanted every voter in each state to have an equal voice” that makes you wonder why it isn’t New Yorkers whining about not being represented fairly. Add to that the fact that urban areas pay more taxes and get fewer taxes back than rural areas, and you begin to wonder how fair it is that this last election was “decided by the [smallest], [least] populous states with little regard for the [larger] ones.”

When you combine the lauded Electoral College with the current level of gerrymandering (another shameful practice begun in 1812 in the era of the founders) you can end up with a boorish billionaire president who has convinced gullible, mostly rural and Southern voters that he could somehow relate to, let alone solve, the problems facing the unemployed or the poor, even as he chooses more billionaires for his Cabinet and other appointments.

Stay tuned for the disastrous policies that soon will unfold from a president force-fed to all Americans – even those of us who live in states with actual people, rather than acreage.

John Nelson


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