Minnesota Secretary of State Simon calls for reforming Electoral College

Minnesota Secretary of State Simon calls for reforming Electoral College Photo: Getty Images.

Josh Skluzacek
Updated: October 26, 2020 01:26 PM
Created: October 26, 2020 11:51 AM

Minnesota's secretary of state on Monday called for reforms to the Electoral College.

"When [U.S. Supreme Court nominee] Judge Amy Coney Barrett is confirmed, a majority of justices on the US Supreme Court (5 of the 9) will have been nominated by presidents who lost the popular vote. Think about that.

"It's time to reform the electoral college," Secretary of State Steve Simon said.

— Steve Simon (@MNSteveSimon) October 26, 2020

The U.S. Senate is expected to confirm Barrett Monday night.

Senate votes to advance Barrett; confirmation expected Monday

The Electoral College was devised at the Constitutional Convention in 1787 as a compromise between those who wanted direct popular elections for president and those who preferred to have Congress decide. At a time of little national identity and competition among the states, there were concerns that people would favor their regional candidates and that big states with denser populations would dominate the vote.

The Electoral College has 538 members, with the number allocated to each state based on how many representatives it has in the House plus its two senators. (The District of Columbia gets three, despite the fact that the home to Congress has no vote in Congress.)

This hybrid system means that more weight is given to a single vote in a small state than the vote of someone in a large state, leading to outcomes at times that have been at odds with the popular vote.

It would take a constitutional amendment to abolish the Electoral College — an unlikely move because of how difficult it is to pass and ratify constitutional changes.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.


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