My dad breathed a sigh of relief and said, “It’s so nice to have your vote count.” My parents had recently moved to Nevada from Illinois and had voted for the first time. If you’re a conservative in a state like New York, California, or Illinois, this mentality of “my vote doesn’t count” is prevalent not just in the national elections, but more importantly, in state elections as well. There is no greater illustration of the need for the electoral college than the corrupt, left-leaning states whose massive Democratically-controlled cities choose their neighboring Republican-majority towns’ future without their consent. I propose a total remake of state elections nationwide–one which uses the national electoral college model at the state level.
Why Is The Electoral College Important?
Many people are downright confused about what the electoral college is. They hear the slogan “one person one vote!” and think “Hey, that sounds fair. We’re a democracy, aren’t we? We should switch to a national popular vote instead of this confusing electoral college thingie.” Well, for starters, we are not a democracy. We are a constitutional republic, and that distinction matters a LOT! Watch this video to understand the vital difference. TL;DR: democracies are essentially mob rule. Republics rule by law.
Second of all, the electoral college is one of the most important aspects of our country’s Constitution. Our Founding Fathers understood that pure democracy is destined for implosion. Simply put, a popular vote is when three people vote that they own the fourth person’s car. The Founding Fathers created a system where politicians are forced to campaign among diverse populations. They can’t only win the votes of, say, the southern conservatives. That’s not enough electoral votes. If it was a straight popular vote, a candidate would only need to campaign in the largest cities across the nation, and would be able to ignore the desires of the “little people.” This would make for a monotonous, tyrannical government (3 voting the rights to the ownership of the 4th’s car), not a government rich in diversity of thought and consideration for many people’s needs. Watch this short video to understand the mechanics of how the electoral college works.
The Left wants to get rid of the electoral college. It’s easy to understand why. If we eliminated the electoral college in favor of the national popular vote, the Democrats would likely control the country forever. “Ridiculous! Just win the majority of the people’s minds with your conservative ideas and you have a chance!” they might say. They do not understand that getting rid of the electoral college would eliminate the states’ sovereignty to define their own election codes (about early voting, felon voting, recounts, etc), place control of the nation in the hands of those who live in the biggest cities (which will inevitably remain Democratically-controlled, for reasons I’ll explore in a moment), and make voter fraud anywhere impact the race everywhere. These and other disastrous consequences are outlined in this video and this article.
Popular Voting Kills Freedom In The States
These consequences are already being felt in state elections, where the popular vote decides the course of the entire state, regardless of how the “little people” feel. States like California, New York, and Illinois are far more diverse than their politicians make them seem. When I was interviewing for general surgery residency, I stayed with a couple in a small town in New York. They shared with me how many small town folks feel about the extremely liberal course of their state. “Many of us don’t like to go to the city. People are scared of it, or they hate it and everything it represents,” they said, referring to New York City. “Mostly because what’s decided there controls our lives here.” That sums it up pretty nicely. These folks, like my parents in Illinois, like many in small towns in California, felt disenfranchised by the popular vote system. The Big Apple drove up their tiny town’s cost of living and imposed what they felt were nearly-tyrannical state laws. And there was no way for their little population to overcome this problem. This is exactly the consequence of a national popular vote, but seen in the microcosm of a state.
The Solution: State Electoral Colleges
So why not fix this problem by replacing state popular elections with electoral votes? The population of each county, like the population of each state in the national elections, would determine the number of electoral votes it receives. So when a person in one of New York City’s five counties votes, it still counts for more electoral votes than a person in a tiny county in upstate New York. However, that tiny county in upstate New York has a bit more of a say than it used to. And politicians campaigning for any state office in New York would be forced to care about the desires of those little counties.
We could take it even further and implement this method at the local level, with county officials being forced to win the electoral votes of the majority of their towns. This method would completely change the landscape of the nation, as conservatives start to have a chance at winning in states like Illinois, which has been Democratically-controlled since 1992. They may even have a chance at winning cities like Chicago, which has been Democratically-controlled for 84 years. But I still think that’s unlikely, even with the new system.
My Take: Big Cities Breed Collectivism
Why is it likely that cities will remain Democratically-controlled? Because cities breed collectivist thinking. The above was factual, but the rest of this article is opinion. Read at your own risk. It is unnatural and unsustainable for so many humans to live as close together as they do in cities, and so they must lean on a central entity to keep order and provide services that are usually provided by the private sector or by individuals. Additionally, people living in a city must depend on others (even within the private sector) to do things for them that others can do for themselves. For instance, many New Yorkers depend on food delivery services because food storage, grocery shopping, and cooking is too inconvenient in the tiny apartments they are forced to live in (at exorbitant prices). Speaking of those exorbitant prices, cities breed high prices for things that are in short supply due to the number of people in the densely-populated area. This leaves less money in the pockets of citizens, which makes them in turn more dependent upon the government. Around 50% of a New Yorkers’ salary is taken from him in taxes! It’s no wonder Americans are moving out of cities in droves. My parents were among those fleeing from the oppression of cities to the shelter of a freer land.
There is a somewhat engineered attempt at gathering more people in cities. In Thomas Sowell’s “The Housing Boom and Bust” (an excellent, quick read) he details the decades-long history of social engineering that led to artificially-increased housing prices in metropolitan areas, and the ultimate housing crash of 2007-2008. There have been efforts by environmentalists, governments, and neighborhood associations to prevent “urban sprawl.” Though these entities have different motivations, they have all campaigned for what resulted in cities that, at the very least, leave less money in the pockets of the individuals who live there and leave them more dependent upon government. At worst, these efforts have shut low-income individuals out of the housing market, led to banks lending flexible interest rate mortgages to people, and the eventual housing crash.
Our Founding Fathers recognized the philosophical danger of cities. Thomas Jefferson wrote to James Madison, “I think our governments will remain virtuous for many centuries as long as they are chiefly agricultural; and this will be as long as there shall be vacant lands in any part of America. When they get plied upon one another in large cities, as in Europe, they will become corrupt as in Europe.” He also wrote “I view great cities as pestilential to the morals, the health and the liberties of man. True, they nourish some of the elegant arts; but the useful ones can thrive elsewhere; and less perfection in the others, with more health, virtue and freedom, would be my choice.” As just described, cities have a tendency to reduce man’s capacity for self-sufficiency. Ironically enough, it also tends to reduce his capacity for community-mindedness. Surrounded by hoards of faceless people you don’t recognize, crowding your space, it’s hard to form the small, tight-knit communities that lead to selfless charity, lifelong meaningful relationships, and a sense of belonging. Cities lead to a false sense of diversity, because there are many people from many different groups but the groups do not see each other as part of the same whole. They tend to stay in their own lane, which is the very opposite of diversity. The lonely-among-the-millions are more likely to turn to a quick and easy answer for their needs: government.
Americans have figured out that they can save a ton of money by moving out of high-tax cities. As droves of citizens flock to freedom-laden lands unhindered by laws against “urban sprawl”, with plenty of space, wholesome communities, less regulations, less taxes, less traffic, and less crime, these Americans will also discover the beauty of community, self-sufficiency, and conservative principles. They will economically thrive in the freer lands, and as the principles of conservatism plainly work in their own lives, they will realize that freedom begets freedom. They will realize that diversity is not the incidental proximity of people from different backgrounds crammed together in their own isolated communities, but rather it is people from different backgrounds who choose to work together toward common goals and interests. They will vote for freedom, because they will see its results.
Embracing State Electoral Colleges Would Transform The Nation
This article has discussed two events: the shift of the nation from urban to rural/suburban culture and the institution of a law that protects smaller communities within states. One does not have to come before the other. In fact, they are two sides of the same coin. Institution of the law would be a top-down approach, while the mass migration out of cities is the bottom-up approach. Both are founded in the rejection of city culture, which leads to authoritarian compulsion. The institution of a state electoral college law that protects small communities will remove some of the near-unchecked power of the big cities.As more Americans move out of cities, more will support the institution of a law that leads to more freedom. The Electoral College keeps us free at a national level. It’s time to free up the states, as well.