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Peter Robinson In What Ways Does the Electoral College System Influence the Campaign Strategies and Priorities of US Presidential Candidates Outline the Criticisms that have been made of the Electoral College and how they can be overcome The process of electing a president in the US is not as simple as declaring the winner to be the candidate with the most votes Each state is granted a number of Electoral College votes which are to be awarded to the candidate that polls the most votes The number of votes each state receives is determined by the number of seats it commands in the House of Representatives plus 2 for its senators eg California receives 2 for its senators plus 52 for its representatives giving it 54 Electoral College votes Each state receives a minimum of 3 votes even states with a very low population eg Alaska The EC votes are then counted and the candidate getting 270 or above wins the presidential election Understandably this election process has its strengths and weaknesses One of its main criticisms is that it can seriously affect the way in which a party campaigns in certain areas of the country Because of the nature of the Electoral College system the winning party in a state receives all the EC votes meaning the second or third placed parties receive nothing It therefore makes financial sense for parties not to campaign strongly in states which always tend to go to the opposition it would be like the Labour party mounting an expensive campaign in Louth and the surrounding area For example Republicans would not campaign in Massachusetts and similarly the Democrats would not campaign in Utah This means that there is a lot of one-partyism not only is this very undemocratic but also it does not allow supporters of a party to have a real say in how they are governed eg Democrats living in Utah would
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