The Electoral College Primer
Most Americans remain only dimly aware of the operations of the electoral college and feel little concern over a system that seems to be working. Yet our archaic electoral college has the potential to thwart popular will, warn Lawrence Longley and Neal Peirce, two leading national authorities on the subject. In this complete guide to the electoral college, Longley and Peirce explain how the U.S. electoral college was created, how it has evolved, how it has influenced various "crisis" elections (including 1992), how it works today, and how it might affect future elections.
The electoral college is a "system of disastrous failings", the authors say, and it could lead to a political and constitutional crisis. To highlight the shortcomings of the system, they create a fictitious, but not impossible, 1996 election scenario in which neither Senator Robert Dole nor President Bill Clinton can claim a victory in the electoral college. A surprising chain of events set off by a strong third party eventually confers the presidency on the Speaker of the House -- a man who received not a single vote in the popular election. This useful handbook will provide all the information a citizen needs to understand our baffling electoral college.