In all of the furor by the supporters of democracy over the Electoral College, its mutilation and contravention by earlier supporters of democracy has been ignored. First, the Twelfth Amendment removed the Vice-Presidency as a runner-up position. Then the democracies in the States supplanted the process of republican selection with their democratic elections in decidedly non-republican and, thus, easily “gerrymandered” election districts. Finally, the Electors were deprived by binding of the independence which their status, as non-officeholders, was clearly intended to establish. It is my contention that we first restore the Electoral College to its republican form before considering any proposal to remove it.
By creating a ballot to elect a Vice-President, the Twelfth Amendment denied the peoples of the United State a consensus in the executive branch. Its repeal would have had, in the 2016 election, Mr. Trump and Ms. Clinton as the two major candidates for the Electoral College to consider. As runner-up, Ms. Clinton would have been serving as Vice-President, defending her supporters’ interests in the executive branch instead of inciting “resistance” against it and division in our Union. That such a consensus did not occur is the fault of the Twelfth Amendment, not of the Electoral College.
A republican form of government is based on each communist household of a republic sending delegates to represent its interests and views in the stewardship of the public matter. From there, republics serve as members of a federal union, as republics of republics, as it were. Democracy, on the other hand, exploits majority votes to rule over each person, regardless of households, republics or federal unions. If the form of a government in a State was republican and bicameral, as the Constitution assumes in Article IV, Section 4, and Article I, Section 2, Clause 1, we would expect that the Electors by population would be selected by town governments, just as the members of a State Assembly would be, while the Electors by State, being fixed at two, would be selected by the State government. Such a form of government would ensure municipal cohesiveness in the selection of the Electors and Representatives and thereby obviate the problem of gerrymandering which plagues democracies. Again, the fault for this political manipulation does not lie with the Electoral College.
The more easily remedied corruption of the Electoral College is to unbind the Electors. Each State can or, at least, should do this by legislation. If any State had bound its Electors in their constitution, the qualifications of its Electors are problematic, due to the members of their Assembly not having to take a referendum for each vote they make. Either way, the form of the remedy, under our democratically corrupted States, would be to put the names of the Electors on each general election ballot, instead of the names of Presidential and Vice-Presidential candidates. The Electors would then be campaigning and debating locally. This would give their voters an idea of what candidate their Elector might elect, even if that candidate was not advanced by the major political machines. Such Electors might have elected Bernie Sanders as President and Donald Trump as Vice-President in 2016, with Senator Sanders forthrightly running as a Socialist.
In this brief essay, I can only give an inkling of the political changes which would come from a restoration of the Electoral College to its original form and purpose. Yet, even from these impressions, it should be clear that great reforms can be accomplished by that restoration. Indeed, the possibility of such reforms would be forever lost if we were to eliminate the Electoral College and corrupt our country thoroughly with a democracy. We ought to first make that reform which is most immediate, requiring neither a Constitutional amendment nor a restructuring of the body politic in the States. We should unbind the Electors and let them do their job as they themselves see fit.