Why The Electoral College Ruins Democracy | Adam Ruins Everything

Why The Electoral College Ruins Democracy | Adam Ruins Everything

August 15, 2019 99 By Stanley Isaacs


(upbeat music) – Every four years, we hear
the words “Electoral College” over and over again. But we never talk about what a ridiculous, and frankly undemocratic
system it really is. The Electoral College
gives vastly more power to different voters
depending on what state they live in. – Bigger states. – Nope, smaller states. If your state has less people, you have more power. Not too may people live in Wyoming. But they have three electoral votes, or one for ever 135,000 voters. California is packed with people, but they have 55 electoral votes, or one for every 411,000 voters. And that’s totally out of proportion, because it means it takes three
times as many Californians to earn one electoral vote, giving voters in Wyoming
three times the power in the Electoral College. As a result of this system, your vote could count for less just because of where you live. Infographics rule, right? – Yeah, well, it does seem unfair, but who cares if the
Electoral College is kooky? I’m kooky. I have two turtles. – Okay, well, it gets worse, because the Electoral College also creates swing states. – Oh, I love the swing states. They make election night so exciting. Kind of like when my
turtles move a little. – What? Exciting? I think the fact that the
entire election is determined by just a handful of states is really messed up. For one thing, it means
presidential candidates can ignore almost the entire country. Hello, America. I’m Adam Conover. And I’m running for President of Florida, Pennsylvania, and Ohio. And boy, do I love Florida oranges, Philadelphia cheesesteaks, and whatever you people like in Ohio. The rest of the country
can go suck a big one! – People in Ohio like Lebron James. – Who? I don’t know many actors. Anyway, swing states have so much power, that in recent elections,
up to 80% of all the votes cast in America had no
impact on the outcome. That includes your vote
here in California. – Well, some states are red states, and some states are blue states. That’s the way America is. – Actually, most states are pretty purple. In 2012, over 3 million
Texans voted Democrat. – I love barbecue, Blake
Shelton, and abortions, y’all. – And almost five million
Californians voted Republican. – Surf’s all, y’all. You know what else needs to go up? Border wall with Mexico, dude. – If electoral votes were
awarded proportionately, in 2012, 16 of Texas’s
electoral votes would have gone to Obama, and 20 of California’s
would have gone to Romney. But in our winner-take-all system, anyone who wants to vote for
their state’s losing party might as well just stay home. – Oh, bummer. – Okay, everybody, get out. I can’t listen to any more. – How about we all vote? – Wait, who are all these people? – Oh, these are the electors. They’re the people who
actually vote for President. – I thought the Electoral
College was just a name? – Nope. When we vote,
we’re actually just picking our state’s electors. Then, those electors get together and cast their ballots for President. – But who are they? – Oh. Mostly retired
politicians and party flacks. – I’m the governor’s rich cousin! – Okay, Mr. Smarty. That’s just a technicality. They have to vote for who we choose. – Actually, in 24 states, they can vote for whoever they want. And that’s happened over 80 times. In 2004, an elector in
Minnesota cast his vote for someone named John Ewards. Which was almost the name of John Kerry’s running mate. – Did you mean John Edwards? – Yes. I may have a drinking problem. – That actually happened? – That actually happened. That elector’s vote
didn’t go to John Kerry. It went to the guy running
for Vice President. The Electoral College
is such a bad system, people have been trying to abolish it for centuries, but so far, it’s been
politically impossible. – Okay. Well, thank you
for the information. I cannot believe our beautiful system has become so messed up. – Oh, no, the founding fathers designed our system this messed up. – Alright, hold on a minute, young man. You do not talk about the founding fathers like that. They were brilliant men who fought hard for my right to vote. – Actually, the founding
fathers didn’t think you should be able to vote at all. Or me. Or most Americans. Let’s go back in time
and I’ll prove it to you. (screaming and electrical sparking) Hey, I’m Adam from CollegeHumor. If you like that clip,
make sure to check out my new show, “Adam Ruins Everything.” Tuesdays at 10PM on TruTV. It’s gonna ruin your
Tuesday, but trust me. The rest of your week will be fine.