The United States of America is at a crossroads. We are currently as close as we have ever been to abandoning our form of government for something other than what the Founding Fathers left us. Some would make the case that we have already passed a point of no return and that we can not return to those founding principles. I like to think that there is still hope and that we are not too far gone.
The way that our founders designed the Presidential elections was by using an electoral college instead of a simple popular vote to decide who gets to be President.
The Electoral College consists of 538 "electors". The reason they did this was because they had no intention of creating a simple "majority rule" democracy. The founding fathers were students of history and the knew that "pure democracies" do not work but rather they implode.
In a "pure" democracy, a simple majority ends up terrorizing the rest of the country, therefore our founders gave us a "representative republic" or a "democratic republic" whereby the people still had the power to make their voice heard but that also prevented a simple majority from dominating the whole.
The Presidential election is comprised into two parts, the first part is conducted by popular vote during the primaries. The second part utilizes the electoral college. Again, the reason for this is to assure that the most populous states do not get to dominate over the less densely populated states.
Each state is allotted a certain number of "electors", depending on their size, and the winning candidate must secure at least 270 electoral votes.
In 2016, Donald J. Trump won 304 electoral votes compared to Hillary Clinton's 227, however, Hillary Clinton won the popular vote 65,853,514 to 62,984,828.
The fact that Hillary won the popular election but Donald Trump became President provided enough of a reason for much of the population to stand in opposition to President Trump. Their thinking was that 'since more people voted against him than they did for him then he should not be able to have the ability to advance his agenda like previous presidents'.
We have watched that justification play out for nearly four years. Resistance in the media, resistance in the Executive branch, resistance in Congress, resistance in the FBI, resistance in the DoJ, resistance in Big Business, resistance in the Republican party, resistance, resistance , resistance.
Imagine for a moment if Donald Trump had won both the electoral vote and the popular vote. Some, not all, but definitely some of that resistance would not have existed.
Now imagine if Trump had won the popular vote by more than 5 million votes. This would have certainly put Trump in a position where he would be able to say that he had a "mandate" from the American people.
Below is a chart that shows the popular vote numbers from 1980 through 2016. Presidents who garnered more than a 5 million advantage in the popular vote have been the most successful in advancing their agenda.
Ronald Reagan's second term gave him a 16 million vote advantage in the popular vote. Could you imagine Donald Trump with that much of a vote difference?
Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton, & Barack Obama each secured the popular vote by more than 5 million votes in at least one of their two terms. George H. W. Bush also achieved this in 1988 against with 7 million more votes than Michael Dukkakis however, George H. W. Bush shot himself in the foot with his "Read my lips" speech and his "New World Order" slip fo the tongue.
Your vote DOES matter. Regardless of whether you live in a very blue state, a very red state of somewhere in between. The popular vote may not matter to elect the president, but the popular vote absolutely matters when it comes to how strong the president can be in implementing his agenda.
If Donald Trump were to win the electoral vote in 2020 but fail to win the popular vote then his enemies in government will only intensify their efforts to diminish his MAGA agenda. However, if Trump was to pull off an electoral victory accompanied by a 5 million popular vote victory then the MAGA agenda not only survives, it thrives and the cowards in the Republican party will be in notice.
What began in June of 2015 when Donald Trump came down those escalators will either live or die on Novemebr 3rd and it is your vote that will make the difference.
*Mandates marked in blue
|Year||Rep.||# Votes||Dem||# Votes||Difference||Total Votes|
|2016||D. Trump||62,984,828||H. Clinton||65,853,514||2,868,686||128,838,342|
|2012||M. Romney||60,933,504||B. Obama||65,915,795||4,982,291||126,849,299|
|2008||J. McCain||59,948,323||B. Obama||69,498,516||9,550,193||129,446,839|
|2004||G. W. Bush||62,040,610||J. Kerry||59,028,439||3,012,171||121,069,049|
|2000||G. W. Bush||50,460,110||Al Gore||49,916,294||543,816||100,376,404|
|1996||B. Dole||39,198,755||B. Clinton||47,400,125||8,201,370||86,598,880|
|1992||G. H.W. Bush||39,104,550||B. Clinton||44,909,806||5,805,256||84,014,356|
|1988||G. H.W. Bush||48,886,597||M. Dukkakis||41,809,476||7,077,121||90,696,073|
|1984||R. Reagan||54,455,472||W. Mondale||37,577,352||16,878,120||92,032,824|
|1980||R. Reagan||43,903,230||J. Carter||35,480,115||8,423,115||79,383,345|