How does voting in the US election work?

10320387414_ee37fb1c44_o
Image: Stephen Melkisethian

With the race for the White House being tight, it is crucial to understand how votes are counted.

In order to become president, one must reach 270 electoral votes.

But what is an electoral vote?


Each state has a certain amount of electoral votes depending on the population size of the state.

For example, California has 55 districts and therefore 55 electoral votes, while several smaller states only have 3 electoral votes.

These electoral votes as effectively the states’ voting power.

Say everyone in California votes (everyone meaning anyone who chooses to vote) and after being counted there is a 60% majority to the Democrats.

The Democrats will get all of California’s 55 electoral votes moving Clinton closer to her required 270.

But if Texas (38 electoral votes) and Tennessee (11 electoral votes) both vote a Republican majority, then Trump will get 49 electoral votes.

Almost every state works in this winner-takes-all system.

The only exceptions are Maine and Nebraska who dish their votes out proportionally.

In the event of a tie, the House of Representatives and the Senate vote for the President and Vice President.

30264104445_4fbd716ec2_o
Image: Prachatai.

Still Haven’t Quite Got it? 

TED-Ed has a video run-down of how the American President will be elected.

Advertisements

Tell us what you think

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s