Salon: The Electoral College Is Racist, But They Should Stand Up Against Donald Trump

Posted: Dec 18, 2016 3:00 PM
Salon: The Electoral College Is Racist, But They Should Stand Up Against Donald Trump

The left wing publication Salon is now hoping the Electoral College blocks President-elect Donald Trump from officially winning the presidency tomorrow, this time by stating (again) how the system is racist. Oh, and how Trump is the avatar of white supremacy:

History often comes full circle. It can be darkly ironic as well. The Electoral College, an institution that helped to protect the white supremacist ignominy of black chattel slavery could now become the instrument used to stop Donald Trump, the avatar of contemporary white racism.

Politics and history are messy and complicated. Many people prefer simple stories about America’s past and present. In the flat version of history, the Electoral College was created in the 18th century by the Framers as a council of elders who would serve as a check on the passions of the public, because they understood how such feelings could all too easily sweep through a democracy like a forest fire if left unchecked.

In reality, the Electoral College was part of a larger compromise that tried to balance the economic interests of different regions as well as the competing desires of various elites. That compromise created a hybrid federal system of government that gave equal representation to each state (in the Senate) but also allowed for representation on the basis of population (the House of Representatives).

America was also a racialized “democracy” where several million black people would eventually be owned by whites as human property. The enslavement, exploitation, rape, and destruction of black bodies were the economic engine that drove the American economy. Thus, by both design and intent, the United States Constitution was a pro-slavery and pro-Southern document. The Electoral College was central to maintaining America’s white supremacist slavery regime.


One of the redeeming features of America’s political culture is an ability to learn from the past and to view democracy as a work in progress. This long arc of progress does bend, sometimes upwards and at other times downward. But in total the United States has shown a remarkable ability to expand its understanding of democracy and personal liberty — even though the election of Donald Trump represents a significant deterioration.

In these dark moments, hopes and dreams are powerful acts of personal resistance. To that end, we can hope that the Electoral College will stop Donald Trump when it convenes in the state capitals on Dec. 19. Under the Constitution, the electors are free to stand against the bigotry and racism of Trump.

Uh no—not all the electors are free to vote as they please. Though its constitutionality is in question, 29 states have binding laws in which electors must vote for whoever won the state. Those who resist or refuse to abide by their states’ respective election laws are removed and replaced, with the possibility of charges being filed against them. So, it’s a rather futile exercise. The small cadre of electors who want to block Trump, Hamilton Electors, have tried to challenge these laws in the courts and lost.

The article also cites how Thomas Jefferson won the 1800 election due to the skew in the Electoral College thanks to the slave states. Actually, Jefferson won due to winning the cities, and he also won New York. If Adams had won New York’s 12 electoral votes at the time, he would have won re-election. So, let’s just take a chill pill on the whole slave state skew theory.

Trump will be president, but here’s the thing that liberals seem to forget. They can try and boot Trump in four years. This isn’t the end. Permanent victories are not possible in this country since public opinion changes constantly. Instead, they’re whining about how Clinton got more popular votes (which doesn’t matter), racism Russia, hacking, the FBI, and James Comey.

(H/T RedState)