The Process of Presidential Election:.
The Electoral College is a system created by the founding fathers of the Constitution of the United States in 1787 ("Electoral College"). Rather than a direct election by the American public, a group of electors comes together every four years to vote for the President and Vice-President of the United States. This group consists of delegates who were popularly elected by the American public.
Most Americans do not understand the Electoral College process (The Electoral College). In fact, the common assumption is that they are voting directly for the President and Vice-President. The actual role the American voting public plays in the election process is to vote for a slate of electors who will represent them. While these electors customarily pledge their support to the candidate in their own party, there is no law against voting with their free will ("Electoral College").
The body of electors who determine the President of the United States is equal to the number of members in the House of Representatives and members of the Senate along with 3 appointed representatives for the District of Columbia. Altogether, there are 538 electors (Procedural Guide). A President must receive at least 270 votes out of the 538 electoral votes to be elected to office. According to the 12th amendment of the Constitution, if no one receives the majority vote, the House of Representatives (who are .
considered closest to the voting public) decide by election the next President. Then the Senate elects the Vice-President. There have only been two occasions in which the House .
Of Representatives had to make the final decision of President, the elections of Thomas Jefferson in 1801 and John Quincy Adams in 1825 (The Electoral College). .
The electoral system that has served our nation for over two hundred years "maintains a federal system of government and representation" (Kimberling).