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Free Research Paper on Electoral College

Based on the election results in last year’s presidential campaigns, the old ways are not always the best. National elections have many entities that are integral to the overall picture of an honest and complete election. There are over 90,000 polling locations across the nation that do not all use the same methodology for collecting and/or tabulating the ballots. Many feel that not all the votes were counted in Florida, Illinois, and Arizona. Many feel that the election laws for each state are not fair or do not specifically address close elections. Many feel the Electoral College is an antiquated system that needs to be modernized.

The obvious modern day method to improve on election returns is through computer technology. This does bring up many issues that some Americans hold very dear. Some of the issues such as privacy, accessibility, digital divide, fraud, and identification are some of the first that need to be resolved before any major technological advance for online voting can proceed.

Most of the procedures at polling locations have not changed in decades. In one method, the ballot is inserted into a book that has all the selections listed and a simple card punch stylus through the selected candidate makes the selection. The other method has the voter using a lead pencil instead of a stylus to mark the ballot much like a Scantron card. Both of these major voting techniques require the ballot to be tabulated by a computerized device. There is no association between the voters showing their voter registration and the ballot dropped into the box.

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The two major competitors in computerized voting both have experience in Internet security technology. This experience may be fine for online hackers looking to make a dollar, but could their technology withstand foreign intervention of unlimited resources looking to effect the outcome of a presidential election? Election fraud inside the United States borders by so-called Americans is a widespread problem predominately on the left coast and in the Chicago area according to news wires on the latest nation wide election. These reports stated that dead people showing up to the registration table to vote that probably voted under their real name earlier in the day. Technology would certainly need to address this kind of fanaticism before moving onto an online voting platform.

The Electoral College was the brainchild of a group of founding fathers called “the Committee of Eleven” which had the undertaking of proposing ideas that would satisfy some of the smaller less populated states. These states worried about not having an equal voice in presidential elections and even held out for signing the Constitution until provisions were made. Each state was given two electors and proportional numbers of electors based on the population determined in the Census. This way, no heavily populated states with similar thinking like Massachusetts and New York could carry the election.

Unlike the present voting machines, the Electoral College still has a vital place in the Constitution. This became evident in the last presidential election where one party scored heavy on the left coast, the northeast coast, and most of the major cities. The other party won two-thirds of the states, the majority of the land mass and rightfully so, the presidency. For the interim, a compromise to online voting would be to offer the voter the option to use the old booths or the computer. Any computerized voting would be accessed from the voting locations only on a LAN system to minimize fraud. The local polling locations would report in the same manner as they do now. This effort would not tie into the Internet at all. No groups or ethnic background would have an advantage due to accessibility or training. Like the Constitutional delegates from the past demanding a fair representation in the ballot box, all legal voters should have a right to equal access.

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