13 votes

The electoral college doesn't need to be abolished. We just need to apportion it. Discuss!

46 comments

  1. [34]
    Pilgrim (edited ) Link
    I see the sentiment bandied about that we must get rid of the electoral college. I think that's a bit drastic - I tend toward moderation in (some of) my views. What has been done for the first 100...

    I see the sentiment bandied about that we must get rid of the electoral college. I think that's a bit drastic - I tend toward moderation in (some of) my views. What has been done for the first 100 years or so of our nation was to increase the number of representatives as the population grew. That is until 1929 when rural interests capped it at 435, and that's where it's sat since then.

    Should we adopt the Wyoming rule? Described as:

    There have been occasional proposals to add more seats to the House to reflect population growth. One is the so-called “Wyoming Rule,” which would make the population of the smallest state (currently Wyoming) the basis for the representation ratio. Depending on which variant of that rule were adopted, the House would have had 545 to 547 members following the 2010 census.

    That'd take us from 435 to >500 members, with the effect being more populous states would have more representatives to, you know, represent the large number of people living there. Right now, voters in rural areas have disproportionate representation - which is often the motivator behind the cry to "abolish the electoral college."

    EDIT: So I didn't do as good of job as I'd have liked linking House apportionment to the electoral college. The number of electors in the electoral college is a combination of the number of Senators (2 per state) and the number of Representatives. The effect of adding more members to the House or Representatives would be to increase the number of electors in populous states. See the wiki page for more info: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Electoral_College

    Right now a state like California gets 55 electors, 53 from Representatives and two from Senators. Using the "Wyoming Rule," which bases the numbers of Representatives on the population of the least populous state, California would have 72 electors - 70 from Representatives and two from Senators.

    I'm getting my population #s from here:
    http://worldpopulationreview.com/states/california-population/
    http://worldpopulationreview.com/states/wyoming-population/

    To me this seems like a way to fix the system that's in line with the intentions of the founding fathers.

    4 votes
    1. [9]
      NaraVara Link Parent
      I don't understand why you're talking about the Electoral College and then jumping to Congressional apportionment. Yes, the EC's size is pegged to the size of Congress, but as long as you're...

      I don't understand why you're talking about the Electoral College and then jumping to Congressional apportionment. Yes, the EC's size is pegged to the size of Congress, but as long as you're changing the EC to be more reflective of the popular will, why constrain your imagination to adjusting the size of congress instead?

      The motivation here just seems to be protecting the status quo out of fear of change. If you think the Presidency should be elected based on a national constituency rather than some weird accounting hack pulled off by rural states, then just make it a national popular vote? Why bother with these administrative fictions?

      The Electoral College was never even designed as a way to privilege rural voters. In the Constitution's original conception, the Presidency was a largely administrative role and Congress was considered to be the truest representative of the popular will. The Electoral College existed because the Framers didn't think individual voters, in a time before mass media, would ever be able to get to know the Presidential candidates well enough to have an informed opinion. It was a safety valve to have a managable number of delegates to represent their constituencies who could speak with and be informed about the candidate and make the decision that way.

      But once you give up on the idea that you need the layer of delegation, then you've functionally rendedred the EC construct itself vestigial. Why keep it then?

      The framers made a hell of an allowance for rural states in the form of the United States Senate. Issues impacting rural voters are dramatically overrepresented in the Senate and this is only going to get more and more pronounced over time. As long as that exists, there is no reason to further harden the stranglehold that these low-density states' interests have on our politics.

      Now if the goal is to make Congress more representative that's a different story. But in that case, we probably need to have a more substantive revision than just adding ~70 new seats to reflect how population demographics have actually changed.

      14 votes
      1. [4]
        gyrozeppeli Link Parent
        Do you have any proof of this? Rural states are disproportionately represented–by conscious design. Where do you go from that to "the stranglehold that these low-density states' interests have on...

        The framers made a hell of an allowance for rural states in the form of the United States Senate. Issues impacting rural voters are dramatically overrepresented in the Senate and this is only going to get more and more pronounced over time. As long as that exists, there is no reason to further harden the stranglehold that these low-density states' interests have on our politics.

        Do you have any proof of this? Rural states are disproportionately represented–by conscious design. Where do you go from that to "the stranglehold that these low-density states' interests have on our politics"?

        Also, what is your solution, then? A national vote? So you mean highly populous areas would instead have a stranglehold on politics, giving less populous states no representation whatsoever? After all, why waste time on politics for states where no people except some farmers live?

        1 vote
        1. NaraVara (edited ) Link Parent
          Proof of what? That rural states are overrepresented and exercise excessive veto power? Just look at the Farm Bill. It's not exactly controversial to assert that governments should represent the...

          Do you have any proof of this? Rural states are disproportionately represented–by conscious design. Where do you go from that to "the stranglehold that these low-density states' interests have on our politics"?

          Proof of what? That rural states are overrepresented and exercise excessive veto power? Just look at the Farm Bill.

          So you mean highly populous areas would instead have a stranglehold on politics

          It's not exactly controversial to assert that governments should represent the interests of people rather than "areas." What exactly is the logic in deciding some people should wield more power simply because they have fewer neighbors?

          It may have made more sense when geography was a stronger determinant of economic activity, but that's not really the case anymore. In the case of states like Wyoming, a lot of the "permanent residents" voting there don't even live there full time. They're just rich folks who buy property out West because they want to cosplay as ranchers without dealing with any of the economic realities that make it hard.

          After all, why waste time on politics for states where no people except some farmers live?

          A.) The Senate still exists.

          B.) Nobody spends time campaigning in those states anyway because they're lock-ins for the GOP. Tallying votes by the state level functionally disenfranchises rural voters in any state that has a big city as well as urban voters in any state that's largely agricultural. A rural Illinoisan or Marylander probably has different concerns than a Montanan or Dakotan both due to their proximity to large cities that dominate the local economy and their local geographies and economies. Meanwhile, a college town in Montana probably has different concerns than a coastal city. Right now, none of these groups get much representation.

          3 votes
        2. alyaza (edited ) Link Parent
          yes, because that's entirely reasonable and how it should be in the presidential election (and probably the senate, actually!). the idea that rural, small states with less people in them than...

          So you mean highly populous areas would instead have a stranglehold on politics, giving less populous states no representation whatsoever? After all, why waste time on politics for states where no people except some farmers live?

          yes, because that's entirely reasonable and how it should be in the presidential election (and probably the senate, actually!). the idea that rural, small states with less people in them than singular cities (the city i live in is literally larger than the entire population of wyoming) should somehow get this disproportionate impact just because if we didn't give them it they'd be theoretically irrelevant is bizarre as shit to me. it's not even accurate since in a popular vote system every state would have influence (because voters in that state would have a reason to turn out when under the electoral college system they don't and therefore couldn't be ignored), but even if you don't account for that, it makes no sense to have small and rural states have a strangle on politics when they're the significant minority of the population. that's inherently undemocratic, just as gerrymandering is inherently undemocratic, and if people take issue with things like wisconsin's state house electing 66 republicans when democrats won the popular vote 53-44, it makes no sense to be fine with the electoral college which renders how many people vote for you irrelevant if you don't win an arbitrary set of states to hit an equally arbitrary line in the sand of states that say "you're popular enough with the "right" sets of people to be president".

          2 votes
        3. Yugioh_Mishima Link Parent
          "Legislators represent people, not trees or acres. Legislators are elected by voters, not farms or cities or economic interests." - Chief Justice Earl Warren in Reynolds v. Sims

          So you mean highly populous areas would instead have a stranglehold on politics, giving less populous states no representation whatsoever?

          "Legislators represent people, not trees or acres. Legislators are elected by voters, not farms or cities or economic interests." - Chief Justice Earl Warren in Reynolds v. Sims

      2. [4]
        Pilgrim Link Parent
        I updated my post to better explain. Well not until 1929 that is...but yes, I agree it should not be about that I prefer a method doesn't involve restructuring a pretty workable system. The broken...

        I don't understand why you're talking about the Electoral College and then jumping to Congressional apportionment.

        I updated my post to better explain.

        The Electoral College was never even designed as a way to privilege rural voters.

        Well not until 1929 that is...but yes, I agree it should not be about that

        Yes, the EC's size is pegged to the size of Congress, but as long as you're changing the EC to be more reflective of the popular will, why constrain your imagination to adjusting the size of congress instead?

        I prefer a method doesn't involve restructuring a pretty workable system. The broken part (IMO) was capping the number of Representatives in 1929.

        1. alyaza (edited ) Link Parent
          personally, i would say that a system where someone who was the overwhelming choice of the voters can still lose because they didn't win what might as well be an arbitrary array of the "right"...

          I prefer a method doesn't involve restructuring a pretty workable system. The broken part (IMO) was capping the number of Representatives in 1929.

          personally, i would say that a system where someone who was the overwhelming choice of the voters can still lose because they didn't win what might as well be an arbitrary array of the "right" states with the right number of delegates is not a good, workable system. this apparently is a pretty popular sentiment, because this is a system that basically no other country in the entire rest of fucking humanity uses to elect a president--even the ones which are federated like america is. unless you get rid of that, there is no amount of "reform" you can slap on the electoral college to somehow make it a less shit, less unrepresentative, less fundamentally unreasonable system in the modern era--and if you do that, you might as well just abolish it because there's no reason to have it then.

          5 votes
        2. [2]
          NaraVara Link Parent
          Why not? Simply tallying the national popular vote is a simpler and more workable system that better achieves the goals we're aiming at. What's the point in keeping something that adds no value...

          I prefer a method doesn't involve restructuring a pretty workable system.

          Why not? Simply tallying the national popular vote is a simpler and more workable system that better achieves the goals we're aiming at. What's the point in keeping something that adds no value just to have it?

          It's not even like people have any ceremonial or ritualistic attachment to the Electoral College. Your typical person on the street likely already thinks the Presidency is elected by the popular vote anyway. The Electoral College does not spark joy. We should thank it for its service and put it in the trash bin.

          4 votes
          1. Pilgrim Link Parent
            You make a compelling case I have to admit

            You make a compelling case I have to admit

    2. [16]
      Ephemere Link Parent
      I'm sympathetic to the argument that we should be moderate in how we change things which have worked, more or less, for some time. That all said, what exactly is the point of the electoral college...

      I'm sympathetic to the argument that we should be moderate in how we change things which have worked, more or less, for some time.

      That all said, what exactly is the point of the electoral college if it just roughly approximates the popular vote?

      2 votes
      1. [15]
        Pilgrim Link Parent
        Here are arguments presented on the wiki page (not necessarily my POV though): Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Electoral_College Of those, I think what I find more resonant is...

        Here are arguments presented on the wiki page (not necessarily my POV though):

        Supporters of the Electoral College argue that it is fundamental to American federalism, that it requires candidates to appeal to voters outside large cities, increases the political influence of small states, discourages the excessive growth of political parties and preserves the two-party system, and makes the electoral outcome appear more legitimate than that of a nationwide popular vote.

        Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Electoral_College

        Of those, I think what I find more resonant is that it increases the political influence of smaller states, and when we're talking about governing bodies I don't think it's entirely fair to say, as a nation, that we're not going to listen to X or Y state just because they don't have a ton of people.

        2 votes
        1. [4]
          spctrvl Link Parent
          I feel as though that runs counter to the basic principles of democracy. Why should someone's opinion and vote count for more just because they live in a rural area? And if we're going to reject...

          Of those, I think what I find more resonant is that it increases the political influence of smaller states, and when we're talking about governing bodies I don't think it's entirely fair to say, as a nation, that we're not going to listen to X or Y state just because they don't have a ton of people.

          I feel as though that runs counter to the basic principles of democracy. Why should someone's opinion and vote count for more just because they live in a rural area? And if we're going to reject the principle of one person one vote, why is it that rural voters are the group we've chosen to get extra votes? There are countless small groups with correspondingly small influence on democratic government, disabled people, religious and ethnic minorities, the LGBT community, and they don't get any amplified voting power for their minority status.

          2 votes
          1. [2]
            TheInvaderZim Link Parent
            This is a contradiction that the US is built on, though, and it gives an undue amount of power to far too many people for it to be abolished entirely at this point. That said, there is an argument...

            This is a contradiction that the US is built on, though, and it gives an undue amount of power to far too many people for it to be abolished entirely at this point. That said, there is an argument to be made for the minority needing a voice when it comes to these things. Take northern california being entirely at the mercy of Los Angeles, for example.

            2 votes
            1. Pilgrim Link Parent
              Thank you. I've been struggling to find the right words.

              Thank you. I've been struggling to find the right words.

          2. Pilgrim Link Parent
            Well the founding fathers were very aware of the “tyranny of the majority” and built a number of systems around it - filibuster being an example, separations of powers, electoral college, etc....

            Well the founding fathers were very aware of the “tyranny of the majority” and built a number of systems around it - filibuster being an example, separations of powers, electoral college, etc.

            Consider for example some outlandish situation where the people living in the Western US wanted to double taxes for everyone living in the Eastern US...democracy is a lot more than majority rule.

            1 vote
        2. [10]
          gyrozeppeli Link Parent
          It is absolutely fair. Politicians have limited time, why would they waste it on states that could give them next to nothing in terms of support? Let me remind you that in the 2016 election, a...

          I don't think it's entirely fair to say, as a nation, that we're not going to listen to X or Y state just because they don't have a ton of people.

          It is absolutely fair. Politicians have limited time, why would they waste it on states that could give them next to nothing in terms of support?

          Let me remind you that in the 2016 election, a certain candidate didn't even visit certain states. And that's just visiting–what do you think will happen with real issues and representation?

          1. [6]
            Pilgrim Link Parent
            That sort of ignores the whole concept of 50 untied states though, doesn't it? If small states don't feel represented then why would they stay in the union?

            That sort of ignores the whole concept of 50 untied states though, doesn't it? If small states don't feel represented then why would they stay in the union?

            1 vote
            1. [4]
              Akir Link Parent
              Because they are dependant on the federal government. I did some searching and found a pretty good article about it:...

              Because they are dependant on the federal government. I did some searching and found a pretty good article about it: https://www.gillettenewsrecord.com/news/wyoming/article_e9b925fc-8518-5326-a4db-bf5c01d67933.html

              1 vote
              1. [3]
                Pilgrim Link Parent
                That's certainly a good practical answer - but I was more thinking about it from the standpoint of the ideals our country is founded on.

                That's certainly a good practical answer - but I was more thinking about it from the standpoint of the ideals our country is founded on.

                1 vote
                1. [2]
                  Akir Link Parent
                  To be frank, that viewpoint is irrelevant. When was the last time someone considered themselves to be antifederalist? Sure, politicians spout out "States Rights" when it suits them, but nobody...

                  To be frank, that viewpoint is irrelevant. When was the last time someone considered themselves to be antifederalist? Sure, politicians spout out "States Rights" when it suits them, but nobody wants true independance. If we were actually a collection of sovereign nations, we would have been working on finding a way to kick out states like Wyoming.

                  1. Pilgrim Link Parent
                    I believe that voters living in those states would disagree with your statement

                    I believe that voters living in those states would disagree with your statement

                    1 vote
            2. Monkinto Link Parent
              Just take a look at all of the problems surrounding brexit and then consider that those states are likely completely surrounded by the rest of the country. Even if they wanted to it would create...

              Just take a look at all of the problems surrounding brexit and then consider that those states are likely completely surrounded by the rest of the country. Even if they wanted to it would create massive economic problems for them on top of the fact that they would have to deal with the citizenship status of everyone born out of state and all the people born in state that left.

              1 vote
          2. [3]
            Pilgrim Link Parent
            Tagging @Akir OK so I was thinking about this more. Here's a great and timely example of a scenario where states should have equal say: flood insurance. Almost all flood insurance in the US is...

            Tagging @Akir

            OK so I was thinking about this more. Here's a great and timely example of a scenario where states should have equal say: flood insurance.

            Almost all flood insurance in the US is subsidized by the US government (i.e. tax payers). Now, as a mid-Westerner, I don't particularly care to fund someone to rebuild in the same flood plains on the coast, over and over. But people in states like Florida or Georgia may very well be interested in that. So, in short, the electoral college acts as a bit of a check on geographically motivated majority rule.

            1. [2]
              Akir Link Parent
              I'm not entirely sure what you are trying to argue in this case. The electoral college is used to elect the President and Vice President. Budgeting for flood insurance would fall under the...

              I'm not entirely sure what you are trying to argue in this case.

              The electoral college is used to elect the President and Vice President. Budgeting for flood insurance would fall under the umbrella of the legislature.

              1. Pilgrim Link Parent
                Yeah... to be honest I'm not 100% sure either.

                Yeah... to be honest I'm not 100% sure either.

    3. Heichou Link Parent
      I've wanted a revision of the electoral college for a while but for whatever reason haven't been able to properly articulate my reasoning. Thank you for helping me out with that haha

      I've wanted a revision of the electoral college for a while but for whatever reason haven't been able to properly articulate my reasoning. Thank you for helping me out with that haha

      1 vote
    4. [7]
      Greg Link Parent
      Not an expert (nor an American), but I thought congressional respresentation was a separate issue to the electoral college? The arguments in the article for more population = more representatives...

      Not an expert (nor an American), but I thought congressional respresentation was a separate issue to the electoral college? The arguments in the article for more population = more representatives seem very sensible to me, but I don't see how it would fix the issue of electoral votes being distributed as a per-state winner takes all.

      The bumps might be smoothed out a bit, but you could still end up with Presidents who lost the popular vote, which doesn't strike me as especially logical.

      1. [6]
        Pilgrim Link Parent
        I updated my post to better explain. I hope that helps. Let me know if not.

        I updated my post to better explain. I hope that helps. Let me know if not.

        1. [5]
          Greg Link Parent
          That does make things clearer, however the per-state winner takes all problem still exists: you end up with a lot of safe states where dissenting votes are essentially hopeless, and one or two...

          That does make things clearer, however the per-state winner takes all problem still exists: you end up with a lot of safe states where dissenting votes are essentially hopeless, and one or two swing states where everything goes down.

          To take a random example, Arkansas had a 60/33 Rep/Dem split - but all 6 electoral votes went to the Republicans; unless you allocate them in proportion to the vote share within a state, improving the number or distribution between states doesn't really help - you can still take the presidency while losing the popular vote. And if you do allocate them in proportion, it seems easier to just use the popular vote directly without the extra steps...

          2 votes
          1. masochist Link Parent
            This issue is separate to the electoral college, though it's manifested both at the level of the States (thus the electoral college and its winner take all nature as you described) and at the...

            however the per-state winner takes all problem still exists:

            This issue is separate to the electoral college, though it's manifested both at the level of the States (thus the electoral college and its winner take all nature as you described) and at the level of the nation itself (where whoever gets the most electoral college votes wins, even if it's not an expression of the nation's will embodied in the popular vote). This is what's known as the first past the post electoral system.

            1 vote
          2. [3]
            Pilgrim Link Parent
            Well yes but it wouldn’t be America if it made too much sense. Historical arcana is surely a better system!

            Well yes but it wouldn’t be America if it made too much sense. Historical arcana is surely a better system!

            1. [2]
              gyrozeppeli Link Parent
              Not agreeing with the EC doesn't mean it doesn't make sense. The Electoral College is one of things that that the founders made that was incredibly wise and had foresight.

              Not agreeing with the EC doesn't mean it doesn't make sense. The Electoral College is one of things that that the founders made that was incredibly wise and had foresight.

              1. Pilgrim Link Parent
                Could you expand on that? I didn't intend this thread to become a defense of the EC but it's sot of become that.

                Could you expand on that? I didn't intend this thread to become a defense of the EC but it's sot of become that.

  2. [2]
    Akir Link
    The electoral college only handles the office of the president and vice president. While I would agree that the electoral college is fairly useless and go so far as to say it is a harm to...

    The electoral college only handles the office of the president and vice president. While I would agree that the electoral college is fairly useless and go so far as to say it is a harm to democracy, I think addressing it is not high enough a priority.

    What is far more pressing is how much power the president has. The office has so many powers and privileges that it's actually difficult to enumerate them all. When we elect a president we are essentially electing an entire branch of government. We also typically have an extremely polarized Congress, which is an issue when the president has the power to veto and create executive orders.

    1 vote
    1. Pilgrim (edited ) Link Parent
      I don’t disagree but maybe we’ll need more than one post to solve all of the country’s problems ;-)

      I don’t disagree but maybe we’ll need more than one post to solve all of the country’s problems ;-)

  3. [10]
    Bedevere Link
    I'd be all for going to a popular vote that also has ranked choice voting and no party primaries. Without a switch to ranked-choice, I don't really see any point in moving from electoral college...

    I'd be all for going to a popular vote that also has ranked choice voting and no party primaries. Without a switch to ranked-choice, I don't really see any point in moving from electoral college to a popular vote, unless your goal is to elect Democrats and don't care that the primaries tend to yield extremists from both major parties.

    1 vote
    1. [5]
      masochist Link Parent
      Err, if you think the Democrats in the US are "extremists", then I would invite you to investigate the political leanings of the far left parties in western Europe, especially in countries like...

      Err, if you think the Democrats in the US are "extremists", then I would invite you to investigate the political leanings of the far left parties in western Europe, especially in countries like Norway. The US's political parties are extremely far right and slightly less far right, on a global scale.

      4 votes
      1. [2]
        Bedevere Link Parent
        I just mean that the primaries tend to elect extremists in their parties relative to others in the party, not relative to people in other countries. Ranked choice voting would yield candidates...

        I just mean that the primaries tend to elect extremists in their parties relative to others in the party, not relative to people in other countries. Ranked choice voting would yield candidates more appealing to the general electorate rather than the minority party members who show up to vote in the party primaries.

        1 vote
        1. masochist Link Parent
          Thank you for the clarification! That really helps. :)

          Thank you for the clarification! That really helps. :)

      2. [2]
        gyrozeppeli Link Parent
        Please re-read: Parent comment said "yield extremists from both major parties". In our dual party system, the more extreme a candidate is, the more likely that they will get voted. Please leave...

        Please re-read: Parent comment said "yield extremists from both major parties". In our dual party system, the more extreme a candidate is, the more likely that they will get voted. Please leave your bias at the door.

        The reason they mentioned democrat is because it's known that the most populous cities are blue. It's almost guaranteed a democrat would win if a popular vote were in place. I'm not saying this is good or bad, I am saying that I believe this to be case due to how the demographics would play out.

        1. masochist Link Parent
          The clarification made by Bedevere in response to my comment helped clarify things, as well as your response. Thank you!

          The clarification made by Bedevere in response to my comment helped clarify things, as well as your response. Thank you!

    2. [4]
      alyaza Link Parent
      ...you mean aside from actually electing people that the voters want?

      I don't really see any point in moving from electoral college to a popular vote, unless your goal is to elect Democrats and don't care that the primaries tend to yield extremists from both major parties.

      ...you mean aside from actually electing people that the voters want?

      1. [2]
        gyrozeppeli Link Parent
        Who says that would actually be the case? A candidate that populous areas would want might be elected, but that's hardly "everyone". Rural areas would become nonexistent to politics, despite a...

        Who says that would actually be the case? A candidate that populous areas would want might be elected, but that's hardly "everyone". Rural areas would become nonexistent to politics, despite a not-insubstantial amount of the populace living there, and farmers, etc.

        1. alyaza Link Parent
          uh, literally basic math. if you win more votes than your opponent in an election, the voters clearly wanted you over your opponent. what sort of argument is this? and are we just going to ignore...

          Who says that would actually be the case? A candidate that populous areas would want might be elected, but that's hardly "everyone". Rural areas would become nonexistent to politics, despite a not-insubstantial amount of the populace living there, and farmers, etc.

          uh, literally basic math. if you win more votes than your opponent in an election, the voters clearly wanted you over your opponent. what sort of argument is this? and are we just going to ignore that populous areas are literally over a super-majority of the american population now, or the part where republicans are competitive in the american suburbs and that it's far from a given that a popular vote system would benefit either party, or the fact that a popular vote system actually renders every vote meaningful and would likely increase turnout because there would be an incentive for blue state republicans and red state democrats to turn out since their votes aren't inevitably to be overridden by the electoral college? rural areas would actually, if what you're saying is accurate, have more of an impact in a popular vote system than in the electoral college because then you can't just fucking ignore them, since all their votes now count for more than whatever the rest of their state decides and the buck doesn't stop there.

          3 votes
      2. Bedevere Link Parent
        The elections are dominated by who wins in the primaries, which are dominated by the most hard-core members of each party who actually show up to vote. Around 14% to 20% of registered voters tend...

        The elections are dominated by who wins in the primaries, which are dominated by the most hard-core members of each party who actually show up to vote. Around 14% to 20% of registered voters tend to show up for the primaries which is what, around 7% to 10% of the population? If we cared to have representation that all the citizens wanted, we would do way better with a ranked choice voting system that would draw in more people and draw in more central candidates than just taking what we have and putting the final election as a popular vote.

        I think it goes without saying that most of the recent candidates in the final elections were people that most of us didn't want. You could go a a popular vote and make a net of 2% or 3% of the voters slightly less unhappy, but I don't see the point.