December 19, 2016
12/19: Abolish the Electoral College? Majority Favors Popular Vote
When thinking about future presidential elections, should the Electoral College be abandoned in favor of adopting the popular vote to determine the winner of the presidential election? A majority of registered voters, 52%, think the popular vote should be the deciding factor while 45% say the Electoral College should be the determinant. Three percent are unsure.
“It’s the second time in the last five presidential elections that the winner of the popular vote does not assume the presidency,” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion. “No wonder there is controversy over the method of selecting a president.”
A partisan divide exists. While nearly eight in ten Democrats, 78%, think the nation should move away from the Electoral College and adopt the popular vote, 67% of Republicans and 52% of independents disagree and think the Electoral College system should remain in place.
Attitudes also differ based on race and gender. A majority of white voters, 51%, think the Electoral College should determine future elections. However, 74% of African Americans and 63% of Latinos say the popular vote should take precedence. A majority of women, 56%, favor the popular vote, but men divide, 50% for the Electoral College and 48% for the popular vote.