Elizabeth Warren is the latest Democrat to weigh in on the electoral college, showing remarkable lack of understanding both of the system itself and how it might be altered.
The Democratic presidential candidate wants the college abolished after the 2020 election, Mailonline reports, and says she would be elected president next year under its rules and then secure the popular vote when she ran for re-election in 2024.
The system has recently been unkind to Democrats.
Democrats were infuriated in 2016 when Hillary Clinton won the popular vote but Donald Trump won the electoral college and the presidency, just like all the presidents-elect before him.
Only five times in American history has a candidate won the popular vote but lost the presidency, including the 2000 election where Al Gore was said to have won the popular vote but George W. Bush took the electoral college.
“I want to get rid of it,” Warren said on her Twitter feed, of the system designed to prevent mob rule and guarantee that smaller states and rural areas get equal representation in balloting.
“Call me old-fashioned but I think the person who gets the most votes should win,” Warren declared.
In fact it is the electoral college system that is “old-fashioned.” The founding fathers established it as a compromise between election of the president by a vote in Congress and election of the president by a popular vote of qualified citizens.
The electoral college consists of 538 electors. A majority of 270 electoral votes is required to elect the president. Every state determines how it will pick its electors, which is equal to its representation in Congress.
As for which candidate wins the electors, all but two states are winner-take-all: meaning whoever wins the most votes in the state wins all of that state’s electors.
Nor could Warren just “get rid” of the system.
Achieving her stated goal would take a Constitutional amendment, which would require the votes of two-thirds of the U.S. House of Representatives, two-thirds of the Senate, and three-fourths of the states. It would be a long process that could take years.