Will Democrats Protest The Election Results?
(2 min read)
While many have focused on whether President Trump will protest the November election results, another possibility is that Democrats could. After all, the Democrats have now lost two Presidential elections in recent memory despite winning the popular vote (2000 and 2016). This has revealed a potential flaw in the US election system where the margin of victory in the popular vote does not match the margin of victory in the electoral colleges (Chart 1). In fact, there have been some large deviations between the two historically – for example, Reagan won the 1980 election with a 10% margin in the popular vote but won the electoral college by a margin of 90%.
While the gap was very large, at least Reagan won both vote counts. The trouble today is that as the popular vote margins have become narrower, and this mismatch in mapping between popular votes and electoral college votes can leading to opposing results, as seen in 2016. This raises the spectre of the Democrats attempting to overhaul the election system even if they win to avoid a repeat of such outcomes.
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