A new Gallup poll shows a majority of Americans want to get rid of the Electoral College. 62 percent of respondents say they would support a Constitutional amendment that would replace the president-making Rube Goldberg machine with a popular vote. For the first time since George W. Bush won the 2000 election because elderly people in Florida thought they were redeeming coupons for cantaloupe instead of voting, a majority of Republicans are in favor of scrapping the Electoral College as well. Full disclosure: This poll was conducted based on individuals’ direct responses, not on a series of delegates elected to respond based on an agreement made at a convention held months prior.
In 2000, after the Supreme Court decided in George W. Bush’s favor for the Florida recount, only 41 percent of Republicans said they preferred a popular vote. Not surprisingly, a huge majority of Democrats–75 percent–wanted to scrap the Electoral College at the time.
Now, 53 percent of Republicans are on board with the popular vote.
Republicans’ decade of supporting the Electoral College was somewhat of an aberration. Most polls conducted on the subject in the latter half of the 20th century were resoundingly in support of a popular vote, no matter the respondent’s party.
America has been using this unpopular system for electing unpopular presidents for the past 224 years. Why change? As they say, if it works for India, Burundi, and the Vatican, it’ll work for the United States.