Former vice president Al Gore, the first of two Democrats to get swindled out of the presidency after winning the popular vote but losing the Electoral College is now saying he thinks we should do away with it altogether. Gore previously supported the Electoral College despite his loss 2000 loss against George W. Bush, but said Wednesday it's time we "eliminate" it.
Only three Republicans have won the White House since Ronald Reagan in the 1980's, and two have weaseled their way in thanks to the Electoral College. President-elect Donald Trump badly lost the popular vote to Hillary Clinton earlier in November (the count is over 2 million votes in Clinton's favor), and before this present day nightmare was another one in the form of George W. Bush, who won the Electoral College but not the popular vote over Al Gore in 2000.
Despite losing the presidency to Bush in 2000 (remember those hanging chads?), Gore continued to support the institution of the Electoral College, a point he acknowledged at a speaking engagement in Washington D.C. this week. "One of its original purposes was to tie the states together," Gore said speaking of his previous support for the college. "I have changed my view on that. I do think that it should be eliminated."
"I think moving to a popular vote system is not without peril, not without problems, it's not a simple 'one choice is all good, the other is all bad,' it's a balancing act. But I think the balance has shifted, at least for me, and I think that we should go to a popular vote," the former vice president said. He also added that he thinks a popular vote would help stimulate public participation in the democratic process like nothing else we could possibly do."
Much of the outrage over Trump's election has been directed at the Electoral College. More than 4.6 million people have signed a Change.org petition asking the Electoral College to vote for Clinton instead of Trump when they officially cast their votes in December. Other petitions have circulated calling to abolish the Electoral College in light of Trump's win despite a major popular vote loss.