Electoral Civic Lessons


Often elections are perceived beneficial to politicians who run for offices. We, as citizens take part in voting process and wait for the elections which are normally announced by the media at evening or next day. That’s the end of the story for most citizens until the next election season. For others who are activists and community organizers etc, they get involved more in the electoral process.

2020 Election – a Civic Lessons for All

The 2020 presidential election was a unique election, in the sense that because of very engaged but polarized electorates, lots of election related issues that were not covered previously were amplified got wide media coverage. Additionally, issues considered as norms, traditions and even some rules were either not followed or challenged at every step by the President Trump. That challenge process help understand the presidential process in its entirety.

In an OpEd article in The Hill, Andrés L. Córdova, a law professor at Inter American University of Puerto Rico, explains electoral college and questions its ‘value or necessity as a constitutional institution’.

Electoral College Votes: It has a role within our constitutional design to maintain the balance of political power among the states, in our federalist model of representative government. Article II, Section 1, Clause 2 states “each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives to which the State may be entitled in the Congress: but no Senator or Representative, or Person holding an Office of Trust or Profit under the United States, shall be appointed an Elector.”

Congress Approves Electoral Votes: After the electoral votes are cast, they have to be accepted by Congress. “By law, the House and Senate meet together on Jan. 6, and if any state’s ballots are challenged by one member of the House and Senate, the chambers must meet separately and vote on the challenge” explains Jeremy D. Mayer, an associate professor at the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University in an OpEd in The Hill.

Explaining the process Prof Mayer writes “The controlling federal law, the Electoral Count Act (ECA), is more than 100 years old, opaque and has never been fully used. It may not even be constitutional.”

Links to Resources