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Letter: Could electoral college work in Oregon?

Published on February 15, 2017 5:00PM

Could electoral college work in Oregon?

Our founders, in their infinite wisdom, created the Electoral College to ensure the states were fairly represented. Why should one or two densely populated areas speak for the whole of the nation?

The following list of statistics should finally put an end to the argument as to why the Electoral College makes sense.

1. Trump won 2,623 U.S. counties. Clinton won 489.

2. There are 62 counties in New York State. Trump won 46 of them.

3. Clinton won the popular vote by almost 2 million votes.

Where? New York City consists of Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Richmond and Queens where Clinton received well over 2 million more votes than Trump.

Therefore NYC more than accounted for Clinton winning the popular vote of the entire country.

4. NYC and immediate area comprise 319 square miles. The United States is comprised of 3,797,000 square miles.

When you have a country that encompasses almost 4 million square miles of territory, it would be ludicrous to even suggest that the vote of those who inhabit a mere 319 square miles should dictate the outcome of a national election.

Large, densely-populated Democratic cities (NYC, Chicago, LA, etc.) don’t and shouldn’t speak for the rest of our country.

How could the electoral college system work within a state to make the vote fair? Urban areas have the population but not the majority of land. Oregon is not unique in the U.S. In fact, most states face the same issues, which are “rural” verses “urban.”

One thought would be for each Oregon state senator and representative to have one electoral vote. Since the majority of legislators from both houses are residents in urban areas, would anything change?

If Oregon has the electoral college system, would past votes have come to a different result? I challenge anyone with more mathematical knowledge and the time to take an issue or two using the past vote and see if rural vote would have made a difference.

Below are some basic facts:

The state is 98,381 square miles of land. There are 36 counties with a total population of 4,028,977 residents.

Recent elections show votes as:

• Rural, 28 counties: 87,094 square miles or 88.8 percent with 19.6 people per acre (1,705,160 or 42.3 percent of population.)

• Urban, 8 counties: 11,287 square miles or 11.4 percent with 205.9 people per acre (2,323,977 57.7 percent of population.)

Ken Parsons

La Grande


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