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About the Book"A radical spirit of change has overtaken American politics, making once-unthinkable reforms-like abolishing the Electoral College-seem possible. Two of the last five elections were won by candidates who lost the popular vote, calling the integrity of the entire electoral system into question. Political passions are already high, and they will reach a boiling point as we enter the 2020 race. The message from the American people is clear: we need major reform, and we need it now. In Let the People Pick the President, New York Times editorial board member Jesse Wegman makes a powerful case for abolishing the antiquated and antidemocratic Electoral College, and choosing presidents based on a national popular vote. He uncovers the Electoral College's controversial origins, profiles the many attempts to reform it over the years, and explains why it is now essential for us to remove this obsolete system and finally make every citizen's vote matter. Wegman addresses objections from both sides of the aisle and presents an airtight argument that moving toward a national popular vote would reduce voter apathy and political polarization, increase voter turnout, and restore belief in our democratic system. Abolishing the Electoral College is the keystone reform that must be accomplished to improve our politics; Wegman shows that this once-lofty goal can be achieved, and charts a path to accomplishing it"--
"Wegman combines in-depth historical analysis and insight into contemporary politics to present a cogent argument that the Electoral College violates America's 'core democratic principles' and should be done away with... --Publishers Weekly
The framers of the Constitution battled over it. Lawmakers have tried to amend or abolish it more than 700 times. To this day, millions of voters, and even members of Congress, misunderstand how it works. It deepens our national divide and distorts the core democratic principles of political equality and majority rule. How can we tolerate the Electoral College when every vote does not count the same, and the candidate who gets the most votes can lose?
"Was it a mistake to create the Electoral College? Jesse Wegman argues that it was. This timely and erudite work should interest all who are interested in the future of the United States." --Annette Gordon-Reed, author of The Hemingses of Monticello"Jesse Wegman's urgent and ultimately irrefutable call to action is the most readable and fully informed explanation of how the Electoral College is wrecking America's great experiment in government of, by, and for the people. It's not too late to rescue our democracy from destruction. But it soon will be. Wegman makes a compelling case that we must act now--and he explains what to do." --Laurence H. Tribe, Carl M. Loeb University Professor, Harvard Law School Jesse Wegman is a shrewd analyst, brilliant researcher and passionate writer, and here he tackles an issue important to our system's legitimacy. --Nicholas Kristoff People have been arguing against the Electoral College from the beginning. But no one, at least in recent years, has laid out the case as comprehensively and as readably as Jesse Wegman does in Let the People Pick the President. --Josh Chafetz, New York Times Book Review "Wegman combines in-depth historical analysis and insight into contemporary politics to present a cogent argument that the Electoral College violates America's 'core democratic principles' and should be done away with...this urgent and lucidly presented plea for change will resonate with progressives." --Publishers Weekly
About the AuthorJESSE WEGMAN is a member of the New York Times editorial board, where he has written about the Supreme Court and legal affairs since 2013. He previously worked as a reporter, editor, and producer at outlets including National Public Radio, The New York Observer, Reuters, The Daily Beast and Newsweek. He graduated from New York University School of Law in 2005.