The inauguration of the independent candidates is a dire necessity in the political spectrum of the United States. However, the talks will be of no use without any feasible and viable solution to the problem. Abolishing the electoral college and moving toward the popular vote is one of the ways that is viable to promote the tickets of independent or third-party candidates.
As the major politicians try to corrupt the nation, every American’s responsibility is to say goodbye to all the long-established biases attached to independent candidates.
The electoral college system is so complex that an independent candidate having fewer resources than the political giants is bound to lose the elections at the end of the day.
A constitutional amendment in this regard is an immediate measure that Congress should pursue for the sake of the country.
The current population paradigm in the United States is also hindering the independent candidates and third parties. With age, people are more likely to cement their long-lasting and old, established beliefs.
They are reluctant to try new things as they move toward becoming senior citizens. So, a robust and well-planned strategy by the independent candidates can turn things in their favor.
How will abolishing the electoral college serve the United States? What audience should the independent candidates target to gain the most out of the current situation? Let’s explore.
Save America, Not Politicians: Abolishing the Electoral College with Establishing a National Popular Vote
For abolishing the electoral college, the National Popular Vote is an appreciable step in the right direction. The National Popular Vote Interstate Compact is a step forward to grant all electoral votes of a state for the presidency to a candidate who wins the popular vote in all fifty states combined.
This will also break the stigma of losing the popular vote and becoming the president. To date, five candidates became president even though losing the popular vote. If this happens, it will encourage the independent candidates and the third parties to promote their campaigns.
This will throw away the concept of Red and Blue states altogether, which will also be a significant move to initiate the progressive projects in these states.
For instance, consider the case of Texas in this regard. Joe Biden won more than five million votes in the state. Still, he did not get a single electoral vote from the state. Similarly, Trump won almost four million votes in California, but the screwed system of the electoral college did not give him even a single vote in California.
The debate on popular vote vs. electoral college is not new. However, in modern times, it is catching up with the pace it deserves. Fifteen states legalized the National Popular Vote along with the District of Columbia. In total, states which now recognize this have 196 electoral college votes, representing 73% of the 270 electoral votes required to give the Compact legal force.
Suppose more states sign the bill, and this number reaches 270. In that case, the National Popular Vote will be implemented all over the United States, giving a positive signal to the independent candidates and the third parties in the United States.
The discussion and the ratification of the National Popular Vote by so many states are itself a signal that the need for independent candidates is more than ever today.
Bring Change with the Governors Governors for the USA, not for Politicians
Introducing the independent governors in more populous states, especially California, Florida, Texas, New York, Illinois, and Pennsylvania, will also be significant progress for the independent candidates. These six states comprise 191 electoral votes in total.
Independent governors will denounce the bipartisan politics in their respective states to make way for the third party and the independent candidates. One positive indicator is that the electoral college laws depend upon states rather than the federal government. Any step forward by the state will remain under the sole authority of the state. So, the presence of independent governors in these states would be a win-win for democracy.
Independent governors will never bow down to political pressure. So those residents who want their states to progress must think of voting for the independent candidates instead of the political dynasties who beg for a vote just to get power.
Saying Good-Bye to the Winner-Take-All Model
Abolishing the winner-take-all system of the electoral college can also help promote independent candidates. For instance, states like Nebraska and Maine do not implement the winner takes all system. It means that both the major political parties of the United States have to work equally to win the electoral votes of these states.
Although the votes of these two states do not have much impact on the overall outcome of the elections, the need to understand the concept is immediate. Implementing the same models in the bigger states like California, Texas, Florida, and Pennsylvania will be a positive indicator of democracy.
This way, every candidate getting the votes from all the states will be awarded the corresponding electoral votes. In this way, respect for every individual vote will be increased, and every voice will matter at the end of the day.
Independent Candidates: Generation Y and Generation Z are Your Voters
Independent candidates or third parties pursuing a future in the United States’ politics should make sure that they are targeting the right people.
People of older ages are less likely to vote for them due to their firmly established beliefs and ideas. Older people are resistant to change, and this is a purely psychological phenomenon.
However, voters belonging to Generation Y and Generation Z will respond to their call. These people have a long life ahead, so they want to see changes. Young people are also open to new ideas, ultimately helping independent candidates make their footprints in politics.
The United States population pyramids suggest that almost 27.2% of people fall in the category of Generation Y and Generation Z. It means that almost 89.2 million people can be targeted by independent candidates or third parties who want to pursue their career in politics.
If they successfully influence these many people, the future will belong to them in any case. Generation Alpha, which is now growing in the United States, will grow up with the notion of the independent candidates in their mind, eventually helping them have a more significant impact on the United States’ politics.
Addressing the Problems of Gen Z and Gen Y: An Opportunity for Independents
Cashing Up their Poor Economic Situation
The older generation who saw the United States in its peak day are more blessed than the younger ones. Especially in these times, when the pandemic struck, the upper strata of Generation Z, which is graduating from colleges, has too much to worry about their future.
The pandemic made sure that most of them remained unemployed or underemployed. Even if they get employment, Y and Z are most prone to get fired in these testing times as companies are more likely to retain only the experienced and most important staff in their bid of downsizing in a pandemic.
This is the alarming thing that the parents of this Generation Z and a fair portion of Generation Y saw during the global financial crisis of 2008 also.
As they see these testing times for the second time in the second consecutive decade, they will be ready to test the third-party or the independent candidates if a true leader appears on the surface.
This is believed to be the deciding factor, as motivating them on a financial basis can be an influential component as they see a crisis in the early ages of their career.
Healing their Mental Health to Win their Sympathy
Similarly, according to the APA report, another major impasse for Generation Z is the mental health problem.
They are the people who are most affected by issues like immigration, sexual violence, and gun violence. Addressing these issues will help the independent candidates and the third parties have a stronger influence over them.
Using Technology to Win Younger Generations
In this regard, the role of digital election campaigns by independent parties grows exponentially, as these voters are active on social media most of the time.
Almost 73% of Generation Z uses social media, while 68% of Generation Y do the same. Out of these people, most of them are inclined towards YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram.
Psychologists believe that winning these people on online platforms is easier compared to traditional methods. A robust digital strategy is a win-win situation that can help the United States in a time of crisis.
With all the struggles and challenges, the need for an independent candidate has increased attention in the United States lately. It is true that it will take a long time for them to make footprints in American politics, but the blunders which the major politicians are making decry that the sooner these candidates assume the higher office, the better it will be for the country.
Saying that it is impossible will only delay this all-important matter. Now, the major question is not “should we introduce independents,” it is “when should we introduce them.”
Small steps in the right direction are always better than stagnated and standstill thoughts. The political dynasty will only serve the elite of the society, and the average American will not be able to enjoy the perks that come with the power enacted in the offices of the United States. Hence abolishing the electoral college is the only way out to open new avenues in the US politics.
Eli is a Political Data Scientist with over thirty years of experience in Data Engineering, Analytics, and Digital Marketing. Eli uses his expertise to give the latest information and distinctive analysis on US Political News, US Foreign Affairs, Human Rights, and Racial Justice equipping readers with the inequivalent knowledge.