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Understanding the U.S. election in one article: Red and Blue States, Electoral College, 2020 U.S. Presidential Election

The US general election is approaching. The 2020 US presidential election will be held on November 3, 2020. This is the 59th US presidential election. At the same time, all 435 seats in the House of Representatives and 33 seats in the Senate will be re-elected to form the 117th US Congress. . After the election, the Electoral College will formally vote on December 14, 2020 and determine the results of the election.

The result of the U.S. election is undoubtedly a major event that affects U.S. stocks , the U.S. and even the global financial market. This article will introduce you to those events in the U.S. election.

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The current US President Donald J. Trump and Vice President Mike Pence were successfully nominated by the ruling Republican Party without any opponents in the party. The other major party, the Democratic Party, has been formally accepted by the party after the former Vice President Joe Biden (Joe Biden) defeated his main rival Bernie Sanders after experiencing the largest party primary election in the history of the US presidential election. Nominated as a presidential candidate, the female Senator Kamala Harris (He Jinli, Kamala Harris) served as his deputy, making it the first African and Asian American to be a presidential candidate in the United States. In addition, there are some candidates representing other political parties and independent candidates participating in the current presidential election.

The winner of this presidential election is expected to be sworn in on January 20, 2021.

1. The Red and Blue States in the U.S. General Election

Red states and blue states refer to the tendency of the distribution of votes in recent elections in the United States. Red is the Republican Party , and blue is the Democratic Party .

Generally speaking, voters in the western coastal and northeastern New England regions tend to vote for the Democratic Party, so there is a blue state, while the southern and central regions are more inclined to vote for the Republican Party, so there is a red state.

It is worth mentioning that the terms red state and blue state are usually more applicable in national elections such as the U.S. President and U.S. Congress, while local elections such as governors are less applicable to this rule.

States that are less inclined to any party are called swing states. The more famous swing states are Ohio, Florida, Virginia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Colorado, and Iowa. , North Carolina, etc.

List of states in the presidential election since 1972

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Statistics on the results of the four US presidential elections in 2004, 2008, 2012 and 2016:

 

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The Republican Party won four times , the Republican Party won three times , the Republican Party and the Democratic Party won two terms each , the Democratic Party won three times , and the Democratic Party won four times.

2. The American Electoral College System

The Electoral College (Electoral College) is a method of American presidential elections. It is an indirect election aimed at electing the president and vice president of the United States. According to the US Constitution, citizens of each state in the United States first elect the electors of the state (that is, members of the Senate and House of Representatives), and then the electors will vote on behalf of the state; because the United States is a federal country and takes into account the specific geography of each state And historical conditions, the electoral college system is adopted to ensure the rights and interests of the states, and the representative is the federal president jointly elected by the 50 states.

Electoral College System:

  • A state is an electoral college unit. The electoral number of each state means the total number of members of the Senate and House of Representatives in that state. For example: New York State has 2 senators and 27 representatives, so there are 29 electoral votes. There are currently 538 electors, consisting of 100 senators and 435 members of the House of Representatives, plus 3 electoral votes unique to the capital, Washington, DC. Among the states, California has the most electoral votes with 55; Texas has 38, New York and Florida with 29; and states such as Alaska, Delaware, and Wyoming have the least, with only 3 votes.
  • The 23rd constitutional amendment approved in 1961 gave Washington DC the right to vote. It also stipulates that the number of electoral votes in the DC shall not exceed the number of electoral votes in the least populated state (that is, 3 people). Therefore, the electors owned by Washington until now For 3 people.
  • The presidential candidate who gets more than half of the electoral votes (that is, 270 votes) wins.
  • Except for Maine and Nebraska, two states adopt the way of constituency of the House of Representatives. The winner of the presidential election in each district of the House of Representatives receives one electoral vote (which can be regarded as the House of Representatives vote, and there is only one member of the House of Representatives in a district, so there is only one vote), and the winner of the statewide presidential election gets the rest Two electoral votes (can be regarded as Senate votes, each state has only two senators so there are only two votes). So as to achieve the goal of decentralized votes, but so far there has been no splitting of votes, because the elected candidates in each constituency are still the same. The remaining 48 states and the District of Columbia have implemented the “Winner-take-all” system, which means that all electoral votes in the state are given to the presidential candidates who have obtained a relatively large majority of votes in the state.
  • If all candidates fail to get more than half of the electoral votes, the House of Representatives elects the president from the top three candidates with the most votes. In 1824, John Quincy Adams was finally elected president by the House of Representatives in this case.

Selection method

General ticket system (Unified ticket system):

In the US presidential election, voters directly vote to elect the electors of the president, and then count the votes based on the electoral vote system. The counting of votes adopts the principle of “winner all-time”, and the sum of the electoral votes of each state is the total electoral votes that the candidate finally obtains. More than half of the electoral votes (that is, 270 votes) can be elected.

A typical election procedure is as follows:

  • Each party launches its own presidential and vice presidential candidates and registers them in each state;
  • Each party has its own electors in each state and usually chooses those loyal party members who have served the party for a long time;
  • General elections are held on election day, the total votes of electors of each party are counted, and the winner of each state is determined;
  • The electors launched by the party of the winner in each state become the electoral college of that state (generally the “winner takes all system”, only Nebraska and Maine are slightly different);
  • Electors from each state meet in the capitals of each state to vote for the president and vice president.

Each state usually requires an elector to swear an oath to guarantee that he will vote for a candidate proposed by his party (that is, a candidate who wins a general election in the state). The vast majority of electors must vote for the winner based on the state’s election results. State presidential and vice presidential candidates. In a few cases, voters will become dishonest voters because of personal feelings or carelessness and other reasons. However, there has been no clear penalty for dishonest voters.

Electoral votes in each U.S. state

According to the provisions of the Federal Constitution, the U.S. Census Bureau conducts a census every 10 years, the results of which will determine the number of electoral votes in each state. The most recent census conducted in the United States was in 2010 (the 2020 census is in progress). According to the results, the number of electoral votes in each state in the United States is as follows:

State name

Electoral votes

State name

Electoral votes

State name

Electoral votes

State name

Electoral votes

Alabama

9

Indiana

11

Nebraska

5 **

South carolina

9(+1)

Alaska

3

Iowa

6(-1)

Nevada

6(+1)

South Dakota

3

Arizona

11(+1)

Kansas

6

New Hampshire

4

Tennessee

11

Arkansas

6

Kentucky

8

New Jersey

14(-1)

Texas

38(+4)

California

55

Louisiana

8(-1)

New Mexico

5

Utah

6(+1)

Colorado

9

Maine

4 **

New York state

29(-2)

Vermont

3

Connecticut

7

Maryland

10

North carolina

15

Virginia

13

Delaware

3

Massachusetts

11(-1)

North Dakota

3

Washington state

12(+1)

Florida

29(+2)

Michigan

16(-1)

Ohio

18(-2)

West Virginia

5

Georgia

16(+1)

Minnesota

10

Oklahoma

7

Wisconsin

10

Hawaii

4

Mississippi

6

Oregon

7

Wyoming

3

Idaho

4

Missouri

10(-1)

Pennsylvania

20(-1)

Washington DC

3

Illinois

20(-1)

Montana

3

Rhode Island

4

total

538

The distribution of red and blue states in the 2016 U.S. election and the distribution of electoral votes in each state:

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Further reading:

Review of the last general election (2016 US presidential election)

The 2016 US presidential election was held on November 8, 2016, US time. This is the 58th US presidential election. At the same time, all 435 seats in the House of Representatives and 33 seats in the Senate will also be re-elected to produce the 115th US Congress. The then President Barack Obama has been elected for two terms. According to the 22nd Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, he cannot stand for election.

There are 10 groups of candidates running this time. Among them, Republican candidates Donald Trump and Mike Pence have 306 electoral votes (the total number of referendum votes is 62,979,636, 45.97%), which is better than Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton. Clinton and Tim Kane partnered to hold 232 electoral votes (65,844,610 votes in the referendum, 48.06%), which exceeds the threshold of 270 electoral votes in half of the electoral votes, and will surely be elected the 45th president of the United States. A total of 29 third party and independent candidates are running for the presidential election. As for Johnson and Jill, they continued to serve as the presidential candidates of the Libertarian Party and the Green Party following the 2012 US presidential election. The Electoral College voted on December 19, 2016 and determined the results of the election. Trump officially became the president-elect.

Because the results of this election are quite different from the predictions of many mainstream media, the process is compared to a recurrence of the 1948 US presidential election. Wisconsin returned to the Republican Party after 32 years; the Republican Party also gained Pennsylvania and Michigan after the 1988 US presidential election. In Maine, since the US presidential election in 1828, one party has won all the electoral votes of the state. This time the Republican Party has received one of the four votes from that office. Trump is also the fifth president-elect to win the general election with fewer popular votes. At the same time, the party won more than half of the seats in the Senate and the House of Representatives, and was fully in power for the first time.

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