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Re: Thank goodness for Founding Fathers' foresight (Mailbag, Feb. 21):

Ms. Van Leeuwen states that Democrats have held the White House 48 years and Republicans 44 years, but fails to mention that the Electoral College was irrelevant in the vast majority of those elections because the popular vote coincided with the electoral vote.

In the entire history of the country, the electoral college has only been "activated" four times. In three of those four times the country suffered. The first time (1876), horse trading in the electoral college plunged the post Civil War south back into the worst of institutionalized racism and Jim Crow laws. The last two times (Dubya, and now Trump) have been horrible for the country. Seems to me that the "tyrannical majority" has always served the country much better than that Electoral College!

There is certainly no need to deify the Founding Fathers: they were men, not gods. They were not at all interested in abolishing aristocracy, only replacing that bloodline British royalty. The Electoral College was one of several measures they instituted to limit governance (and the vote) to their own American "propertied aristocracy" exclusively. Not much "foresight" in any of that. Our forbearers had to fight like crazy to overturn those measures to achieve universal suffrage. It's well past time to rid ourselves of the Electoral College so everybody's vote counts.

A election system where it takes 30 or so California votes to equal one South Dakota vote is not "checks and balances" — it's just plain wrong!

Bill Halsey

Albany (March 25)


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