The Electoral College: How it Works

Another presidential election has come and gone and in January, Donald Trump will take office as the 45th president of the U.S. The electoral college is an important part of the election process in the United States and I thought I might take some time today to explain how the popular vote and electoral college work, for those of you who don’t know.

So in each state, on election day, if not before, citizens vote on who they want in office. Those votes are totaled up and the candidates with the most votes win the popular vote.

While the popular vote may demonstrate which candidate is more desired, the electoral college is what actually determines who the next president will be. In order for a candidate to win the presidential race, they have to win a majority vote of the electoral college which is 270 votes.

Based off of the popular vote, the electoral college then gives the electoral votes of their state to the candidate who won the popular vote. For example, Hillary Clinton won the popular vote in Colorado, and so the electoral voters of Colorado gave the eight electoral votes to Hillary Clinton. And for another example, Donald Trump won the popular vote in Alabama, so he was given the nine electoral votes from that state.

The amount of electoral votes is based off of state population, so the more people in a state, the more electoral college votes they get. For instance, California has 55 electoral votes, because so many people live there, and Wyoming only has three electoral votes because the population is small.

Below is a short video on how the electoral college works to clarify it.

Reflecting on 2015

This might be coming a little late but, Happy New Year! 2016 has arrived and it’s going to be another good year. 2015 was filled with ups and downs and there were all kinds of trends and things that occurred this past year. Here are some of the events and trends of 2015.

In January of 2015, the Charlie Hebdou attack occurred in Paris. 12 people were killed and 11 were injured.

In February, the Super Bowl took place and Katy Perry gave a stunning performance and Left Shark, who performed during Perry’s song, “California Gurls” became a worldwide sensation. And there was also the dress. People argued over whether or not it was black and blue or white and gold. The couple that took the picture confirmed that it was black and blue after the photo went viral. Team black and blue!

In March, the Germanwings flight 9525 ended in tragedy when the co-pilot of the plane deliberately flew the plane into the French Alps, killing everyone on board. Dawn of Justice was released in theaters. It was the Batman vs. Superman movie, in case you didn’t know.

Age of Ultron, the second movie of the Avengers series as well as Furious 7 were released in theaters in April. Both movies lived up to their expectations and were successful in the theaters.

In May, the Mayweather vs. Pacquio fight went down in Las Vegas and resulted in another win for Floyd Mayweather Jr. is a website where you allow the website to analyze a photo of yourself and it guesses how old you are. This website became well-known and sparked the question of “How is the website able to tell how old you are?” If you’d like to test out click here to see if it guesses your age correctly. The biggest trend of May was Netflix and Chill. There were all kinds of variations and parodies of this interesting and well-known trend.

“Just Do It” featuring Shia LeBouf went viral in June of 2015. The video was a motivational and overdramatized speech telling people to accomplish their goals and follow their dreams. In June, gay marriage was legalized in the U.S. Caitlyn Jenner also introduced herself to the world and later on ended up winning the “Woman of the Year” award.

In July, Minions took the world by storm and did well in theaters. “Now watch me whip/nae nae” became a song and dance sensation. I don’t know a single person that doesn’t know how to whip and nae nae. From the flyby of New Horizons, everyone was able to see clear and exciting pictures of Pluto and its moons. The pictures will allow for astronomers to gather more information about Pluto and its moons. In July, the world lost Saturo Iwata, the president of Nintendo and the creator of video games like Kirby and Mario.

In August, Donald Trump officially announced that he would be running for president in 2016 and began campaigning. AND HIS NAME IS JOHN CENA! You’ll understand this if you’ve seen the vine videos. John Cena also made it big this month in 2015. Hundreds of thousands of vines were created using his videos and announcement for the WWE. Some of them are funny and some of them are plain weird.

The supermoon eclipse left everyone in awe in September. It was beautiful to watch and great to take pictures of. Continuing on the topic of space, water was found on Mars. This was a very exciting discovery and we’ll have to wait and see what comes next as far as findings and discoveries on Mars and in the space around us.

In October of 2015, Drake’s hit song “Hotline Bling” made its’ debut. It was on the radio quite often and there were many parodies done of this song. ISIS crashed a Russian plane killing all 224 passengers on board near the Sinai Peninsula in Egypt. A gunman killed ten including himself and injured seven at Umpqua Community College in Oregon as well.

Sadly terrorist attacks were becoming quite the trend towards the end of the year and Paris was attacked in November. 130 people were killed and over 300 were injured. Also in November, Ronda Rousey lost her fight to Holly Holm and Fallout 4, the fourth game of the Fallout series was released. And who could forget the release of the final movie of the Hunger Games trilogy, Mockingjay Part 2? Most people believed that Mockingjay Part 2 finished out the trilogy well, others believed that it could have been finished differently, but in my opinion the movie was amazing and the actors all did a wonderful job portraying their characters and the plot stuck pretty close to the books.

Finally in December, the Star Wars saga continued with The Force Awakens I haven’t seen it yet but I’ve heard that the movie was very good and lived up to everyone’s expectations, so far. Not only was the new Star Wars movie big, but so was the Miss Universe pageant. The host, Steve Harvey made an honest mistake when he announced the final results, the wrong girl was crowned, and then he corrected himself as soon as he caught the mistake. After this happened, there was a lot of dispute over the actual results and Harvey’s actions and in the end Miss Philippines was crowned Miss Universe.

I believe that 2015 was a pretty good year even with all of the attacks and losses of wonderful people. We were all able to learn new things about ourselves and the world, experience new activities and situations, and also grow as people. As far as what’s going to happen in 2016, I guess we’ll have to wait and see. Do what you can to make it your own great year. Good luck getting used to writing 2016 on your papers and best wishes in the new year.

Reflecting on 2015