What happens if there is a tie in the Electoral College vote?

What happens if there is a tie in the Electoral College vote?

随着 2020 总统选举 less than a week away, many are speculating about what would happen if there is a tie in the Electoral College vote. Although unlikely, a potential tie is not entirely impossible and does have historical precedent.

Electoral College consists of 538 votes distributed among all 50 states and 华盛顿州, 直流. To become president, a candidate must win a majority of these votes, 与 270 being the absolute minimum.

但 538 is an even number, meaning that there could be a scenario in which both candidates receive 269 选举人票. In that outcome, the vote would go to the 我们. House of Representatives to break the tie.

United States electoral college map showing number of electoral votes by state.

United States electoral college map showing number of electoral votes by state. (Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

Unlike the number of electoral votes, 有 435 members in the U.S. House of Representatives, meaning that a majority vote is guaranteed. 然而, each state – and not each representative – gets one vote, based on the party majority.

所以, 例如, a vote among U.S. representatives from 马里兰州 – which has seven 民主党人 and one 共和党人 – would go to the Democratic candidate. A vote among U.S. representatives from 佛罗里达 – which has 13 Democrats and 14 Republicans – would go to the Republican candidate.

Critics say this system is vastly disproportionate given that the 最佳 10 largest states, which have half the population, would 20% of the vote while the remaining 40 状态, with less than half the population, would get 80% 投票.

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The vice president, 与此同时, would be chosen by the Senate in the case of a tie. This means that the U.S. could have a Republican president and Democratic vice president. If the House of Representatives couldn’t decide on the president, and the Senate has chosen a vice president, then the vice president would become the acting president until the matter was resolved. If both the Senate and the House could not pick someone, then the speaker of the House would become acting president until both houses of Congress decided on someone.

A tie in the electoral college – let alone the speaker of the House becoming acting president – is highly unlikely to happen. But an electoral tie did occur in 1800, during the presidential election between Thomas Jefferson and Aaron Burr. The candidates each received 73 选举人票. (There were fewer states at the time.)

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The House of Representatives voted among themselves to eventually settle on Jefferson as the third president and Burr as his vice president. This unusual situation led to the passage of the 12th Amendment to prevent a situation in which multiple candidates win a majority of electors.

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