Bill Petrocelli

Electoral College — the Twitter Quiz (Sept. 13, 2020)

Sept. 13, 2020

There’s nothing funny about the Electoral College. It’s a dangerous anachronism that threatens our democracy. But there are a few bits of trivia about the system that might raise an eyebrow or two, if not bring a smile. Hopefully,  something like this will catch people’s attention.

Here is a summary of a running Twitter Quiz that has been running on Twitter (@billpetrocelli) for the last week or so. there are six entries at the moment with more to follow.

September 5

#ElectoralCollege quiz #1: How many real votes does it take to get one Electoral Vote? Is it based on the number of votes cast, the number of registered voters, or the size of the voter-turnout? Or is there another link? See #ElectoralBaitandSwitch at

Answer to #ElectoralCollegequiz #1: It’s a trick question. There’s no correlation between real votes & Electoral Votes. Each state gets an allotment of EVs based on a 10-year-old census whether there are 100 voters or 1,000,000 voters. This unfair, corrupted system must go!

September 7

#ElectoralCollege quiz #2: If you lived in Kansas City, MO, in 2016, there was one Elector chosen for every 280,860 voters. How could you have increased your individual voting power in that election? (Answer below) #ElectoralBaitandSwitch at

Answer to #ElectoralCollege quiz #2 (above): You could have increased your voting power by 30% if you had moved across the river to Kansas City, KS. It took only 197,358 votes to choose an Elector in that state. This ridiculous, arbitrary system must go!

September 11

#ElectoralCollege quiz #3: In 1924 Alabama & Minnesota were about equal in population. But MN had almost 5 times as many voters as AL, because AL’s Jim Crow-laws kept blacks from voting. How did this affect the Electoral Vote? (Answer below) #ElectoralBaitandSwitch at

Answer to #ElectoralCollege quiz #3 (above): It had no effect. MN & AL each got 12 Electoral votes in 1924. The Elector system gives states a “voter suppression bonus.” You can curtail minority voters and not lose any Electoral Votes. This discriminatory system must go!

September 13

#ElectoralCollege quiz #4: In 2000, Bush’s margin in Texas was 1,365,898. If I were a Gore-voter in Dallas, how could I increase the impact of my vote on the Electoral College & change the result of the election? (Answer below) #ElectoralBaitandSwitch at

Answer to #ElectoralCollege quiz #4 (above): Move to Miami and vote in Florida. Bush’s margin in Florida was only 538 votes. Your chances of impacting the outcome of the national election would have been 2,543 times greater than voting in TX. This insane, arbitrary system must be changed.

(not yet published)

#ElectoralCollege quiz #5: in 1790 Alexander Hamilton was an Elector, and he actively lobbied Electors in other states to choose George Washington. What do modern Electors do that is similar to that? (Answer below) #ElectoralBaitandSwitch at

Answer to #ElectoralCollege quiz #5 (above): Modern Electors just sign a few papers, and most states forbid them from doing anything else. If Hamilton did what he did now, he’d probably be busted (and he’d be as upset with the modern Electoral College as we are).

(not yet published)

#ElectoralCollege quiz #6 (part one): I’m a registered voter in South Carolina, but I’ll be in the U.S. Virgin Islands on Election Day. Can I still vote for President? Yes! Just apply for an absentee ballot, and you can help choose SC’s nine Electors. #ElectoralBaitandSwitch at

#ElectoralCollege quiz #6 (part two): I’m a U.S. citizen who lives in the Virgin Islands, but I’ll be in South Carolina on Election Day. Can I still vote for President? Forget about it! U.S. citizens who live in the Virgin Islands don’t get any Electoral Votes. Why would you even ask?