Saving the Electoral College

Why the National Popular Vote Would Undermine Democracy

by Robert M. Hardaway


Congress has attempted to overturn the Electoral College more than 700 times.

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Cover image for Saving the Electoral College

August 2019


Pages 195
Volumes 1
Size 6 1/8x9 1/4
Topics Politics, Law, and Government/Presidential Studies
  Current Events and Issues/Politics and Government

The 2016 election caused many pundits and citizens alike to decry the Electoral College. This book explains the dangerous and unconstitutional implications of the National Popular Vote Bill, which is quietly passing in state houses across the nation.

Ever since the Founding Fathers created the Electoral College, Congress has tried to overturn it. The latest attempt is taking place not in Congress, but in state legislatures around the country, where a well-financed campaign by a private California group calling itself "National Popular Vote" (NPV) is proposing an "interstate compact" to circumvent the process for amending the U.S. Constitution. If adopted by states representing a majority of electoral votes, the signatory states would bind themselves to ignore the popular votes within their respective states, and instead allocate their electoral votes to the candidate whom the media proclaimed to be the "national popular vote" winner.

In this new history of the Electoral College, law professor Robert M. Hardaway lays bare the constitutional loopholes that have allowed this movement to succeed in states representing approximately half the electoral votes necessary to purportedly bind those states to ignore the popular vote of the people within their respective states. The presentation of the information in this book to state legislatures considering the compact, resulted in complete reversal of preconceived perceptions about how presidential elections should be conducted.


  • Exposes the National Popular Vote movement, which seeks to abolish the Electoral College, by making readers aware of this its agenda, financing, and goal of effectively amending the constitutional process by a means that takes place under the radar of the general public
  • Presents as succinctly and clearly as possible the dubious constitutional grounds for the Compact, as well as the ramifications if it were to somehow be approved by the U.S. Supreme Court
  • Illustrates exactly how this movement is succeeding in state after state precisely because the public is uninformed about the Electoral College
  • Shows how the abolition of the Electoral College and inauguration of a national "popular vote" would actually result in an outcome that is contrary to the goals of many of its supporters
Author Info

Robert M. Hardaway is professor of law at the University of Denver Sturm College of Law where he teaches evidence and civil procedure and election law. He is the author of numerous law review articles and books on the Electoral College and election law, including The Electoral College and the Constitution: The Case for Preserving Federalism (Praeger, 1994) and Crisis at the Polls (Greenwood, 2008). He has been voted best professor by his students. He has contributed to public media such as CNN, MSNBC, and numerous public television and radio stations as well as the Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times, Huffington Post, AOL News, and local news publications. He has also written amicus legal briefs to district and appellate courts on issues relating to the Electoral College. Professor Hardaway is the author or co-author of 37 law review articles and reviews, as well as over 325 published articles in publications ranging from New York Times Upfront to the Chicago Tribune and the Los Angeles Times.



"A readable account of an immensely important Constitutional provision that few fully understand. An important history lesson!"—Richard D. Lamm, Former Governor of Colorado

"Robert M. Hardaway has long been a thoughtful and effective advocate for the Electoral College. His critique of the national popular vote legislation is much needed at this critical moment in our nation's history. Saving the Electoral College is a welcome resource for any student of the American political system."—Tara Ross, Author of The Indispensable Electoral College and Enlightened Democracy: The Case for the Electoral College

In the News

The Daily Caller, FLASHBACK: JFK Once Defended The Electoral College, 3/23/2019

Look Inside

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Midterm Campaigning and the Modern Presidency cover imageVoting Rights under Fire cover imageThe Press in American Politics, 1787–2012 cover image

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