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"Obama Will Win, [But] Romney Will Be President" by Everett E. Murdock
A self-published book talking about the history of the Electoral College.
The title of this book may stir up short-fused Democrats, Independents and more, but it's nothing. Despite a rather unique title for a book, enough to catch the eye of the curious, it's a book about the history of the Electoral College—why those folks are the ones deciding who gets to be this country's president, and not much consideration from the people. Personally, I wasn't as stunned having found out, compared to the corruption and lies hidden in sports, but it was definitely enough to get me to read about this.
Author Murdock states is simply how the Electoral College works and why it does what it does, on the first chapters. This will cause high-brows from the reader assuming that his/her vote was the vote placed to elect his/her favorite candidate—the popular vote. Murdock drops such assumption and explains why the electors from the Electoral College and its system decides the winner. Would that mean our votes are meaningless? Not exactly, and it's not a ploy to get us to stop voting, but it's enough to make one wonder: Why can't we vote for our favorite candidate directly? Murdock states two reasons, according to the delegates, why they refuse popular votes:
The delegates from the smaller states knew the more populous states would control the presidential elections.
Many of delegates didn't trust the people to make the decisions.
(Murdock, 2012, p.18)
The first point is interesting because if the presidency was decided by popular vote, the states with larger populations would decide who should run our country, which would deem unfair for states with low populations. The second point holds some truth value—a harsh one at that. Reason is because delegates believe the people voting aren't knowledgeable enough about their candidate, his plans and where he will lead the country to. I feel this is understandable. Nevertheless, the 48 states (besides Maine and Nebraska) use what's called Winner-Take-All system: that is, the electors from those states are recommended they place the vote of the candidate who wins that state's popular vote. Murdock comments, "That means, when the Electoral College members vote, the votes the less popular candidate received in the general election are thrown out. It's as if those people never voted at all." As you read through, the Electoral College system complied with the popular vote 93% of the time, in terms of choosing the president and vice president. You realize and learn about the rare failures occurred within the 7% from the past elections. Will we see that in this year's 2012 election? There are 538 members in the Electoral College, and for the candidate to win, he needs one vote about half of the members: that number is 270 votes. What happens if either candidate fails to acquire 270? The decision is sent to the House of Representatives.
With that said, why haven't the people spoken their dislikes on this system? (It would've been nice had I known about this system years ago. Either that, or I'm hanging out with the wrong people, most of whom are sports addicts. I know, I know...) Even if it takes three-fourths majority to agree on eliminating the College, isn't there a better solution to back it up? Murdock feels this may never happen, despite getting three-fourths to agree, and feels it isn't going to change.
"Over the years, the Electoral College system has sometimes failed to agree with the people's choice for president. So why haven't the people risen up to demand an end to the Electoral College? Hard to say. It's probably just because we tend to forget about things if they seem to be working 'all right.' Only when things go wrong, do we get riled up and want to do something about it." (Murdock, ed 2012, p.34)
This must explain why I was one of those people glued to watching the [cable] news channels all day finding out the progress of the elections and who won. (It actually brought me into a minor mental panic and loss of concentration at school that time. I can't imagine someone who thrives on constantly watching the news every minute. Go figure.)
From then on, to the middle, and close to the end of the book, Murdock brings the reader back to history class listing all of the results of the presidential elections, from George Washington to Barack Obama. Although there are a ton of numbers to crunch, Murdock did an excellent job going into the population's reactions, roles and having their thoughts expressed going into election year and the results. To add more succulent flavor to the dish, Murdock jots down the major events following the election, from the economic roller coasters to wars in which the US were involved in. Those with strong historical knowledge, from the wars fought to the office, will be utterly familiar with all this and won't get anything new from it. As for those with little knowledge, it's a must read; you'll learn a lot more than just presidents being elected, such as the growth and formation of the political parties, what the candidate's roles were, what they planned for the US and their decisions about war.
By the sixteenth and seventeenth chapters, Murdock stamps his solid predictions for the upcoming (at the time and date of this writing) presidential elections. The author breaks down which states will vote for whom, their popular and electoral votes, adding them up and summarizing with the proof of the previous elections, as history states, believes Romney will be our 45th president of the US. I've got as far as to jot down Murdock's predictions, including the electoral votes, seen below:
|Obama Will Win||Romney Will Win||Swing State*||Unsure|
* Swing States are states that, according to history, have (in)frequently "swung" their votes from one party to the other. A couple of states have been known to periodically vote for one, and after four/eight years, voted the other.
|New Hampshire||4 votes|
|New Jersey||14 votes|
|New Mexico||5 votes|
|New York||29 votes|
|North Carolina||15 votes|
|North Dakota||3 votes|
|Rhode Island||4 votes|
|South Carolina||9 votes|
|South Dakota||3 votes|
|Washington D.C.||3 votes|
|West Virginia||5 votes|
** Murdock thinks Obama will grab some votes from Minnesota, despite his unsure possibility. Obama isn't leading much in this state, according to the polls.
So having listed those possible votes from all 50 states, what Murdock says should catch attention:
"The winner-take-all system is extremely unfair because the people who voted for the less popular candidate get no credit for their vote at all. All votes for the losing candidate get thrown out. In fact, if you know the candidate you favor is sure to win your state, what is the point of voting at all?" (Murdock, ed 2012, p.209)
I currently live in California, and being a Democratic state this is, it is no surprise the Democratic nominee Barack Obama has this state covered. Of course, this doesn't mean I and everyone else shouldn't vote despite the College's role, but what value do our votes hold? If we were the 'other' party, besides Democratic, will our votes still count? What happens if the elector(s) vote the other party? Those electors are called "faithless electors," and yes faithless voting has happened in the past.
Then Murdock concludes with this great closing:
"If what happened in 2000 happens again in 2012, will the people rise up and demand a change? They didn't in 2000 when the presidential candidate who won the general election by more than half a million votes was not allowed to take his rightful place as the president of the United States. If it happens again this time, will anybody care? Will the people demand the right to directly elect our presidents? We shall see." (Murdock, ed 2012, p.211)
Yes I do feel the people will make a stand. Unfortunately, it won't be very significant. I rightfully place all the blame on sports and reality TV. As you can see, majority are more concerned about their favorite team, and voting for who should win a mediocre talent show, more than our country's status. They constantly babble about how "we" need to strengthen our defense next time and never backdown against haters pointing fun at "my" team. No matter what, these folks are willing to spend their life savings on something with no effect to the outside world, regardless of our economy, let alone, spending all their time watching sports without a care for their loved ones and more; They simply sit there to make moderately educated athletes that much more rich. It's terrible and downright sad. Anyway, folks would like to see Obama reelected but the reaction of the people will likely take a toll, though, again, not by much, as soon as the results are in. What about the other people? Will they make a stand? Doubt it because they have a game to watch.
Only thing I have a problem with the book was the grammatical and spelling errors, mostly with commas, periods and misspellings of indefinite articles; There were too many to cover. I'm not sure if the book was rushed to get published but this book could've really used an editor to clean up these mistakes. I state this because it becomes extremely hard to read, having to stop and reinterpret what the sentence/word is saying preceding the other. This really deteriorated the book as whole because this was actually an excellent book (don't get me wrong, it is).
Since this book is "Volume 1," which I'm guessing Murdock will eventually release a follow-up to this, it would be a pleasure to look forward to Volume 2. I enjoyed what I read and learned a lot.
Other than that, wanting to know if your vote really count makes this book an excellent one to have. Those will little knowledge about our US government/history in general, and the goings-on in our office, I completely recommend this great book.
Our country's Electoral College and its role in the presidential elections was what I enjoyed getting a deeper sense of. Not only that, I learned quite a bunch about our nation's leaders and life back in the 19th and 20th centuries, leading up to today. The historical synopses was truly a bonus, and any reader looking to learn about the Electoral College will certainly get more for their money when reading this book.
Inspired by this book, I've actually went out, and here online, to go and purchase books on US History. How I got from generic political science to military history marks this book as the main reason why (and rightfully so because I'm more infused about the other sciences being Astronomy, Geology and more). These history books are no less than 500 pages long but yes, they will be read and reviewed here on this website. Nevertheless, this book inspired me well to get a better feel about our country, our democracy, the value of our citizenship, the wars fought shaping our world the way it is and more; It's a great feeling.
Yes, the spelling and grammatical errors in this book could use some work. Other than that, I'm looking forward to the second volume, let alone dig up more of our history. Big thanks to author Murdock for the inadvertent inspiration that blossomed from the book.
- Great historic information about the Electoral College.
- One of the rare, decent, self-published books out there.
- Marred with lots of misspellings.
- Although explained, Murdock wasn't too thorough about "behind the grinding gears" into the likelihood of a Romney win (are our votes counted, and if so, legitimize the results of the election?).
- Murdock released a follow-up of this book titled, "Obama Will Win, but Romney Was Almost President," after Obama won a second term.
|Title||Obama Will Win, [But] Romney Will Be President
How Political Parties Target Electoral College Votes to Win Presidential Elections
A Historical Analysis of Every U.S. Presidential Election
|Author(s)||Everett E. Murdock, Ph.D|
|Description||This is one of those rare books that gives even more than it promises. Novelist and history buff, E.E. Murdock, predicts that the 2012 presidential election will have a surprising and disturbing outcome: Barack Obama will the popular vote by as much as one million votes, but Romney will be named president because of the biased design of the Electoral College System.
Dr. Murdock makes his case by analyzing every presidential election in U.S. history, carefully ferreting out historical details that reveal just how the Electoral College has influenced election results since it was created at the Constitutional Convention in 1787. One of the author's disturbing revelations is how the Southern slave states were able to manipulate the design of the Electoral College system to get disproportionate representation in deciding who would be president. In fact, conflicts over slavery had significant influence on all of the presidential elections prior to the Civil War. Though few people realize it, that unfair advantage affects presidential elections to this day; it was the reason, in the election of 2000, Al Gore won 543,895 more votes than George Bush but did not get to be president.
From duels to wars to riots and assassinations, Dr. Murdock describes how, throughout history, national and international events affected which candidate would be president. He has created a book chock full of little-known information about our nation's presidential history, information that every U.S. citizen should know before they walk into their local polling place on November 6, 2012.
|Dedication||"For Zoe, Without whom this book would not exist, and without whom I would not exist."|
|Book Dimensions||Width: 6.0″|
|Depth: 0.56″ (9/16″)|
|Contents||Acknowledgements, Introduction, seventeen (17) chapters, Conclusions, Index|
|Published||May 14, 2012|
|Publisher||H.O.T. Press (www.hotpresspublishing.com)|
|Copyright||© 2012 by Everett E. Murdock|
|Printed by||Bemrose Printing C.I.P., Derby / Thetford Press Limited, Thetford, Norfolk|
|Book Format||Paperback, Kindle|
|Best Seller's List||--|
|Other||Everett E. Murdock is an Emeritus Professor at California State University, Long Beach.|
|Another version of the book cover features an orange and lighter blue combo.|
|Volume 2 titled "Obama Won, [But] Romney Almost Was President" is a follow-up to this book.|
|Library of Congress
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