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The US Has an Electoral College, and So Do…


United States: The breakdown of votes in the US Electoral College after reapportionment based on the 2010 census.

The United States Electoral College is an example of a system in which an Executive President is indirectly elected, with electors representing the 50 states and the Federal District of Columbia

Each state has a number of electors equal to its Congressional representation in both houses, with the non-state District of Columbia receiving the number it would have if it were a state, but in no case more than that of the least populous state.

The electors generally cast their votes for the winner of the popular vote in their respective states.

There are however several states where this is not required by law.

In the United States, 270 electoral votes of the 538 electors are currently required to win the Presidential election.

In France, an electoral college is particularly formed by the Grands électeurs consisting of local elected representatives (French departmental councillors, French regional councillors and French mayors).

Since the beginning of the French Fifth Republic, these Grands électeurs are responsible for electing the senators. Prior to the 1962 French presidential election referendum, the President of the French Republic was elected indirectly by the French Parliament.

Worldwide”Colleges” of electors play a role in elections in other countries, albeit with electors allocated in ways differing from the United States.

In Germany, the members of the federal parliament together with an equal number of people elected from the state parliaments constitute the Federal Convention, that exists for the only purpose of electing the (non-executive) Head of State.

Similarly, in India the members of the both houses of parliament together with weighted votes from the members of the state legislative assemblies constitute an electoral college that elects the Head of State.

In Italy, the non-executive head of state is elected by the members of both houses of Parliament in joint session, together with delegates elected by the Regional Councils to ensure the representation of minorities.

Other countries with electoral college systems include Burundi, Estonia, Kazakhstan, Madagascar, Myanmar, Pakistan, Trinidad and Tobago and Vanuatu.

The Seanad Éireann (Senate) in Irelandis chosen by an electoral college.

Within China, both Macau and Hong Kong each have an Election Committee which functions as an electoral college for selecting the Chief Executive and formerly in the case of Hong Kong for selecting some of the seats of the Legislative Council.

In Guernsey, an electoral college called the States of Election chooses the island’s jurats. 

Georgia will have the Electoral College to elect the President of Georgia beginning in 2024.

In the sovereign Holy See, with the Vatican City as sovereign territory, the College of Cardinals elects the Pope in a papal conclave.

Ecclesiastical electoral colleges abound in modern times, especially among Protestant and Eastern Rite Catholic Churches.

In the Eastern rite churches, all the bishops of an autocephalous church elect successor bishops, thus serving as an electoral college for all the episcopal sees.

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