To learn about these topics in more depth, please navigate here to watch the full Policy Pub webinar presented by FSU’s College of Social Sciences and Public Policy.
The FSU Alumni Association, in partnership with the College of Social Sciences and Public Policy, the LeRoy Collins Institute and the FSU Institute of Politics, hosted this panel of esteemed faculty to explore American democracy in action and our tradition of representative governance. Featured panelists Carol Weissert (FSU Political Science, Collins Institute), Brad Kile (Institute of Politics, Master of Applied American Politics program) and Nat S. Stern (College of Law) engaged in a nonpartisan discussion on the next stages following the presidential election and explained emerging political processes.
This webinar covers a wide array of topics having to do with the 2020 election. This webinar includes information about why counting votes takes so long, why polls can be inaccurate for predicting election outcomes, how the Supreme Court makes decisions when involved in state election law, and the places to find the best and most reliable information.
Q: Do you see the electoral college process being eliminated and just relying strictly on the popular vote?
A: No, I don’t anticipate a change. And the reason is such a change would require a constitutional amendment which would require approval by 3/5 of the states and I just don’t see that happening because there are states that wield a disproportionate impact on the outcome of elections. Under the formula of the electoral college, states with smaller populations are given a disproportionate amount of weight in the electoral college and it would require the approval of those very states, or at least a substantial number of them to change the current system.
Q: What’s the role of social media in modern day elections and this election?
A: I think it is very important. I think it’s a way of our providing information and sometimes misinformation out to people. I think that all I think I played a role and specifically, I think it played a role in Florida. There was a lot of information across social media about Biden’s “socialist tendencies,” and a variety of other things. It’s interesting because it’s clearly very important to get our hands around this issue. One of the more troubling things is that misinformation spreads faster than true information. The more scandalous something is, the more likely we are to read it than, let’s say, more nuanced truth, and that’s a real problem with social media.
Q: What are the prospects of a multi-party system in America?
A: No. Part of our system is that we have these 50 states and these subdivisions within these states that run this system and these 50 states define third party and what a third party is, and define how a third party can be put on a ballot. It makes it hard to get on the ballot in all 50 states. You need a lot of money and you need a lot of organization.
This post is based on a Policy Pub webinar presented by FSU’s College of Social Sciences and Public Policy. You can watch the full webinar here.
Dr. Weissert is a LeRoy Collins Eminent Scholar and Chair of Civil Education and Political Science at Florida State University. Dr. Weissert’s research interests include Florida politics, elections, intergovernmental relations, federalism and health policy. You can learn more about Dr. Weissert’s research here.
Dr. Kile is an Instructor in Political Science Department for Masters of Applied Politics and Policy Program at Florida State University, as well as Principal of the Dumbarton Group in Tallahassee. Dr. Kile’s research interests include networks, lobbying, and grassroots organizations. You can learn more about Dr. Kile here.
The feature image is from Pexels.