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Electoral Vote vs. Popular Vote

In the Presidential elections of USA, the president is elected by the composition of a particular ratio of Electoral votes and popular votes. Popular votes are the votes cast by the general public voters for electing their president of the country, Whereas Electoral votes are divided ratio of jury votes in each state of America and are supervised under the Electoral College. A person having more popular votes and less electoral votes cannot be elected as a President as Hilary Clinton in 2016, and back in 2000, Al Gore had the same issue, and they lost the elections. The president is selected by the ratio of both types of votes, but the person with more electoral votes is more likely to win and be the president of Unite States of America.

Key Differences

The popular vote is the general public vote directly given by public from every state to their favorite presidential candidate.
Electoral vote depicts indirect democracy, and it is representative republic approach.
Aimie Carlson
Jul 09, 2017
The Electoral vote is the vote cast by elected representative of political parties in every state of America.
Popular vote depicts the general public opinion and is direct democratic phenomena.
Popular vote winner can lose due to less electoral votes.
Samantha Walker
Jul 09, 2017

Comparison Chart


Electoral Vote are the decisive votes as they have more influence regarding electing a president.
Popular votes are not decisive votes and don’t have that much influence as the Electoral votes have but represent the public choice and minority rights.

Political Structure

It shows representative republic formation.
It directly depicts the democracy.

Voting system

Citizen of America vote and elect the electors from each state, which then further vote to elect the president.
The general public directly votes for presidential elections candidates in all the States of America.

Involvement of Bureaucracy

Bureaucracy is involved in conducting the general elections and forming different committees and councils.
Not involved. Bureaucracy is not required in particular and does not participate as no need of any council or group formation.
Harlon Moss
Jul 09, 2017

Benefits for the Parties

Favors the parties that have the majority of electors.
Favors general public than the parties.

What is Electoral Vote?

Electoral Vote refers towards the vote of elected electors from each state of America. Electoral College is an organization which controls and supervise the whole scenario of the electoral vote. In the presidential elections of USA, the president is elected by electoral votes got from each state. The Electoral College has divided a fixed ratio of electoral votes for every state of America based on their population and other balances. The general elections that held on the first Tuesday of November after every four years, general public vote for the party candidates competing for the elector’s seat in each state. Every political party nominates their candidate for the general elections. General public vote and select the electors from their respective states. Combining all the electors from every state of America, there is a total of 538 electors in Electoral College. The ratio of 538 is divided among all the States of America by their population and according to other parameters. Among these 538, 435 are general representatives, 100 are the senators, and the remaining three belongs to the District of Columbia, which is an alliance state of the USA. Then these elected electors cast a vote in their states on the 3rd Monday of December, which are the presidential elections. Electoral vote majority selects the president. The candidate who gets more electoral votes from 538 becomes the president of the United States of America even if he or she has less popular votes. It is representative republic system. It refers towards the indirect democratic approach. Many people disagree with this concept as in many situations a person winning more popular votes but less electoral votes lose the election, but this is how the system of USA works. Bureaucracy is involved regarding grouping, making committees and councils regarding conducting the general elections and managing the Electoral College.

What is Popular Vote?

Popular Vote refers to the votes cast by the general public of United States in their Presidential Elections. All the citizens living in each and every state of America including the minorities, all of them are given the right to vote and chose their preferred Presidential candidate in the presidential election. This approach demonstrates the concept of direct democracy. People directly vote for their favorite presidential candidate. Popular votes depict the general view of the public and enable the people rather than depending on the political party and their affiliation directly participate in selecting their own President of the country. This direct democratic approach is seen in many other countries also, but America has the oldest and most well-defined system and setup. But the candidate popular among the general public and getting more number of the popular vote is not always elected as the president of the state. Number of electoral votes in every state counts too. Electoral votes have more influence than the popular votes. There are many real life examples in the elections, the candidates with more electoral and less popular votes become the president of the USA.

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