Popular vote victor could finish second - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

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Popular vote victor could finish second

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LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -

You head out to make your choice for the next president. But your vote truly only matters if you're in a state that's not already a lock for one side or the other. The accumulation of the popular vote simply doesn't matter. It's all about the Electoral College.

This system is a compromise that was agreed upon hundreds of years ago by our Founding Fathers. They agreed to elect the President of the United States by a combination of a vote in Congress and a popular vote by qualified citizens. So the Electoral College was born.

But a lot of people don't feel like their voice matters because of this very system.

Take the 2000 election between Al Gore and George Bush. It was frustrating for those who voted for Gore because he received 50.3 percent of the votes across the U.S. Bush got 49.7 percent. But because Bush got 271 electoral votes, he won the Presidency.

Many analysts say it could be that close between Mitt Romney and Barack Obama. There is speculation that we may end up with a popular vote winner not getting the win.

It's whoever gets to 270 electoral votes first. The accumulation of the popular vote isn't a factor.

Both sides agree to this system, and it's been in place since the Constitutional Convention. But there is an argument to be made for people who say their vote doesn't matter. In presidential races, depending on where you're from, it's true. This year the race does matter for Nevada voters because it's clear it will be a close race in the Silver State.

California and Texas are examples of states that lean heavily one way or the other. Voters who vote against the majority in their state are not really a factor.

The National Popular Vote Bill has been passed in nine states so far and would make the popular vote determine the winner of the presidency.

The candidates are always saying voter turnout is key, but the truth is voter turnout in close states is the key.

There are 538 total electoral votes, which are comprised of the number of senators and congressmen from each state. The first candidate to 270 wins.

The winner of the popular vote has lost in the Electoral College only three times in history. Those odd occurrences happened in 1824, 1876 and 2000.

Copyright 2012 KVVU (KVVU Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.

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