Education

1992 Electoral College Vote of New York


Historical Context
The Electoral College was established by the Founding Fathers as a part of the original Constitution of the United States.  It was seen as a compromise between having the president elected by popular vote and having Congress elect the president.  New York State has thirty-one electoral votes. In New York, the elected officials who vote in the Electoral College are not bound by law to follow public opinion when casting their votes.
Essential Question
How do citizens participate in a democracy?
Check for Understanding
Identify the purpose of this document and use the information to explain the role of the Electoral College in the American voting system.
[click to enlarge]
Electoral College. 1992 Certificate of Vote, New York State Archives, NYSA_13251-93_1992_vote
Document Description
1992 Certificate of Vote for the New York State Electoral College. [2 pages]
Questions
  1. What does this document tell us about the 1992 presidential election?
  2. Did the person the New York electors voted for become president?
  3. How old do you have to be to vote in the United States?
  4. Why do we vote?
  5. Is this how American citizens vote when they go to the voting place?
Historical Challenge
Which two presidents have won the electoral vote but not the popular vote?

Why does this document show thirty-three electoral votes for New York? How many electoral votes does New York get now? Why is there a difference?
Interdisciplinary Connections
Math: A presidential candidate has to receive more than half of the electoral votes to become president. If there are 538 total electoral votes, how many votes does a candidate need in order to have more than half of the votes?
Resources
  1. Christelow, Eileen. Vote!. New York: Clarion Books, 2003. ISBN: 0618247548
  2. Israel, Fred L. Student’s Atlas of American Presidential Elections: 1789-1996. Washington, D.C.: Congressional Quarterly, 1997. ISBN: 1568023774
  3. McNamara, Margaret. Election Day. New York: Aladdin Paperbacks, 2004. ISBN: 0689864264
  4. St. George, Judith. So You Want to be President? New York: Philomel Books, 2000. ISBN: 0399234071
  5. http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/electoral-college/
  6. http://www.pbs.org/elections/kids/
  7. http://www.socialstudiesforkids.com/articles/government/theelectoralcollege.htm