Even a simple game must have a set of rules. And when the competition is most fierce, that’s when the rules matter the most.
Our Constitution provides the set of rules for governing our country. It affirms that we are a nation of states. It creates three branches of government and defines their powers. It limits the powers of both the federal government and, in its amendments, state governments.
The most important way the Constitution protects liberty and promotes justice is by structuring government to require deliberation and compromise. The Electoral College is one of these processes. It limits federal power over presidential elections, instead pushing that power into the states. This in turn limits the risks of election fraud and prevents any need for a nationwide recount. Coupled with the requirement to win with a majority of electoral votes, it also forces political parties to cobble together support from across the country. This means more voices get heard.
On this day in 1787, the Constitutional Convention approved and sent to the states for ratification the document that became the Constitution of the United States. That makes today—Constitution Day—a great time to remember just how important these rules are at a time of contentious and uncertain politics.