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ONLINE—The Electoral College: What Were The Founders Thinking?

January 19 @ 4:00 pm5:30 pm

California on the Ballot

The Electoral College is an original American model, never duplicated outside of the country. Created after lively debate in the last ten days of the five-month long Constitutional Convention of 1787, it set forth that presidents would be selected — not by popular vote — but by electors in each state.

What were the motives of the founders of the Electoral College? What role has California played over the years? What is its legacy today, in a more populous and mature America?

Join us on Zoom for a conversation that delves into the history of the Electoral College system, discusses implications across the state and nation, and explores popular ideas for reform.

Tuesday, January 19 2021
4:00-5:30pm PST

Register for the Online Event


Sonja Diaz, Founding Executive Director, UCLA Latino Policy & Politics Initiative (LPPI), Luskin School of Public Affairs

Karthick Ramakrishnan, professor of public policy and political science at UC Riverside, and founding director of its Center for Social Innovation

Mindy Romero, Founder and Director, Center for Inclusive Democracy, USC Sol Price School of Public Policy


Dan Schnur, Political Strategist and Professor, USC Annenberg School of Communications and UC Berkeley Institute of Governmental Studies (moderator)

The panel will be in conversation from 4:00-5:00 p.m. PT, followed by thirty minutes of Q&A and informal conversation until 5:30 pm PT.

Through California On The Ballot, California Humanities invites the people of California and beyond to reflect and talk—with neighbors, historians, election experts, and more—about the past, present, and future of electoral engagement in California. To sign up for upcoming events, visit www.calhum.org.

This event is funded by the “Why it Matters: Civic and Electoral Participation” initiative, administered by the Federation of State Humanities Councils and funded by Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

For more information, please write to Kirsten Vega at kvega@calhum.org.


January 19
4:00 pm – 5:30 pm
Event Category:


CA United States


California Humanities