GOP pollster: Electoral College prevents 'tyranny of majority' very effectively

Republican pollster Ed Goeas dismissed Democratic criticisms of the U.S. Electoral College Tuesday, arguing that the presidential voting system protects Americans from a "tyranny of the majority" in which small groups of citizens could have their rights abused by the majority.

“The point is, the founding fathers are very concerned that in the majority, we get too passionate about their controls and too passionate about their interests, ” Goeas said on Hill.TV’s “What America’s Thinking.”

The Electoral College has become a partisan flashpoint after Donald Trump won the 2016 presidential election while receiving millions fewer voters than Democratic nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonAre Democrats turning Trump-like? The Hill's Campaign Report: Battle for Senate begins to take shape The Hill's Morning Report — Trump and the new Israel-'squad' controversy MORE.

In the latest The Hill-Harris X poll, 64 percent of voters who picked Clinton favor abolishing the Electoral College, while 61% people who voted for Trump want to keep the system.

“If you looked at vote that just happened in 2016, and you take away the plus vote in California and in New York, Hillary Clinton did not win the majority of the vote,” Goeas said.

While presently Democrats are interested in changing over to a national popular vote system, it's only a matter of time before Republicans become more passionate about it, the pollster added.

“I have been seeing ebbs and flow on this issue. There are Republicans pushing for getting rid of the Electoral College. This time the Democrats are pushing to get rid of it,” Goeas added.

Several Democratic presidential candidates, including Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenAre Democrats turning Trump-like? Manufacturing shrinks, raising questions for Trump Volatile presidential polls spark new round of anxieties MORE (D-Mass.), Pete ButtigiegPeter (Pete) Paul ButtigiegVolatile presidential polls spark new round of anxieties British Bookmaker: Warren has replaced Biden as Democratic primary favorite The Hill's Campaign Report: Battle for Senate begins to take shape MORE, Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisAre Democrats turning Trump-like? Volatile presidential polls spark new round of anxieties Conservative commentator rips Shapiro over criticism of people with multiple jobs MORE (D-Calif.) and former Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas), are open to the idea of replacing the Electoral College with popular votes.

Last week, Trump President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump watching 'very closely' as Portland braces for dueling protests WaPo calls Trump admin 'another threat' to endangered species Are Democrats turning Trump-like? MORE tweeted in support of the Electoral College, reversing his previous support for popular votes.

“The brilliance of the Electoral College is that you must go to many States to win,” Trump tweeted, “I used to like the idea of the Popular Vote, but now realize the Electoral College is far better for the U.S.A.”

—Philip Wang