The custom in the United States today is for Electoral College (EC) votes to be awarded state-by-state on a winner-take-all basis. A candidate who wins the popular vote in an individual state gets every one of its electoral votes.
Although we are accustomed to thinking this is the only way it can be done, the method of awarding electoral votes is a matter for each state to decide. For example, two states (Nebraska and Maine) award electoral college votes by congressional district rather than by statewide popular vote. There is no reason for every other state in the nation not to follow suit.
The number of electors in each state is equal to the number of members of Congress to which the state is entitled. Thus there are, in total, 538 electors, corresponding to the 435 members of the House of Representatives, the 100 senators, and, by virtue of the 23rd Amendment, three additional electors from the District of Columbia.
Each member of the House, of course, represents one congressional district, and each of a state’s two senators represents his entire state. The fairest way to award electoral votes would be to award one electoral vote to the winner of each of those congressional districts and the two senatorial votes to the winner of the statewide vote.
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