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Obama to be re-elected Monday (by Electoral College)

9:46 AM, Dec 17, 2012   |    comments
Electoral College/file/AP
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President Obama will be re-elected on Monday -- officially.

The Electoral College meets Monday to formally cast the state-by-state votes that Obama won in the Nov. 6 election.

Obama won states that total 332 electoral votes; Republican Mitt Romney won states with 206 electoral votes.

Even after the college vote, the next Congress must formally record the electoral votes on Jan. 6 and formally declare Obama the winner.

It's all a foregone conclusion, given the scope of Obama's victory -- though it's always possible one or two electors will go their own way.

From The Washington Post:

"The Constitution provides little in the way of mandating how the electoral college should work. It simply determines that each state has one elector for each of its senators and representatives, meaning no state has fewer than three votes.

"Federal law requires state electors to meet in their respective state capitals every four years to cast their votes for president and vice president on the Monday after the second Wednesday of December. Otherwise, states largely set their own rules. In most states, an equal number of electors pledge themselves to each candidate, and the popular vote dictates which team of electors casts its votes.

"But not all states require their electors to vote according to their initial pledges. And sometimes, electoral voters go their own way.

"President Gerald Ford won Washington state in 1976, but Republican elector Mike Padden spent his vote on Ronald Reagan, who wasn't even the GOP nominee that year. ...

"Nine electors are known to have defected from their pledges since 1948. Some states have passed laws subjecting such 'faithless electors' to fines."

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