Monday 12 November 2012

A quick thought on the Electoral College

Last week President Obama was re-elected in the US under the electoral college system. It's been described as "arcane" on this side of the Atlantic, which got me thinking about the possibility of a directly elected Commission President in the EU.

I've discussed in more detail here why I think a parliamentary system would be better for the EU than a directly elected President (or indirectly in the US case). But if we introduced a "directly" elected president in the EU, could we do it without weighting the votes to protect the smaller Member States? I don't think so: a simple majority vote would render campaigning in the small(er) Member States less useful and there would be fewer incentives for candidates to overcome language barriers.

And if we would need an electoral college, why not just have a parliamentary system, with the European Parliament acting as that electoral college?

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