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The Candidates:
• George W. Bush
• John Kerry
• Ralph Nader
• Third Parties
Showdown States:
The Conventions:
• Democratic
• Republican

The president and vice president are elected by 538 Electoral College voters, one per senator and representative from each state, who usually cast a ballot for the candidate who wins the popular vote. In addition, the District of Columbia has three votes. A candidate must receive a majority of 270 votes to win the election. More
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Who's leading in the race for Electoral College votes? Here's the latest survey from the CNN political unit.
• General election
• States send Certificates of Ascertainment - the list of electors - to the Federal Register through December 13.
• Electors meet in each state to vote for president and vice president. Most meet at their respective state capitols.
• By this date, votes must reach the president of the Senate and the archivist.
• Congress meets in joint session to count and announce the vote.
No candidate wins majority
• Newly elected House picks president from top three Electoral College vote-getters.
• Newly elected Senate chooses vice president from top two Electoral College vote-getters.
Timeline: Congressional intervention

An elector bucks system
• In 26 states and Washington D.C., laws require electors to follow the popular vote.
• Some states threaten penalties for "faithless electors." No one has ever been prosecuted.
Details: Rules and regulations

Should the Electoral College system still be used to select the president?
Yes, the system works.
No, it's time for a change.
Don't know

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