In the weeks following the election, worried supporters of Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton have been talking about trying to convince electors to flip their votes in the Electoral College. Although electors have never flipped the outcome of an election before, the idea has spurred some voters to reach out to their state's electors, flooding them with calls, emails, and letters. If you're among those hoping to sway electors one way or another, you might consider speaking to your own electors. While unearthing their names and information might take a bit of sleuthing, it is possible to contact your state's electors. And theoretically, you may even be able to meet with them face to face.
While meeting your electors may sound like a tedious task (and I'm not kidding when I say it may take some sleuthing), you might find it worthwhile if you're looking for a way to turn your post-election anxiety into action. Now there are a few different ways you can go about finding the names of your state's electors.
Every state must submit a certificate of ascertainment, which lists the names of their elected electors, to the Office of the Federal Register. Unfortunately, many states have yet to submit a certificate. Thankfully, Politico put together a very handy roster of every known 2016 elector. Because electors are often involved community members, public figures, or active members of their political party, their contact information can be (but is not always) easy to find via a simple Google search. Moreover, sites like asktheelectors.org and makedemocracymatter.org aim to quickly put voters in contact with electors through either the telephone or email.
If a recent petition on Change.org is any indication, millions of voters are hoping some electors can be convinced to flip their vote come Dec. 19. More than 4.7 million people have signed a petition urging the Electoral College to make Hillary Clinton president.
While some voters may feel frustrated over the fact President-elect Donald Trump secured the majority of electoral votes needed to win the presidency while losing the popular vote by more than 2.5 million votes, this frustration does not justify harassment.
Communicating your desire to see your state's electors vote for a certain candidate is one thing. But I am in no way, shape, or form advocating for anyone to confront electors face to face unless invited to do so by the elector themselves. If none of your state's electors will agree to meet with you in person to discuss their vote in the Electoral Collete, make a phone call, write an email, or send a letter. Harassing electors or sending them a barrage of insult-riddled messages is not likely to encourage them to listen to your concerns.
Those interested in watching their state electors cast their votes on Dec. 19, should check with their state's Secretary of State or Governor's Office for information about how to gain access to that meeting. It should be noted not every state makes the electors' vote open to the public.
The odds that efforts to use the Electoral College to keep Trump from reaching the Oval Office are successful are slim to none. And yet, while an Electoral College upset would be unprecedented, there's been a lot of unprecedented things about the 2016 presidential election.