Would this Harvard Professor have argued similarly if the situation had been reversed, with Clinton winning but Trump having the popular vote? I thought not...
The fact that this happened twice in ancient (by US standards) history is not enough... maybe to a lawyer who is used to giving incredible weight to case law. Here's what my exhaustive couple of minutes worth of research in Google turns up:
- In 1824, no candidate received a majority of the electoral votes. The guy they selected in the end to become president (John Quincy Adams) did not have the most electoral votes, and had not won the popular vote either
- The 1876 election apparently saw some dispute over the results in a couple of key states, and the matter was settled between the two contestants
a year later, essentially having one candidate ceding victory to the other.
Not at all the same as the case at hand in 2016. And speaking of case law; think about the terrible precedent you'd be setting here: "If we don't like the outcome of the election, we can change it", with "we" being whichever group, organisation or cabal has the most leverage over / pull with the electoral college. No, GP is right: if you want the candidate with the popular vote to win, change the system so that this happens automatically and democratically, not by giving the finger to roughly half the candidate and saying "sorry, but we didn't like your candidate and the law says we can nix him".
Disclaimer: I'm a European, no great fan of Hillary, but as another European said: I would have voted for Satan over Trump.