Five times in United States history, a President has been elected to office while losing the popular vote, each time sparking renewed arguments about the Electoral College, contentious since its inception 230 years ago. The heated issue flared once again this week in BB&N's own Upper School Theater as a group of talented sophomores squared off in the annual All-Star Debate.
If the Constitution were amended according to the outcome of this close contest, then the U.S. Presidency would be determined solely by a simple majority vote of the populace.
Leading up to this culminating event, students in each English 10 section voted for their best-in-class after a week of inter-class debates on other topics. All-star Leyla Ewald '19 said, "I used lots of courage, gained tons of knowledge, and learned to collaborate effectively. I know I will use the skills and confidence I gained from this experience throughout my life."
Speaking before the entire Class of 2019, teachers, and a panel of judges, the all-stars presented well-researched points about the less directly democratic mode of voting through electors, who, advocates argue, make more informed decisions than the average citizen, versus the "one man one vote" reasoning of popular-vote proponents.
In the end, the team arguing for a change in the status quo prevailed, according to this year's presiding panel of judges: history teacher Leigh Hogan, history teacher Lizanne Moynihan, and junior Maggie Foot, one of last year's all-stars and the 2016 recipient of the Jacobs Prize, which will be awarded later this spring to the outstanding participant in the All-Star Debate.
The 2017 All-Star Debaters pictured above from left: : Max Ambris, Sam Klein Roche, Sophie Collins Arroyo, Andy Elkins, Leyla Ewald, Harry Golen, Klara Kuemmerle, Talia Belz, Lauren Yun, (Will Jarrell, absent), all Class of '19.