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The 2012 Electoral College

The 2012 Electoral College

On Monday, December 17, 2012, at noon, the 18 members of Ohio’s Electoral College will gather in the Senate Chamber of the Statehouse to cast their electoral votes for president and vice president. This occasion marks the 53rd meeting of the Ohio Electoral College since statehood in 1803. Since Ohio did not become a state until 1803, the state did not participate in the Electoral Colleges of 1788 (Washington), 1792 (Washington), 1796 (Adams) or 1800 (Jefferson).

Members of Ohio’s Electoral College for the 2012 Presidential Election include:

  • Daniel Traicoff
  • Constance Lighthall
  • Tracy Heard
  • William Young
  • Michael Friedman
  • Ann Block
  • William J. Healy, II
  • Cathina Hourani
  • Wade Kapszukiewicz
  • Mark Owens
  • Pernel Jones, Jr.
  • Grace Anne Cherrington
  • Sarah Brown-Clark
  • Kevin Malecek
  • Jeremy Van Meter
  • Ryan Kolegar
  • Ted Strickland
  • Chris Redfern

Deciding the Number of Electors in Each State

Each state is awarded a number of presidential electors equal to the number of its U.S. Senators, always two, plus the number of U.S. Representatives, currently 16 for Ohio. The number of electors based on U.S. Representatives may change each decade according to the size of each state’s population as determined in the decennial Census. 

How Electors Are Selected

The political parties in each state submit a list of their electors, which are pledged to their candidate for president.  Whichever party wins the popular vote in the state wins that state’s electoral votes. Two exceptions to this are Maine and Nebraska, where two electors are chosen by statewide popular vote and the remainder by the popular vote within each Congressional district. 

Scheduling the Electoral College Meeting

Federal law requires each state’s electors to meet in their state capital and cast their electoral votes, one for president and one for vice president, on the Monday following the second Wednesday of December. This year that date falls on December 17, 2012.

Counting Each State’s Electoral Votes

The electoral votes are sealed and sent to the President of the U.S. Senate, who on January 6, 2013, opens and reads them before both houses of Congress. The candidate for president with an absolute majority (one over half the total) of electoral votes is declared president, with the vice presidential candidate with an absolute majority being declared the vice president. In the event of no absolute majority of electoral votes, the U.S. House of Representatives would elect the president from among the top three contenders with each state casting only one vote. If no candidate obtains an absolute majority for vice president, then the U.S. Senate would select a candidate from among the top two contenders for the office.

Administering the Oath of Office

The president and vice president will be sworn into office at noon on January 20, 2013.

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