The Electoral College
The Electoral College is a group of citizens (known as electors) appointed by the voters in each state to cast votes for the President and Vice President of the United States on behalf of the state's citizens. It was created to ensure that each state has a role in selecting the President. In casting a vote for President, a Pennsylvania voter is actually voting for a candidate’s slate of Presidential electors. The winning candidate’s electors represent Pennsylvania at the meeting of the state’s Electoral College in December where the electors cast their votes for President and Vice President. In a presidential election, the President of the United States is elected by the Electoral College, not the popular vote. However, each vote for President helps decide which candidate’s electors are appointed to attend the Electoral College where they vote for President and Vice President.
Each state gets the same number of electoral votes as it has members of Congress. There is a total of 538 votes in the Electoral College and a candidate must win a simple majority (270) of those votes to win the election. Pennsylvania has 20 electoral votes. Most states have a winner-take-all system, meaning that all of the state's electoral votes are pledged to the person who won the state's popular vote.
Commonwealth of Pennsylvania 58th Electoral College
December 19, 2016
Chamber of the House of Representatives
State Capitol Building
First row (Left to right): Theodore S. Christian, Robert A. Gleason Jr., Secretary Pedro A. Cortés, Joyce C. Haas, Reverend Canon David W. Lovelace
Second row: Carol D. Sides, Patricia K. Poprik, Robert B. Asher, Robert F. Bozzuto III, Lawrence J. Tabas, Carolyn "Bunny" Welsh, Elstina "Tina" Pickett, Richard W. Stewart, Christine J. Toretti, Ash K. Khare, Margaret L. Ferraro, Mary T. Barket, Gloria "Lee" Snover
Back row: Christopher K. Gleason, Andrew J. Reilly, James E. McErlane, Michael R. Downing