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One argument is that it is consistent with the federal system of government, which locates power in part at the state level. If it were abolished, one might argue, that would be just another power arrogated by the federal government. Another is that it fosters political stability by basically weighting the scales toward a two-party system. Another is that it actually gives people who do not live in major urban areas, or in very big states, more representation in the election, because while presidents could get a popular majority in those regions, they cannot get an electoral majority. Presidents thus have to campaign more in these areas, and often will even select a vice-presidential candidate that appeals to areas outside of those where they usually draw their support.
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