A Historic Number of Electors Defected, and Most Were Supposed to Vote for Clinton

State Pledged to Voted for
Hawaii Clinton Bernie Sanders
Texas Trump Ron Paul
Texas Trump John Kasich
Washington Clinton Colin L. Powell
Washington Clinton Colin L. Powell
Washington Clinton Colin L. Powell
Washington Clinton Faith Spotted Eagle

Electors are not required by the Constitution to vote for a particular candidate. Some states and parties require their electors to pledge to vote for a candidate and may fine or replace electors who break their pledge.

It is rare for more than one elector to vote against the party’s pledged candidate, but it has happened on a few occasions.

In 1808, six New York electors from the Democratic-Republican Party refused to vote for James Madison and instead voted for the party’s vice-presidential candidate, George Clinton.

The last time an elector voted for a candidate from another party was in 1972, when a Republican from Virginia voted for the Libertarian candidate, John Hospers, instead of the eventual winner, Richard M. Nixon. A single elector has refused to vote for the party’s presidential candidate in 11 elections.

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