(POLITICO) — On Monday, members of the Electoral College will cast their historic votes for the next president of the United States. In the meantime, they are under siege.
The nation’s 538 presidential electors have been thrust into the political foreground like never before in American history. In the aftermath of a uniquely polarizing presidential contest, the once-anonymous electors are squarely in the spotlight, targeted by death threats, harassing phone calls and reams of hate mail. One Texas Republican elector said he’s been bombarded with more than 200,000 emails.
“I never can imagine harassing people like this. It’s just f—– up,” said Jim Rhoades, a Republican elector from Michigan who runs a home inspection service. “I’ve lost a bunch of business.”
In recent decades, the Electoral College had become such a reliable rubber stamp of Election Day results that it was viewed as an afterthought.
But with many Democrats desperate to block the all-but-certain ascension of Donald Trump to the White House, this long-neglected body has been gripped by turmoil, and its members have been subjected to pleas to upend centuries of tradition by casting their votes for someone other than the president-elect.
The remainder of this article is available in its entirety at Politico