Where do I find the law of the Electoral College?

Constitution & Statutes

Federal

The main sources of federal law regarding the Electoral College are the United States Constitution and the United States Code.

  • Article II, Section 1, Clause 2 and the Twelfth Amendment of the Constitution provide the framework for the Electoral College process.
  • Title 3, Chapter 1 of the US Code pertains to presidential elections and vacancies and provides for a number of details about the Electoral College process, including details on the states' submission of Certificates of Vote and the counting of electoral votes in Congress.

State

Neither the U.S. Constitution nor federal law prescribes the method of appointing electors. The administration of presidential elections is largely left up to the states. Many states provide state laws related to elections on the website of their election office. Researchers can find links to state and local election offices using the USA.gov tool, Find My State or Local Election Office Website. For further information on state laws related to the administration of elections, researchers can consult these online resources:

Case Law

Challenges to election results sometimes culminate in litigation, which can in turn result in case law. Contested election lawsuits can take place in both state and federal courts, depending on the issue. Researchers interested in court opinions pertaining to the Electoral College can consult these online resources:

For general guidance on finding case law, researchers can consult the Law Library's research guides, Legal Research: A Guide to Case Law and How To Find Free Case Law Online


Last Updated: Nov 17, 2020
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