Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images; National Archives

Congresswoman and clapback expert Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) made short work of President Donald Trump after his campaign criticized "crazy AOC" in a text to supporters, threatening that the freshman congresswoman wants to abolish the Electoral College.

There's just one problem with the Trump campaign's assertion: Trump himself referred to the Electoral College as a "disaster for democracy" in a 2012 tweet. Ocasio-Cortez quickly retweeted it, writing, "I'm so glad the President and I agree that the Electoral College has got to go."

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WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 12: US President Donald Trump delivers remarks on 5G deployment in the United States on April 12, 2019 in Washington, DC. Trump discussed plans to build out a nationalized 5G network with plans to invest $20 billion improving broadband access. (Photo by Tom Brenner/Getty Images)

Millions of Americans remember the sinking feeling they had on November 8, 2016 when—against virtually all predictions—then-Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump defeated Democratic nominee and former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton to clench the presidency.

It's likely that many of them watching the results asked, "Could this defeat be any worse?"

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After the 2016 presidential election, questions about a person losing the popular vote by millions of votes but winning the presidency again came to the forefront. Five times the winner of the most votes in the presidential election lost the presidency due to the electoral college: 1824 - John Quincy Adams, 1876 - Rutherford Hayes, 1888 - Benjamin Harrison, 2000 - George W. Bush and 2016 - Donald Trump.

Only Hayes lost by a wider percentage than President Trump. But the electoral college is part of the United States Constitution and would require an amendment to abolish.

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Olivier Douliery-Pool/Getty Images // @mattklewis/Twitter

Conservative columnist Matt K. Lewis used a misleading map of the United States to defend the electoral college.

"Getting rid of the electoral college also means creating a system where this map isn’t enough to elect a Republican," Lewis, who currently contributes to The Daily Beast, wrote.

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Credit: NBC News

President Donald Trump has long sought to discredit the Special Investigation into possible conspiracy between his campaign and Russian operatives to influence the 2016 election.

In doing so, he's frequently railed against Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller as well, but in talking to reporters on the White House lawn Wednesday morning, Trump employed a new tactic: criticizing Mueller for being unelected and citing his own electoral college victory.

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Despite efforts to pressure electoral college members to switch their votes to honor the popular vote count, electors chose to seat Donald Trump, a result Congress will ratify next month. While efforts were fervent, they were always unlikely to persuade enough electors to switch their votes. In fact, there has never been a revolt by the College in its entire history.

The New York Times issued a widely circulated op-ed yesterday favoring an end to the electoral college. Although Trump, it wrote, “won under the rules… the rules should change so that a presidential election reflects the will of Americans and promotes a more participatory democracy.” The electoral college, it wrote, “is more than just a vestige of the founding era; it is a living symbol of America’s original sin.” Through the infamous three-fifths compromise, slaves counted towards the electoral college votes of each state, but they were not allowed to vote.  Thus, while a direct popular vote would have placed the Southern states at a disadvantage, the electoral college advantaged them. In large part because of this, seven out of eight of the first U.S. Presidents hailed from a Southern slave-holding state, Virginia, which commanded a massive number of electoral votes.

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A Republican member of the electoral college from Texas has indicated he will not cast his ballot––one of his state's 38 electoral votes––for President-elect Donald Trump. Christopher Suprun, a Dallas paramedic, previously supported Trump, but now says that Trump's continued attacks on the First Amendment and his numerous financial conflicts of interest have changed his mind. Although Suprun and the state's other Republican electors signed a pledge at a Dallas convention last summer promising to vote for their party's nominee, their signatures are not legally binding, and Texas law does not mandate that electors vote according to the results of the state's presidential election.

"I'm expecting backlash, but that has been par for the course this campaign. People are unhappy. They're angry. But I'm angry, too," said Suprun, who revealed that prior to changing his mind, he received hundreds of emails from concerned citizens urging him not to vote for the president-elect.

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