There’s a legal and constitutional way to elect the president by popular vote without a constitutional amendment abolishing the Electoral College or even changing one word in the Constitution. How? By enacting the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact.
When the founding fathers were creating the Electoral College in 1787 they couldn’t agree on the best way to select the electors to the Electoral College. So they decided to let the states select their own electors to the Electoral College and use any way they saw fit.
Today 48 states and D.C. have state laws to award all of their state’s electors to the Electoral College in a presidential election to whichever candidate has the most popular votes in their state, alled the “Winner-Take-All” system. Note: Maine and Nebraska award their Electoral College votes using a modified Winner-Take-All system.
Under the National Popular Vote Compact each state that joins the compact makes one simple change in their state voting laws: Instead of awarding all of their state’s electors to the Electoral College to whoever wins the most votes in their state they award all of their state’s electors to whoever wins the most votes in the entire country.
When enough states have joined the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact to total 270 Electoral College votes (that’s how many EC votes a candidate needs to win the presidency in the Constitution) the candidate will become president that won the popular vote in the entire country.
Currently 15 states and D.C. have joined the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact with a total of 196 EC votes, When enough additional states with a total of 76 additional EC votes join this compact it will go into effect in the next presidential election and the candidate with the most national popular votes will win the election.
This Interstate Compact will be legally binding in all of the states that have joined this compact. This intestate compact is similar to other interstate compacts with states that participate in multi state lotteries.
By using the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact to change state laws on how state electors to the Electoral College are chosen the presidential candidate that wins the most popular votes in the entire country will win the presidency without any amendment abolishing the Electoral College or even changing one word in the Constitution. It will all be legal and constitutional because the Founding Fathers allowed in the original Constitution for the states to choose whatever method they wanted to select their own electors to the Electoral College.