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The one constant in the history of voting rights in America, Harvard Kennedy School Professor Alex Keyssar says, is that no law has ever been passed to restrict the voting rights of upper-middle-class white men. Other than that, the history of access suffrage has been a very mixed bag. This November, issues of voter disenfranchisement will once again occupy center stage, and looming over it all will be the much-maligned institution of the Electoral College. Keyssar’s new book asks: “Why Do We Still Have an Electoral College?” The answer, he says, is complex — a mix of partisan politics, constitutional law,  and structural racism.

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