However, the electoral college is enshrined in the constitution. Short of a constitutional amendment (or legislation from the bench via the Supreme Court) for better or worse... we are stuck with it.
Having said that, let's look at the bright side:
1. The rules of the game are well known. Everyone plays at equal disadvantage.
2. California alone, a single state, is so powerful that it would dominate national election politics. This is aptly illustrated in the first graphic.
3. A close popular election could trigger a nationwide recount nightmare, as George Will points out:
Those who demand direct popular election of the president should be advised... the electoral vote system quarantines electoral disputes.Perhaps the manner in which we choose our sole nationally-elected representative isn't perfect, but it's not broken either.