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View Full Version : What if the Pres elect and VP elect were both assassinated b4 taking the Oath?


JEDI
01-01-2012, 07:26 PM
it's 2008. Obama and Biden are now pres/vp elect.
If in Dec 2008 someone blew up their car and killing them, what happens?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_presidential_line_of_succession

According to the wiki, the Speaker of the House is next in line.
but in 2008, the Repubs won majority.

Does that mean in Jan 2009 when it's time for someone to take the oath to be Pres, it'll be a Repub (ie: John Boehner)?

The voters elected a Dem as Pres, and a Repub takes office???

soundforbjt
01-01-2012, 07:31 PM
pssss, don't give them any ideas...

MotF Bane
01-01-2012, 07:35 PM
There is a long list assembled of succession, and yes, Speaker of the House is third in line. The voters elected Republicans to the House, so your last sentence is invalid.

woodie1
01-01-2012, 07:44 PM
You guys ... The current sitting Pres and VP get another 4 year term ... now you know.

NoStateofMind
01-01-2012, 07:51 PM
it's 2008. Obama and Biden are now pres/vp elect.
If in Dec 2008 someone blew up their car and killing them, what happens?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_presidential_line_of_succession

According to the wiki, the Speaker of the House is next in line.
but in 2008, the Repubs won majority.

Does that mean in Jan 2009 when it's time for someone to take the oath to be Pres, it'll be a Repub (ie: John Boehner)?

The voters elected a Dem as Pres, and a Repub takes office???

And if someone took him out we would get this guy:

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a6/Daniel_Inouye_Official_Photo_2009.jpg/165px-Daniel_Inouye_Official_Photo_2009.jpg

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/President_pro_tempore_of_the_United_States_Senate

IGemini
01-01-2012, 07:54 PM
Succession is made by promoting subsequent office, not by the party they belong to. Dunno why that's so earth-shattering.

The Pres and VP don't travel in the same car for that reason. That's why presidential succession hasn't gone further down the list than the VP in the history of the office.

MomentsofSanity
01-01-2012, 07:58 PM
it's 2008. Obama and Biden are now pres/vp elect.
If in Dec 2008 someone blew up their car and killing them, what happens?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_presidential_line_of_succession

According to the wiki, the Speaker of the House is next in line.
but in 2008, the Repubs won majority.

Does that mean in Jan 2009 when it's time for someone to take the oath to be Pres, it'll be a Repub (ie: John Boehner)?

The voters elected a Dem as Pres, and a Repub takes office???

I'm assuming you mean December as in post electoral college voting. I'd be curious what would happen pre-electoral college voting. Considering how many are required to vote for the winning person, what happens to what's left... That would be a nightmare.

JEDI
01-01-2012, 08:09 PM
And if someone took him out we would get this guy:

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a6/Daniel_Inouye_Official_Photo_2009.jpg/165px-Daniel_Inouye_Official_Photo_2009.jpg

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/President_pro_tempore_of_the_United_States_Senate

if someone took out the 3rd in line b4 Jan, couldnt the House just vote in another Speaker and have that person take the Oath?

after all, it's not like the nation is w/o a Pres since Bush is still in office till whatever day the Oath is administered.

DominionSeraph
01-01-2012, 08:20 PM
AMENDMENT XX
Section 3.
If, at the time fixed for the beginning of the term of the President, the President elect shall have died, the Vice President elect shall become President. If a President shall not have been chosen before the time fixed for the beginning of his term, or if the President elect shall have failed to qualify, then the Vice President elect shall act as President until a President shall have qualified; and the Congress may by law provide for the case wherein neither a President elect nor a Vice President shall have qualified, declaring who shall then act as President, or the manner in which one who is to act shall be selected, and such person shall act accordingly until a President or Vice President shall have qualified.

So, it doesn't look like succession comes into play.

Lemon law
01-01-2012, 08:32 PM
Maybe an interesting question Jedi, with presumed answer the sqeaker of the house and next the Pres pro tem of the Senate. And then the sec of State.

But still a valid question to come post 11/2012, and every year subsequent Presidential election into the hopefully infinite future American history. What good does it do us Jedi, to speculate about only 2012, about a rare event that has never occurred yet?

thraashman
01-01-2012, 09:13 PM
Um ... didn't the Republicans not win majority in the House until 2010? And thus when Obama was inaugurated in 2009 it was Nancy Pelosi that was still the Speaker?

soundforbjt
01-01-2012, 09:28 PM
Um ... didn't the Republicans not win majority in the House until 2010? And thus when Obama was inaugurated in 2009 it was Nancy Pelosi that was still the Speaker?

Exactly. That's why I said "don't give them any ideas". I'm surprised no one else got it until you. ;)

cybrsage
01-02-2012, 10:04 AM
Succession is made by promoting subsequent office, not by the party they belong to. Dunno why that's so earth-shattering.

The Pres and VP don't travel in the same car for that reason. That's why presidential succession hasn't gone further down the list than the VP in the history of the office.

The Secretary of Education became President after the Cylons attacked the Colonies.

IGemini
01-02-2012, 10:54 AM
^^I'll remember to include fictitious examples for you next time.

Darwin333
01-02-2012, 11:44 AM
There is a long list assembled of succession, and yes, Speaker of the House is third in line. The voters elected Republicans to the House, so your last sentence is invalid.

Is the line of succession the Congress at the time of inauguration or the time of the Pres elects assassination?

Darwin333
01-02-2012, 11:49 AM
AMENDMENT XX
Section 3.
If, at the time fixed for the beginning of the term of the President, the President elect shall have died, the Vice President elect shall become President. If a President shall not have been chosen before the time fixed for the beginning of his term, or if the President elect shall have failed to qualify, then the Vice President elect shall act as President until a President shall have qualified; and the Congress may by law provide for the case wherein neither a President elect nor a Vice President shall have qualified, declaring who shall then act as President, or the manner in which one who is to act shall be selected, and such person shall act accordingly until a President or Vice President shall have qualified.

So, it doesn't look like succession comes into play.

So does that mean that Congress can basically pick a President if they so chose to serve the entire term or they could appoint a temporary President and call a special election?

Holy shit that would be a friggen mess in todays politics. Doesn't the Constitution require a president? There is no way in hell that I could see our current Congress agreeing on who to pick as President so what happens if the fail to pick one and the previous presidents term expires. We have no President? No Commander in Chief at all? No Cabinet? No one in real control of the .mil?

cybrsage
01-02-2012, 07:56 PM
^^I'll remember to include fictitious examples for you next time.

Fictitious? Not at all, how do you think mankind started? There are those who believe that life here began out there, far across the universe, with tribes of humans who may have been the forefathers of the Egyptians, or the Toltecs, or the Mayans. That they may have been the architects of the great pyramids, or the lost civilizations of Lemuria or Atlantis. Some believe that there may yet be brothers of man who even now fight to survive somewhere beyond the heavens.

cybrsage
01-02-2012, 07:58 PM
Is the line of succession the Congress at the time of inauguration or the time of the Pres elects assassination?

It only takes effect when the current President and Vice President die. So if Obama and Biden had been killed on election night, Bush would have remained President at least until Jan 20th.

Not exactly sure what would happen at that point, but I suspect the Speaker of the House would take over right then...especiall if the currently President has already served two terms.

Whoever becomes president serves out the remainder of the dead president's term, no special elections.

Rainsford
01-02-2012, 08:44 PM
AMENDMENT XX
Section 3.
If, at the time fixed for the beginning of the term of the President, the President elect shall have died, the Vice President elect shall become President. If a President shall not have been chosen before the time fixed for the beginning of his term, or if the President elect shall have failed to qualify, then the Vice President elect shall act as President until a President shall have qualified; and the Congress may by law provide for the case wherein neither a President elect nor a Vice President shall have qualified, declaring who shall then act as President, or the manner in which one who is to act shall be selected, and such person shall act accordingly until a President or Vice President shall have qualified.

So, it doesn't look like succession comes into play.

The amendment seems to reference the case where there was not a President or Vice President elect. If a President and Vice President were elected but died before their term started, it seems like the normal succession rules would apply. In this particular case, we'd have had President Pelosi.

werepossum
01-03-2012, 10:34 AM
The amendment seems to reference the case where there was not a President or Vice President elect. If a President and Vice President were elected but died before their term started, it seems like the normal succession rules would apply. In this particular case, we'd have had President Pelosi.
Read it again. Specifically, the Amendment was to address this very case, where the President-elect and/or the Vice President-elect dies before taking office. Because of the delay between election and inauguration, this is a distinct possibility, although admittedly and thankfully much less so today than in 1932.
http://law.jrank.org/pages/10948/Twentieth-Amendment.html

Section 1. The terms of the President and Vice President shall end at noon on the 20th day of January, and the terms of Senators and Representatives at noon on the 3d day of January, of the years in which such terms would have ended if this article had not been ratified; and the terms of their successors shall then begin.

Section 2. The Congress shall assemble at least once in every year, and such meeting shall begin at noon on the 3d day of January, unless they shall by law appoint a different day.

Section 3. If, at the time fixed for the beginning of the term of the President, the President elect shall have died, the Vice President elect shall become President. If a President shall not have been chosen before the time fixed for the beginning of his term, or if the President elect shall have failed to qualify, then the Vice President elect shall act as President until a President shall have qualified; and the Congress may by law provide for the case wherein neither a President elect nor a Vice President elect shall have qualified, declaring who shall then act as President, or the manner in which one who is to act shall be selected, and such person shall act accord-ingly until a President or Vice President shall have qualified.

Section 4. The Congress may by law provide for the case of the death of any of the persons from whom the House of Representatives may choose a President whenever the right of choice shall have devolved upon them, and for the case of the death of any of the persons from whom the Senate may choose a Vice President whenever the right of choice shall have devolved upon them.

Section 5. Sections 1 and 2 shall take effect on the 15th day of October following the ratification of this article.

Section 6. This article shall be inoperative unless it shall have been ratified as an amendment to the Constitution by the legislatures of three-fourths of the several States within seven years from the date of its submission.

Seems pretty straightforward. If the President-elect dies before being sworn in, the Vice President-elect becomes President. If both should die before being sworn in, then the House selects a President and the Senate a Vice President, both of whom serve a full four year term. It might get really nasty if the party in power will lose power in January. For instance, a Republican House, Senate and President could be defeated in November, but if the Democrats elected died before being sworn in then that Republican Congress could lawfully appoint a Republican President and Vice President before the new Democrat Congress comes in. (Or vice versa, obviously.) And in our present condition, if the winners in 2012 were to die before inauguration we would almost certainly have a Republican President and a Democrat Vice President - something not seen in modern times. Congress could also punt and pass legislation to require a special election for the remainder of the term, but would still have to select temporary office holders. Note also that each chamber has its purpose, with neither chamber having veto power over the other's choice.

Another really thorny issue would be if the winners died before the Electoral College voted. At that point the President and Vice President would be selected by the Electoral College and, again, would serve a full four year term. There would be no requirement to choose the defeated party or a defeated primary opponent - in fact, I think no restrictions would apply other than those on the eligibility to serve as President and Vice President. The President and/or Vice President might well be someone with whom most people were unfamiliar.

Kudos to DominionSeraph for a timely, on-topic post.