View Full Version : Far fetched US election hypothetical.
06-27-2008, 11:10 AM
What would happen if both candidates died* on the same day or close together sometime between now and the election? Would the next most popular candidate for both parties then have to contest? What if they died on the same day very close to the election, would the election be postponed etc?
*I don't think it's necessary for the sake of this debate to go into specifics of their hypothetical demises but say one is shot and the other one has a heart attack.
06-27-2008, 11:16 AM
Just to add to the discussion, how much would be affected by whether these deaths happened before or after the party conventions? Or before or after having chosen a running mate?
06-27-2008, 11:21 AM
Very interesting question. Having voted for a third party candidate many times, I might see my candidate actually stand a chance.
06-27-2008, 11:23 AM
Well, while I don't think it will happen, because Obama's heart seems to be fine, but if it happened today, what would happen would be, at the convention, the delegates would pick someone else. Remember, neither McCain or Obama are the nominees yet, and they won't actually be the nominees until they're voted for at the convention.
There would of course be a whole lot of political maneuvering between now and the convention.
06-27-2008, 11:29 AM
Well, while I don't think it will happen, because Obama's heart seems to be fine, but if it happened today
What if in October, at a public debate, a terrorist's actions lead to the loss of both major party candidates?
06-27-2008, 11:31 AM
Since we are voting for electors, not the actual candidates, in the worst-case scenario the electors we selected on election day would simply meet and vote among two other choices, presumably endorsed by the two political parties.
06-27-2008, 11:32 AM
Okay, so it would be Hillary and who?
06-27-2008, 05:09 PM
Richardson & Jeb Bush.
06-27-2008, 05:41 PM
First, the election wouldn't be postponed unless Congress got together and changed Chapter 1 of Title 3, United States Code.
1. The electors of President and Vice President shall be appointed, in each State, on the Tuesday next after the first Monday in November, in every fourth year succeeding every election of a President and Vice President.
If one or both candidates died after the party convention, the party's national committee would meet and select a replacement. This happened in 1972, when Thomas Eagleton withdrew after being nominated by the Democratic Party for Vice President. The National Committee can choose whoever they please (Eagleton's replacement, Sargent Shriver, had not been placed into nomination at the convention) or even call the convention back into session to nominate a new candidate. Again, this would start from zero -- being the runner up wouldn't count.
After the election, but before the Electoral College votes, the electors would be free to vote for anyone they wanted. This happened in 1872 (The Master Speaks about it here.) (http://www.straightdope.com/classics/a1_133.html)
In practice, the electors aren't just names pulled out of a hat -- they are loyal party members who get rewarded with a trip to their state capitol for their efforts. It's more likely that the National Committee would meet and "suggest" a replacement candidate the electors can rally around.
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