Qualifications of a President

The USA Constitution states the three requirements needed to become President; one must be a natural born citizen of the US, one must be at least 35 years of age, and one must have lived in the US for at least 14 years. But there's one more caveat, actually getting elected. To become President elect one must receive a majority of the Electoral Votes (270 for the 2008 Election), with a tie being decided in the House of Representatives. Nothing in the constitution states anything about the qualifications needed to serve as President; rather this decision is left up to the citizenry. The people decide who is qualified by voting.

The basis for the qualification of a President as laid out in the constitution is as follows; let us start by assuming that [Candidate] is seeking the Presidency and has succeeded:

  1. [Candidate] received the most Electoral Votes (ignoring a tie)
  2. [Candidate] theoretically* received the most popular votes, because [Candidate] received the most Electoral Votes.
  3. [Candidate] received the most popular votes because [Candidate] is the most qualified.

*Implies that the popular vote is perfectly reflective of the proportion of the Electoral Votes assigned to a given state. This does not always happen, but is the intention of the system.

The constitution's conclusion is simple; a candidate will receive the most votes for President, and in turn the most Electoral Votes if they are the most qualified. If this conclusion is taken and applied to the current Presidential race, the facts submitted in the previous article are given new light.

Let's first start with the Presidential side of the ticket. If we analyze the vote totals for just the 2008 Presidential Primaries as if it were a poll (assuming 122,295,345 voters, the same as in 2004) John McCain receives 8.05% and Obama receives 15.16% of the total voting population. If you believe the previous reasoning then these percentages can be directly equated to a candidate's qualification level. As of the primary, twice as many people believe Obama is more qualified to be President than McCain.

Now the counter argument is that John McCain secured the nomination earlier than Obama and therefore people in the later states didn't vote in as high of numbers for McCain because the nominee was already decided. This may be true, but of the people who did vote they voted in much higher numbers for McCain because it was essentially a soviet style election, with just one real contender. I'm going to conclude that the ratio of increased turnout for the Democrats due to the tight race can be canceled out by the lack of real competition in the Republican race; I have no concrete proof of this so if anybody wants to concretely prove me wrong, go for it.

It is not the set of experiences that qualify a candidate for the presidency, but rather how a candidate's set of experiences' are translated by the electorate into qualification. The electorate so far, has clearly decided that Obama is more qualified.

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8 Response(s) to Qualifications of a President

9/4/2008 2:45:07 AM CT

Exactly! Thank you!
9/6/2008 1:50:43 PM CT

I second!
9/28/2008 6:41:04 PM CT

not what i needed!
10/26/2008 10:55:41 AM CT

That is what I needed.
2/18/2009 1:36:01 PM CT

11/12/2009 12:31:58 PM CT

ok whatever
1/19/2010 5:18:52 PM CT

swering is bad
1/25/2010 10:02:22 AM CT

Omggg. That was rude. dont swear on here, im telling my teacher.& my dad& my mom& my sister& my grandma&&&&&& THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES

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