Just like a crowd requires a leader, a nation wants a president. In absence and unavailability of an organized strength, everything becomes chaotic and harrowing.

To look after and decide about  nation’s economy, defense and other national and international affairs, a president is elected. President leads a country just like an officer leads a troop, a captain leads a team and a guide leads the tourist.

Therefore, to have a stable nation with stable and balanced affairs, a president is needed. A person who is eligible enough to lead the nation towards progress and prosperity.


The general elections for President and Vice President of United States takes place after every 4 years. It is organized on the first Tuesday of November.

People eligible for voting are allowed to cast the ballot in one of the fifty states of United States. Voters don’t elect the President or the Vice President. Instead, they put their votes for members of Electoral College which in return choose and appoint  President and Vice President through Electoral Votes.

A candidate is bound to achieve at least 270 votes out of 538 according to TWENTY-THIRD AMENDMENT. If candidates fail to win such an amount then, HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES decides the President.

If candidates for Vice President aren’t able to reach the targeted votes, then, SENATE decides the Vice President.

The electors aren’t decided by the government but, are chosen on voting by the public. Each state legislature decides how the electors will be chosen , and isn’t the job of federal government. Previously, the electors were selected directly by state legislatures. But, over time the process metamorphosed and the electors started to be elected by public voting. This process of popular voting persists today as well. Electors, after getting chosen, cast their votes on the basis of plurality rate in their state. In this way, they designate a person. This system of selecting the electors isn’t followed in 18 states.

Any person who goes against the plurality statistics, is designated as “faithless”  or “unpledged”. However, in this modern era, going against the popularity rate doesn’t affect the outcome and result of the elections.


United States Constitution  establishes a group of electors which is known as Electoral College. Electors are required to elect and designate President  and Vice President  of United States. Electoral College consists of 538 electors out of which 270 are wanted to win the elections. If any candidate fails to reach the required votes, then , HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES  decides the President  and SENATE  decides the Vice President.

Additionally, the Twenty- third Amendment endorsed that  District Columbia  ( DC )  is permitted to have as much electors as it would have if it was a state. The restriction is that it cant have more electors than the least populated states.  The territories of United States aren’t states of United States. That’s why they aren’t allowed to have electors.

Dispute of Electoral College:

The Electoral College system is a matter of ongoing debate.

Supporters of the Electoral College argue that federalism requires that electors go out of their cities, carry of political campaigns and attract a large amount of voters.

In this way, political influence on small states is increased by folds, people tend to know about it and the elected President and vice president of United States seems to be more legitimate rather than being elected on basis of nation wide popularity.

Opponents of the Electoral College, talking against the prior suggestion, say that campaigning for the elections enables the candidates to focus on the required tasks. It results in designation of different candidates for the elections. Moreover,  the people of small and swinging states are given the right of voting four times as the power of other populated states.

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It is a process to elect the candidates for election. Since, everyone wants to run the office of the President of the United States, people following the same agenda align in the same political party. But, that’s not the end. In order to stand up for the elections, the member has to win the support of his party members.


Primary is the election which takes place at state level to decide which person would represent his party in general elections . The party members vote for the most suitable and eligible person of the party to stand in the general elections.  34 United States  carry out this election. The elected and selected party members then face one another in the general elections.


There are four types of primaries, namely:

Closed primary Elections in USA:

In this type of primary, election is held within the party. It states that only the party member can cast vote to the person.

Semi closed primary Elections in USA:

It allows the candidates to cast votes even if they aren’t affiliated. Depending upon the state, the candidate either chooses the party inside the voting booth or makes an announcement publicly to join a particular party. It allows the candidate to change the party on election day.

Open primary Elections in USA:

This type of primary includes election that takes place intra parties. It means that anybody from any party can cast vote. Candidates can receive votes from pupil outside their respective political parties.

Semi open primary Elections in USA:

This primary allows a  registered voter not to publicly declare which political party’s primary they will vote before entering the voting booth.


Requirements to Contest Presidential Elections In USA:

In order to be allowed to stand up for Presidential elections of United States, the constitution laid down the following requirements. The person should fall under each of the following requirements:

  • The person should be natural born of United States
  • The person should be a resident of 14 years
  • The person’s age should be of 35 years or more

The above stated requirements don’t restrict the gender of the candidate; be it a woman or a man. As long as the terms and conditions are followed, he/she is regarded eligible to fight for the seat of President of United States.


What is National Convention?

National Convention is where the Presidential nominees for each of the parties are announced. Each party finalizes their elected candidate. Every selected person is publicly declared the nominee for upcoming presidential election. Those particular voted persons fight for the seat of President of United States.

Can National Convention select a nominee?

Yes, in case of inadequately voted persons, the delegates of National Convention are defined to elect nominee (s). This happens when none of the candidate is able to acquire the required votes i-e; 270 votes out of 538.

Hence, the delegates are requested to select a particular candidate to stand in the elections. This is carried out by an additional round of voting.


Pledged or bound delegates:


Such delegates are allowed to vote only the candidates assigned to them through the  process of primary and caucus.

Unpledged or super delegate:

These delegates are permitted to vote for any candidate of their will. They don’t have any restricted candidates. They can support any presidential candidate.


If none of the candidates fails to win through delegate’s voting, then, the convention is said to be contested or brokered. In this case, one or more rounds of voting is carried out.


  • The first round of voting consists of pledged delegates casting the vote for the candidates they were allocated before. Unpledged delegates aren’t involved in this round of voting.
  • If any of the candidates has already won enough delegates through primary and caucus elections, then the super delegates aren’t allowed to vote.
  • The convention is said to be “ brokered “ if none of the nominees acquires enough delegates in the first round. This leads to further voting by the delegates and in these later voting rounds, super delegates can cast their vote as well.
  • Continuation of balloting persists until one of the candidate is chosen.

At the end of the convention, the elected presidential nominee announces the running mate for vice presidential election.

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  • Primaries and caucuses
  • National Convention
  • General election
  • Electoral college
  • Inauguration day

Each of the above declared steps of process of presidential election of United States have been discussed earlier.

 The time of the year when the above cycle takes place is as follows:

  • During spring of the year, candidates declare their intentions to stand up in the elections
  • Summer of the yearis allocated for the deliverance of speeches of candidates of primaries and caucuses.
  • January to June of the election year, states and parties carry out primaries and caucuses.
  • InJuly till early September, conventions hold to designate nominees for the election.
  • Candidates deliver their presidential speeches in September and October
  • Election day is carried out in November
  • December is utilized in the casting of votes by electors in the electoral college
  • Early January  of the next year is defined for the counting of votes
  • January 20 is the day of inauguration.

What happens if a President dies?

Every living being is exposed to death, one day or the other. In such a case, if a person holding the seat of President of United States dies, then, the Vice President is allocated and designated as the President of the United States. If the vice President is unable to run the office of the President, then, the next person in line of succession is made to run the office of the President of the United States. The line of succession is followed in the sequence of

  • Vice President
  • Speaker of the house of representatives
  • President protempore of senate
  • Eligible heads of federal executive departments from President’s cabinet

What makes the President to be removed from the office?

If the President of the United States is found guilty of high crimes of bribery, treason etc and misdemeanors, he is removed from the office of the President of the United States. Additionally, he is also removed on impeachment for high crimes. Thus, any President or vice President and all other civil officers of United States are caught for the above mentioned crimes, he is removed from the particular assigned office.

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The first President of United States was George Washington.

Next to him in rule was John Adams , Thomas Jefferson and James Madison respectively.

The current President of the United States is Donald Trump.

Prior to him Barack Obama, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton ran the office of the President of the United States respectively.


Voters are allowed to cast their votes for 59th quadrennial elections of United States. They are permitted to elect electors which will in turn either  choose another President and vice president of United States or reelect Donald Trump and Mike Pence respectively.

To conclude any prediction for elections of United States should be avoided. We’ve often fallen for headlines about various fields and aspects of life. It’s not what it’s shown.

To talk about the general elections 2020, the re-electance of Trump is possible while, the electance of any other candidate can take place too.

The conclusion is, the voices of “ Trump  will be re-elected’ and “ Trump won’t win again” comes from the same place, same time and same people. Therefore, to hold any prediction about the elections is not possible.

Written by:

Raeha Hanif, raehahahanif@gmail.com