What Occurs If a Presidential Candidate Passes Away or Must Withdraw from the Race?

Credits: The Australian

As the 2024 presidential race appears to be shaping up as a rematch between President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump, there is an acknowledgment that unexpected events can influence the course of the election.

Drawing on historical precedent, such as the case of newspaper publisher and Democratic presidential candidate Horace Greeley in 1872, who died after Election Day but before the casting of Electoral College votes, the article explores the complexities that can arise in such situations.

Greeley’s death led to challenges in determining what to do with the Electoral College votes he had won. While most electors did not cast votes for the deceased candidate, opting for other contenders, Congress did not count the votes cast for a deceased individual.

US Presidential Candidates (Credits: KRDO)

Despite constitutional amendments related to presidential succession, there remains some ambiguity in addressing unforeseen events affecting a presidential nominee or candidate.

Considering the age of both Trump and Biden – 78 and 82, respectively, during the 2024 election – and public concerns about their fitness for the job, the article explores the hypothetical scenario of one of them being unable to continue in the race.

Replacing a candidate on the ballot, though not a current topic of serious discussion, is portrayed as a potentially chaotic and divisive process, revealing internal divisions within political parties.

The uncertainties surrounding such situations underscore the need for a clearer framework in addressing unforeseen events in the electoral process.

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