Requirements for a presidential candidate

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Constitutional requirements

- Must be a natural-born American citizen

-Must be at least 35 years old.

-There is a residency qualification of 14 years

Extra-constitutional requirements

-Political experience: vice-presidents, state governors, senators

Examples: Of the 16 politicians who were nominated as presidential candidates in the last 11 elections to 2008, nine were senators, six had been vice-presidents and five were governors.

-Major party endorsement: If someone is serious about becoming president, it is vital to be chosen as a candidate for one of the two major parties.

Examples: Eisenhower had to become a Republican in 1952. The political endeavours of Geroge Wallace (1968), John Anderson (1980), Ross Perot (1992 and 1996) and Pat Buchanan (2000) show that thirs party or independent candidacies do not lead to the White House.

-Personal characteristics: Tradionally, it is more helpful if the candidate is a WASP (white, anglo-saxon, protestant). However, the Democratic presidential nomination race had a white woman (Clinton) and a black man (Obama).All vice-presidents have been white males. It is an advantage to be married with no scandals or affairs.

Examples: Senator Edward Kennedy's…


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