V is for Vice-Presidents

The United States has had 43 men who have served as President, but 47 who have served as Vice-President.

The first two Vice-Presidents became the second (Adams) and third (Jefferson) Presidents. Those elections, in 1796, when Adams was stuck with a VP of another party, and in 1800, when Jefferson and Aaron Burr had the same number of electoral votes, led to the passage of the 12th Amendment to the Constitution (1804), after which electors voted separately for President and Vice-President, rather than casting two votes for President, superceding a portion of Article II, section 1 of the Constitution.

13 men who were Vice-President became President,

including four after a President was assassinated, and four after a President died of natural causes.

As a result, some Presidents had no Vice-President for all or part of their time of service. This was rectified by the passage of 25th Amendment (1967) which established a procedure for filling a vacancy in the office of the Vice President, among other issues. This got utilized a few times in the decade after its passage.
Richard Nixon was re-elected President in 1972. His VP, Spiro Agnew resigned over improprieties in 1973, and Congress confirmed Gerald Ford as VP. Then Ford became President in 1974 as a result of the Nixon’s resignation over Watergate. Congress then confirmed Nelson Rockefeller to be Ford’s VP.

What of the VPs who never became President? The first of these, Burr, is probably best known for killing Alexander Hamilton in a duel. George Clinton and John C. Calhoun served under two different Presidents. Elbridge Gerry’s behavior in the state of Massachusetts helped create the word gerrymander.

But mostly Veeps are known for the disparaging things they themselves have said about their office, such as these; the John Nance Garner, usually cleaned up to use the word ‘spit’, is the most infamous. It is generally agreed, though, that the VPs in the latter part of the 20th Century and beyond have had far more responsibilities than their predecessors.

Someone came up with a BINGO game so that one could learn the Veeps. I should print this out; I must admit that some of those late 19th century dudes escape my memory.

ABC Wednesday – Round 9

0 thoughts on “V is for Vice-Presidents”

  1. Great post Roger and informative for a Canadian. Thanks for fixing the linky…next time I won’t put in so many photos. 😀


  2. I have a vivid memories is of Lyndon Johnston being sworn in on after the assassination. Happily events like that are rare and VPs can carry on being obscure.


  3. It does seem to me that being vice-president of anything is a bit of a downer, unless you are guaranteed to be the next president, as is true in some organizations. But I’m such an over-achiever, 110% is never enough for me!


  4. always the brides maid and never the bride. How many V president has become the president. and how many V president want to be the president?

    I don’t understand my electoral system too, I voted a system not knowing what I am voting for. Can you imagine a person can become a minster without being voted in, they call it list MP.


  5. Your always teaching. I don’t think I have ever come to this blog and have not learned something. I think I would FAIL the bingo test:) I know who our last couple of VP’s were and the first few. The past 10 years has left me so so discussed with the state of things I don’t keep up with anything political anymore. Which is sad ~ up until 3 years ago I wrote actively to my Congressman and Senators ~ They are probably relieved I have given it up. 🙂


  6. On that I can’t comment ! In my little country of 11 million (or you say billion I think) we only have a Prime Minister with two Vice Prime Ministers, a King and lots of Bank Presidents.


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