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appointed, and if no person have a majority, then from the two highest numbers on the list, the Senate shall choose the Vice-President; a quorum for the purpose shall consist of two-thirds of the whole number of Senators, and a majority of the whole number shall be necessary to a choice. But no person constitutionally ineligible to the office of President shall be eligible to that of Vice-President of the United States.”
$ 388. The amendment, as will be seen by comparison, retains many of the features of the original clause. It still leaves with Congress the right to elect a President and Vice-President, where there is no election by the people; but it changes the mode of procedure. The principal alterations it effects are the following: The electors, instead of voting generally for two persons, are to vote for one person for President and one person for Vice-President in distinct ballots, and separate lists of the persons voted for as President and as Vice President are to be sent to the seat of government.
$ 389. If no person have a majority, the House of Representatives are to elect a President from the three highest persons on the list of those voted for as President, instead of the five highest, as in the original article. This was intended to exclude from the chance of election by the House of Representatives, those persons who had received but a small number of electoral votes. ·
$ 390. If the House of Representatives, whenever the choice of a President shall devolve upon them, shall fail to choose a President before the fourth day of March next following, then the Vice-President shall act as President, as in case of the death or other constitutional disability of
the President. There was no provision similar to this in the original article.
§ 391. As the Constitution at first stood, a Vice-President could not be designated until after the President had been elected by the House of Representatives. The amendment allows the Senate to proceed at once and choose a Vice-President from the two highest numbers on the list of persons voted for as Vice-President; two-thirds of the senators constitute a quorum for this purpose, and a majority of the whole number is necessary to a choice. The votes of the Senate in choosing a Vice-President are not taken by States, as the votes of the House are in choosing a President, but each Senator has one vote.
§ 392. It is also declared by the amendment, that a person who is constitutionally ineligible to the office of President, shall be also ineligible to that of Vice-President. This is because the Vice-President may be called on to act as President.
$ 393. Since the adoption of this amendment, there has been one election of President by the House of Representatives. At the election for the tenth Presidential term, commencing March 4, 1825, John C. Calhoun was chosen Vice-President, but there was no election of President by the electors. It therefore devolved on the House of Representatives to choose a President from the three highest on the list of candidates for the Presidency, who were Andrew Jackson, John Quincy Adams, and William H. Crawford. John Quincy Adams received a majority of the votes of the States, and was consequently declared elected by the House.
[Clause 4.] “The Congress may determine the Time of chusing the Electors, and the Day on which they shall give their Votes; which Day shall be the same througlıout the United States.”
$ 394. In virtue of the power given by this clause, Con gress passed an act, March 1, 1792, requiring electors to be elected in each State within thirty-four days preceding the first Wednesday in December, in every fourth year succeeding the last Presidential election, which electors shall be equal to the number of senators and representatives to which the several States may by law be entitled at the time when the President and Vice-President to be chosen shall come into office; for instance, a State entitled to ten representatives, and having two senators, appoints twelve electors.
$ 395. The electors are required by the act above mentioned to meet and give their votes on the first Wednes. day in December, at such place in the State as shall be directed by the legislature thereof. They usually meet at the capital of the State. Their votes are thus given on the same day throughout the United States. The electors are further required to make and sign three certificates of all the votes given by them, and to appoint a person to take charge of and deliver one of the certificates to the President of the Senate at the seat of the national government, before the first Wednesday in January, then next ensuing.
$ 396. If there should then be no President of the Senute at the seat of government, the certificate is to be deposited with the Secretary of State, to be delivered by him as soon as may be, to the President of the Senate. Anothor one of the certificates is to be sent by the Postoffice to the President of the Senate at the seat of government. The remaining certificate is to he delivered to the
judge of the district court of the United States for the district in which the electors are assembled.
$ 397. The executive authority of each State is also directed by the act to make out and certify three lists of the names of the electors of such State, and the electors are to annex one of those lists to each of the lists of their votes.
$ 398. If a list of votes shall not have been received at the seat of government on or before the first Wednesday in January, then the Secretary of State shall send a special messenger to the district judge in whose custody a list has been lodged, who shall immediately transmit his list to the seat of government.
$ 399. On the second Wednesday in February succeeding the meeting of the electors, the certificates shall be opened by the President of the Senate, in the presence of the Senate and the House of Representatives, the votes counted, and the persons who shall fill the office of President and of Vice-President ascertained and declared agreeably to the Constitution.
$ 400. The act above mentioned fixes no day for choosing the electors. It only requires them to be chosen within thirty-four days preceding the first Wednesday in December. But by a later act passed in 1845, Congress declared that the electors shall be appointed in each State on the Tuesday next after the first Monday of November of the year in which they are to be appointed; also that each State may provide by law for filling vacancies in its college of electors, when such college meets to give its electoral votes ; and that when any State shall have held an election for the purpose of choosing electors, and shall fail to make a choice on the day above mentioned, the electors may be appointed on a subsequent day, in such manner as the State may by law provide.
. [Clause 5.] “No person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adop. tion of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty-fivo Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States."
$ 401. The qualifications of the President consist of these four particulars :
(1.) He must be a natural born citizen of the United States.
(2.) Or if not a natural born citizen, he must have been a citizen of the United States at the adoption of the Constitution.
(3.) He must be at least, thirty-five years of age.
(4.) He must have been fourteen years a resident of the United States.
$ 402. It is very proper that aliens or foreigners should be excluded from the office of President, because it is the highest and most responsible office under the Constitution.
At the time, however, of the adoption of the Constitution, many of the citizens in the States were natives of Europe, and had emigrated to this country and been naturalized in the various States. They had helped to win our independence, and some of them were among the most distinguished and valuable of the patriots of the Revolution. It seemed unjust and ungrateful to exclude such persons from the office of President, and it was, therefore, in order to meet their case, provided that those who had been citizens of the United States at the time of the adoption of the Constitution should be eligible to the