If Hillary drops out for health reasons, the possibilities are far more complex than you may think…
After Hillary’s collapse at the 9/11 Memorial on Sunday, September 11th, 2016, her campaign described the episode as a “faint,” then as ”overheating,” and now her doctor says that she has pneumonia.
If you missed the event, here it is again:
Hillary Clinton 9/11 NYC pic.twitter.com/q9YnsjTxss
— Zdenek Gazda (@zgazda66) September 11, 2016
After seeing the event, many, including Republican Donald Trump, are asking if there may be a more serious issue at play?
While speaking to CNBC’s Squawk Box, Trump began by repeating his wish that Clinton get well soon and denying that he felt any sort of glee about the situation. “It’s quite sad,” he said. “I hope she gets well soon.”
“You know it’s interesting because they say pneumonia on Friday, but she was coughing very, very badly a week ago, and even before that if you remember. This wasn’t the first time,” Trump said. “It’s very interesting to see what’s going on.”
So what would happen if a more serious issue caused Hillary to drop out?
Now, it’s still purely speculation, but should a presidential candidate drop out, the Democratic National Committee has rules in place to handle the situation. Article 2, Section 7 of the DNC Bylaws says that if there is a vacancy on the national ticket, a special meeting of the Committee ” shall be held on the call of the Chairperson,” where they would choose a new candidate. Such meetings make decisions based on a majority of those in attendance.
But what about if she has to withdraw after the election takes place, but before she is sworn in? Well, if a candidate withdraws after the general election, but before the electoral college meets, federal law says that electors can vote for whomever they want, although states can pass their own laws on the matter.
However, should a candidate win the election, but become incapacitated prior to the inauguration, then Section 3 of the 20th Amendment kicks in, according to the Office of the Federal Register. The 20th Amendment says that in such a scenario, the Vice President-elect would become President.
The most interesting of the options listed above, to me, is the second. Imagine a scenario where Clinton withdraws before the electoral college meets. Electors could go rogue, and nominate virtually anyone. Additionally, state would have legal authority to drag the process on for months, perhaps longer.
Also, what would sitting President Obama do in a chaotic scenario like the one described? Would he use the uncertainty to remain President until the dust settles?
If Hillary Clinton does in fact win the election and become President, it is apparent that her Vice President, Tim Kaine, is likely to step in sometime in the next four years.
A vote for Hillary Clinton is in many ways, a vote for Tim Kaine!
This is not likely the Democrat Party’s first choice, but it is a possibility that they, and all of us, should prepare for.