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Office of the President-Elect

AQA, Edexcel, OCR, Eduqas

Last updated 22 Mar 2021

The Office of the President-Elect is a non constitutional office that only exists when a new President is due to take over. Its existence what the President-Elect makes of it, with no set rules governing what it should look like. To date there have two

Obama using the Office of the President-Elect

The Office exists to assist with the transition from one President to another after a Presidential Election. US Law gives certain privileges to the President-Elect such as postage benefits, office space, and telephone requirements. However, US Law does not grant the President-Elect nor the Office any Special Powers. President-Elects have used the benefits granted to them, but none have gone as far as creating an office for the transition team, therefore it is a relatively recent invention.

The Transition of Barack Obama
Barack Obama was the first person to use the Office in 2008 after his victory over John McCain. He utilised the benefits that the law granted him, and held press conferences from behind a lectern emblazoned with the seal of the Office of the President Elect. As the Office is not a constitutionally mandated one, it does not get an official seal like the Office of the President.

One British journalist referred to the office as a 'bogus concoction'

The Transition of Mitt Romney

Screenshot of Romney's Transition Site

After Romney lost the 2012 election to Barack Obama, a website surfaced containing information about the transition of Mitt Romney to the Presidency. It was quickly mocked online and the Twittersphere.

The Donald Trump Transition

Donald Trump is the second person to use the Office of the President-Elect however, he has opted for simply his name rather than Office of the President-Elect.

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