The Vice Presidency of the United States: Tradition and a "New" Concept

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politics, vice president, United States, political office, Nixon, Truman


American Politics | Political History | Political Science | President/Executive Department | Public Affairs, Public Policy and Public Administration | United States History


In 1945, in order to bring the war to a rapid close, one person gave the most terrible weapon man's mind had ever conceived--the atomic bomb. Its awful contents obliterated great portions of the population of two Japanese cities leaving those metropolises a mass of rubble, twisted steel girders and bodies.

The Presidency of the United States has been called the lonliest job in the world. Only its occupant could make the decision to drop that bomb. The man who made that decision had been called into the White House from the Vice Presidency. As Vice President, he had not even known the completed bomb existed.

The Vice President of the United States is one of two people elected by the entire nation. He lives just one heartbeat from the Presidency. How did the Constitution provide for his preparation to guide the ship of state should he be called on? It allowed him to preside over the Senate. In other words, it did not prepare him at all. As a representative of all the people of the Nation what great powers were given tot he Vice President? None.

Department 1 Awarding Honors Status

Political Science

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