If Election Day is November 8 in 2016, that's the only day we have to think about electing a president...right? Wrong! There are many steps in the presidential election process. And - surprise! - the president is not officially chosen until the Electoral College votes in December - and those votes are counted on January 6, 2017. Here are the major steps it takes to elect the President of the United States:
Candidate announces that he or she is entering the race.
Members of the same party run against each other, trying to become the party’s candidate. Each state holds its elections on specific dates in January-June.
Representatives, or delegates, of each political party meet to talk about the party platform and officially nominate their candidate. This person runs for President of the United States. 2016 conventions include:
Through campaigns, speeches, political ads and debates, the candidates communicate their positions on different issues. This is an important time when voters learn about the candidates, think about their positions, and decide who to vote for!
Voters vote for president. This is called the “popular vote.” Election Day is November 8. In North Carolina, Early Voting begins in late October.
Through the “popular vote”, voters are really voting for electors who are pledged to a candidate. The Electoral College is made up of all of the electors.
The president and vice president are sworn into office on January 20. By law, the President must take the Oath of Office before noon.