As the title says. Now that Trump has tested positive, if he takes a turn for the worst and actually dies of COVID before the election, what happens to the Republican ticket and the election?

Will/Can Pence run with someone else?

Would the election be delayed or does Biden/Harris almost win by default (as in the only ticket with enough real support)?

I have found this and this, but they're behind a paywall and I'm sure the information is in the constitution somewhere.

It's similar to this question, but specifically about dying, not just dropping out. I guess they're kind of the same thing maybe.


I did find this information:

If a candidate dies before the general election but after they've secured their party's nomination, it's a relatively simple fix: The deceased candidate's party picks a replacement (who may or may not be the vice presidential candidate from the ticket), and that replacement is on the ballot on Election Day. Both the Republican and the Democratic parties have rules about how their parties would fill the vacancy.

If a candidate dies between the popular vote and the meeting of the Electoral College the parties follow the same process to fill the vacancy on the ticket. If the candidate that dies is on the winning ticket, it's still the party's responsibility to provide a new candidate their electors could vote into office.

But here, the political implications are more serious because it takes some of the power away from the people; they don't get to vote again. The replacement candidate's name goes on the Electoral College ballot only, and their political party expects its electors to vote the replacement candidate into office.

There's no federal law saying the electors have to vote for the new candidate. Theoretically, if the candidate to whom they pledged their votes dies and their party doesn't name a preferred successor, electors could vote for the party's VP candidate, a third-party candidate or a leading contender within their own party. But state laws vary on the matter.

Source: https://people.howstuffworks.com/what-happens-presidential-candidate-dies.htm

  • Nice. Welcome to Politics.SE! – bishop Oct 2 '20 at 6:12
  • Do you have any information how early mail votes would be affected? – o.m. Oct 2 '20 at 9:07
  • @o.m. Early voters just get screwed out of the deal. Popular vote only elects the electors. So from what I can tell, if you voted R, then it's up to the R party to determine whoever they want to put in for the real voters (i.e. Electoral College) to vote on. Don't you just love 'merica? – coblr Oct 2 '20 at 15:14

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .