Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Who Isn't Running for President of the United States?

Updated October 2015

From what we read in the mainstream media, one would think that there are quite a plethora of candidates running for the November 8, 2016 presidential election.  According to a Ballotopedia, here is a listing of the candidates for both parties and the current third-party candidate:

While it seems to be a ridiculous number of candidates, particularly given that many of them can only be termed a long-shot, in fact, according to the Federal Election Commission, the situation is far worse.  To be listed as a candidate, an individual must file a Statement of Candidacy known as FEC Form 2 with the FEC within 15 days of declaring their candidacy.  If the candidate chooses, they may file a letter than contains the information required on the FEC Form 2 in lieu of the form itself.

Here's what FEC Form 2 looks like:

In addition to Form 2, under the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971, an individual becomes a candidate for federal office when he or she meets two prerequisites:

1.) The individual must have received contributions totalling more than $5000 or made expenditures totalling more than $5000 (a laughably small amount given the billions of dollars that are spent on Presidential elections).

2.) The individual must have given consent to another person to receive contributions or make expenditures on behalf of himself or herself and that person must have made expenditures totalling more than $5000.

The FEC notes that funds received and payments made for the purpose of determining whether or not an individual should become a candidate are not considered either contributions or expenditures.

Now, let's look at a partial list of who has filed Form 2 between September 4th, 2015 and October 19th, alone, starting with the most recent:

Since Ted Cruz filed his Form 2 on March 23, 2015, an additional 1083 Americans have declared their intentions.  That brings the total number of declared presidential candidates in the 2016 election cycle to a whopping 1278.  On August 20, 2015 alone, 77 Americans declared their interest in a run for the Oval Office.

In fact, while it is little discussed in the mainstream media, Americans were lining up to be presidential candidates for the 2016 election cycle way back in time.  All you have to do is look back through the FEC Form 2's that have been completed for the 2016 Run for the Oval Office and you will find an interesting cross section of Americana like this:

This couple (who may have misspelled "capitalism" but I can't be certain because it could be a play on the word Capitol) want to be president and vice president respectively.  You will note that their application was received by the FEC on January 2, 2014.

Here's another interesting presidential candidate who represents the Bull Moose Party:

Obviously, Mr. Jones was thinking ahead, planning what he was going to be doing in 2016 back in October 2013.

Here's one of the more interestingly completed forms:

Here's the first candidate that actually filed his (I assume) paperwork to become a candidate for the 2016 presidential election back on December 12, 2008:

Now that's what I call planning ahead...but not as far as this gentleman who filed this FEC Form 2 on February 19, 2013 for the 2020 presidential election:

Lastly, here is a gentleman who has already prepared the stationery required for his campaign:

The first Republican who wished to run in the current presidential cycle submitted his name on December 12, 2008 and the first Democrat submitted his name on November 13, 2012.  So, when you hear or read about the crowded field in the 2016 presidential election from the mainstream media, keep this posting in mind.  The headline candidates are just a tiny fraction of the total number of men and women seeking the job.

As an aside, if you happen to be interested at a run for the Oval Office, here is a link to the FEC's Form 2 webpage.  All the best!


  1. I think its just so people can legally claim they were a presidential candidate for the US presidency. Sort of like lobbying someone to submit your name to the noblel peace prize. So you can claim to be a nobel peace prize candidate. Sounds great means nothing.

  2. Seems like a strange obsession, all these people and all this fuss in a system that in the final results is shown to be extremely undemocratic in responding to the people of America