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The Slippery Vice Presidential Stepping Stone
It appears that Vice President Al Gore won't be moving to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue anytime soon, but he can take solace in the fact that the office of Vice President is historically not the best stepping stone to election to the White House. While 14 vice presidents have gone on to serve as the chief executive, nine of those were due to death or resignation. Only four men have been elected president immediately following their terms as vice president - and three of those were before 1840! Gore might want to keep his hopes up reading about another sitting veep who after losing an extremely close election was able to come back several years later and win the presidency. But for now he'll have to buck up and resign himself to joining the other two vice presidents who, after presiding over the counting of electoral votes in Congress, had to declare their opponent the winner.

John Adams
VP 1789-1797
under George Washington
elected President over Jefferson. served one term from 1797-1801.
Thomas Jefferson
VP 1797-1801
under John Adams
elected President over his boss, Adams, and running mate Aaron Burr. served two terms from 1801-1809.
George Clinton
VP 1805-1812
under Thomas Jefferson
and James Madison
defeated by James Madison in 1808 (Clinton was running as a candidate for president against Madison, even though he had been nominated as Madison's VP). Clinton purposely avoided being in Washington for the counting of electoral votes, and therefore did not declare his opponent the winner or himself the re-elected VP.
Martin van Buren
VP 1833-1837
under Andrew Jackson
elected President over William Henry Harrison. served one term from 1837-1841. no other sitting VP would be elected president for almost 150 years.
John Tyler
VP 1841
under William Henry Harrison
succeeded to the presidency after the death of Harrison. served from 1841-1845.
Millard Fillmore
VP 1849-1850
under Zachary Taylor
succeeded to the presidency after the death of Taylor. served from 1850-1853.
John Breckinridge
VP 1857-1961
under James Buchanan
defeated by Abraham Lincoln. presided over the counting of electoral votes in Congress and had to declare his opponent the winner.
Andrew Johnson
VP 1865
under Abraham Lincoln
succeeded to the presidency after the assassination of Lincoln. served from 1865-1869.
Chester Arthur
VP 1881
under James Garfield
succeeded to the presidency after the assassination of Garfield. served from 1881-1885.
Theodore Roosevelt
VP 1901
under William McKinley
succeeded to the presidency after the assassination of McKinley. elected for an additional term. served from 1901-1909. defeated by Woodrow Wilson in 1912.
Calvin Coolidge
VP 1921-1923
under Warren Harding
succeeded to the presidency after the death of Harding. elected for an additional term. served from 1923-1929.
Henry A. Wallace
VP 1941-1945
under Franklin Roosevelt
defeated by Harry Truman in 1948.
Harry Truman
VP 1945
under Franklin Roosevelt
succeeded to the presidency after the death of Roosevelt. elected for an additional term. served from 1945-1953.
Richard Nixon
VP 1953-1961
under Dwight Eisenhower
defeated by John Kennedy. presided over the counting of electoral votes in Congress and had to declare his opponent the winner. elected President over Humphrey in 1968. served one full term/one partial term from 1969-1974.
Lyndon Johnson
VP 1961-1963
under John Kennedy
succeeded to the presidency after the assassination of Kennedy. elected for an additional term. served from 1963-1969.
Hubert Humphrey
VP 1965-1969
under Lyndon Johnson
defeated by Nixon. was out of the country and did not preside over the counting of electoral votes in Congress.
Gerald Ford
VP 1973-1974
under Richard Nixon
succeeded to the presidency after the resignation of Nixon. served from 1974-1977.
Walter Mondale
VP 1977-1981
under Jimmy Carter
defeated by Ronald Reagan in 1984.
George Bush
VP 1981-1989
under Ronald Reagan
elected President over Michael Dukakis. served one term from 1989-1993. first sitting VP elected president in almost 150 years.
Al Gore
VP 1993-2001
under Bill Clinton
defeated by George W. Bush. presided over the counting of electoral votes in Congress and had to declare his opponent the winner.

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