In United States politics and government, the term presidential nominee has two different meanings.
The first is the person selected by the delegates of a political party to be the party's nominee for President of the United States, typically at the party's national nominating convention. The nominee also may be referred to as the "presidential candidate."
The second meaning is someone nominated by the sitting U.S. President for appointment to any of numerous governmental positions, under the President's executive authority, subject to the approval of Congress.
In United States politics, the presumptive nominee is a political candidate who - barring unforeseen events or circumstances - is assured of his or her party's nomination, but has not yet been formally nominated. A candidate may be considered a presumptive nominee after all other major competitors have dropped out and it is considered unlikely that the candidate will withdraw, be usurped, or be otherwise removed from the race.
The term is often applied to the candidate who has not yet received the formal nomination of his or her political party at the party's nominating convention, but who has acquired more than 50% of delegate commitments through the primary elections and caucuses prior to the convention. The term is applicable to the candidate's selected running mate as well. The term is applied widely on the national level, notably in regard to the U.S. presidential nominating conventions, as well as at the statewide level.
Different news organizations may declare a person the presumptive nominee based on their own standards. Not all news organizations use the term, other phrases such as "apparent nominee" and "presumed nominee" have been used.
The term is sometimes used to describe a candidate who is widely thought to eventually become the nominee. For example, Hillary Clinton has been termed the presumptive nominee for the 2016 Democratic Party presidential primaries in some media outlets.
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- Sabato, Larry; Ernst, Howard R. Encyclopedia of American political parties and elections. Infobase Publishing. 2006. p. 216. ISBN 9780816058754.
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- Salam, Reihan (March 12, 2015). "Five Democrats who should challenge the presumptive nominee.". Slate. Retrieved June 4, 2015.