Today, I am proposing another debate question. The question is “Should it be a requirement for someone to have served in the military BEFORE they are eligible to run for President?” Should Congress pass a law to change the eligibility requirements for the U.S. President? Under the current laws (as of 2014) here are the requirements to be eligible for U.S. President.
- Must be natural born in U.S.
- Must have been permanent resident for 14 years
- Must be at least 35 years old
- Must not have participated in a rebellion against the United States
- Must not have been impeached by Senate
Under our current laws, there are no military service requirements to run for U.S. President. As I see it, it SHOULD be a requirement to have served honorably (at least two years) in any branch of the U.S. Military BEFORE someone can be eligible to run for President. Why do I think this? First and foremost, the President is the Commander in Chief of the country’s military forces. They get this authority from Article II, Section 2, Clause I of the U.S. Constitution. Some of their responsibilities as Commander in Chief include:
- They oversee the U.S. military
- They can’t declare war, but they can order maneuvers
- They can station troops strategically throughout the world
- They can issue Executive Orders concerning the military
- The President participates in military ceremonies in the U.S. and overseas
- They can establish policies that effect the military
Of course, the President has a lot more responsibilities other than just Commander in Chief. That being said, I can’t think of any responsibility GREATER than defending and protecting our freedom as Americans. Can you?
I believe that a President with prior military experience would have a greater understanding and appreciation of the military. They would understand the complex issues concerning the military and if nothing else, they would be more grounded.
On the other hand, just because someone had military experience doesn’t mean they would be a good President. Please note that I am not saying that. I just think that NOT having military experience should keep someone from being allowed to run for President. It’s a show stopper as I see it.
If you’re going to be in charge of a country’s military forces, you should at least be a veteran yourself.
What are your thoughts? Do you think someone should have to have military experience before they are eligible to run for President? Leave a comment below to share your thoughts.