A young kid smiles at the white house podium


Can a Kid Be President?

Get the answer to this and other important questions about the 2020 election.

On November 3, voters will pick the next president of the United States. Even though the election is months away, the race to win it is already heating up. Here are the answers to some questions you might have.

Can a kid be president?

No, sorry! There are three rules about who can be president, and one has to do with age. The U.S. Constitution says that a person must be at least 35 years old to be elected president. The earliest most of today’s third-graders could run is the 2048 election. The other rules are that a person must have been born a citizen of the U.S. and must have lived in this country for at least 14 years.

What does the president do?

U.S. presidents juggle many duties. They meet with other world leaders and lead the U.S. military. They run the nation’s government, which has millions of workers. They also share ideas for laws with lawmakers in the U.S. Congress. When Congress passes a law, the president can say yes or no to it.

“Being president is a big job!” says Barry Burden, an expert on the presidency.

I keep hearing about parties. What exactly are they?

These parties don’t involve cake or presents! Political parties are groups of people who have similar ideas about how the nation should be run. The U.S. has two main parties—the Democrats and the Republicans. Each party picks a candidate to run for president.


The President lives in the White House in our nation’s capital, Washington, D.C.  

How does someone "run" for president?

Running for president means working hard to get the support of voters. This is also known as campaigning. Candidates travel all over the nation to meet voters and talk about their plans for the country. They give speeches, hold rallies, and give interviews to reporters.

The election is far away. Why are we talking about it now?

Beginning this month, the two main parties will hold elections called primaries and meetings called caucuses. These events will help each party choose the candidate who will represent them in the big election.

President Trump is a Republican. He is hoping to win another four years as president and will almost definitely be his party’s candidate. Several people are hoping to be the Democratic candidate. Each party will announce its choice this summer.

Will Scholastic News keep me up-to-date?

Absolutely! You can count on us to keep you informed.

1. What are the three requirements for becoming the president of the U.S.?

2. Summarize the responsibilities of the U.S. president.

3. What is the purpose of campaigning?

Close-Reading Questions

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