“Donald Trump would make an amazing President” – said nobody this week.
On Tuesday, the 68-year-old billionaire businessman and reality TV celeb declared his candidacy with the words, "I will be the greatest jobs president that God ever created" and “I don't need anybody's money ... I'm using my own money, I'm not using the lobbyists, I'm not using donors, I don't care. I'm really rich."
As far as recognition goes for conservative presidential hopefuls, it's hard to top Donald Trump – and while he certainly scores points for name identification, Republican strategists say he lacks something any prospective leader of the free world ought to have — serious political credibility.
Many are suggesting that The Donald merely loves the spotlight and that this is more of a sideshow act; later confirmed by his rambling and belligerent announcement (one of the more bizarre and most entertaining spectacles of the 2016 political season thus far). He allegedly also hired a cast of people for $50 per person to wear TRUMP t-shirts and carry signs to cheer him on during his announcement– which some are calling strategic, while others are calling desperate.
While I am intrigued to see how this plays out, I suspect that the bigger issue here is the threat that someone could have a chance at winning a Presidential campaign based on fame vs. integrity. I was curious as to what the US Constitution requires for any individual wanting to become President of the United States – a quick Google search later and I’m surprised to learn that there are only 3 minimum constitutional requirements. A president must:
1. be a natural born U.S. citizen. Someone may be born abroad, but only if both parents were citizens of the United States. The only exception to this was for those around at the time the Constitution was adopted. Their requirement was that they had to be a citizen when the Constitution was adopted.
2. be at least 35 years of age. John F. Kennedy was the youngest person to be elected president; he was 43 years old when he was inaugurated in 1961 - however, Roosevelt served as President when was 42 when he took over after McKinley’s assassination. There is no maximum age limit- Ronald Reagan was the oldest president; at the end of his term in 1988, he was nearly 77.
3. have lived in the United States for at least 14 years to be president. This does not have to be consecutive or even the 14 years leading up to becoming president. So far, however, this requirement has not been challenged.
While those are the minimum constitutional requirements, there is certainly much more to consider when it comes to qualifying a world leader – I have faith in that at least. On a smaller, yet just as important comparison, the criteria that you use to select your investment advisor guides one of the most important financial decisions you will ever make. Before entering into a partnership with any financial advisor, ask the following questions, and make sure you are comfortable with the answers:
- How are you accredited or registered?
- How are you compensated?
- What is your experience?
- What kind of products and services can you provide?
- What clients do you serve?
- How will you help me reach my goals?
- What kind of service will I receive?
Read more about how I answered these questions here.