from the FAS Project on Government Secrecy
Volume 2016, Issue No. 91
November 8, 2016

Secrecy News Blog:


What would happen if no candidate for President of the United States won a majority of electoral votes?

The Congressional Research Service explains: "In these circumstances, the 12th Amendment . . . provides that the House of Representatives would elect the President, and the Senate would elect the Vice President, in a procedure known as 'contingent election'."

This is not a purely speculative scenario. "Contingent election has been implemented twice in the nation's history under the 12th Amendment: first, to elect the President in 1825, and second, the Vice President in 1837."

See Contingent Election of the President and Vice President by Congress: Perspectives and Contemporary Analysis by CRS Specialist Thomas H. Neale, November 3, 2016:

Other new and updated reports from the Congressional Research Service include the following.

The Terrorist Screening Database and Preventing Terrorist Travel, November 7, 2016:

Pipeline Security: Domestic Threats, CRS Insight, November 3, 2016:

Individual Income Tax Rates and Other Key Elements of the Federal Individual Income Tax: 1988 to 2017, November 4, 2016:

Treasury's Recent Report on Foreign Exchange Rate Policies, CRS Insight, November 3, 2016:

U.S.-Mexico Economic Relations: Trends, Issues, and Implications, updated November 4, 2016:

Moldova: A Pivotal Election?, CRS Insight, November 4, 2016:


Secrecy News is written by Steven Aftergood and published by the Federation of American Scientists.

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