President Pro Tempore of the Senate
The President pro tempore (/
|President Pro Tempore of |
the United States Senate
(Informal and within the Senate)
|Appointer||Elected by the U.S. Senate|
|Inaugural holder||John Langdon|
April 6, 1789
March 4, 1789
Officially the Vice President is the person in charge of the Senate, but they are not a Senator. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) is the President pro tempore. When the Vice President cannot be in charge, the President pro tempore is in charge of the Senate. Many people still think of the President pro tempore as de facto president of the Senate. Benjamin Wade was only one vote away from becoming the President of the United States due to the impeachment of Andrew Johnson. No president pro tempore has taken over the presidency as of July 2019.
Probably the most famous Presidents pro tempore were John Langdon (first in this office), David Rice Atchison (D-MO), Benjamin Wade (R-OH), Arthur Vandenberg (R-MI), Carl Hayden (D-AZ) Richard Russell, Jr. (D-GA), Strom Thurmond (R-SC), Robert Byrd (D-WV), Daniel Inouye (D-HI), and Patrick Leahy (D-VT).
When Senator Hubert Humphrey, a former Vice President of the United States, was seriously ill, the Senate showed its respect for him by creating the office of Deputy President Pro tempore for any former President or Vice President who is elected to the Senate. No Vice-President since Humphrey has done this.