Can You Name the Vice President to Each President?



By: Lauren Lubas

6 Min Quiz

Image: Daniel Schwen via WikiCommons

About This Quiz

When it comes to the American government, there are two figures who function as the face of politics: the president and the vice president. Since 1789, these offices have been given varying levels of power, but have often been referred to as the most powerful men in the world. Though anyone can tell you the power of the president, few know what the vice president actually does. 

We know that the vice president's role is to take over power should the president become incapacitated in any way, but there are other essential duties that he or she must fill. The vice president of the United States (VPOTUS) doesn't just serve in the executive branch (as the second in command), but also plays an important role in the legislative branch, functioning as the president of the Senate. Though they cannot vote in the Senate, they can preside over deliberations and cast tie-breaking votes when necessary. 

With so much power, the role of vice president is incredibly important in American politics. Therefore, when a presidential candidate chooses a running mate, people pay attention. While you may know a few of the more recent vice presidents, do you think you can name some of the previous ones? Take this quiz to see if you know the history of the office.

From 2009 to 2017, who was the vice president to Barack Obama?

He's currently running in the 2020 primaries, but Joe Biden is often seen as Barack Obama's buddy. There was a series of memes in which the two are joking around together with genuine smiles.


Richard Nixon had two vice presidents. Who was his first?

Both Gerald Ford and Spiro Agnew played the role of vice president to Richard Nixon, but Spiro Agnew was his first. Though Nixon has a lot of blemishes on his record, his first-term approval rating was exceptionally high.


Can you name Eisenhower's vice president who later became president?

Before Richard Nixon was president, he ran for president against JFK and lost. Before that, he was the vice president to Dwight D. Eisenhower for eight years. He had quite a bit of political experience, but lost to Kennedy due to a televised debate.


George W. Bush's vice president was this man. Who is he?

Dick Cheney may have a series of questions surrounding his actions while he was in office, but his work as the vice president during the 9/11 tragedies is what he will be known for.


He was the vice president to a president who was assassinated, and then he became the president in 1963. What's his name?

Lyndon B. Johnson is the most recent vice president to have to take on the role of president after the untimely death of the president who was elected. After John F. Kennedy was assassinated, Johnson was elected for another term.


Do you know who Bill Clinton's vice president was for eight years?

Al Gore spent a lot of time as the face of politics. Though he ran for president after his work as VPOTUS, he lost the Electoral College vote and won the popular vote. He is an advocate for clean energy and fighting climate change.


Who was the first vice president of the United States?

John Adams functioned as the vice president to George Washington. They served two terms together from 1789-1797. Adams later became the second president of the United States for a single term.


George H.W. Bush selected which man as his running mate?

Although we have memorable moments between Dan Quayle and Candice Bergen, we will all remember the vice president's misspelling of a certain word (potato). He served one term with George H.W. Bush.


Wartime presidents get a lot of attention. Who was Franklin D. Roosevelt's vice president during WWII?

Franklin Roosevelt was president for three terms and one year. He was the longest sitting president of the United States. During this time, he had three different vice presidents, including Henry Wallace and Harry Truman.


President Gerald Ford nominated him to be his vice president. Who is he?

Born in 1908, Nelson Rockefeller was a life-long businessman and politician. He served as the 49th governor of New York for 14 years before he took on the vice presidency from 1974 to 1977 when Gerald Ford took over for the resigning Nixon.


Do you know the name of Abraham Lincoln's first vice president?

Abraham Lincoln was elected for two terms, and he selected a different vice president for each. For his first term, Hannibal Hamlin took the office. However, it was the VPOTUS of his second term, Andrew Johnson, who took over his duties after his assassination.


Which president was Ronald Reagan's vice president for eight years?

While George H.W. Bush only had one term as the POTUS, he did serve two terms as the VPOTUS. Following Reagan as the president was a lot of work and some big shoes to fill. Bush lost to Bill Clinton in 1992.


From 1886-1889, who was Grover Cleveland's vice president?

While running for president, Grover Cleveland selected Thomas A. Hendricks as his running mate. However, Hendricks only served as the vice president from March of 1885 to his death in November of 1885. The office remained vacant for the remainder of the term.


For his first term, William H. Taft had who for a vice president?

James Sherman was a politician for decades before he took on the role of the vice president. He served as the VPOTUS from 1909 until his death in 1912. The remainder of Taft's presidency went without a vice president.


Who was Jimmy Carter's vice president?

Though Jimmy Carter wasn't hampered in his term by post-Vietnam and post-Nixon national discontent, his choice of vice president was ready to take on the world. However, Walter Mondale suffered a terrible defeat against Ronald Reagan in 1984.


Can you name Warren G. Harding's vice president, who took office after his death?

Warren G. Harding was only in office for about two years before his sudden death. Calvin Coolidge took over for him as the president of the United States in 1923. Coolidge went on to serve another term as the POTUS.


Do you know who Herbert Hoover's vice president was?

Serving as the 31st vice president, Charles Curtis was a known politician in Kansas. He ran with Herbert Hoover, and became the VPOTUS from 1929 to 1933, helping America through some if its toughest times.


James Buchanan was the only president not to have a first lady, but he did have a VPOTUS. Can you name him?

Before serving as the vice president, John C. Breckenridge was a lawyer, soldier and representative of the state of Kentucky. As the VPOTUS, he cast 10 tie-breaking votes in the Senate.


Which vice president became president when Abraham Lincoln was assassinated?

Shortly after being elected for a second term, Abraham Lincoln was assassinated at Ford's Theater. Andrew Johnson was in the role of the vice president at the time and assumed the role of president after the assassination.


From 1817 to 1825, who was James Monroe's vice president?

As only the fourth governor of New York, Tompkins made a name for himself in some of the most populated areas of our country. He soon became the sixth VPOTUS under James Monroe in 1817.


Who was Thomas Jefferson's vice president, who killed Alexander Hamilton in a duel?

During the Revolutionary War, Aaron Burr was an officer of the Continental Army. His work as a soldier gained him recognition among other politicians, and he soon became the third vice president. His political career ended after he killed Hamilton in the duel.


Here's a toughy. Do you know who was the vice president to Calvin Coolidge in his term that began in 1925?

Calvin Coolidge was the vice president to Warren G. Harding. After Harding's death in 1923, Coolidge took over without a vice president for two years. Upon the next term, he chose Charles Dawes to run with him as the vice president.


Can you name Andrew Jackson's first vice president from 1829 to 1832?

John C. Calhoun was the "always the bridesmaid, never the bride" of vice presidents. He served under two different presidents for two consecutive terms, but was never given the title of POTUS.


John Quincy Adams had which vice president?

While many vice presidents never get to be the president, John C. Calhoun spent a lot of time as the second-most-powerful man in the United States. His work as VPOTUS spanned two presidencies.


Which vice president took over after William Henry Harrison died in office in 1841?

After William Henry Harrison died in his first year in office, John Tyler took over for the remainder of the four years. Tyler finished off the term and was not reelected for another term. He never had a vice president.


Can you name the vice president to both Thomas Jefferson and James Madison?

George Clinton must have been excellent in the office of vice president, as he was twice considered for the role and twice won the role. He served as vice president from 1805 to 1812.


From 1833 to 1837, who served as Andrew Jackson's vice president?

After serving one term with Andrew Jackson as the vice president, Martin Van Buren became president from 1837-1841. He will go down in history as the first president to be born after America's independence from the British Empire.


He was Pierce's vice president in 1853. Do you know his name?

William R. King was the 13th vice president. However, his political career started in the American south. He was a representative from North Carolina and later became a senator for Alabama. He was only VP for a short time before dying of tuberculosis.


Benjamin Harrison had who as a vice president?

Levi Morton held the office of the vice president from 1889 to 1893. The well-read and well-spoken gentleman had a long career in politics, including time as an ambassador to France and a representative of New York.


Do you know who Chester Arthur's vice president was from 1881 to 1885?

There were many sitting presidents who didn't have vice presidents before 1967. This is because there was no proper way to fill the role of VP between elections. The 25th Amendment changed this.


In 1901, William McKinley's vice president was a soon-to-be president. Do you know his name?

While many of us think of Theodore Roosevelt as an adventurous president who loved nature and conservation, few realize that he functioned as the vice president in 1901 under William McKinley.


Can you name the vice president to James Polk?

Though you may not have heard of George M. Dallas in your history classes, he had a short political history. He served as the mayor of Philadelphia and eventually became the 11th vice president.


Ulysses S. Grant had two different vice presidents. Can you name the first?

Ulysses S. Grant served as the president from 1869 to 1877. His vice presidents were Schuyler Colfax and Henry Wilson. From 1875 to 1877, the office of vice president was vacant after Wilson's death.


Who was Woodrow Wilson's vice president?

The 28th VPOTUS was Thomas Marshall. A scholar and a politician, Marshall served under Woodrow Wilson, from 1913 to 1921. He cast nine tie-breaking votes as the president of the Senate.


Grover Cleveland won the presidency again in 1892. Who was his vice president during this time?

The 23rd vice president in office, Adlai Stevenson I served from 1893 to 1897. Before his time as the VPOTUS, he was a representative of Illinois for several years. He died in 1914 in Chicago.


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