By David Schepp & Claire Gordon
Think your job is difficult? Just imagine what it's like to lead one of the most populous and prosperous nations on earth. And yet, as the current race for the Republican nomination has shown, there's no shortage of candidates who think they have the right stuff to be president of the United States.
The person ultimately selected for that prestigious post must possess numerous talents, including being an effective policymaker, communicator, conciliator and moderator, in trying to bridge the divides among the many different views in Congress.
Historically, U.S. presidents have been aided in this effort by being leaders of one sort or another before ascending to the presidency. Many served as generals or other high ranking military officers, while others were governors, considered by many the best training for potential presidents.
But there are also those who practiced more conventional professions prior to their political lives, as history shows. Among the more famous of those, of course, is Abraham Lincoln, who grew up poor but became a self-taught lawyer and served in the Illinois legislature before being elected the 16th president in 1860.
For more on the first jobs of U.S. presidents, check out the gallery below.
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