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President (game)

President (also known as "Asshole", "The Great Dalmuti" or "Scum") is a card game for 3 or more in which players race to get rid of all their cards. The game is often played informally as a drinking game.

Table of contents
1 Cards
2 Dealing
3 Play
4 Scoring
5 Optional rules


The game is usually played with a single decks of cards (optionally including the Jokers). The order of cards, from highest to lowest, is Joker, 2, Ace, King, Queen, Jack, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3. Typically a pair beats a single and a triple beats a pair except for the Joker which trumps all singles, pairs and triples.

However, there are often special rules regarding the 2's. In some variants a single 2 beats any pair (and a pair of 2's beats a triple). In other variants a single 2 beats only other singles and in other variants the only cards that can beat a 2 are a pair or triple of 2's or the Joker.



Each hand begins with the shuffled deck of cards being dealt out evenly to each of the players (usually any extra cards are discarded). After the deal, in any hand except the first, there is a settlement of cards depending on the players' order of finish in the last hand. The President, the player who got rid of all of his cards first, exchanges a set number of cards (typically 1 or 2) with the Asshole, the player who got rid of all his cards last. In the exchange the Asshole must give the President his highest cards (pairing need not be considered), however the President can give the Asshole any cards he likes. Other exchanges may also take place (e.g. between the Vice-President and Vice-Asshole) depending on the variant and the number of players.


In the first hand, the person with the lowest card (usually the 3 of clubs) leads. In subsequent hands, the Asshole (or in some variants the President) leads. Play then proceeds in a clockwise order, with each player required to play a higher card or card combination than the last. A player may elect not to play, even if he is able to. The last player to play to a round leads the next round. The round is ended immediately if a Joker is played (to avoid the situation of two Jokers appearing in a single round) or depending on the variant either once all players have had a single opportunity to play or once all players have passed. At the end of each round all cards are removed from the hand and the first player to get rid of all of his cards becomes the President for the next hand. The titles Vice-President, Vice-Asshole and Asshole are also given to the players that finish second, second-last and last respectively. When there are no further cards in the hand, the next hand may be dealt. Play typically proceeds for as long as desired with no score being kept however some people prefer play to end once a pre-determined score is reached.


Typically the game is played without scoring but often with players required to drink at the end of each round depending on their finishing place (usually the Asshole is expected to drink the most). However a score can be kept whereby at the end of each round the Asshole is awarded no points, the Vice-Asshole one point and so on until the President scores 1 less than the number of players.

Optional rules

Skip rule

When a card is played that matches the rank of the previously played card, the next player must pass. For example, if the ten of hearts is played on the ten of clubs, the next player must pass (even if he wished to play a Jack). This rule also applies when a pair is played on a pair of the same rank.

The skip rule allows one unusual situation. If only 2 players remain, skipping a player ends the round. For example, a six has just been played by player B. Player A has two sixes and a seven. Player B has an eight. Player A may now play a six, forcing player B to skip. This ends the round. Player A may start the new round by playing another six. However, this does not cause player B to skip again, because the end of the previous round removed the six from the table. Notice that player A would have been able to avoid becoming Asshole if he could force player B to skip twice.

Poker hands

In addition to playing pairs and triples, you are allowed to play a 5-card poker hand. This includes straight, flush, full house, etc. When you play 4 of a kind, you must also play any 5th card to complete the hand.

Suit ranks count

Ordinarily, the suits do not matter. Optinally, suits rank in alphabetical order, same as in Bridge. That is, from highest to lowest, clubs, diamonds, hearts and spades. So, the ten of spades may be played on the ten of diamonds, but the ten of clubs may not be played on the ten of diamonds. Of course, the jack of clubs may still be played on the ten of diamonds.

Change seats after every round

After every round, the seating changes, based on the order of finish in the prior round. The President gets the most comfortable chair. The Vice-President sits to his left, and so on, until the Asshole sits to the President's right, in the least comfortable chair. Since the President plays first, this gives a slight advantage to the players seated to the President's left

Deal all the cards

If the number of cards is not evenly divisible by the number of players, the lowest ranked players get the extra cards. For example, with 5 players and a 52 card deck, the Asshole and Vice-Asshole get 11 cards, and the other 3 players get only 10 cards.

Must match previous type

If the last person played a single card, then all plays for the rest of the round must be a single card. For example, a pair of threes may not be played on a seven. Similarly, three fours may not be played on a pair of sixes. The player who starts a new round (after all other players pass) may play anything he chooses.

Social rule (or Socialism)

When this rule is in effect, the round can instantly be won by "socialing." Socialing is the act of playing cards out of turn in order to create a four-of-a-kind on the table. The opportunity to social is lost if higher cards are played before the opportunity is taken. Here is an example: You have two sevens, and the last two people to play each put a single seven on the table. You may then play out of turn and plonk down your two sevens. (In some circles you would be required to yell "SOCIAL!" while doing this or else it wouldn't count.) If someone else played on top of the sevens before you had the chance to social, you wouldn't be able to do it. The 'special cards' (twos, threes, jokers, or whatever you are using) cannot be socialed. Leading with a four of a kind is an instant social, so a hand with a four-of-a-kind is a good thing to be dealt.