"I ran for Congress, just once."

-- Shirley Temple

What does "run for" mean? What does this quote mean?

  • You could have looked it up here
    – Peter
    Jan 14, 2016 at 16:47

2 Answers 2


Run for Office is a quote you will hear more and more of as we get closer to November.

To run for ABC is to nominate yourself, or accept the nomination from a party, to fill a political position. After being nominated, you then campaign until a preset date when the people cast their votes. The candidate with the most votes wins the position.

Run for is also a phrase that means "persist for a specified period of time."

I can run for two hours without stopping.

Both examples speak to perseverance. It is no easy feat campaigning for public office - it takes willpower, dedication and a little luck as well.


It means that Shirley Temple competed in an election as a candidate for a Congress member, just once.

Apart from the above sense of the phrase "run for", it is also used to mean to last or continue for a particular period, for example, "The film runs for three hours".

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