pro tempore


pro tem·​po·​re prō-ˈtem-pə-rē How to pronounce pro tempore (audio)
: for the time being

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web In the Senate, the chamber often compared to a retirement home, where the average age has climbed to 56 from 47 since 1980, Senator Patrick J. Leahy, 82, the Vermont Democrat serving as president pro tempore, is retiring. Peter Baker, New York Times, 20 Nov. 2022 Passidomo on Monday named Sen. Ben Albritton, a Wauchula Republican who is slated to become president in 2024, as majority leader and Sen. Dennis Baxley, R-Ocala, as president pro tempore. Jim Turner, Orlando Sentinel, 14 Nov. 2022 First elected in 1974, Mr. Leahy is currently the longest-serving senator and as president pro tempore, is third in line for the presidency after Vice President Kamala Harris and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.). Kristina Peterson, WSJ, 9 Nov. 2022 In 2017, she was selected as majority leader of the Democratic caucus, before becoming the first woman to serve as president pro tempore in 2021. Prem Thakker, The New Republic, 9 Nov. 2022 The Senate voted by acclamation to elect Hester as Senate president pro tempore. Michael R. Wickline, Arkansas Online, 10 Jan. 2023 If the presidency is vacated, the president pro tempore of the Senate — currently Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash. — is next in line, after the speaker, to occupy the Oval Office and assume presidential duties. Dallas News, 3 Jan. 2023 Harris is also the first Black or Asian American vice president, and Senate President pro tempore Toni G. Atkins is the first openly LGBTQ person to lead the statehouse’s upper chamber. Dakota Smith, Los Angeles Times, 11 Dec. 2022 At a weekend retreat at Gleneden Beach, Senate Democrats also chose Sen. James Manning of Eugene as their nominee for Senate president pro tempore. oregonlive, 21 Nov. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'pro tempore.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History


Middle English, from Latin

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of pro tempore was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near pro tempore

Cite this Entry

“Pro tempore.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Feb. 2023.

Kids Definition

pro tempore

pro tem·​po·​re prō-ˈtem-pə-rē How to pronounce pro tempore (audio)
: for the present
president pro tempore

Legal Definition

pro tempore

adverb or adjective
pro tem·​po·​re
prō-ˈtem-pə-rē, -pō-ˌrā
: for the time being : chosen or appointed to occupy a position either temporarily or in the absence of a regularly elected official
an administrator pro tempore

History and Etymology for pro tempore


Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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