Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Presidents by the Half Dozen

Some time ago, I saw an interview on C-SPAN of David Pietrusza, the author of the book 1920: The Year of the Six Presidents. I have not had a chance to read it, but I find it to be an interesting angle on the 1920 elections for president and vice president.

The incumbent president, a former president, and four future presidents were all candidates, to some degree or other, for president or vice president in that election:

  1. Theodore Roosevelt was angling for the Republican nomination to return to the White House when he died suddenly in 1919.
  2. The incumbent, Woodrow Wilson, subtly let it be known that he would accept the Democratic nomination for a third term. Concerns about both his physical health and his political health prevented his party from taking him up on that.
  3. Senator Warren Harding, Republican of Ohio, won the 1920 presidential election.
  4. Governor Calvin Coolidge, Republican of Massachusetts, won the vice presidency as Harding's running mate. Coolidge became president in 1923, when Harding died.
  5. Franklin Roosevelt was the vice presidential candidate on the unsuccessful Democratic ticket. He, of course, was elected president four times, beginning in 1932.
  6. Herbert Hoover was a candidate for the Republican presidential nomination. He served as secretary of commerce under both Harding and Coolidge, and was then elected president in 1928.

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