Friday, January 21, 2005

Presidential Trivia -- Re-elected Presidents

This is an easy to look up factoid I have not seen anywhere else.

In 1996, President Bill Clinton ran for a second time and was re-elected.

In 2000, George W. Bush ran for a second time and was re-elected.

This is only the third or fourth time in American History that a four Presidential election-cycle went: Someone wins a Presidential election, gets re-elected, and then someone else wins a Presidential election, and gets re-elected.

1. Jefferson runs in 1800, was re-elected in 1804.
2. Madision runs in 1808, was re-elected in 1812.
3. Monroe runs in 1816, was re-elected in 1820.

What was the fourth time? Does the fourth time count?

Teddy Roosevelt (1904), Calvin Coolidge (1924), Harry Truman (1948)and Lyndon Johnson (1964) were all Presidents who were "re-elected," but none of them ran for President a second time. They all became Presidents when the previous President died. All of them ran for President only once.

Grover Cleveland won in 1884, lost in 1888, and won in 1892.

Other Presidents who won two Presidential elections were suceeded by Presidents who only won one Presidential election

Washington (J.Adams)
Monroe (J.Q. Adams)
Jackson (Van Buren)
Grant (Hayes)
McKinley {T Roosevelt)
Wilson (Harding)
FD Roosevelt (Truman)
Eisenhower (Kennedy)
Nixon (Ford/ Carter)
Reagan (GHW Bush)

And then the fourth time.

Abraham Lincoln ran for President in 1860 and was re-elected in 1864
Ulysses Grant ran for President in 1868 and was re-elected in 1872.

Of course, after Lincoln was assassinated, Andrew Johnson became President, but given his impeachment, Johnson was not in a position to run for his own term in 1868.

So Lincoln and Grant were not "back-to-back Presidents" who won re-election, but rather "back-to-back candidates" who won re-election. Whether or not Lincoln/Grant counts in your trivia answer depends on how you ask your trivia question.

Another way to say it is that 2004 is the first time that a candidate won re-election immediately after the candidate from the other party won re-election.

(You have to phrase it that way to get around Truman/ Eisenhower)

(Jefferson/ Madison/ Monroe were Democrats; Lincoln and Grant Republicans)

And no. I definitely do NOT have too much time on my hands :-)