Thursday, October 21, 2004


Nasty Campaigns in History

The Detroit Free Press has this article on Presidential campaigns going "nasty."

I think Kerry (the blogger) would probably appreciate this excerpt:

"William Henry Harrison: Democrats derided the Whig party and its 1840 standard-bearer, Harrison, as a country peasant who lived in a log cabin and drank hard cider. So what did the Whigs and Harrison do? They held rallies at log cabins, sold Harrison as a regular rustic American -- and, of course, drank lots of hard cider. He won. "

Some other tidbits:

"Buchanan had congenital palsy, a condition that forced him to tilt his head to the left to compensate for a slight case of double vision. In the 1856 campaign, his rivals spread rumors that the tilted head was the result of a bungled attempt to hang himself. He won.

Goldwater v. Johnson: In 1964, Democrats questioned Republican candidate Barry Goldwater's judgment. The U.S. senator from Arizona had proposed allowing U.S. military commanders to use tactical nuclear weapons. Democrats ran a TV ad that showed a girl counting as she removed petals from a daisy. As she neared 10 petals, her voice was replaced with a man counting down to zero. Then, to a deafening roar, the TV screen was filled with a mushroom cloud. The ad concludes: "Vote for President Johnson on Nov. 3. The stakes are too high for you to stay home." Johnson won in a landslide. The ad ran only once, but was replayed on TV news broadcasts. "

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