Presidential Races: The Battle for Power in the United States
With today's presidential candidates launching multimillion dollar campaigns years before an election, it's hard to imagine a time when running for ... Show synopsis With today's presidential candidates launching multimillion dollar campaigns years before an election, it's hard to imagine a time when running for the top office in the country was as simple as being asked. But that's how George Washington became president. Thomas Jefferson and other early presidential contenders actually tried to avoid the contest as it wasn?t proper to appear too interested in the office. In the 1840s, candidates didn't need to say much about their own ideas for government; the party leaders ran the campaigns. The Whig Party campaigned for William Henry Harrison and his running mate, John Tyler, with parades, campaign souvenirs, and songs. Their slogan, "Tippecanoe and Tyler too," became famous, and the boisterous campaign won the election. Follow the presidential races from the election of George Washington to George W. Bush and witness the changes in the battle for power over more than two hundred years. See how election rules have adapted; how caucuses, primary elections and political conventions evolved; and how strategies have moved from the simple campaigns of the early days to the elaborate focus groups, polls, TV commercials, fund raising and loud and colorful party conventions of today.