Important Presidential Elections

1812

The election of 1812 consisted of a battle between James Madison, and De
Witt Clinton. Madison had represented both Democratic and Republican
beliefs, while Clinton was a Federalist.

James Madison was born in Port Conway, Va., on March 16, 1751. A
Princeton graduate, he joined the struggle for independence on his return
to Virginia in 1771. He had been an active politician in the 1770\'s and
1780\'s. He was greatly know for championing the Jefferson reform program,
and in the Continental Congress. Madison, in collaboration, had
participated greatly in the, Federalist, a paper who\'s main purpose was to
ratify the constitution. Madison first became president in 1809, when he
bested Charles C. Pickney. He had led the U.S. in a very unpopular war, in
which the U.S. hadn\'t been prepared for...the War of 1812.

De Witt Clinton was a Federalist, who\'s main purpose of the election was
to get the U.S. out of a war in which he felt was very unnecessary. DeWitt
held every major elective office in New York between 1797 and
1828--assemblyman, senator, mayor of New York City, lieutenant governor,
and governor. He was a philanthropist and patron of the arts and science
and, as canal commissioner, championed construction of the Erie and
Champlain canals

The method in which these candidates received nomination was by the
Electoral College, or by King Caucus. The idea of political conventions
had not been present at this time. There were no third-party candidates in
this election.

The major issue of this election was the War of 1812. The War of 1812, or
"Mr. Madison\'s War", had been very unpopular among different sections of
America. Mainly the ship owners in New England. The war was supposed to
protect. This war was supposed to help their shipping, but instead, it had
kept them from trading and making money.

The winner of the election of 1812 was James Madison. Madison collected
128 electoral votes, while Clinton received 89, and the number of "No Votes
Cast" was 1. The Vice-presidential candidate, who won the election was
Elbridge Gerry, who received 131 electoral votes, while Jared Ingersoll
received 86. There was no record of the number of popular votes for this
election.

My opinion of why Madison had won the election is because he had led the
country into the War of 1812, and therefore, he should be allowed to fight
it. He was also much more popular than De Witt Clinton. Madison\'s part in
ratifying the Constitution, and his other early deeds, were also
influential on the voters minds. He also did pretty well during his first
term.

1844

The candidates for the election of 1844 were James K. Polk, and Henry
Clay. Two very respectable men, who had great plans for the U.S. Polk
represented the Democratic party, while Clay represented the Whigs.

James Knox Polk was born in Mecklenburg County, N.C., on November 2, 1795.
He graduated from the University of North Carolina, from which he then
moved to Tennessee, where he became prominent in state politics. He was
elected to the house of representatives in 1825. He was elected Speaker of
the House in 1835. Four years later, he was elected governor of Tennessee,
but was beaten in tries for re-election in 1841, and 1843. Martin Van
Buren, the president prior to the 1844 election, counted on Polk as his
running mate; but when Van Buren\'s stand on Texas alienated Southern
support, the convention swung to Polk on the Ninth ballot.

Henry Clay, a key figure in U.S. politics during the first half of the
19th century, was a master of the art of political compromise. Born in
Hanover County, Va., on April 12, 1777, he studied law in Richmond and
moved to the frontier state of Kentucky in 1797. Clay became more and more
important in Kentucky politics, becoming speaker of the state assembly in
1807, and winning election to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1811.
Clay made his first try for the presidency in 1824. Four men ran,
including Andrew Jackson, were on the ballot. When no candidate won a
majority, Clay threw his support to John Quincy Adams. Adams won and
promptly named Clay his secretary of state.

The party members won their candidacy by primary. The major upset of this
time happened during the Democratic convention. Everyone expected Van
Buren to be named the Democratic candidate, but because of Van Buren\'s
stand on Texas, the nomination went to Polk. This election had no
third-party candidates.

The major issue of this election was the issue of Texas. Polk and the
Democrats, wanted Texas