Not really a discussion topic. A good reference book would answer it.
LBJ was eligible to run for another term but stepped aside.
I am not much of a political historian. My question is, in the history of our election process has the incumbent president who is eligible for reelection ever been substituted by their party for some else who had a better chance of being elected?
Last edited by high desert; 07-10-2012 at 11:36 AM.
1) Apparently for some segment of the population he is "likeable."
2) Some people are going to vote for him merely because he is black.
The democrats would have to find another likeable black guy to run and I don't see them doing that on short notice.
However, the firestorm that he could gin up if they didn't nominate him telling everyone how they are going against the "will of the people" would be enormous.
So in short, democrats are stuck with the obama for good or ill.
I can't think of a time in the last century or so when this happened. The power of incumbency is hard to beat, especially within a party. In 1980 Teddy Kennedy mounted a campaign against Jimmy Carter, but didn't make it. Same thing when Ronald Reagan ran in 1976 against Gerald Ford and fell short. (That's sort of a special situation, since Ford hadn't been elected president to begin with and thus lacked a certain legitimacy.)
1912 is an interesting case. William Howard Taft was elected in 1908 with the backing of Teddy Roosevelt, who had promised not to run for another term. In 1912, Roosevelt decided he wanted to run as a Republican against his buddy Taft, but lost out at the Republican convention. So he started his own political party (the Progressive Party, aka the Bull Moose Party) and took the nomination for them, not surprisingly. In the general election he came in second to Wilson, with Taft a close third.
The Taft/Roosevelt case shows how different presidential politics is now from what it once was. Can you imagine somebody today bolting from his own party, creating a third party in a matter of a couple of months, and making a credible run at the presidency? There may be cases of the type you describe in the 19th century, but the political culture and organization was so different that I'm not sure it would be comparable.
“Whether the knife falls on the melon or the melon on the knife, the melon suffers.” -- African Proverb
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