Real-life Election Stories: Chaos in 1912 leads to a 3-way presidential race

Do you know about the crazy election of 1912? Some portions of the contest feel eerily similar to modern headlines. Indeed, the 1912 election was just as divisive as the 2016 election—and there was a lot at stake in 1912, too. The election that year featured a three-way contest: Two Republicans and a Democrat were […]

Real-life Election Stories: The U.S. House decides the election of 1824

The 2016 presidential election has barely begun, but it’s already been one for the record books.  One sad aspect of this election year? The media spin! It is undermining Americans’ understanding of their own election systems–and even their own Constitution. Unfortunately, media discussions have sometimes blurred the distinction between the political primaries and the Electoral College. (In reality, the two are […]

Happy Birthday, Benjamin Harrison!

Happy birthday to President Benjamin Harrison!   He was the 23rd President of the United States, the grandson of President William Henry Harrison, and one of two Presidents to win the presidency despite losing the popular vote. [Side note: Electoral College opponents will say that four Presidents won the presidency despite winning the popular vote. Some will […]

Which President was Elected by the House on This Day in History?

We are used to seeing Presidents elected through the Electoral College procedure.  Do you know who elects the President if no candidate obtains votes from a a majority of these electors?  The Constitution provides that the House of Representatives is to select the President in this situation.  In that House election, each state has one […]

On this day in history: Al Gore concedes the presidential election

On December 13, 2000, the contested election between George W. Bush and Al Gore finally came to an end. It had taken 36 days to decide which candidate won Florida’s slate of electors. Were the weeks of uncertainty caused by the Electoral College? Many commentators act as if they were, but the truth, of course, […]