1936 Presidential Election

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The 1936 presidential election was known as one of the most lopsided presidential elections in the history of United States in terms of electoral votes since Monroe’s in 1820 (Boller, P.249). In this election, Franklin Delano Roosevelt also known as FDR campaigned on his New Deal programs against the Kansas Governor Alf Landon. Governor Alf Landon argued that the New deal programs were unconstitutional and it would affect the business (Kelly).

FDR enters the election with a strong, but not unbeatable, hand. The measures that FDR took during his first term in the White House didn’t produce prosperity. But they were able to pull the country out of depression and made sure that millions of people were better off than they had been when he first took office (Boller, P.240). Still the economy remained sluggish and eight million Americans were without jobs. At this election, he brought out the New Deal that would help all groups and firms. By this time Roosevelt had become the center of both passionate adoration and burning hatred. With millions of Americans support he had become more popular than the New Deal itself (Boller, P.240). Critics from various points on the political spectrum such as Father Coughlin and Dr. Francis Townsend had spent much of the previous two years attacking the President. They supported Representative William Lemke of the newly formed Union Party in the 1936 election (American President: A Reference Resource).

Due to the widespread popularity of FDR in 1936, the Republicans felt desperate to avoid a repeat of the 1932 failure in which FDR had trounced the incumbent Herbert Hoover. So the party had to select a candidate that could strongly oppose FDR and sweep all the electoral and popular votes. The Kansas...

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Boller, Paul F. Presidential Campaigns: From George Washington to George W. Bush. January 2004.

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Lakeside Publishing Group,LLC. 1936 Franklin D. Roosevelt (Democrat) Vs. Alfred “Alf” Landon (Republican). Flash Focus: Presidential Elections 1788-2000. 144-146. US: Lakeside Publishing Group, LLC, 2005. History Reference Center. Web. April 12, 2012


Peter, Gerhard. The American Presidency Project. Retrieved: March 30th, 2012.

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