President

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second Vice President of the United States. Garner was born near Detroit, Red River County, Texas. He studied law, was admitted to the bar in 1890, and began practice in Uvalde, Uvalde County, Texas. He was a judge of Uvalde County from 1893 to 1896 and a member of the state House of Representatives from 1898 to 1902. Garner was elected as a Democrat to the United States House of Representatives in 1902 from a newly created congressional district covering tens of thousands of square miles of rural South Texas. He was elected from the district fourteen subsequent times, serving until 1933. Garner's hard work and integrity made him a respected leader in the House, and he was chosen to serve as minority floor leader for the Democrats in 1929, and then as Speaker of the United States House of Representatives in 1931. In 1932, Garner ran for the Democratic Presidential nomination, becoming one of New York Governor Franklin Roosevelt's most serious opponents for the nomination. When it became evident that Roosevelt would win the nomination, Garner cut a deal with the front-runner, becoming Roosevelt's Vice Presidential candidate. He was re-elected to the Seventy-third Congress on November 8, 1932, and on the same day was elected Vice President of the United States. He was reelected Vice President in 1936 and served in that office from March 4, 1933 to January 20, 1941. Garner, always the character, once described the office of the vice presidency as being "not worth a bucket of warm piss" (at the time reported with the bowdlerization "spit") and that his decision to take it in the first place was "the worst damn fool mistake I ever made." During Roosevelt's second term, the previously warm relationship between Garner and Roosevelt quickly soured, as Garner disagreed sharply with Roosevelt on a wide range of important issues. Garner supported federal intervention to break up the first sit-down strike, supported a balanced federal budget, opposed packing the Supreme Court with additional judges, and opposed executive interference with the internal business of the Congress. After Roosevelt sought to defeat in the 1938 primaries Democrats who opposed him, Garner began to see himself as the champion of the regular Democratic Party, as opposed to the New Deal party which supported Roosevelt. During 1938 and 1939, numerous Democratic party leaders urged Garner to run for President in 1940. Gallup polls showed that Garner was the favorite among Democratic voters, presuming that Roosevelt would not run for a third term.

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