1924

THEO LIPPMAN JR.

October 09, 1992|By Theo Lippman Jr.

This is the 52nd presidential election.

The 35th in 1924 was the second of three huge Republican

landslides of the 1920s. Warren Harding, besieged by scandal, had died in 1923. An unsullied Calvin Coolidge of Massachusetts succeeded him and was renominated with no trouble.

The Democrats, divided by region, race, religion and Prohibition, struggled for 103 ballots before nominating John W. Davis, a New York lawyer with little elective experience.

Republicans ran a status-quo campaign, and with prosperity widespread among the voting public, were able to fend off Democratic criticisms of the Harding scandals. Democrats had little energy or enthusiasm left for the general campaign after their bruising nomination fight.

There is little likelihood that the public would have opted for change, anyway. After losing by more than 26 percentage points in 1920, Democrats lost by more than 25 in 1924.

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