How did Grover Cleveland win two non consecutive terms?

Discussion in 'History & Past Politicians' started by JohnHamilton, Nov 14, 2022.

  1. JohnHamilton

    JohnHamilton Well-Known Member

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    Grover Cleveland is the only president who served two non-consecutive terms. How did he do that? Here is the Readers' Digest version.

    Cleveland rose very quickly in politics. Within two years he went from private citizen, to Mayor of Buffalo, to Governor of New York. and then, President-elect of the United States.

    Cleveland was a reformer, and he emphasized that on his campaign pieces.

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    He might not have been the brightest president, but one thing no one could deny, He was an honest man. When his opponents accused him of fathering a child out of wedlock during the 1884 campaign, his aids asked him what to do. "Tell them it's true," was his response. He weathered the storm as was elected.

    During his time as New York governor, Cleveland gone after crooked politicians including the crooks in his own party. He teamed with a young assembly member, Republican Theodore Roosevelt, in that effort.

    Because of that, the Tammany Hall politicians hated him. At the 1884 Democratic convention, they were especially galled when they had to vote to nominate Cleveland for president. The unit rule required the delegation to vote him. One delegate summed up the issue when he made the point, "The people love and respect him (Cleveland) because of the enemies he has made." Despite the child out of wedlock issue and the reluctance of some New York Democrats, Cleveland won the election.

    I will have to finish this tomorrow. My wife just announced she wants to go out to dinner.
     
  2. JohnHamilton

    JohnHamilton Well-Known Member

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    During his second term, Grover Cleveland married Frances Folsom. He was 48 years old; she was 24. The story gets more interesting from there.

    Frances' father had been Grover Cleveland's law partner. After he died in a carriage accident, Cleveland became Frances' guardian at a young age. Cleveland bought her first baby carriage.

    Over time a relationship developed between them, and she became his bride after she graduated from college. It was first and only marriage of a president in the Whitehouse.

    How did the public take this? They loved it. Frances became an immediate political asset for Grover Cleveland. Here are two campaign pieces from 1888.

    1888 Ms Cleveland.jpg

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    In the mean time, Grover Cleveland was facing a tough re-election campaign. His political enemies in New York would not support him. Ultimately he lost New York State by less than 2,000 votes and the 1888 election. Cleveland got more popular votes than his opponent, Benjamin Harrison, because he rolled up big majorities in the southern states. As they were leaving the Whitehouse, Frances Cleveland said that she would be back.

    Prior to the 1892 election, Grover Cleveland made a truce with his New York opponents. They gave him their support, and that combined with the high tariffs Harrison had gotten passed during his time in office, Cleveland won a second term.

    Grover Cleveland's family continued to help his political career. This piece, which featured their daughter, Ruth, was issued during the campaign.

    GC 1892-7 O Baby Ruth.jpg GC 1892-7 R Baby Ruth.jpg

    Interestingly, the Curtis Candy Company claimed that they named their new candy bar "Baby Ruth" after her in the 1920s. This was highly dubious because Ruth Cleveland died when she was 12 years old, many years before the candy bar was introduced. The real reason was that the company wanted to link their product to baseball player, Babe Ruth, without paying him any royalties.
     

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