Why did democratic nominee Woodrow Wilson win the presidential election of 1912? Debs attempted to rally support for his socialist views while also claiming that the other three candidates were receiving funding from trusts.
Wilson took advantage of the Republican divide and won 40 states and a huge majority of the electoral vote with only 41.8 percent of the popular vote, the lowest support for any President since 1860. This was accomplished by gaining a significant majority of the electoral vote.
United States presidential election of 1912, American presidential election held on November 5, 1912, in which Bull Moose (Progressive) candidate and former Republican president Theodore Roosevelt was defeated by Democratic candidate Woodrow Wilson, who went on to become president of the United States. Republican incumbent president William Howard Taft was also defeated.
In 1901, Theodore Roosevelt became the president of the United States when William McKinley was killed in an assassination attempt. Four years later, in 1904, he won the presidency in his own right and went on to become a highly well-liked chief executive.
Shortly after the election in 1904, he stated that he would not be a candidate four years later; despite the fact that he was so revered by the general populace and could have easily won the nomination for the Republican party in 1908, he decided against running for office. He was adamant about keeping his promise, so he orchestrated the candidacy of his secretary of war, William Howard Taft, who went on to win the presidency with little difficulty in 1908.
Both the public and the Republican Party were agitated throughout Taft’s presidency. The national movement for progressive ideals was on the verge of reaching its zenith, and a sizeable contingent of Republican progressives, often known as “insurgents,” had seats in both chambers of Congress.
These Republicans, along with the majority of Americans, wanted several changes, including the decrease of tariffs, the introduction of an income tax, the direct election of senators, and even more stringent controls for railroads and corporations. Taft, who considered himself to be a progressive, had more traditional philosophical beliefs and lacked the traits of a dynamic and popular leader.
It was in 1909 when he summoned a special session of Congress to discuss tariff reform that he ran into his first set of problems. When the measure that emerged from Congress increased rates, Republican insurgents and the majority of Americans were outraged; however, Taft signed the bill and called it the best tariff law the Republicans had ever enacted.
This is despite the fact that Republican insurgents and the majority of Americans were outraged. The Taft Republicans and the rebels were more estranged from one another as a result of disagreements and misunderstandings on conservation and parliamentary process. By 1910, it was abundantly evident that the Republican rebels had gained the upper hand in Congress.
They took control of a legislation proposed by the president to regulate railroads and inserted additional clauses that significantly enlarged the Interstate Commerce Commission’s jurisdiction. The next year, they voiced their vehement opposition to Taft’s initiative for tariff reciprocity with Canada. Despite having the backing of Democrats in Congress, the measure was ultimately unsuccessful as it was rejected by voters in Canada.
Insurgents affiliated with the Republican Party were adamant about thwarting Taft’s renomination in 1912. They found their leader in Roosevelt, who had grown more estranged from Taft and who conducted a frenetic campaign for the presidential nomination throughout the winter and spring of 1912.
Taft’s relationship with Roosevelt had deteriorated significantly. Even in Taft’s home state of Ohio, Roosevelt was victorious in all of the presidential primary elections. However, Taft and other conservative Republicans controlled the influential state organizations as well as the Republican National Committee.
As a result, when the Republicans assembled at their national convention in Chicago in June 1912, it turned out to be a contentious and divided event. Taft, Roosevelt, and Wisconsin Senator Robert M. La Follette, a prominent reformer, all sought the nomination for president of the United States.
However, Taft’s supporters exercised such complete control over the party machinery that delegate challenges made by Roosevelt were all defeated, prompting Roosevelt to refuse to have his name entered into nomination consideration. La Follette was also a candidate for the nomination.
In the end, Taft received his nomination on the first vote, while Vice President James S. Sherman was renominated with little difficulty. Roosevelt, who was under the impression that the party officials had snatched the nomination away from him, led his supporters out of the Republican convention.
In August, they established the Progressive Party, sometimes known as the Bull Moose Party, and nominated Roosevelt to head the cause of the third party. Roosevelt chose Hiram Johnson, the conservative Republican governor of California, to be his running partner in the election.
During this time, the Democrats were victorious in both the congressional and the gubernatorial elections that took place in 1910. Furthermore, following the dissolution of the Republican Party in the spring of 1912, it became abundantly clear that almost any Democrat of passable caliber was capable of winning the presidency in that year.
A week after the conclusion of the Republican convention, the Democrats held their convention in Baltimore, Maryland. They had a number of candidates vying for the nomination, including Champ Clark, the speaker of the House, and Woodrow Wilson, a former president of Princeton University who had a progressive record while serving as governor of New Jersey.
In the end, Woodrow Wilson was successful in winning the nomination for Democratic presidential candidate on the 46th ballot, and Thomas R. Marshall was selected to be his running mate.
In light of the fact that Wilson was in essence competing against two Republicans, the Democrats emerged from their convention in a strong position. Roosevelt and the Bull Moose organization were quite proud of their reputation as progressives and reformers; they even supported women’s right to vote.
The election of 1912 was a race between Taft and Roosevelt, and Taft’s only goal was to beat Roosevelt. However, the true competition for control of the progressive majority was between Roosevelt and Wilson. Roosevelt demanded effective control of big business through a strong federal commission, radical tax reform, and a whole series of measures to put the federal government squarely into the business of social and economic reform while vigorously campaigning on a platform that he called the New Nationalism.
During this time, Roosevelt referred to his platform as the New Nationalism. Wilson, on the other hand, seemed conservative with a program that he called the New Freedom. It envisioned a concerted effort to destroy monopoly and to open the doors of economic opportunity to small businessmen through drastic tariff reduction, banking reform, and severe tightening of antitrust laws. In addition, it envisioned a concerted effort to destroy monopoly and to open the doors of economic opportunity to large businessmen.
On election day, November 5, Roosevelt received more votes than Taft but was unable to get a significant number of Democratic progressives to support him instead of Wilson. Wilson was successful in winning 435 electoral votes despite receiving just roughly 42 percent of the popular vote.
Roosevelt and Taft received a combined total of 7.6 million votes, which was 1.3 million more than Wilson received; nevertheless, Roosevelt only won 88 electoral votes, while Taft only got 8. The performance of Taft, who received 8 electoral votes, was the lowest showing ever by an incumbent candidate seeking reelection. Wilson, who was born in Virginia, became the first president born in the South to be elected to the office since the end of the American Civil War (1861–65).
Refer to the United States presidential election of 1908 for information on the outcomes of the previous election. For information on who won the succeeding election, see the presidential election held in the United States in 1916.
The table below details the outcomes of the presidential election that took place in the United States in 1912.
Woodrow Wilson, who was serving as governor of New Jersey at the time, was nominated for president of the United States by the Democratic Party in 1912. The nation was facing challenges that its founding fathers could not have foreseen in any way. Since the 1880s, the United States had been through major shifts in urbanization and industrialization.
As a result, the government urgently needed to find new approaches to the role it played in order to keep up with these developments. Many people, including the progressive Woodrow Wilson, thought that the United States of America needed to rearrange itself.
The discussion of the election expanded beyond candidates’ personalities and into issues of political theory when serious contenders entered the race. William Howard Taft, the incumbent President of the United States as a conservative Republican, was seen as a representative for big business and the status quo.
Former President Theodore Roosevelt, who was nominated for president by the newly established Progressive Party (also known as the Bull Moose Party), placed himself in the center of the race and appealed to the reform-minded majority of Americans. Eugene Debs, a labor leader and the candidate for the Socialist Party, was considered to be on the far left. He urged those who supported him that it was time for the working class to take control of America.
Both reformers, Wilson and Roosevelt, were attempting to win over people in the center of the political spectrum. One reporter compared shaking Wilson’s hand to shaking the hand of a dead fish because of his apparent lack of warmth and friendliness. Roosevelt, on the other hand, was a charismatic leader who could win people over with his boasting and back-slapping.
Wilson’s greatest chance of defeating Roosevelt was to go on a speaking tour around the nation and address people directly about a plan he termed “New Freedom,” which was intended to assist “the guy on the make.” This individual was of the middle class but had dreams of one day joining the property- or business-owning classes. By the summer of 1912, Woodrow Wilson had successfully formed a strong core of individuals who desired change.
On the evening of the election, Wilson and his family went back to their house in Princeton to wait for the results of the nationwide vote. Following the meal, he shared with Ellen and his children a poem written by Robert Browning that emphasized the significance of yielding to God’s will.
After the votes were counted, it was determined that three quarters of the American electorate supported change-oriented political parties. It was abundantly evident that change was needed, but this did not necessarily mean that Wilson should lead it.
He had received six million votes, but Taft and Roosevelt had jointly received a million more votes than he had individually. In addition, another million people had decided to vote for Debs and the Socialists.
As a result of a rift within the Republican Party, Woodrow Wilson was elected president.
Woodrow Wilson was only governor of New Jersey for a total of two years before he was elected president of the United States in 1912. Wilson was successful in his campaigns for governor of New Jersey and for the presidency with major assistance from realistic political organizers. Wilson served as president of Princeton University from the year 1902 until he was elected as governor of New Jersey.
Col. George Harvey, the editor of Harper’s Weekly, managed to convince James Smith of Newark, the “boss” of the New Jersey Democratic Party, to back Woodrow Wilson for the nomination for governor during the spring of 1910. Wilson, who had had just lost an internal dispute at Princeton with one of his deans, agreed to accept the candidacy provided it were presented without terms.
However, the requirements must be removed before the nomination can be accepted. The well-oiled system that Smith used to elect a dignified puppet functioned properly, but Smith’s strategy to elect the puppet quickly went astray. Wilson accepted the candidacy that was given to him by the Democratic state convention, united himself with the progressive forces that had been opposing Smith, and went on to win the election by an overwhelming margin on November 8, 1910.
The revolution had only gotten started at that point. Wilson intervened to stop Smith from being elected to the United States Senate by the state assembly before he took office as president. Inaugurated on January 17, 1911, the new governor kept such heavy pressure on the legislature in Trenton that he was able to win enactment of the majority of his program in just one session.
This included workmen’s compensation, direct primaries, effective state regulations of public utilities, municipal reform, and reorganization of the school system. Direct primaries were also a part of the program. At the beginning of 1913, he was successful in obtaining the last of his significant requests, which was antitrust legislation to eliminate industrial monopolies in New Jersey.
Wilson’s presidential campaign was aided by the split that occurred within the Democratic Party at their nominating convention as well as the subsequent split that occurred within the Republican Party at its convention, with the party’s progressive and conservative factions supporting the candidacies of incumbent President William Howard Taft and former President Theodore Roosevelt, respectively. Both of these events occurred during Wilson’s campaign.
Despite the academic image that he presented to the public, Woodrow Wilson also relied on key advisers who were skilled in practical politics. One of these key advisers was Edward “Colonel” House of Texas, who assisted Wilson in gaining the support of William Jennings Bryan, the Democratic presidential nominee in 1896, 1900, and 1908, at the Democratic Convention in Baltimore.
The nomination of Wilson didn’t take place until the 46th ballot of the convention, which was held after a complicated sequence of compromises and changing alliances. The early votes of the more progressive Democrats were split between Wilson and Champ Clark of Missouri, who was the Speaker of the House. Congressman Oscar W.
Underwood of Alabama, who was supported by the majority of Southern delegations, and Governor Judson Harmon of Ohio, who was moderate, were both supported by many party machine politicians. When the Tammany Hall forces in New York City switched their support from Harmon to Clark, Colonel House assisted in convincing a hesitant William Jennings Bryan to put his support to Woodrow Wilson.
This helped to stem the movement of delegates toward Clark. Wilson’s managers reportedly made a series of promises to win additional votes, including offering cabinet positions to key leaders. These promises helped Wilson gain the lead on the twenty-eighth ballot, and as the former opposing forces rushed to join the Wilson camp, Wilson eventually won by near acclimation on the forty-sixth ballot with 990 of the 1,089 possible delegate votes.
The Republicans began to disagree with one another when former President Roosevelt disputed the candidacy of William Howard Taft, who had been Roosevelt’s former cabinet official and the person he had chosen to succeed him as president.
Roosevelt, along with other more progressive Republican leaders, had a falling out with Taft over the policies of his administration, particularly the defense of business interests in maintaining high tariffs on imported goods and the failure to pursue Roosevelt’s conservation program in the West. Taft’s administration had also failed to pursue Roosevelt’s conservation program in the East.
In 1911, Roosevelt had suggested that court decisions might be subject to reversal through public referenda, a proposal that angered Taft, who had spent his earlier career as a lawyer and who would later serve as chief justice of the United States Supreme Court. Taft had spent his earlier career as a lawyer and would later serve as chief justice of the United States Supreme Court.
Roosevelt and Taft also disagreed over the judicial treatment of reform legislation such as that which provides workers’ compensation for injuries sustained on While Taft was only victorious in one election, Roosevelt was victorious in primaries in nine of the states that elected delegates. But despite the fact that Roosevelt was shown to be popular with regular Republican voters, Taft ended up winning the candidacy for the Republican party.
This was due to the fact that just 42 percent of the delegates who attended the nominating convention were chosen via primary elections. The party leaders who controlled the majority of delegates favored Taft’s conservative, pro-business leanings over Roosevelt’s more progressive positions, which sought to curb business monopolies and improve workplace conditions. This preference was made clear by the overwhelming majority of delegates.
In addition, the leaders felt more at ease with Taft’s character as opposed to that of Roosevelt, who was known for his independence and sometimes obstinacy. When it was announced that Taft would be the candidate for president, progressives who had supported Roosevelt walked out of the convention.
Soon after, they established the Progressive Party, which became more popularly known as the Bull Moose Party after Roosevelt’s statement that he was “as fit as a bull moose” to run for another office in another campaign. The Progressive platform, which supported Roosevelt’s campaign for president, advocated for several social changes, as well as the direct election of U.S. senators, women’s suffrage, and a decrease in tariffs.
There was also a campaign for the Socialist Party in the 1912 election, which was led by Eugene V. Debs. In the years leading up to World War I, the Socialist Party amassed a significant amount of power, resulting in the election of two members of Congress, over 70 mayors, and a great number of state legislators and municipal councilors.
The Socialist tally of slightly more than 900,000 votes in 1912, which was approximately 6 percent of the total votes cast, was more than double the number of people who voted for Debs in the 1908 election. This was a reflection of the increasing strength of the left, which resulted in pressure being placed on the major parties to advocate for labor and social reforms to counteract this trend.
Wilson ran for president on a platform known as the New Freedom, which placed an emphasis on individuality as well as the sovereignty of states. Roosevelt’s campaign, which was generally aggressive, was directed against both Wilson and Taft, but his domestic agenda appealed to working class voters in a manner that was comparable to Wilson’s.
In a campaign speech that he gave in August in New York City, he said, “The principles for which we stand are the principles of fair play and a square deal for every man and every woman in the United States.” The “square deal” label that he gave to his campaign was later adopted by subsequent politicians (for example, “New Deal”; “Fair Deal”). Taft was the first sitting president to engage in active campaigning for himself while in office, although it was quickly apparent that the true competition was between Wilson and Roosevelt.
An anarchist by the name of William Schrenk opened fire on President Theodore Roosevelt as he arrived at a hotel in Chicago on October 12 to deliver a speech there.
As President Roosevelt clutched the hole in his chest, he issued orders to his Secret Service men who had captured the assailant, telling them, “Don’t harm him!” I want to look at him,” and then proceeded inside to deliver his address, speaking for an hour before fainting and being rushed to the hospital. He had been speaking for the whole time until he passed out.
It seems that the thick materials for his speech that Roosevelt had in his breast pocket helped to slow the bullet down to the point where it was able to spare Roosevelt’s life.
Wilson and Taft suspended their campaigns until after Roosevelt was discharged from the hospital; however, Roosevelt realized during his recovery that there was little chance in a victory with Republican votes split between him and Taft. This realization occurred while Roosevelt was still in the hospital.
On the day of the election, Wilson earned more than 6 million votes, Roosevelt received more than 4 million, and Taft received more than 3 million. Wilson’s election made him just the second Democrat to win the president since the end of the Civil War. He did it with only 42 percent of the popular vote, which is remarkable considering how close the race was.
Wilson’s win in the Electoral College was an overwhelming one, with 435 electoral votes to Roosevelt’s 88. This was despite the fact that Wilson lost the popular vote to the combined totals that voted for Roosevelt and Taft. Only eight electoral votes were cast for Taft, the incumbent president, who suffered a humiliating loss.
Wilson won the election with a comfortable margin of victory over both Taft and Roosevelt, receiving 435 of the 531 electoral votes available. Wilson also won 42 percent of the popular vote, which was far more than Roosevelt’s 27 percent, who was his closest competitor.
Wilson was victorious in the election of 1912 in large part due to the division that occurred within the Republican party. During the election season of 1912, Wilson’s “New Freedom” platform advocated for a socially active government and the preservation of huge controlled trusts, whilst Roosevelt’s “New Nationalist” platform advocated for small businesses and severe antitrust regulations.
Wilson beat Hughes in a close race by a margin of around 600,000 votes out of approximately 18.5 million that were cast in the popular vote. Many people had Hughes pegged as the front-runner to win, but in the end, Wilson prevailed. By sweeping the Solid South and capturing many swing states by razor-thin margins, Wilson was able to achieve a majority in the Electoral College and win the election for president.
In spite of the fact that incumbent Republican President William Howard Taft and former Republican President Theodore Roosevelt were at odds with one another, the Democratic Party was victorious in both houses of Congress and the presidency, marking the first time that this had been accomplished by the party since the election of 1892.