John Quincy Adams
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Founding Fathers

Because a card only holds so much.

Single Party Dominance
By the time of the 10th presidential election in 1824, the Federalist party was moribund and the Jeffersonian Republicans had achieved, in game terms, Single Party Dominance. Initially five nominees from this party contended for the presidency, a crowded field. But Secretary of War John C. Calhoun, not liking his chances, decided to withdraw and set his sights on the vice presidency. This left westerners General Andrew Jackson and House Speaker Henry Clay, northerner Secretary of State John Quincy Adams, and southerner Secretary of Treasury, William H. Crawford. (Vice President Daniel D. Tompkins was overwhelmingly unpopular and suffered from major health problems that would claim his life in the next year.)

Both Adams and Jackson chose Calhoun as a running mate; he must have seemed a good ticket balancer for this northerner and this westerner. Clay chose the former New York Senator Nathan Sanford while Crawford chose party elder Albert Gallatin, until Van Buren persuaded Gallatin not to run (see Foreign-born Presidents) or maybe because he lacked sufficient support. Crawford chose North Carolina Senator Nathaniel Macon (see Macon Bill Number 2). Prior to the election Crawford suffered a stroke that significantly hurt his chances.
Presidential CandidateRunning MateElectoral Vote
Andrew JacksonJohn C. Calhoun99
John Quincy AdamsJohn C. Calhoun74
Henry ClayNathan Sanford28
William H. CrawfordNathaniel Macon24
John Quincy AdamsAndrew Jackson9
William H. CrawfordMartin Van Buren9
Henry ClayJohn C. Calhoun7
Henry ClayAndrew Jackson3
William H. CrawfordNathan Sanford2
William H. CrawfordHenry Clay2
William H. CrawfordJohn C. Calhoun2
William H. CrawfordAndrew Jackson1
John Quincy Adamsnone1

In the election, Calhoun won the Vice Presidency easily. But none of the presidential candidates earned the 131 electoral votes required to win the election. Totals were as follows:

Jackson: 99
Adams: 84
Crawford: 41
Clay: 37
Of course this threw the election into the House of Representatives where John Quincy Adams, with the support of Clay (who being fourth was out of the contest) won to become the sixth president, returning it to the north.

This is well known. But what is less well known is the breakdown of the electoral vote by ticket (see table).

While the official tickets took the first four positions, we find a number of oddities in the lower portion of the table (highlighted in blue). An Adams-Jackson ticket? Clay and Jackson? Clay and Calhoun? Crawford and Clay? Crawford and Jackson? Crawford and Sanford? Adams and no one? And how did Martin Van Buren collect 9 votes when he wasn't even on the ballot?

What we need to remember is that while in our times members of the Electoral College are almost always faithful to the voters' wishes, in earlier times that was not always the case. The post-12th amendment Single Party Dominance rules make these kinds of results possible in the game as well.

Founding Fathers

Created: 30 June 2015