From passing a budget to selecting a presidential candidate, party unity is often essential to getting work done. So how do fractured parties unite behind a person or a cause? Explore the topic in this collection of short videos.
Factions in the Republican party were breeding corruption, so Garfield worked to nominate James Blaine to combat the machine politics of the Stalwarts. But when Garfield delivered his speech to the Republican Convention to back Blaine, the crowd chanted that it was Garfield they wanted for president instead.
Kennedy vs. Johnson
After Kennedy was nominated for the Presidency, the Vice Presidency came into question. "No one was sure what Johnson would do if Kennedy offered it to him."
Americans doubted that a former Hollywood "B" actor could manage the country.
Passing the Budget Bill
The vote on the budget bill came down to a Freshman Democrat, Marjorie Margolis Mezvinsky. Senator Tom Daschle described Clinton's resolve to get the budget passed: "There wasn’t anything he wasn’t willing to do. He would call, he would meet. He would grovel, he would strong-arm. He would use every tactic any leader has at his disposal to try to get this thing done."
A Compromise Candidate
The 1944 Democratic Convention focused on who would be nominated for the Vice Presidency.
The Silent Majority
President Nixon garnered approval with his "Silent Majority" speech in November 1969.
George H.W. Bush fired the majority of Reagan's appointees in an attempt to distance himself from his predecessor. "It was an ideological housecleaning," says presidential historian John Robert Greene. "And Reagan appointees are shown the door in a harsh transition that makes it look like a Democrat is coming in."
For a large part of American history, military service was considered almost a prerequisite to serving as president. In recent decades, that has changed. Explore the topic in this series of short videos.