In search of presidential candidates who were as bad as Hillary Clinton, Part One

I’ve stated here that Hillary Clinton is the worst presidentcandidate ever nominated by a major political party. I’ve been working on that hypothesisand have begun to formulate a list of candidates who could give Hillary a runfor her money. Here’s a start:

Aaron Burr - 1800 election - In 1800 the system for electingpresidents was a bit different. Members of Electoral Collage each had twovotes. The candidate who got the most votes was elected president, and therunner up was elected vice president. This produced the result in 1796 whenJohn Adams, a Federalist was elected president, and Thomas Jefferson, aDemocratic - Republican was elected vice president. Jefferson spent the nextfour years and an outsider in the Adams administration.

In 1800 Jefferson and Burr agreed to run together. Thethought was that Jefferson was the presidential candidate and that Burr was theVP. Jefferson and Burr won the election, but when the electors cast their votessomebody didn’t blink and Jefferson and Burr ended up with the same number ofelectoral votes. In that event, the election was thrown into the House ofRepresentatives. Burr, now noting that he might become president, refused toconcede. This would ruin the relationship between Jefferson and Burr forever.

In the House the Federalists were looking to disrupt theprocess by getting Burr elected or perhaps grid locking decision until the newFederal Government fell apart. Ultimately Hamilton stepped in, held his noseand threw the House election to Jefferson.

Burr is an interesting fellow. He killed Alexander Hamiltonin a duel in 1804. In modern terms this would be like Joe Biden killing Reince Priebus,the Republican Party Chairman, with a pistol.

After that he became involved in a scheme that might havespit off the western part of The United States into a separate nation. You canread articles and books about this that cut both ways as to whether or not Burrwas guilty of attempted treason.

So was Burr a worse candidate than Hillary? Given thisevidence, he would appear to be worst, BUT Burr was not a presidentialcandidate until after the general election when the decision was thrown intothe House of Representatives. He was not the presidential nominee of a majorparty. He was vice presidential nominee.