Election of 1888

The Republicans in 1888 sensed an opportunity to regain the White House because President Cleveland had offended so many sectors of the electorate. James G. Blaine, the unsuccessful candidate in 1884, refused to run again. Benjamin Harrison, a former senator from Indiana and grandson of the hero of Tippecanoe, became the nominee. His prime assets were his famous name, a sterling record in the Civil War, popularity among former Union soldiers and his strength in the swing states of Indiana and Ohio.

The Democrats renominated the incumbent, whose principled actions had upset many voters, including:

  • The Democratic professional politicians who opposed civil service reform
  • Union war veterans, represented by the G.A.R., who resented the veto of pension legislation
  • Industrial leaders who opposed the president's call for tariff reduction
  • Farmers and debtors who disliked Cleveland's adherence to the gold standard.

As if these weren't sufficient to ruin his chances, Cleveland further destroyed his support in pivotal swing states by returning captured Confederate battle flags to the Southern states; Union veterans were incensed.

The campaign in 1888 set a new standard for corruption. Senator Matthew Quay of Pennsylvania used large sums of money to buy votes, which may have provided the margin for the Harrison victory. Cleveland won a majority of the popular votes, but failed to carry either Pennsylvania or his home state of New York.

Election of 1888
Candidates

Party

Electoral Vote

Popular
Vote

Benjamin Harrison (IN)
Levi P. Morton (NY)

Republican

233

5,444,892

Grover Cleveland (NY)
Allen G. Thurman (OH)

Democratic

168

5,534,488

Clinton B. Fisk (NJ)
John A. Brooks (MO)

Prohibition

0

249,819

Alson J. Streeter (IL)
Charles E. Cunningham (AR)

Union Labor

0

146,602


Off-site search results for "Election of 1888"...

Election of 1888
Election of 1888 2004 1968 1932 1896 1860 2000 1964 1928 1892 1856 1996 1960 1924 1888 1852 1992 1956 1920 1884 1848 1988 1952 1916 1880 1844 1984 1948 1912 1876 1840 1980 1944 1908 1872 1836 1976 1940 1904 1868 1832 1972 1936 19Election of 1888 2004 1968 1932 1896 1860 2000 1964 1928 1892 1856 1996 1960 1924 1888 1852 1992 1956 1920 1884 1848 1988 1952 1916 1880 1844 1984 1948 1912 1876 1840 1980 1944 1908 1872 1836 1976 1940 1904 1868 1832 1972 1936 1900 1864 1828 ...
http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/showelection.php?year=1888

Presidential Election of 1888
The election itself was very close with Cleveland winning the popular vote, but losing the electoral vote to Harrison. He lost New York's crucial 34 votes with the help of his old adversary the Tammany machine ...
http://www.historycentral.com/elections/1888.html

The Political Graveyard: Election of 1888
Questions? Return to The Political Graveyard main page. Election of 1888 Electoral College Details President BENJAMIN HARRISON: 233 electoral votes California (8), Colorado (3), Illinois (22), Indiana (15), Iowa (13), Kansas (Election of 1888 Electoral College Details President BENJAMIN HARRISON: 233 electoral votes California (8), Colorado (3), Illinois (22), Indiana (15), Iowa (13), Kansas (9), Maine (6 ...
http://politicalgraveyard.com/offices/pres-vp-1888.html