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Thirty-first American presidential election of 1908

AndyHogan14, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons


The 1908 election took place on November 3, 1908.


  • Republican party
  • Democratic party
  • Socialist party
  • Final tickets

    Republican ticket 1908

    William Howard Taft for president & James Sherman for vice president

    Democratic ticket 1908

    William Jennings Bryan for president & John Kern for vice president

    Socialist ticket 1908

    Eugene Debs for president & Ben Hanford for vice president (this photo is from 1904, as a 1908 poster could not be found)

    Campaining & major issues

    Though President Roosevelt's second term was not as eventful, he was still immensely popular, and most Americans, even some Democrats, liked him. Many Republicans urged him to reconsider, but he refused. Maybe he would reconsider (yes, that's foreshadowing.) Instead, Roosevelt endorsed his friend William Howard Taft. Taft did not want to be president as much, and had more of a passion for the Supreme Court, and most of his charisma came from Roosevelt. William Jennings Bryan, at this point, was still known by a lot of Americans. Bryan had considered running in 1904, but knew he would lose to Roosevelt. However, he thought Taft was vulnerable and he sought his third chance at the presidency. The Taft campaign made it hard though, with a famous slogan still mentioned by presidential enthusiasts: "Vote for Taft, you can vote for Bryan anytime!" Making fun of how he had already ran twice.

    Electoral college & turn-out

    The electoral college increased to 483 votes; 242 needed to win. 14,889,239 people voted in this election.


  • First place (winner): William Howard Taft & James Sherman
  • Second place: William Jennings Bryan & John Kern
  • Third place: Eugene Debs & Ben Hanford
  • Note: 3.36% of the popular vote went to other candidates.
  • Other attributions (listed from top to bottom)

    Kurz & Allison.., Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

    Heritage Auctions / Kurz & Allison (Chicago), Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

    Debs-Hanford Presidential Campaign, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

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