Thursday, January 10, 2008

Brokered convention

Tom McMahon posts today on the brokered Democratic convention of 1852, where Franklin Pierce was nominated on the 49th ballot. Contested conventions were common during the fight for abolition; in 1844 the Democrats were split. The three nominees for the presidential candidate were: Martin Van Buren, a former president and an abolitionist; James Buchanan, a moderate; Louis Cass, a general and expansionist. From Nashville came a dark horse riding up. He was James K. Polk, Napoleon of the Stump.

Austere, severe, he held few people dear; his oratory filled his foes with fear. The factions soon agreed he's just the man we need to bring about victory, fulfill our manifest destiny, and annex the land the Mexicans command. And when the votes were cast the winner was Mr. James K. Polk, Napoleon of the Stump.

In four short years he met his every goal. He seized the whole southwest from Mexico; made sure the tariffs fell; and made the English sell the Oregon territory. He built an independent treasury.

Having done all this he sought no second term, but precious few have mourned the passing of Mr. James K. Polk, our 11th president, young Hickory, Napoleon of the Stump.

That might sound good set to music.

No comments: