The election of 1792, where George Washington will become the very first two-term President in American history… Let’s Go!

    Background Info

    So, as you can see from the map above all of the previous states like that didn’t ratify the Constitution in the 1788-89 election have now done so as well as the new states of Vermont and Kentucky who were added into the United States in March of 1791 and June of 1792 respectively. 

    Despite his reluctance to run for a second term, George Washington was persuaded to run and much like the previous election his victory wasn’t in any doubt however, things are a little bit more complicated when it comes to the race for the vice presidency.

    Now before I talk about what’s going on with the vice presidency, I think it’s important to really talk about the partisan division’s that’s really been forming since the last presidential election between the Federalists and the Anti-Federalists.

    A Line In The Sand

    So, if you remember the article I did on the 1788-89 election, then you know I briefly talked about the Federalists who were those politicians that supported the ratifying of the Constitution and the Anti-Federalist or also known as the Democratic-Republicans who are the politicians that were against ratification, well by 1792 all of the states have been ratified so the Democratic-Republicans need another ideology to stand for and they find it under the leadership of Thomas Jefferson

    Jefferson and the rest of the Democratic-Republicans believe that the United States should be an agrarian like the community that focuses more on agriculture, limiting executive power, favouring of state’s rights and opposing the idea of a national bank, in fact, James Madison one of the names who helped in the writing of the Federalist Papers and the Constitution was at first a Federalist but after the proposal of a national bank was brought up, he left to form the Democratic-Republicans with Jefferson and they stand as opposition against the Federalists.

    The Federalists, on the other hand, favoured the idea of a strong federal government and pushed for a national bank in order for the U.S. to have some economic growth and this party is led by Washington’s Treasury Secretary, Alexander Hamilton but also includes politicians like Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, John Jay and Vice President John Adams among others. While George Washington never officially associated himself with a Federalist, he did support many of their ideas.

    By 1792 the partisanship is becoming more and more rabid with both sides looking to steer the country in a different direction, but they are held together with some sort of unity with Washington as president but by the time the election in 1796 comes rolling around those divisions will play out even more.

    The Battle For Vice President

    So now that we’ve discussed what’s been going on between the two growing parties and how Washington is a shoo-in to win the presidency, let’s talk about the fight for the Vice-Presidential position.

    John Adams, Washington’s current VP is the obvious pick for the Federalist party but the Democratic-Republicans have a little issue, see Thomas Jefferson was looking to challenge Adams for the VP spot but there’s something in the Constitution that prevents this from happening as Jefferson and Washington were both from Virginia and electors were not permitted to vote for candidates that come from the same home state and so, therefore, the Democratic-Republicans nominated former New York Governor, George Clinton for the vice presidency but some of the supporters of the Democratic-Republicans are not going to get behind Clinton and instead their looking to vote for some else like Thomas Jefferson or Aaron Burr, who a senator from New York.

    The Results

    George Washington wins again making him the first two-term president and the only one to win 100% of the electoral votes in two consecutive elections; Washington received 132 electoral votes, John Adams came in second with 77 electoral votes, George Clinton gets 50 electoral votes, Thomas Jefferson got 4 votes and Aaron Burr only received one.

    Washington goes on to have another term as president and even though he warned against the creation of political parties and foreign alliances, it’s far too late as the battle lines have been drawn between the Federalists and the Democratic-Republicans and by 1796 the war over who will be in charge as President will begin. 

    And with that, there’s the election of 1792, Washington becomes a two termer, the battling ideologies of Jefferson and Hamilton have led to the creation of two different political parties and the set up for the next election is sealed.