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The Grand Old Party (GOP), as the Republican Party is sometimes referred to, can trace its roots back to the United States Democratic-Republican Party, a breakaway faction of the ruling Federalist Party of the late eighteenth century. The Missouri Compromise of 1820 and subsequently, the Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854, triggered an internal revolt within the Democratic-Republic Party. A breakaway faction led by anti-slavery activist Alvan Earl Bovay and Thaddeus Stevens officially announced the formation of the Republican Party on July 6, 1854. Its rise to power was swift, as typified by Abraham Lincoln's victory in the 1860 presidential election, barely four years after the Party fielded its first ever candidate in a national election. Since then, the Party has had another 17 presidents, serving a total of 88 years. The Party boasts of 55 million registered voters, the second largest in the country, and is known as an advocate of American conservatism, espousing the role of religion, nationalism and economics at its core.

Former Republican Presidents: Lincoln (1861-1865), Grant (1869-1877), Hayes (1877-1881), Garfield (1881), Arthur (1881-1885), Harrison (1889-1893), McKinley (1897-1901), T. Roosevelt (1901-1909), Taft (1909-1913), Harding (1921-1923), Coolidge (1923-1929), Hoover (1929-1933), Eisenhower (1953-1961), Nixon (1969-1974), Ford (1974-1977), Reagan (1981-1989), Bush, H (1989-1993), Bush, W (2001-2009)

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    Barack Obama

November 8th, 2012

White HouseAfter a bruising two-year battle (let’s face it, the presidential race effectively commenced immediately after the 2010 Congressional elections), an estimated cumulative $6 billion in campaign expenditures, dozens of Letterman’s Top Ten Lists, and several thousand hours’ worth of political ads (remember this?), the 2012 United States Presidential Election finally concluded with President Barack Obama securing a second term in office.

One more time, in case anyone missed it: $6,000,000,000.

This is larger than the entire annual Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the 54 smallest economies in the world. It’s even larger than the 2011 GDP of the Principality of Monaco, where billionaires spend their summers watching $7 million F1 race cars zooming around town. It’s larger than the combined 2010 and 2011 GDP of the Cayman Islands. It’s larger than Grenada's last ten years’ GDP, where Clint Eastwood once famously led an American invasion force. Wait, that was Heartbreak Ridge.

Was it worth it? You bet. Every single cent was worth it, regardless of how one looks at it. We are, after all, speaking about electing the leader of the most powerful country in the entire recorded human history, either relative or absolute.

However, President Obama’s victory doesn’t appear to be banishing the sense of uncertainty that is enveloping the nation. America appears to be more divided than ever in the backdrop of the most challenging economic climate in living memory. The $16 trillion albatross hanging around the country’s metaphorical neck only adds to the growing anxiety of the populace. Congress is still split between the Republican-controlled House and the Democrat-controlled Senate.

And to top it all off, perhaps the sight of what many consider as the most contentious, spiteful and fractious presidential election ever, between two equally forceful candidates, has led many Americans to look at the future with a little trepidation. There seems to be a growing culture of hatred in the national political discourse.

Surely the country has never faced anything even remotely similar to this, right? Wrong.

John Adams and Thomas JeffersonCompared to what the nation experienced in the third presidential election between John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, what we are seeing now is child’s play.

When George Washington indicated his preference for John Adams to be his Vice President in 1789, such was his stature, the Confederation Congress and state electors fell in line and voted accordingly, despite concerns over his volatile temperament. So when Washington declined to run for a third term in office, and spend his retirement in Mount Vernon, there was a scramble for the presidency.

The most influential Federalist in Philadelphia, Alexander Hamilton, was fearful that Vice President Adams might decide to back off from running in favor of his good friend, the genius Thomas Jefferson.

Everyone still remembered that Adams was the main reason why Jefferson was tasked with drafting the Declaration of Independence a decade earlier. After the death of his wife, Martha, Jefferson sought companionship with Adams and his wife, Abigail, and became a frequent guest at their home. Jefferson even developed a strong platonic friendship with Abigail Adams. In fact, Jefferson had a habit of buying presents for Abigail during his travels.

Letter from Thomas Jefferson to Abigail Adams (Paris, Sep. 25, 1785)
“Mr. Short's return the night before last availed me of your favour of Aug. 12. I immediately ordered the shoes you desired which will be ready tomorrow. I am not certain whether this will be in time for the departure of Mr. Barclay or of Colo. Franks, for it is not yet decided which of them goes to London. I have also procured for you three plateaux de dessert with a silvered ballustrade round them, and four figures of Biscuit.”

Hamilton and his allies, advocates of a strong, centralized federal Republic, were fearful of Jefferson’s populist, small and regionalized government concept. So Hamilton began a character assassination campaign against the popular and well respected Jefferson. Explosive stories about a colored harem in his Virginia estate became the talk of town, courtesy of widely distributed poison-pen letters. Jefferson's private statements about equal rights for the slaves drew gasps of horror. Most damaging though, was the allegation that he fathered a child with his black concubine, Sally Hemings. Adams, by virtue of his Vice Presidency and being the public face of the Federalist faction, took the blame for most of Hamilton’s machinations.

Hamilton, who was holding a grudge against Jefferson for publicizing his affair with a married woman several year earlier, was hell bent on destroying Jefferson’s public standing and his friendship with Adams. Even as their relationship deteriorated, Jefferson and Adams fully understood the role that Hamilton played. So much so, Jefferson referred to Hamilton as the devil several times in public, while Adams called him a ‘fiend’ in private. Nonetheless, their friendship waned, and both men ran for the presidency in 1796.

Despite Jefferson’s early favorite status, he was ultimately defeated by Adams in the election. However, he received enough electoral votes to become Vice President. At the time, the person with the second highest Electoral College count is automatically appointed Vice President.

And thus, the stage was set for a rematch in 1800. This time, Jefferson, aided by his right-hand man, James Madison (another future president), marshaled the Democratic-Republican Party (the granddaddy of the present Democratic and Republican Party), and went after Adams and Hamilton with a vengeance.

Jefferson and his allies discreetly hired fugitive Scottish writer, James Callender, to write a whole series of poison-pen letters aimed at destroying the reputation of both Adams and Hamilton. Jefferson, at the time, was not aware that Callendar was also hired by Hamilton four years earlier, and was the one who broke the Sally Hemings story.

Matthew Lyon and Roger GriswoldAdams, concerned with Jefferson’s growing popularity, pushed for the creation of a Grand Committee, a five-man body purported to “adjudicate any disputes in the election of the president.”  The move was interpreted by many as an overt attempt to prevent a Jefferson presidency. A year earlier, the Adams’ administration even engineered the passing of the Alien and Sedition Acts of 1798, which sought to suppress public criticisms of his administration, especially those made by Jefferson’s Democratic-Republican Party.

During a fiery debate in Congress Hall, Vermont Representative Matthew Lyon, one of Jefferson’s strongest allies, spat tobacco juice in the face of the Federalist’ Connecticut Representative Roger Griswold. Griswold then picked up a cane and charged at Lyon, who quickly grabbed a pair of fire tongs from the fireplace to defend himself. They were of course separated.

Over the next one year, Jefferson and Adams went after each other mercilessly, ridiculing one another at every opportunity (monarchist was an often used term), right up to Election Day.

Jefferson, by virtue of his position as Vice President, was responsible for counting the Electoral College ballots received from the states. With only Georgia to go, Jefferson was leading Adams by 69 to 65 votes. The four Georgia electors had voted in favor of Adams, which tied the contest.

However, Jefferson realized that the Georgia electoral ballots did not fulfill the requirements laid out in the Constitution:

Article II, Section 1.
The Electors shall meet in their respective States, and vote by Ballot for two persons, of whom one at least shall not lie an Inhabitant of the same State with themselves. And they shall make a List of all the Persons voted for, and of the Number of Votes for each; which List they shall sign and certify, and transmit sealed to the Seat of the Government of the United States, directed to the President of the Senate.

Jefferson promptly awarded the ballots to himself, and with no opposition from any of the legislators present in Congress, declared victory. And thus ended the most acrimonious presidential campaign in the history of the United States. Amidst the resulting cries and criticisms, there were strong fears that the young nation would crumble under the weight of the unrelenting infighting.

But instead, the nation healed, and entered into a period of political and economic stability, as evidenced by the election of three consecutive two terms presidents (Jefferson, Madison and James Monroe). And Thomas Jefferson is now widely recognized as one of the greatest American Presidents ever.

Have faith, electorates. These United States of America will emerge stronger from this.

Note: Thirteen years later, Adams wrote a letter to Jefferson.

You and I ought to not die, before we have explained ourselves to each other.

And at the bottom of the letter, Abigail added a little note for her old friend.

I have been looking for some time for a space in my good Husbands Letters to add the regards of an old Friend, which are still cherished and preserved through all the changes and vicissitudes which have taken place since we first became acquainted, and will I trust remain as long as… A. Adams

Sadly, while they began to write to one another again, their friendship never really recovered.

Note 2: On Tuesday night, President Obama and Gov. Romney spoke of each other during their respective speeches.

President Obama's Victory Speech
I just spoke with Governor Romney, and I congratulated him and Paul Ryan on a hard-fought campaign. We may have battled fiercely, but it's only because we love this country deeply, and we care so strongly about its future. From George to Lenore to their son Mitt, the Romney family has chosen to give back to America through public service, and that is the legacy that we honor and applaud tonight. In the weeks ahead, I also look forward to sitting down with Governor Romney to talk about where we can work together to move this country forward.

Gov. Mitt Romney’s Concession Speech
I have just called President Obama to congratulate him on his victory. His supporters and his campaign also deserve congratulations. I wish all of them well, but particularly the president, the first lady and their daughters. This is a time of great challenges for America, and I pray that the president will be successful in guiding our nation.
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2012 Republican Presidential Nominee
Former Governor of Massachusetts

Mitt Romney

Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney
Senator John McCain's defeat to President Barack Obama in the 2008 presidential election signaled the reemergence of former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney as a serious contender and clear favorite for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination.

The Harvard man has been comfortably leading almost every poll since then. He was knocked off his perch for about two months during the summer of 2011, first by Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, and then, Texas Governor Rick Perry. However, he recovered, and despite losing the opening caucus in Iowa to former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum and a short-lived, acrimonious battle in the South against former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, the former venture capitalist steam rolled past his opponents for the rest of the campaign with relative ease.

On August 30, 2012, Gov. Romney was nominated as the nominee for President in front of over 15,000 party faithful during the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida.
Romney's profile, official website and positions on the issues



 
2012 Republican Vice-Presidential Nominee
U.S. Representative from Wisconsin

Paul Ryan

Presidential Candidate Paul Ryan
The dashing House Budget Committee chairman found himself in the limelight in June 2011 following the tabling and subsequent rejection by the Senate of his House-approved budget plan. Despite the proposal’s defeat, the 7-term Wisconsin Congressman’s attempt at repealing President Obama's controversial Affordable Care Act suddenly thrust the 42-year old fiscal conservative into an unfamiliar leadership position that resurrected calls for him to enter the Republican nomination race.

On August 22 2011, he released a statement saying that while he appreciates the confidence of supporters, he hasn't changed his mind about staying out of the race. However, a year later, Rep. Ryan is back in the picture, albeit in a completely different role. On August 11, 2012, Gov. Mitt Romney announced the selection of Rep. Ryan as his running mate for the 2012 presidential election.
Ryan's profile, official website and positions on the issues



 


 

 

Declared 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate


Kathyern Lane

Presidential Candidate Kathyern Lane
The 45-year old Indiana-born mother of three believes in the need for the neutrality of a presidential candidate. However, she realizes that under the current political system, the deck is stacked against any independent running for the office, which explains her reason for registering her candidacy under the Republican banner. Lane also believes that her status as a non-career politician, coupled with her first-hand experience in the private sector, makes her uniquely suited for the job.
Lane's profile, official website and positions on the issues



 
Declared 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate


Andy Martin

Presidential Candidate Andy Martin
The self-professed People’s Attorney General and Internet Powerhouse is famously remembered as the source of the chain mail and online reports questioning the citizenship of President Obama and the claim that he was a Muslim. The 66-year old Martin filed his papers as a candidate for the next presidential election on Feb 8, and was quoted two weeks later saying, “Obama
plays for keeps. He plays rough, and that's the only way to beat him, and I'm the only one that is
tough enough to do that."
Martin's profile, official website and positions on the issues



 
Declared 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate


Jimmy McMillan

Presidential Candidate Jimmy McMillan
The former mayoral, gubernatorial and senatorial candidate for the Rent Is Too Damn High Party announced his candidacy for the Republican presidential nomination on December last year. Explaining his decision not to contest the Democratic nomination, a party he was formerly registered with, karate expert McMillan was quoted as saying "the rent is too damn high." The flamboyant Vietnam veteran also gave some words of advice to President Obama, “If you don’t do your job right, I am coming at you!"
McMillan's profile, official website and positions on the issues



 
Declared 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate
U.S. Representative from the State of Texas

Ron Paul

Presidential Candidate Ron Paul
The former medical doctor officially announced his candidacy for the 2012 Republican Presidential nomination on May 13, 2011. The 75-year old Texas Congressman will once again center his campaign on the theme of liberty, human rights and financial market reforms. With his small but vocal pockets of supporters spread all over the country, the Libertarian leaning Republican is set to be one of the most controversial characters on the campaign trail.
Paul's profile, official website and positions on the issues



 
Declared 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate


Matt Snyder

Presidential Candidate Matt Snyder
Matthew Bradley Snyder is a supporter of people, not parties. He believes in the passion that stirs the heart of the common man. It is not political ambition, but personal experience, that enflames that passion. A president should exude it, not emulate it. Snyder is a true representative of the people.
Snyder's profile, official website and positions on the issues



 
Declared 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate
Businessman

Vern Wuensche

Presidential Candidate Vern Wuensche
Wuensche ran for President in 2008, garnering a tenth place finish in both the Iowa and New Hampshire primaries, despite spending only $36,000. In 100 days, the owner of Houston’s third oldest construction company, visited over 6,000 local businesses and churches in 242 towns in both states.

He believes that businesses survive and thrive chiefly through the caliber of those who runs them and thus, these executives are perfectly qualified for a public office shorn of proven management experience
Wuensche's profile, official website and positions on the issues



 

 

 

Former 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate
U.S. Representative from Minnesota

Michele Bachmann

Presidential Candidate Michele Bachmann
Michele Bachmann, the three terms Minnesota Congresswoman, is the current chair of the Congressional Tea Party Caucus. The attractive Iowan finished first in the August 2011 Straw Poll but saw her fortune quickly plummet following the entry of Texas Governor, Rick Perry, into the race. The resignation of deputy campaign manager, David Polyansky, and the redeployment of campaign manager Ed Rollins into a consulting role told us that all was not well in the Bachmann camp.

Following her disappointing numbers in the January 3rd Iowa caucuses, Rep. Michele Bachmann announced that she giving up her bid for the 2012 Republican nominee for president. She stated the following day, "Last night, the people of Iowa spoke with a very clear voice, and so I have decided to stand aside."

"I have no regrets," she added. "None whatsoever. We never compromised our principles." She added that she "looks forward to the next chapter in God's plan."



 
Former 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate
Businessman, Politician & Media

Herman Cain

Presidential Candidate Herman Cain
Cancer survivor, YouTube sensation and former mathematician with the US Navy, Herman Cain has a résumé that demanded our attention. His experience on all three major fronts of American politics - corporate, legislative and media – through his stellar career at Pillsbury, the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City (as chairman) and as the host of WSB’s "The Herman Cain Show" in Atlanta, nearly guaranteed that the articulate Republican wouldn't face questions of credibility.

Cain's rise in popularity was reversed within weeks by numerous allegations of sexual misconduct and the acknowledgment that he made a series of payments to a friend, Ginger Winter, without his wife's knowledge. Winter claims the two had a 13-year affair.

Herman Cain announced his suspension from the 2012 race, in dramatic fashion, on December 3rd 2011 in Atlanta. It was the day he was supposed to have opened his official campaign headquarters in Georgia.



 
Former 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate
Former Speaker of the House

Newt Gingrich

Presidential Candidate Newt Gingrich
After a 13-year absence from mainstream politics, Newton Leroy Gingrich made a dramatic return to politics by announcing his candidacy for the Republican presidential nomination in May 2011. His campaign unfortunately began under a torrent of criticisms following his controversial statements on Medicare and a perceived attack of fellow Republican Paul Ryan’s budget proposal. Nevertheless, Gingrich, a fighter and above all, a consummate politician, recovered and briefly surged to the top of the leader board towards the end of 2011. He officially withdrew from the race on May 2, 2012.



 
Former 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate
Former Governor of Utah and Ambassador to China

Jon Huntsman

Presidential Candidate Jon Huntsman
The 51-year old former Governor of Utah officially announced his much-anticipated entry into the presidential race, with the Statue of Liberty spectacularly serving as the backdrop. The highly rated and charismatic Republican technocrat was considered by many in Washington as one of most dangerous dark horses in the race, and one of the few capable of unseating President Obama.

His conservative message, perhaps overshadowed by his stint as Chinese ambassador for the Obama administration, never picked up steam. Following his disappointing results in New Hampshire and garnering only 1% support in South Carolina polls, Jon Huntsman announced his withdrawal on January 16th 2012. Huntsman threw his support behind Republican front-runner Mitt Romney.



 
Former 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate
Political Consultant & Gay Rights Activist

Fred Karger

Presidential Candidate Fred Karger
Fred Karger, one of the shrewdest Republican political operators of the past three decades, announced the formation of his 2012 Exploratory Committee on July 18, 2010, making him the first ever openly gay aspirant for the presidency. Despite being a lifelong Republican, the 61-year old Karger will be running on an independent ticket. His campaign was hit with a sucker punch when he was locked out of the Carolina Republican Party Presidential Debate of May 5, with the organizers citing his low poll numbers as the reason.

More on Karger's profile and positions on the issues  



 
Former 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate
U.S. Representative from Michigan

Thad McCotter

Presidential Candidate Thad McCotter
The lead guitarist for the New Flying Squirrels, who incidentally is also a five-term Representative for Michigan’s 11th District, filed his papers for the 2012 US Presidential Elections with the FEC on July 1, 2011, and formally announce the news during the WAAM Freedom Festival at Whitmore Lake the following day.

His long-shot campaign for the GOP nomination never gained traction. On September 22, he ended his campaign and threw his endorsement to fellow candidate Mitt Romney.



 
Former 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate
Career Flight Attendant

Tom Miller

Presidential Candidate Tom Miller
Tom Miller feels that the country is being destroyed from within chiefly through a series of failed fiscal and immigration policies; a state of affair brought forth by an entrenched political elite. Miller sees himself as a representative of the people, as envisioned by the Founding Fathers themselves, and offers a solution-based approach to tackle the multitude of issues facing the nation. Ultimately, he hopes to re-empower the American people around the concept of small government.

More on Miller's profile and positions on the issues  



 
Former 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate
Former Governor of Minnesota

Tim Pawlenty

Presidential Candidate Tim Pawlenty
Timothy James Pawlenty, the former two-term governor of Minnesota, is renowned for his ability to connect with the masses. His middle-class background lends him an earthy appeal to the average Joes, not unlike the warm Texan drawl of former president George W. Bush. His time in Minnesota is typified by his focus on grassroots issues, tackling subjects that affect them and their future. However, he announced his withdrawal from the presidential nomination race following a disappointing third-place finish in the Iowa Straw Poll, a state he has unofficially campaigned in for the past year.



 
Former 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate
Current Governor of Texas

Rick Perry

Presidential Candidate Rick Perry
After almost two years of uncertainty, Texas Governor Rick Perry’s wall of resistance has crumbled. Perry took advantage of the publicity generated by the Ames Straw Poll and announced his entry into the Republican nomination race in Charleston, South Carolina, with a confident declaration, "I full well believe I'm going to win". His candidacy is expected to reinvigorate the hitherto subdued Republican evangelical grassroots, and inject some excitement into the contest.



 
Former 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate
Former US Senator from Pennsylvania

Rick Santorum

Presidential Candidate Rick Santorum
The former two-term senator from Pennsylvania officially announced his entry into the GOP Presidential nomination race on June 6, 2011, symbolically launching his campaign at the Somerset County Courthouse, located not far from the coal mine where his grandfather first worked after arriving from Italy. Despite his dismal poll numbers, Santorum is confident of gaining grounds on early favorite Mitt Romney and warns, "We are going to be in this race, and we're in it to win."

More on Santorum's profile and positions on the issues  



 


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