Category Archives: Politics

Nixon v. Kennedy, 1960: The Closest Presidential Election in the 20th Century

In this Dispatch, Dr. Deaton takes a look at another hotly contested election in America’s history that included charges of voter fraud and threats of recounts and legal challenges: the presidential election of 1960 between Richard Nixon and John F. Kennedy.

Dispatches From Off the Deaton Path: The Presidential Election of 1876: A Second Civil War?

We all remember the contested presidential election of 2000, but the greatest Constitutional crisis we ever faced was the disputed election of 1876, decided four months after the election and just two days before the inauguration.

Take Two Aspirin & Call Me in the Morning: Presidential Illness in American History

Questions surrounding the president’s health go back to the earliest days of the republic. In this Dispatch, Dr. Deaton looks at the history of presidential health, beginning with George Washington.

Podcast S4E1: The Cigarette: A Political History

In our first podcast of the season, Stan talks to Sarah Milov of the University of Virginia about her recent book The Cigarette: A Political History, and about the fascinating history of smoking and anti-smoking in America–including a snippet of the creepy Johnny Smoke PSA from the late ’60s. We also check out “This Week in History,” from Jimmy Carter to Janis Joplin to Tomochichi, “Obituaries You Were Too Busy to Notice,” and this week’s edition of “People You Thought Were Dead but are Still Living.” 

The Great Chief Justice: The Supreme Court Pick That Really Changed History

In the midst of the current Supreme Court nominee controversy, Dr. Deaton looks at another nomination to the Supreme Court that was made and confirmed after the incumbent president had lost the election–and it turned out to be one of the most momentous Supreme Court appointments in American history.