Presidential Losers of 1788-1789: Where did they go?

Annie69 By Annie69, 18th Sep 2015 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Writing>History

America's first presidential election took place in 1788-89. Unlike today, there were no candidates for Vice President. The first place loser became Vice President, but what happened to the other candidates?

John Adams

John Adams was the number one loser in the 1788-89 presidential election, coming in second to George Washington. As the man with the second most votes (34), Adams became the first Vice President of the United States and served two terms under Washington.

In the third election, Adams got the most votes and became President.

John Jay

John Jay was the second runner up with nine votes. While he never attained the office of President, he did have the distinction of becoming the nation's first Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. After six years on the bench, Jay resigned to become Governor of New York, serving two terms.

Robert H. Harrison and John Rutledge

Robert Harrison and John Rutledge tied for fourth place, each receiving six votes.

President Washington nominated both men to the Supreme Court. Although Harrison was confirmed by the Senate, he declined to serve due to health issues.

Rutledge, on the other hand, took his seat on the High Court. After only serving a year and a half, Rutledge resigned. The Senate wasn't in session when Chief Justice John Jay resigned, so Washington made a recess appointment, returning Rutledge to the
Bench as Chief Justice. By the time the Senate reconvened six months later, they refused to confirm the appointment and Rutledge had to step down.

John Hancock

John Hancock received four votes and continued his political career as governor of Massachusetts. He died in office on October 8, 1793, at the age of 56.

George Clinton

George Clinton received three votes and after serving as governor of New York, he was twice elected Vice President of the United States under Presidents Thomas Jefferson and James Madison respectively. Clinton died in office on April 20, 1812.

Samuel Huntington and John Milton

Huntington and Milton received two votes each. Both men continued serving their country in their home state: Huntington as Governor of Connecticut and Milton as Secretary of State for Georgia.

Edward Telfair, James Armstrong, and Benjamin Lincoln

Receiving one vote each, Edward Telfair, James Armstrong, and Benjamin Lincoln also continued serving the newly formed United States. Telfair and Armstrong were from Georgia and served as governor and in the state assembly, respectively. Benjamin Lincoln served his home state of Massachusetts as Lt. Governor.


Benjamin Lincoln, Edward Telfair, George Clinton, James Armstrong, John Adams, John Hancock, John Jay, John Milton, John Rutledge, Robert H Harrison, Samuel Huntington

Meet the author

author avatar Annie69
History column appears weekly in local newspaper. Also news, human interest, and pictures. My fiction and poems have appeared in literary anthologies and I've written 3 novels

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author avatar M G Singh
1st Oct 2015 (#)

Quite some research. Great Information.

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author avatar Annie69
1st Oct 2015 (#)

Thank you. I enjoy playing around with the research. I never know what similarities I'll find.

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