A new episode of the Madison presidency series is now available!
June 21, 2020

S005 – Unprecedented Part II

S005 – Unprecedented Part II

Year(s) Discussed: 1936-1944

With increasing uncertainty in the global situation and continued instability in the domestic economy, candidates lined up on both the Democratic and Republican sides to succeed Franklin Roosevelt at the end of his second term. However, 1940 found the President considering what was previously unthinkable: running for a third term of office. In this special episode, we explore this unprecedented election conducted under the looming threat of being drawn into a war waging abroad.


Special thanks to Bry and Fry of Pontifacts as well as Carrie and Alex for providing the opening quotes for this episode!

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  • Dallek, Robert. Franklin D. Roosevelt and American Foreign Policy, 1932-1945. New York: Oxford University Press, 1979.
  • “Garner, John Nance (1868-1967).” Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. https://bioguideretro.congress.gov/Home/MemberDetails?memIndex=G000074. [Last Accessed: 12 May 2020]
  • Goodwin, Doris Kearns. No Ordinary Time: Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt: The Home Front in World War II. New York: Simon & Schuster, 1994.
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  • “McNary, Charles Linza (1874-1944).” Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. https://bioguideretro.congress.gov/Home/MemberDetails?memIndex=M000583. [Last Accessed: 10 May 2020]
  • Peters, Charles. Five Days in Philadelphia: The Amazing “We Want Willkie!” Convention of 1940 and How It Freed FDR to Save the Western World. New York: PublicAffairs, 2005.
  • Roosevelt, Franklin Delano. “Address at University of Virginia, 10 Jun 1940.” Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project. https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/209705. [Last Accessed: 14 May 2020]
  • Roosevelt, Franklin Delano. “Radio Address to the Democratic National Convention Accepting the Nomination, 19 Jul 1940.” Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project. https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/209818. [Last Accessed: 15 May 2020]
  • Roosevelt, Franklin Delano. “Campaign Address at Boston, Massachusetts, 30 October 1940.” Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project. https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/209314. [Last Accessed: 16 May 2020]
  • Smith, Jean Edward. FDR. New York: Random House, 2007.
  • Stone, Irving. They Also Ran: The Story of the Men Who Were Defeated for the Presidency. Garden City, NY: Doubleday, Doran and Co Inc, 1943.
  • “Taft, Robert Alphonso (1889-1953).” Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. https://bioguideretro.congress.gov/Home/MemberDetails?memIndex=T000009. [Last Accessed: 9 May 2020]
  • Tarr, David R, et al. Guide to U.S. Elections, Sixth Edition, Volume I. Washington, DC: CQ Press, 2010.
  • “Vandenberg, Arthur Hendrick (1884-1951).” Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. https://bioguideretro.congress.gov/Home/MemberDetails?memIndex=V000025. [Last Accessed: 10 May 2020]
  • Vandenberg, Arthur H, Jr., ed. The Private Papers of Senator Vandenberg. Joe Alex Morris, collab. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co, 1952.
  • Whyte, Kenneth. Hoover: An Extraordinary Life in Extraordinary Times. New York: Alfred A Knopf, 2017.
  • Willkie, Wendell L. “Address Accepting the Presidential Nomination in Elwood, Indiana, 17 August 1940.” Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project. https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/275905. [Last Accessed: 17 May 2020]
  • Witcover, Jules. Party of the People: A History of the Democrats. New York: Random House, 2003.
  • Wunderlin, Clarence E, Jr, ed. The Papers of Robert A Taft: Volume 2, 1939-1944. Kent, OH and London: Kent State University Press, 2001.

Featured Image: “President Franklin D. Roosevelt seated at desk with microphones,” courtesy of Wikipedia


Featured Image: “Wendell Willkie, President of the Commonwealth & Southern Corporation appearing before House Military Affairs Subcommittee” by Harris & Ewing [17 May 1939], courtesy of Wikipedia