SOCIETY OF AMERICAN TRAVEL WRITERS NAME TOP 10 SITES FOR LOSING PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGNS
Now that the Presidential election has passed, voters go through the regular rituals of celebrating the winner or mourning the loser. History often mythologizes sites associated with the winner, but what about the candidate who comes in second? Those locations are often noteworthy themselves as travel destinations, and the Society of American Travel Writers, Travel’s Most Trusted Voices, presents the top 10 travel sites in Presidential election history – for those who came in second!
1) South Dakota: Home state to George McGovern, whose candidacy faced the biggest landslide loss in US election history against Richard Nixon’s 1972 campaign. McGovern was born in the town of Avon, South Dakota (www.avonsd.com/people.asp), and his library is located on the campus of Dakota Western University (www.dwu.edu/library).
2) Owosso, Michigan: Birthplace of Thomas Dewey, who the media had prematurely – and incorrectly – declared the winner in the 1948 election against Harry Truman. Many consider the photo of Truman triumphantly holding a newspaper with the wrong result as among the most iconic in American journalism. Visit ci.owosso.mi.us.
3) Palm Beach County, Florida: The home of the infamous “hanging chad” ballots that kept the 2000 election in suspense well after polls closed. That race ultimately went to the US Supreme Court for a final decision and George W. Bush’s eventual victory. Visit www.palmbeachfl.com.
4) Carthage, Tennessee: With Bush’s 2000 election victory, we quickly turn to the Tennessee hometown of Al Gore, who won the popular vote but lost that same election after the final Electoral College tally. Visit www.carthagetennessee.com.
5) Texarkana, Texas: Home to Ross Perot, who ran the most high-profile third party presidential campaign in recent history. He was ahead in polls against George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton, only to withdraw suddenly from the race and have his political fortunes decline. Visit www.txkusa.org.
6) North and South Carolina:To some degree of controversy, both states claim to be the birthplace of Andrew Jackson, who won the popular vote but lost the 1824 election to John Quincy Adams. Visit www.whitehouse.gov/about/presidents/andrewjackson.
7) New Lebanon, New York: Birthplace of Samuel Tilden, who won the popular vote but lost the 1876 election to Rutherford B. Hayes. Visit www.townofnewlebanon.com.
8) Caldwell, New Jersey: Birthplace of Grover Cleveland, who won the popular vote but lost the 1888 election to Benjamin Harrison. Visit www.caldwell-nj.com.
9) Yorba Linda, California: Birthplace of Richard Nixon, who before winning the 1968 and 1972 elections, lost his first time out against John F. Kennedy in 1960. Visit www.nixonlibrary.gov.
10) Norton, Kansas: Home of the Gallery of Also-Rans, honoring all losing candidates in presidential campaign history. The museum is housed in the First State Bank in Norton and features portraits of every candidate who came in second. Visit www.firstatebank.com/also_ran_gallery.htm.