United States presidential election, 1896

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Democratic attack ad in 1896 against GOP National Chairman Mark Hanna; cartoon by Davenport depicts Hanna as a slave driver; from Hearst's New York Journal

In 1896 the Democrats nominated William Jennings Bryan as their presidential candidate. While the Republicans nominated William McKinley as theirs. Bryan traveled all over the country and appealed to people as the "common man." McKinley did the opposite and remained at home on his front porch and appealed more to the average businessman. In the midst of the election McKinley requested people who supported him display the American flag. After that the American flag became identified with McKinleyism.[1] The results of the election were:

candidates popular vote electoral vote
William McKinley 7,102,246 271
William Jennings Bryan 6,492,559 176
John M. Palmer 133,148 0
Joshua Levering 132,007 0
Charles H. Matchett 36,274 0
Charles E. Bentley 13,969 0


  1. Golden tongued orator, William Jennings Bryan, by Robert A. Allen, 1992.