JFK+50: Volume 6, No. 1849FIRST IN WAR, FIRST IN PEACE... AND FIRST TO BE RE-ELECTED TO A SECOND TERM AS PRESIDENT
Philadelphia, PA (JFK+50) Two hundred and twenty-three years ago today, February 4, 1793, George Washington of Virginia was unanimously elected to a second term as President of the United States by the Electoral College.* John Adams of Massachusetts was elected to a second term as Vice-President.
The President won all fifteen states, including Vermont and Kentucky which had achieved statehood since the last presidential election. Washington received 28,579 popular votes and one vote from each member of the Electoral College totaling 132 electoral votes**. John Adams carried the North but lost every state in the South. He received 77 electoral votes.
D. Jason Berggren adds that the Election of 1792 "reflected the democratic idea that presidential elections every four years would be a regular and frequent feature of American politics."
Despite his impressive victory, President Washington, concerned about policy divisions within his administration, considered retirement after his first term. The President, however, was considered "indispensable" to the success of the Republic by the men within his administration who opposed each other on policy issues.
President George Washington was sworn-in for his second term in the Senate Chamber Hall here in Philadelphia one month later, March 4, 1793.***
*The Election of 1792 was the first presidential election in which the states appointed Electors.
**Popular voting was done between November 2nd & December 5, 1792.
***Although there was no Constitutional limit to the number of terms a POTUS could serve at the time, GW declined to run for a 3rd term in 1796. This set a precedent which was not broken until FDR's re-election in 1940.
"Presidential Election of 1792," George Washington's Mount Vernon, by D. Jason Berggren, www.mountvernon.org/