General Hancock for President
April 28, 1868
The Democratic party must decide on a Presidential candidate. As of now General Hancock looks like the most fit candidate. Hancock is a brave and generous soldier and would do well as President in the eyes of Democrats.
General Hancock for President. Washington, April 25, 1868. Notwithstanding the absorbing interest taken by politicians of all grades and parties in the impending impeachment trial, there has within the past few days been no little talk and speculation about the nomination of the Democratic party for president. The Radicals have virtually nominated their candidate, and the only discussion among them relates to their nomination of Vice President, with regard to which there is an amount of anxiety displayed which is certainly not called for on ordinary occasions. Wade holds the best hand, however, and it is very widely conceded among them that he will receive the second place on the ticket. Now, the Democrats have a great political battle to fight, and the greatest circumspection is to be paid as to their leader. He must be a man upon whom the shafts of Radical calumny will fell unheeded by the people everywhere. There must be some concessions among the more enthusiastic Democracy of the country if they hope to win. The Radicals-particularly if the President is convicted and Wade goes into the White House-will hold an immense power of treasure and patronage with which to work during the campaign, and taking these facts into serious consideration, it is acknowledged by prominent and influential conservative politicians that the man for the contest is General Hancock. His record is not to be doubted by any who has knowledge of the history of the country in the past few eventful years. And there is nothing truer than that the probabilities of his nomination are now daily becoming more and more evident, to the serious fear of the Radical leaders, who would rather see any other man who is identified with the principles of free government and Republican liberty than Hancock. The Democrats of the East are enthusiastic for him, and the very great favor which the serious mention of that nomination has received in the South leaves but little doubt that the southern delegations to the nominating convention at New York would join ardently in the movement. The Western politicians generally have for their first choice an able, high-toned gentleman, and the feeling is universal that the nomination of Mr. Pendleton would but reflect credit upon the Convention; but there is a very widespread idea among influential men of the Conservative ranks that his nomination would be a less wise policy than that of some other gentle man equally as well known for the purity of his republican principles, and equally as highly and universally respected for his moral worth as an able and dignified gentleman. To these essential requisites General Hancock combines the character of a brave and generous soldier. His military record is beyond being disputed by the most violent of his political opponents. His career in time of peace has been such as to fill them with disappointment, and his nomination by the national Democracy as their candidate for President would fill them with apprehension and dread for their own success. The issue in the next campaign cannot rest almost mainly upon the financial situation, as it was thought some months back it might, but will be one of direct political character, differing in no respect from that which has been before the people of the several States in which elections have been, held recently. The Radical party knows this, and for this only do they rely upon the prestige of General Grant as a soldier to carry them through. They must be met with a soldier, and; there is but one name prominently mentioned. The delegates from the southern States, representing the people of those States, will have a wide influence in the Democratic Convention, and their endorsement of General Hancock, which is not unexpected, will very materially influence the nomination. The able set of delegates which Virginia will be sure to send to New York, will certainly discern the real situation as plainly as it appears to the most ardent advocates of General Hancock's nomination. Upon their action, not only as leading representatives of Virginia, but also as fair exponents of the intelligence and high standing of the good people of almost every southern community, much may be based. It is not too soon for them, as well as for prominent Conservative men all over the country, to consider the important reason calling for the nomination of General Hancock., They are not few; but among them may be mentioned: First. The demoralizing effect that nomination will have among the Radical masses, as already evidenced by the uneasiness of their prominent political leaders at the probability of such action. Second. His unflinching patriotism and devotion to the pure principles of constitutional liberty, which has called forth the commendation of every leading man and journal in the entire Conservative ranks. Third. The intelligence as a statesman and the consistency as a soldier that has marked his career in every position in which he has been prominently before the country, either in the exercise of powers conferred upon him in his government of a State or military district, or in time of war in defence of the principles which he had espoused. Fourth. The entire confidence which is reposed in him by the people of all sections as a fit representative of a Republican government. There are many other reasons which favor what has been herein advocated. They are plainly set forth as entitled to the consideration of enlightened and patriotic men. Timon.
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“General Hancock for President,” Reconstructing Virginia, accessed May 18, 2022, https://reconstructingvirginia.richmond.edu/items/show/1007.