TWU Elections and Women Participation in Politics Discussion

We had a controversial election in 2020.  We have a history of having sometimes controversial, different, exciting, at-times bizarre elections.  We will see that here. So you are going to answer this question:  imagine that you were an American voter, living in the year 1840.  (if you are a female or African-American, yes–I realize back then you were not allowed to vote.  But this is a hypothetical, so just imagine that the laws were different then than they were, and that all of you in this class could vote, whether you are male, female, African-American, etc.)  There was a presidential election that year, with the two major candidates being:  Martin Van Buren of the Democratic Party, and William Henry Harrison of the Whig party.  So: in that election, which candidate would you have voted for, and why?  In your answer, first, give at least THREE REASONS for your vote; and second, be certain and include as at least part of your answer, for the candidate for whom you choose to vote, the POLICY POSITIONS he held and explain why those positions lead you to vote for him.  You must also use at least _two_ quotations from the readings.  These quotes can come from your Open Stax US History textbook that help explain your position. You can also, if you wish, get information from some additional sources, and you can quote from them, too.  Here is a link to a real interesting article concerning how women felt about the campaign:

You might also find this video interesting:

If you quote from the Washington Post article, after you quote, just put this in parentheses after it: (Shafer).  If you quote from the video, just put this in parentheses after it (Video).

Remember:  you are a voter in 1840.  That’s the year in which this question is set.  So you can’t use anything that happened _after_ 1840 as part of your answer.

In your two response posts, respond to a different classmate in each response and do so in depth, adding to the conversation.  Include at least _one_ quote from your Open Stax text in each response. Again, as before–there are many ways to do respond in depth and in detail to a classmate. The key is to be specific and detailed.  If you agree with your classmate, be very specific as to why and seek to _add_ information to what your classmate has said. (example: if your classmate discussed William Henry Harrison, add some information about him that your classmate did not mention).  You can (very respectfully) disagree with something a classmate said, and explain in detail just why you disagree.  You can expand on something your classmate said, again being sure to _add_ information to what was already said.  Keys: don’t just re-state what your classmate said; don’t just agree with what was said, without adding anything; and make sure you have two _unique_, _different_ responses (don’t just repeat in your 2nd response what you already said in response 1).

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During the election of 1840 we had two different political party, the first one called Whigs with William Henry Harrison as candidate and the second the democratic party with Martin Van Buren as their candidate.

As a black woman, if I was given the opportunity to vote at that time, I would have voted for the candidate of the Whigs party William henry Harrison. His agenda is the reason for my choice.

1-William was a brave and courageous man, note that he is a war hero who has proven himself worthy of this title in the battle of Tippecanoe.

2- William was a member of the Whigs, known as defenders of power abuse. In their policy, they gave more right to the women even though they could not vote at that time and a chance to voice their opinion on politics; The democratic think that women don’t have a say in elections because men already represent them. “The Whig Party decided to encourage female participation in the presidential campaign for” Tippecanoe and Tyler Too.” (Shafer)

3- They also believed the government should be active in social and economic affairs. Government should support local business encourage those trying to succeed. “Whigs advocated accelerated economic growth, often endorsing federal government projects to achieve that goal.” (chapter10; section 10.5).


The presidential candidates of the 1840 election and their vice presidential nominees were pretty unremarkable. However, the election of 1840 would change U.S. elections forever. Candidates had to reach out to the American people and convince them for their vote- instead of winning over a few electors. The formalities of past elections would cease. In 1840 Democrat Martin Van Buren squared up against Whig William Henry “Old Tippecanoe” Harrison. The presidential campaigns of 1840 had all of the backstabbing, name-calling, parades, booze, and superficialities that we all know and love.The two main political parties in 1840 were the Whigs and the Democrats. Democrats favored a less involved federal government and thought most decisions should be left to individual states. Democrats supported slavery or, at the very least, thought the government shouldn’t get involved with abolishing it. The Whigs were a mishmash of many types of people that only agreed on a few things: Andrew Jackson was an evil tyrant, a more involved federal government would boost the economy, and they wanted a National Bank. The Whigs didn’t take sides on many political issues of the time- like slavery. The southern Whigs tended to favor slavery, while the northern Whigs tended to be against it. So to avoid conflict, they didn’t address the issue whatsoever.Van Buren supporters poked fun at Harrison’s age, saying, “Give him a barrel of hard [alcoholic] cider and settle a pension of two thousand a year on him, and take my word for it, he will sit the remainder of his days in his log cabin (Corbett 10.5).” Harrison supporters used this statement to paint him as a “common man” who grew up in a cabin when in fact, he came from a wealthy family. Harrison supporters portrayed Van Buren as a rich snob out of touch with the average American. (Van Buren did not come from a wealthy family, and he was a self-made man)If I could’ve voted in the 1840 election, I most likely would vote for James Birney. But since the prompt is asking me to choose between Harrison and Van Buren, I would choose Harrison. Even though women couldn’t vote at the time, they were active in campaigning for the Whigs. Not only did they sew banners for parades and cook for gatherings, but they also spoke at political rallies- “At another meeting of 5,000 men, “Mother Clarkson” delivered a pro-Harrison speech while holding her infant son on one hip (Shafer).” The economy was currently devastated because of Jackson’s Bank War, and also, “cotton prices plummeted, contributing to a financial crisis (Corbett 10.3).” So although the Whigs didn’t have much of a political platform, at least they wanted to fix the broken banking system and create a stronger federal government that would take control of the economy.

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