Looking at Great Political Blunders

Political history is full of political blunders that have sunk Presidents while others managed reelection but their reputation, and that of their party and the United States suffered in the process. While plenty are small, it’s the great political blunders that stick out, like the following.

The Watergate Scandal
Watergate was the blunder of all blunders. Nixon, by all accounts, was the heavy favorite to win the upcoming election but his blatant disregard for the law and work trying to sabotage the other party’s candidates led to his impeachment and resignation. Since then even worse stories have come out as the active sabotaging of campaigns and planning the assassination of a U.S. journalist, but Watergate was the blunder of all blunders.

“Mission Accomplished”
Former President George W. Bush probably sorely wishes that banner wasn’t up, it turned out 14 years and counting too early. Aside from the flag, the whole handling of the Iraq war was a disaster. From leaks in intelligence accusing the administration of lying about their reports to encourage war, to Cheney’s famous line in 2005 about the insurgency being in its death throes. Even the wild predictions of democracy and peace were taking hold in the middle easy for future security, which fell flat, added up.

Prohibition
Prohibition was strong-armed into becoming a Constitutional amendment, led to the mafia, organized crime, and some of the most violent times in U.S. history, resulted in the government poisoning moonshine and American citizens, and finally being appealed. This is one of the greatest examples of political failure in U.S. history – though fortunately for FDR pulling the country out of The Depression kept his legacy depressed.

Campaigns are not immune from great political blunders, as well. Ask Howard Dean about his infamous scream that sunk his campaign, Ed Muskie’s crying, or about anything Ben Carson has said for months.

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