Whigs Win For First Time in 150 Years

Henry Clay
Henry Clay, 1843. (Library of Congress)

Provided by Ballot Access News
Posted to The Daily Beast

Whigs Win For First Time In 150 Years

by Ben Jacobs
Nov 7, 2013 1:20 PM EST

For the first time in a century and a half, the Whig Party has successfully elected a candidate. Is the party of Henry Clay making a comeback?

On Tuesday, the party of Lincoln notched a big win. No, not the GOP, but the Whig Party, the original party of Lincoln. In Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Robert Bucholz defeated Democrat Lorretta Probasco to become the judge of election for the Fifth Division of the 56th Ward by a margin of 36-24 to become the first elected Whig in Philadelphia, if not the entire country, in roughly 150 years.

Bucholz is a member of the centrist Modern Whig Party, which was founded in 2007 and claims to be successor to the Whig Party, which was one of the two major parties in the United States during the early 19th century. (The Modern Whigs are not to be confused with the True Whig Party, which ran Liberia as a one-party state for over a century until a military coup in 1980.) The original Whig Party elected two presidents, William Henry Harrison and Zachary Taylor and was led by such notable statesmen as Henry Clay and Daniel Webster. However, it broke up in the 1850s as the issue of slavery came to the fore in American politics.

The original Whigs focused on issues that now seem somewhat dated. The party was strongly in favor of restoring the Bank of the United States, higher tariffs and federal involvement in building internal improvements, like canals. In an email to the Philadelphia Inquirer, Bucholz described the party as focused on “pragmatism.” He wrote that the Modern Whigs “believe that politics is all about compromise instead of getting everything you want and giving up nothing. The recent gridlock in Washington could not have happened under Modern Whigs.”

The rest of this article can be read here .

There also is a report from Huffington Post .

12 thoughts on “Whigs Win For First Time in 150 Years

  1. Mark Axinn

    Back then, the Whigs, and Clay in particular, were the party of centralized government, crony capitalists, mercantilists like Lincoln and high tariff protectionists.

    The Party of smaller government was called Democrats.

    My, how things have changed!

  2. Jed Ziggler (@JedZiggler)

    Mr. Bucholz beat a Democrat in a 2-way race. Partisan labels were on the ballot (as they are for pretty much everything here in Pennsylvania). This is pretty big for the Modern Whigs, even if it is for a small office. Reminds me of when Jim Hedges of the Prohibition Party was elected tax assessor, also in Pennsylvania.

  3. paulie

    Back then, the Whigs, and Clay in particular, were the party of centralized government, crony capitalists, mercantilists like Lincoln and high tariff protectionists.

    So a lot like today’s Republicans, in other words….

  4. William Saturn

    “Reminds me of when Jim Hedges of the Prohibition Party was elected tax assessor, also in Pennsylvania”

    Along with being the Prohibition Party nominee, Hedges was also the Republican and Democratic Party nominee in his race for County Tax Accessor. He had no opposition. Bucholz’s election is more impressive because he actually defeated another candidate.

Leave a Reply