An Interesting Fact About Two-Term Presidents

Not much to say today that hasn’t been said elsewhere.

One thing that is interesting to note (or at least I find interesting) is when President Bush officially handed power over to Barack Obama this afternoon, it became only the third time in American history when back-to-back Presidents managed to serve two consecutive complete four-year terms. The first two times occurred when James Madison followed Thomas Jefferson and James Monroe in turn followed James Madison back between the years of 1801 and 1825

Since then, there has not been an instance where two consecutive Presidents managed to complete two complete four-year terms until Bill Clinton and George W. Bush just did. Everytime a President managed to serve two full terms, the following President either lost re-election, chose to not for re-election, or died in office.

The only Presidents out of the 43 men to hold the office to serve two consecutive full four-year terms were George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, James Monroe, Andrew Jackson, Ulysses Grant, Woodrow Wilson, Franklin Roosevelt, Dwight Eisenhower, Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton, and George W Bush. Grover Cleveland, of course, served two non-consecutive terms.

Posted by Dave at 8:05 pm
Filed under: 2008 President | Comments (37)

37 Responses to “An Interesting Fact About Two-Term Presidents”

  1. lisab says:

    obama will serve for life

  2. Davidson says:

    LisaB are you trying to say he is going to become a dictator or that he will Die in office?

  3. lisab says:

    that they will want him to run for more than two terms, and will keep electing him if he runs

  4. Davidson says:

    ok thanks 🙂

  5. knova_red says:

    3-They would have to change the constitution for that and I doubt that it will get the requisite number of states to approve it.

  6. Phil says:

    Yep three fouths of the states won’t go for that.

    However, don’t rule out Michelle running for senator or governor of Ill about 6 yrs into the Obama presidency and then using that as a springboard to the White House. That would give them 16 consecutive years. Think that’s farfetched? Think again.

    Seen the Obama MSM in action the last couple of days (and the entire campaign for that matter)? Taken a good look into the eyes of the starry eyed Obomobots?

  7. knova_red says:

    phil-I thought I told you to take a break in some warm place. You are really letting this get to you. I have survived JFK, LBJ, Nixon, CARTER, and so on. We will do fine Americans always do.

  8. lisab says:

    “Yep three fouths of the states won’t go for that.”

    well, i hear that whites that don’t embrace right, won’t be allowed to vote …

    so it will pass

  9. Chekote says:

    Michelle’s gown is horrible. It looks like something a pageant contestant would wear. What do you guys think? Ladies?

  10. Brandon says:

    #9. Was it taxpayer funded?

  11. Chekote says:


    Doesn’t matter. It looks terrible. Throughout the campaign, the Obama’s were compared to the Kennedy’s. Well, Michelle is no Jackie. Michelle looks like she belongs on the WNBA. She has no grace. She plods along when she walks. Jackie was graceful even though she sounded like a total airhead when she opened her mouth.

  12. rdelbov says:

    That gown?

    What a mess.

  13. Phil says:

    #7 Those guys were pikers compared to this guy – and they didn’t have anything like the MSM propaganda arm this man enjoys.

    Survive? Sure, but I’ll not like the new America under dear leader.

  14. Bitterlaw says:

    I hope Obama isn’t like JFK. Kennedy was a womanizing scum.

  15. AC1 says:

    I pray Obama receives the same support as Bush has over the past 8 years.

  16. AC1 says:

    …and yes I am bitter because my side lost. What are you going to do about it? I am allowed to be. I am allowed to pursue political revenge against the other side.

  17. Diogenes says:

    So depressed today. The looney, unemployed left flooded washington. It will be hard to convince them why they are still unemployed 4 years from now with the media hyping Obama so much.

  18. Diogenes says:

    Republicans have tended to win 2 terms in general throughout the last century even. Roosevelt was different as was truman. Nixon would have won the first time had JFK not stolen Illinois and Texas. Carter was so bad he got Reagan elected even after the whole watergate mess just a few years before. Americans have short memories.

    Polling shows americans will give obama about 2 years grace period. I’m hoping Republicans can take back 20 seats in the house and maybe gain 1 or 2 seats in the senate to get a solid filibuster. The last part is doubtful but anything can happen.

    A hispanic leader coming to the front of the party would help a lot in that cause.

  19. Charles says:

    Now we just wait and see how long it is before he is ‘tested’ to quote Biden.

    Hopefully it’ll be someplace that’s rather useless like LA that ends up glowing in the dark because of Skippy and not a place that actually has a great deal of historical landmarks that would be destroyed.

  20. Diogenes says:

    I would never wish harm on any American or any innocent person, but if the terrorists are going to hit a target, it will probably reside in our liberal population centers.

    Poetic Justice I suppose.

  21. Tim says:

    I agree with knova. Some of you folks just need to get a grip.

    Hell, I live in Ga. I’ve lost more races than I’ll ever win.

    The cure for one election is the next one.

  22. bonncaruso says:

    Correct, but when you consider that Harry Truman served all but the first 80 days of FDR’s fourth term, in essence, the Truman / Eisenhower 16 years can be included in this list.

    True, Truman was not “technically” a two term President, but for all intents and purposes, he was.

    But it is a good observation on your part, one I made on my blog in November 2007.

    This is, however, not to preclude Obama from securing a second term nor does it in any way guarantee him a second term. First, wait and see how he and his administration governs.

  23. Indep says:

    My new hope is that we’re not all required to dress like Michelle O.

    Also, President Obama is not only our first AA President, but more importantly, he’s our first COOL President.

    Maybe that explains the crazed mainstream media who would sooner drive their businesses into bankruptcy than report honestly.

  24. David says:

    Even after Obama said he was a supporter of the 2nd Amendment, look for him to reverse the recent decision to allow concealed parks in the National Parks. The Park Service, Brady Campaign, etc. are putting great pressure on him to reverse it. For some reason the Park Service thinks a crimminal will obey the old law and not bring a gun into the Parks….Are these guys for real?

  25. jones says:

    Give Michelle a break.

    Klingons have different fashion sense. Did you know that gown was also a cloaking device and had room to hide 3 phasers and a halbred?

  26. HiChris says:

    No No, He’s our first Kool president 🙂

    If he was sneaking smokes during the campaign – now with the stress of the Presidency, don’t you think he’ll be doing the same every now and again?

  27. Aaron_in_TX says:

    “Also, President Obama is not only our first AA President, but more importantly, he’s our first COOL President.”

    Bill Clinton was considered pretty cool.

  28. Aaron_in_TX says:

    From the comments on here, I begin to understand how some on the left felt about Bush.

    I never had Bush derangement syndrome, I always thought he was at heart a decent guy, but intellectually lazy and stubborn about certain things, among a lot of other problems. But some people I knew hated him. One person told me one time that she turned off the TV whenever Bush talked because his voice made her sick. That made no sense to me at the time. He was the president, after all.

    My mom used to say that since she lived through Nixon, she could live through any president. So I agree with Tim, people need to get a grip.

  29. bio mom says:

    I agree that the beauty of our country is that there is always the next election. That’s why we don’t have any more revolutions. But beware the attempt to overthrow the 22nd ammendment. That ammendment was the smartest thing we ever did. Wish we had a similar one for all in congress.

  30. The Joker says:

    #28 – Aaron in TX – Good point. I think most people are hoping for success in terms of improving the economy and not being attacked by terrorists. However, my underlying concern is the way the media, and a lot of citizens too, have a double standard when it comes to Bush, and that the media have the power to distort things. In other words, the media will give a lot of credit to Obama for stuff that he doesn’t deserve credit for. The media will overlook a lot of mistakes that he’s gonna make. And so on. In doing so, the media will paint him as a savior and Bush as the devil (they;ve already taken care of that part). I mean, christ, the guy wasn’t even sworn in and the media are complaring him to Lincoln and starting to carve his face onto Mount Rushmore.

    I certainly don’t root for him to fail, because that would hurt all Americans. But, look back over the last 8 years and see how many people (dems and liberals) who DID root for Bush to fail, and did everything to make him fail (at least in the eyes of the public and according to polls – which I don’t recognize as being accurate or truthful). Even Obama spent the last 4 years lambasting Bush, and he was still doing it in his innauguration speech.

    And now those same people demand that republicans and those who didn’t vote for Obama give him all consideration and have an open mind. It’s rank hypocrisy.

  31. The Joker says:

    If you want an example of media distortion and hype look no further than the oft cited “Worst economic disaster since the Depression” label that is constantly thrown around. This current situation is not even as bad as the Carter economy. The media is simply overhyping the problem to make the problem seem worse than it is – because they knew that doing so would make voters turn against republicans and help get Obama elected.

    And, don’t even get me started about the silence concerning the ethical and corruption issues of some of Obama’s appointees. If those same persons had been nominated by Bush, the media would be SCREAMING their heads off.

    So much for change. Obama is just proving to be another slick politician who said a bunch of fluff to get elected. Nothing is gonna change in DC.

  32. Indep says:

    I sure hope not. I’m warming to him. My statements are derogatory toward the press, not the Pres.

  33. Aaron_in_TX says:

    “If those same persons had been nominated by Bush, the media would be SCREAMING their heads off.”

    We don’t know that for sure. I generally don’t like the media bias issue. It does no good to attack the messenger. I agree that they’ve had too much of a triumphant tone with Obama, but they need to create hype to get people to watch.

    What is “the media” anyway? Olberman? Hannity? Limbaugh? Katie Couric? Charles Gibson? All these personalities fill niches. Newspapers? There’s liberal and conservative ones, take your pick, but they’re all dying.

    I think that’s the problem – people want an objective media when there’s not very many objective people.

    Try watching Jim Lehrer. Probably the most boring but most objective TV journalism you’re going to get.

  34. Aaron_in_TX says:

    “So much for change.”

    I had figured long ago Obama’s “change” meant change from Bush and not much else. I originally hoped it meant change from Clinton too, but the political advantages they bring are obviously too good to refuse.

  35. The Joker says:

    Aaron in TX – Fox News is the most unbiased news show. Even the opinion shows like Hannity have people from both sides of the philosophical aisle on the show to give points and counterpoints. Contrast that with MSNBC with the vapid, hatemongering Rachel Maddow and foaming-at-the-mouth Keith Olberman. Have you EVER seen them offer contrasting viewpoints? They even take video clips, edit them and play them back to alter the meaning.

    BTW – there are very FEW conservative newspapers, and very FEW conservative TV shows. There may be more conservative radio programs but that’s about it. And, its the ultra liberal newspapers that are dying, not the conservative ones.

    The problem is that as soon as a conservative mentions media bias (which can be proven based on how many times certain things are said and how critical the stories are depending on who its about) the libs counter with Rush Limbaugh and Shawn Hannity, blah blah blah. Those guys are talk show hosts who can be as opinionated as they want. NEWS organizations or programs on the other hand are supposed to give us FACTS when reporting on stories.

    The media played a huge part in getting BHO elected by misrepresenting issues and events over the lasat few years, not just the last few months. How does someone like McCain or Palin overcome such bias? They can’t. Once the media has them portrayed in such an unflattering way, they can’t undo the damage no matter how much ad space or air time they might purchase. BHO didn’t have to purhcase anything, because the media gave him so much free press. When the media behaves this way it is very dangerous to healthy and democratic republic.

  36. bonncaruso says:

    FOX is hardly unbiased. Every headline breathes and lives for the right.

    And Hannity is an absolute joke.

    But FOX is just great entertainment.
    Love that sound of gnashing teeth 🙂 🙂

    But I agree with you that MSNBC is equally biased.

  37. lisab says:

    hannity is a joke

    but fox news is probably the most balanced of the news shows. hannity is of course hard right wing, but he is not a news show.

    fox news is pretty balanced, but also very boring … almost no international news at all

    of course now that brit hume has left it may drift more right again.