Remember when candidates announced in February?

How did we get to the point where candidates are running for over two years and networks are scheduling debates so far in advance?

Remember FOX and their August 2015 GOP debates or MSNBC with their Democrat debates a year before the party conventions?

We remember today that former vice president Nixon announced that he was seeking the presidency on this day in 1968.  To be fair, everyone knew that Mr. Nixon would be running in 1968, but the official announcement did not come until today.

Back then, we were announcing candidacies in February.  Today, we are holding a caucus in Iowa and setting up New Hampshire.

Former V.P. Nixon battled Governor Reagan of California and Governor Rockefeller of New York but won the nomination on the first ballot in Miami. 

On Election Day, Mr. Nixon got 43.4%, and Vice President Humphrey was right behind with 42.73% of the 74 million votes cast.  Governor George Wallace got 13.5% and carried five Southern states.

In the end, Nixon got the electoral votes to become the 37th president.

I was very happy that Mr. Nixon won.  I couldn't vote in 1968, but he was my choice.  Nevertheless, I look back at that campaign and wish that we were not starting presidential elections so early.

PS: You can listen to my show (Canto Talk).

Image: National Archives via Picryl, public domain.

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