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Campaigns & Campaigning Quotes

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Quote Author Cited
Whom the gods wish to destroy they first call promising. Cyril Connolly
I have against me the bourgeois, the military and the diplomats, and for me, only the people who take the Metro. Charles de Gaulle
It is just as important that business keep out of government as that government keep out of business. Herbert Hoover
Nothing is irreparable in politics. Jean Anouilh
The legions of reporters who cover politics don't want to quit the clash and thunder of electoral combat for the dry duty of analyzing the federal budget. As a consequence, we have created the perpetual presidential campaign. Hugh Sidey
I've always been controversial because I offer new ideas. For me to be controversial, I think this is positive. Avigdor Lieberman
No part of the education of a politician is more indispensable than the fighting of elections. Winston Churchill
I don't know much about Americanism, but it's a damn good word with which to carry an election. Warren G. Harding
Never promise more than you can perform. Publilius Syrus
It's no exaggeration to say that the undecideds could go one way or another. George H. W. Bush
The great leaders have always stage-managed their effects. Charles de Gaulle
I am not gay. Roberto Cavalli
Have you ever seen a candidate talking to a rich person on television? Art Buchwald
You campaign in poetry. You govern in prose. Mario Cuomo
I believe in evolution. But I also believe, when I hike the Grand Canyon and see it at sunset, that the hand of God is there also. John McCain
Never ascribe to an opponent motives meaner than your own. James M. Barrie
Whenever a man has cast a longing eye on offices, a rottenness begins in his conduct. Thomas Jefferson
The essential ingredient of politics is timing. Pierre Trudeau
Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence. John Adams
Promise, large promise, is the soul of an advertisement. Samuel Johnson
Never forget posterity when devising a policy. Never think of posterity when making a speech. Robert Menzies
Never take anything for granted. Benjamin Disraeli
People never lie so much as after a hunt, during a war or before an election. Otto von Bismarck
If you think you can win, you can win. Faith is necessary to victory. William Hazlitt
Never contend with a man who has nothing to lose. Baltasar Gracian
Our culture peculiarly honors the act of blaming, which it takes as the sign of virtue and intellect. Lionel Trilling
When you're leading, don't talk. Thomas Dewey
In every election in American history both parties have their cliches. The party that has the cliches that ring true wins. Newt Gingrich
Politics is about putting yourself in a state of grace. Paddy Ashdown
I pledge you, I pledge myself, to a new deal for the American people. Franklin D. Roosevelt
Abuse a man unjustly, and you will make friends for him. Douglas Horton
I don't want to spend the next two years in Holiday Inns. Walter F. Mondale
In government offices which are sensitive to the vehemence and passion of mass sentiment public men have no sure tenure. They are in effect perpetual office seekers, always on trial for their political lives, always required to court their restless constituents. Walter Lippmann
You can't beat somebody with nobody. Jack Abramoff
What is the difference between unethical and ethical advertising? Unethical advertising uses falsehoods to deceive the public; ethical advertising uses truth to deceive the public. Vilhjalmur Stefansson
Sometimes I wonder if we shall ever grow up in our politics and say definite things which mean something, or whether we shall always go on using generalities to which everyone can subscribe, and which mean very little. Eleanor Roosevelt
Facts are stubborn things. Alain Rene Le Sage
You need to earn your spurs through performance, not interviews. George W. Bush
... equal responsibilities are less popular than equal rights. Binyamin Applebaum
The man is a tyrant and he killed lots of people . Mike Huckabee
I was cranking out that bullshit on Nixon's crime policy before he was elected. And it was bullshit too. And we knew it. John Dean
If you [as a Presidential candidate] identify a problem, you are going to be expected to have a solution. Frank Sesno
Our nation stands at a fork in the political road. In one direction lies a land of slander and scare; the land of sly innuendo, the poison pen, the anonymous phone call and hustling, pushing, shoving; the land of smash and grab and anything to win. This is Nixonland. America is something different. Adlai Stevenson
Let's not demonize people who don't happen to agree with us. Bernie Sanders
You have ruined politics in India by dragging up a whole lot of unwholesome elements in Indian life and giving them political prominence. It is a crime to mix up religion and politics the way you have done. Muhammad Ali Jinnah
We're in a political environment of competing pessimisms today. Arthur C. Brooks
I pledge to you that we shall have an honorable end to this war in Vietnam. Richard Nixon
Boyle's Law: As pressure on a candidate increases, the volume at which he speaks also increases. Alexandra Petri
Observer's Paradox: How you are doing in the polls will affect how you are doing in the polls. Alexandra Petri
Law of Diminishing Returns: As the popularity of a candidate approaches zero, the probability that he or she will release a wildly bizarre video approaches 1. Alexandra Petri
The Doppler Effect: When running in a primary, candidate appears farther to the left or right than he or she in fact is, but as candidate nears the general election, candidate's views appear to approach the center. Alexandra Petri
Our leaders are stupid. Our politicians are stupid. Donald Trump
I don't think it would be dignified. Thomas E. Dewey
This could be a close election. I can pretty much tell which states are going to be close. If you would start two or three weeks before Election Day and saturate those critical states with [TV Advertising] spots, it could swing the election. Rosser Reeves
I know certain techniques, such as a press release that looks like a newscast. So you use it because you want your man to win. Roger Ailes
I would kill my own son for liberty and to secede from the Union. Neal Horsley
When you grow up on a farm in Georgia, your first girlfriend is a mule. Neal Horsley
Mr. Gingrich's injunction represents the worst of American political discourse, which reached a low during the dispiriting presidential campaign of 1988. Then, more than ever before, negative argument displaced reasoned discussion about how a nation might best be governed. The sound bite reigned. Attack commercials flourished. The signs this year aren't any better. Evidence that negative campaigning can come back to sink the sender has had little impact. The races for governor in California and Texas have already seen the same slash and burn. No doubt the proceedings will grow more rabid still as November nears. Negative discourse serves democracy poorly. The temptation to avoid serious debate is already great. It increases as the stakes soar and slander becomes a rewarding, easy option. The issues of the day go untended. The whole affair takes on the character of the gladiator's art. The GOPAC glossary [{35756}] may herald a descent into even lower levels of discourse. It comes blessed by a politician of some influence—the Republican whip in the House—and it is intended for candidates on the state level, many of them presumably running for the first time. Even though Mr. Gingrich himself may not have seen the list before it was mailed, this is a disturbing document. The nakedness of the GOPAC offering also makes it useful. There must be limits to the negative politics that voters will bear; the bald appeal to invective will certainly probe those limits. For now, it should be said that some adjectives in the glossary aptly describe the glossary itself: shallow, sensationalist, and, yes, shame(ful). New York Times
I think that the mother killing the two children in South Carolina vividly reminds every American how sick the society is getting and how much we need to change things. The only way you get change is to vote Republican. Newt Gingrich
We can go to the American people on this issue of winning the war [against terrorism]. We can go to the country on this issue because they trust the Republican Party to do a better job of protecting and strengthening America's military might and thereby protecting America. Karl Rove
... there is little upside in analyzing [Donald] Trump's words. Those who support him are not looking for fancy language, of political correctness, or logical coherence, or human decency–all those establishment poses. Michael Gerson
Government has got to work for all of us and not just for a few billionaires.. Bernie Sanders
I will tell you that I am going to be the greatest jobs president that God ever created. Donald Trump
I have never run a negative political ad in my life. Bernie Sanders
It is a simple reality that even as he [President Barack Obama] is a candidate for reelection, he continues to be President of the United States, and the demands of the job restrict his capacity in some instances to focus entirely on the campaign. He simply cannot do that. So he and we carefully allocate his time working with the campaign. Jay Carney
The man [President Ronald Reagan] will be out campaigning three days a week. The rest of the time he will govern. Larry Speakes
Mr. Trump regularly lies and, when confronted with contrary evidence, he lies louder. Washington Post
Nothing is so common as to imitate one's enemies, and to use their weapons. Voltaire
One always speaks badly when one has nothing to say. Voltaire
Trump pivots, but then he pivots right back. It's a 360 degree pivot. Jeff Flake
Politics is not longer about argument of discussions it is about trying to put your opponents into the box of the untouchables. David Brooks
Politicians are wither very good at running for office or they are good at running government. Seldom are the two found together. Molly Ivins
The single biggest weakness that politicians have as a group is that they want people to like them. Molly Ivins
Presidential politics is not like a golf tournament. There’s no prize for second place. Haley Barbour
Spending limits not only do not work, they have the perverse effect of making special interests more powerful and more influential. Haley Barbour
He's gone around the country stirring up apathy David Lange
He had more on his mind than his mind could hold. David Lange
Retain the Key to Prosperity: Vote Labour British Labour Party
If victory has a hundred fathers, it also brings forth a hundred advisors. Robert M. Shrum
Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice.... Moderation in the pursuit of freedom is no virtue. Barry Goldwater
Calm down. If you want to be President you have to be calm. Nicolas Sarkozy
The people will turn to us [the Republicans] and the country will be saved. Walter H. Judd
In the early period of American History the office sought the man. Today various kinds of people seek the office. John Patrick Diggins
In our anxiety to get votes, we sometimes put in our platform things that are not orthodox. Joseph Cannon
Taylor won votes in both the free and slave states by reason of his persistent and obstinate silence and reserve on the vexed question of slavery. Horace Greeley
Our opponents struggled manfully, desperately; but wind and tide were against them. They had campaign and other papers, good speakers, and large meetings; but we were far ahead of them in singing and electioneering emblems and mottoes which appealed to popular sympathies. Horace Greeley
Lincoln, like Seward, had developed a cadre of lifelong friends who were willing to do anything in their power to ensure his nomination. But unlike Seward, he had not made enemies or aroused envy along the way. Doris Kearns Goodwin
…the fact of the Convention was the defeat of Seward rather than the nomination of Lincoln. Murat Halstead
…the nomination of Mr. Lincoln took everybody by surprise: it was brought about by accident or trick, by which my pledged friends had to vote against me… The thing was well planned and boldly executed. Edward Bates
I shall be nominated on the next ballot. William H. Seward
Make no contracts that will bind me. Abraham Lincoln
… let us do nothing through passion and ill temper. Even though the Southern people will not so much as listen to us, let us calmly consider their demands, and yield to them if, in our deliberate view of our duty, we possibly can. Abraham Lincoln
…in every locality we should look beyond our noses; and at least say nothing on points where it is probable we shall disagree. Abraham Lincoln
If you desire negro citizenship, if you desire them to vote on an equality with yourselves, and to make them eligible to office, to serve on juries, and to adjudge your rights, then support Mr. Lincoln and the Black Republican party. Stephen Douglas
He distinguished himself by his opposition to the Mexican war, taking the side of the common enemy against his own country; and when he returned home he found that the indignation of the people followed him everywhere and he was again submerged or obliged to retire into private life, forgotten by his former friends. He came up again in 1854, just in time to make his Abolition or Black Republican platform, in company with Giddings, Lovejoy, Chase and Fred Douglas for the Republican party to stand upon. Stephen Douglas
All the anxious politicians of his party have been looking upon him as certainty, at no distant day, to be the President of the United States. They have seen in his round, jolly, fruitful face, post offices land offices, marshalships, and cabinet appointments, chargeships and foreign missions, bursting and sprouting out in wonderful exuberance ready to be laid hold of by their greedy hands. Abraham Lincoln
Nobody has ever expected me to be President. In my poor, lean, lank face, nobody has ever seen that any cabbages were sprouting out. These are disadvantages all, taken together, that the Republicans labor under. We have to fight this battle upon principal and upon principal, alone. Abraham Lincoln
There is literally no such thing as an idea that cannot be expressed well and articulately to today's voters in 30 seconds. Dick Morris
Klandidate James E. Ferguson
Me for Ma Miriam A. Ferguson
People don’t have to agree with every position you take, but they have to believe that you believe it. Brian Schweitzer
I will keep all our young people from having to abandon their towns and families for the other side of the border Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador
There’s another force that wants to keep us from going to Washington DC. It is the devil. John Jacob
Some politicians denounce government in order to capture the government and then they turn around and expand the government. George Will
We are moving in, as soon as Brooke is elected Senator! Anonymous
George W. Bush, the man, is a person of profound faith and deep compassion for those who suffer. But President George W. Bush is a politician and is ultimately no different from any other politician, content to use religion for electoral gain more than for good works. David Kuo
Christ would not vote for Barack Obama, because Barack Obama has voted to behave in a way that is inconceivable for Christ to have behaved Alan Keyes
The hardest thing about a presidential election is how to win without proving that you are unworthy of winning. Adlai Stevenson
When you are attacked, you have to deck your opponent. Hillary Clinton
I think it's going to be a doosey. I mean, talk about a fistfight in a whorehouse. Molly Ivins
Do you know that Claude Pepper is known all over Washington as a shameless extrovert? Not only that, but this man is reliably reported to practice nepotism with his sister-in-law and he has a sister who was once a thespian in wicked New York. Worst of all, it is an established fact that Mr. Pepper, before his marriage, habitually practiced celibacy. George Smathers
The political battle is between big money combines who spend a thousand pounds or more on every constituency they fight… when they speak democracy, they don't mean government by the people...they mean financial democracy, in which money counts and nothing but money. Oswald Mosley
Politics was just about as dirty in those days as it is now. Edna Greene Medford
The political parties use religion for their own interests and whenever they find any criticism about religion, they can't tolerate it, so they ban the book. Taslima Nasrin
Anyone who gets too close to President Bush will get burned. Eleanor Clift
“Lobbyist” has been a dirty word in politics for a number of years. Kathleen Hall Jamieson
Good humour may be said to be one of the very best articles of dress one can wear in society. William Makepeace Thackeray
It's always useful for a politician to bash Congress. Gordon Humphrey
As a Jew, I've been called many a bad name, but this is the first time in my life that I've been called a 'damned Gentile'! Simon Bamberger
Slogans are both exciting and comforting, but they are also powerful opiates for the conscience. James Bryant Conant
Politics has got so expensive that it takes lots of money to even get beat with. Will Rogers
It takes a full quarter for economic improvement to effect the electorate as they are skeptical. Robert Teeter
Judges are red meat in politics. Charlie Rose
There is ample evidence that participation in an electoral process forces any party, regardless of ideology, to moderate its position if it wants to attract voters in large numbers. Marina Ottaway
It isn’t easy, but I guess I can understand why the good citizens of the hill country might let themselves be represented in Washington by a man who drinks too much. It isn’t easy, but I guess I can even understand why the good citizens of the hill country might even let themselves be represented by a man in Washington who carouses with city women while his wife and children are back here working the land. But, as God is my witness, I will never understand why the good people of the hill country would let themselves be represented by a man who takes female sheep up into the hills alone at night! Richard Mifflin Kleberg
Prebuttal Al Gore
To be a party you have to have a national message. Bill Clinton
The public relations phases of this campaign call for the same careful planning and strategy as you and your staff employed in setting up the invasion of Normandy, and the same careful planning that we, in our business, employ in order to insure the successful introduction to the public of a new product or service. Sigurd Stanton Larmon
During the last 20 years the advent of radio changed all the old rules of political campaigning. Now the successful advent of television, available for the first time this year in a presidential campaign, must again influence the planning of the campaign. Television, with its triple advantages of sight, sound and motion, can make or break a candidate, a party or a platform. In my opinion television must not be considered as supplementary media but as the heart of your program to “win friends and influence people.” Sigurd Stanton Larmon
Madison Avenue’s advertising men are going to run much of the show and ‘sell’ the candidates with the same compelling advertising techniques that they use to sell carloads of toothpaste, cigarettes and soap. Joseph J. Seldin
We recommend a planned public relations and publicity campaign to position the Republican party as the defender of individual liberties against the encroachment of socialism, paternalism, and government control. Young and Rubicam
People are dumb, People are dumb, Promise ‘em peace and kingdom come. / People are dopes, People are dopes, Play on their peeves, play on their hopes. / Make ‘em feel mad, Make ‘em feel mad, Everything’s lousy, everything’s bad. / Make ‘em afraid, Make ‘em afraid, Show ‘em they’re dupes, tricked and betrayed. / Then if they bite, Then if they bite, You will have fools to fight your fight. Marya Mannes
Take the pledge and after you’re elected, do whatever you want. Richard Joseph Daley
All Coolidge had to do in 1924 was to keep his mean trap shut, to be elected. All Harding had to do in 1920 was repeat “Avoid foreign entanglements.” All Hoover had to do in 1928 was to endorse Coolidge. All Roosevelt had to do in 1932 was to point to Hoover. Robert E. Sherwood
The homes of America are horrified and the intelligence of Americans is insulted by weird television advertising by which this Administration threatens the end of the world unless all-wise Lyndon is given the nation for his very own. Barry Goldwater
He warns the heads of parties against believing their own lies John Arbuthnot
Part of me too is my relation to all life, my religion. And this is not so easy to talk about. Religious experience is highly intimate and, for me, ready words are not at hand. Adlai Stevenson
Eleanor Start Packing. The Willkies Are Coming. Anonymous
We Don’t Want Eleanor Either Anonymous
Vote Democratic. The party for you, not just the few. Democratic Party
Candidates in the future should be chosen based on their ability to sell themselves over the television airwaves. Leonard W. Hall
Eisenhower was willing to experiment with television to promote his candidacy, his Democratic opponent Adlai Stevenson was less inclined to do so. Fearful that the election might become a simple decision between “Ivory soap vs. Palmolive,” Stevenson shunned short, televised commercials and opted instead to talk sense to the American people with more substantive speeches. Bernard Benjamin Yamron
… a near revolutionary change in the democratic process Emmet John Hughes
Nixon appears to be a politician with an advertising man’s approach to his work. Policies are products to be sold to the public - this one today, that one tomorrow, depending on the discounts and the state of the market. He moves from intervention to anti-intervention with the same ease and lack of anguish with which a copy writer might transfer his loyalties from Camels to Chesterfields Richard Rovere
Can freedom be maintained under the most severe attack it has ever known? I think it can be. And I think in the final analysis it depends upon what we do here John F. Kennedy
I will not change my beliefs to win votes. I will offer a choice, not an echo. Barry Goldwater
… a racist film with nothing but riots Barry Goldwater
The basic purpose of this documentary is to very strongly and efficiently depict the national prevalence of juvenile delinquency, crime, moral degeneration, narcotics, and the facts that women are afraid to walk on the street at night and parents are fearful for their children, husbands for their wives … to portray and remind the people of something they already know exists, and that is the moral crisis in America, the rising crime rate, pornography, filthy magazines, which is all part of the same package. We want to just make them mad, make their stomachs turn. Russell Walton
… the sickest political program to be conceived since television became a factor … it appeals to the prurient and prejudiced in a fashion which makes a mockery of its pretension to be speaking for moral conduct. John Moran Bailey
When the legislator is finally elected --- ah! then indeed does the tone of his speech undergo a radical change. The people are returned to passiveness, inertness, and unconsciousness; the legislator enters into omnipotence. Now it is for him to initiate, to direct, to propel, and to organize. Mankind has only to submit … Frederic Bastiat
Anyone who thinks that negative campaigning is a modern invention has never read the nineteenth century press Richard Norton Smith
A political campaign should be an education for both the voters and the candidates. Adlai Stevenson
Our country, crowned with the vast and marvelous achievements of its first century, asks for a man worthy of the past and prophetic of her future; asks for a man who has the audacity of genius; asks for a man who is the grandest combination of heart, conscience and brain beneath her flag. Such a man is James G. Blaine. Robert G. Ingersoll
The best way to kill anything un-American is to drag it out into the open; because anything un-American cannot live in the sunlight. Alfred E. Smith
The principle issue in this election is whether or not you are prepared to do anything new. Eleanor Roosevelt
Direct primaries would destroy the party machinery ... and would build up a lot of personal machines, and would make every man a self-seeker, and would degrade politics by turning candidacies into bitter personal wrangles John Coit Spooner
Promise little and do much. Jewish Proverb
Promising is not giving, but serves to content fools. Portuguese Proverb
It is very difficult to deliver nuance in a campaign. Campaigns are about contrasts. Amy Walter
We're prepared to place our trust in the people to reshape the government. Our liberal friends place their trust in the government to reshape the people. Newt Gingrich
The American people believe that we ought to control our government. On the other hand, we've seen government more and more controlling us Jimmy Carter
No one gives away their vote for free if somebody will pay for it. Stephen Kotkin
It is a naked fight against theft, and the thieves will not win. Theodore Roosevelt
Make your point as clear as possible and thrust the steel well home. Theodore Roosevelt
Incumbents have too much power and challengers have too little opportunity. Newt Gingrich
What do members of Congress say to each other every Wednesday? Have a nice weekend! Mark Russell
Shuffle up the cards and try again. Randolph Churchill
The nation needs a statesman who fears not to meet and who knows how to sway immense masses of the working classes. Randolph Churchill
The minute you announce as a candidate, your opponents go on a deep sea fishing expedition for your sins. Ben Stein
If he wore a feather in his hair / And dressed in a fig leaf / We’d vote for Henry just the same / And carry out the plan / Because he’s Roosevelt’s man. Anonymous
I can’t talk about myself that way. Whatever I did before was just in line with my work. I can’t be saying I, I, I all the time. Henry L. Stimson
You would make the best governor but not the best candidate. Theodore Roosevelt
…this duty lies in your path and that you ought to undertake it. If defeated, so much the better for you personally; if victorious, the greatest opportunity in the American struggle for self-government except that afforded by the Presidency will lie at your hands. Elihu Root
The politician, himself oftentimes uninformed as to his country's history, frequently appeals to the ignorant and unthinking on the score of economy; . . . such demagogues are dangerous. John Joseph Pershing
Minority parties don’t have to be responsible and have policies. Their job is to throw rocks. If they put forth policies they lose whatever advantage that they can have as then they too will be attacked. Charles Cook
If Truman wins, by God I'll make sure the President of the United States can speak to the country whenever he wishes. Howard McGrath
Truman didn't have enough money to make a radio speech. James H. Rowe Jr.
Competition for votes sends parties in a two-party system toward the center. Anthony Downs
It is important to have a President who not only understands, but enjoys complexity Teresa Heinz
This is your last campaign. Mary Landrieu
In political advertising, truth only has an advantage when a credible source makes it known. Kathleen Hall Jamieson
Campaigns exaggerate or oversimplify the truth because it’s effective. Kathleen Hall Jamieson
If I had two faces, do you think I would be wearing this one. Abraham Lincoln
What ultimately defeated George W. Bush is that when push came to shove he was a wimp governed by his personal animosities Pierre Andre Rinfret
… all raw emotion and little knowledge Pierre Andre Rinfret
Politicians, most politicians, are, by definition, people without morals and people who know no limits in what they will do to get elected. Pierre Andre Rinfret
Under democracy one party always devotes its chief energies to trying to prove that the other party is unfit to rule-- and both commonly succeed, and are right. H. L. Mencken
I have read their platform, and though I think there are some unsound places in it, I can stand upon it pretty well. But I see nothing in it both new and valuable. "What is valuable is not new, and what is new is not valuable. Daniel Webster
An elected representative is not tied in any substantial way to particular policies, whatever the preferences of the electorate. Influence on the politician is greatest at the time of election. Once elected, the representative is released from popular control but continues to be exposed to powerful pressure groups, especially corporations, state bureaucracies and political party power brokers Brian Martin
I have serious doubts about the value of debates in a presidential election. They tend to be a test of reaction time rather than a genuine exposition of the participants' philosophies and programs Dwight D. Eisenhower
Public service is a noble career. You can’t do it unless you get out there and run…. You can make a difference if you are elected. William B. Richardson
I lost my first run for office, but I developed a great love for grassroots politics. William B. Richardson
The conventions have become meaningless. They’re manufactured events Dick Tuck
The people who run campaigns today have more iron control over the campaign than they did 20 or 30 years ago. Ted Koppel
Almost every politician running for office comes out with a set of plans so that they can demonstrate how serious they are about fixing the state’s problems. But once the election is over and the candidate takes his or her oath, you rarely here a peep about those plans again. They end up on a shelf somewhere gathering dust. Joe Manchin
No general in the midst of battle has a great discussion about what he is going to do if defeated. David Anthony Llewellyn Owen
Singing Cowboy Anonymous
A child can't see through campaign promises, but you can. Anonymous
A little hypocrisy is better than losing. Anonymous
Always elect Hoan, never support him. Anonymous
John Quincy Adams who can write And Andrew Jackson who can fight. [Jackson won.] Anonymous
James G. Blaine as a Know-Nothing and persecutor of foreign born citizens and Roman Catholics. Anonymous
Bootleggers and harlots will dance on the White House lawn if Al Smith is elected President. Anonymous
It's clear the defense contractors are getting their money's worth out of congress, but are we? Anonymous
Don't make waves; don't back losers. Anonymous
Double V Anonymous
front porch campaign Anonymous
He that promises too much means nothing. Anonymous
Hooray for the mother / Hooray for the kid / I voted for Cleveland / And I’m damn glad I did. Anonymous
If people want peace in the world, then Ging Wei should be gotten rid of, if people want a good world, then they need Kou Zhuan. Anonymous
Log Cabin and Hard Cider Campaign. Anonymous
Ma! Ma! Where's my pa? Gone to the White House, Ha! Ha! Ha! Blaine, Blaine, James J. Blaine, The continental liar from the State of Maine, Burn this letter. Anonymous
Preparedness He Kept Us Out of War Anonymous
[William] McKinley, Protection, and Prosperity. Anonymous
Red Special Anonymous
Slander strongly and some will stick. Anonymous
The chief is a thief! Anonymous
Van’s Policy, Fifty Cents a Day and French Soup: Our Policy, Two Dollars a Day and Roast Beef. Anonymous
Vote Yourself A Farm. Anonymous
Welcome Home from The Crow Eaters Anonymous
About other Democratic candidates: Never say that any of them is not qualified to be President. Never say any of them can't win. Never suggest that any of them is the tool of an group or interest ... Dean Acheson
A stranger would think that the people of the United States had no other occupation than electioneering. John Quincy Adams
And so I am launched again upon the faithless wave of politics. John Quincy Adams
General [Thomas] Metcalfe, member of the House from Kentucky ... is the Administration candidate for Governor of the State, and according to the usage of that part of the country, must before the election travel round the State and offer himself to the people and solicit their votes. His competitor has already made his canvassing tour. John Quincy Adams
I never had asked, and never should ask, the vote of any person for any office. John Quincy Adams
The presidency of the United States was an office neither to be sought nor declined. To pay money for securing it directly or indirectly, was in my opinion incorrect in principle. John Quincy Adams
This mode of electioneering suited neither my taste nor my principles. I though it equally unsuitable to my personal character and to the station in which I am placed. John Quincy Adams
Modesty is a virtue that can never thrive in public …. A man must be his own trumpeter—he must write or dictate paragraphs of praise in the newspapers; he must dress, have a retinue and equipage; he must ostentatiously publish to the world his own writings with his name, make the mob stare and gape, and perpetuate his fame. John Adams
Show yourself if only for a week ... If harm comes of it I promise never to advise you again. Louisa Catherine Johnson Adams
Smilin' for the Presidency Louisa Catherine Johnson Adams
These visits make me sick, and I really think they will make me crazy. Louisa Catherine Johnson Adams
Look at this face. Is it black enough? I want you to vote for me. Oscar Adams
We have to have campaign contributions to apprise the public about our qualifications. Oscar Adams
I'm low in the polls because nobody's ever heard of me. Lamar Alexander
If you make payroll every time, everyone will be satisfied with your budget regardless of how bad it is. Janet Allem
There is never enough money for TV. Janet Allem
When budgeting a campaign I prefer to believe whatever lies people tell me about how many field staff will be recruited and how fast they will be on board. Janet Allem
Do I let a group of power-mongering men with short penises tell me what to do? Doris Allen
My fellow citizens. What General Tucker says to you about sleeping under yonder clump of trees is true, for I stood guard over him while he slept. Now, then: All of you who were generals and had privates to stand guard over you, vote for my opponent. And all of you who were privates and stood guard over generals, vote for Johnny Allen. John Mills Allen
I have never really liked Lowell Weiker personally, but I think that those of us who are conservative have wasted entirely too much effort fighting him over the years. James Altham
The demagogue ... is a good showman, whether at Nuremberg at a youth conference, or in Georgia at a political barbecue. He knows the tricks of the ham actor, the gestures, the tones of voice that can arouse passions. Always he dresses himself up as the little man come to life, grown to Brobdingnagian stature and become the "Duce" or the "Leader" or, maybe, "Ploughboy Pete. Ellis G. Arnall
You don't win elections on Election Day. You win them by what you do all year round, by the day-to-day good will you generate in each precinct. Jacob L. Arvey
You cannot take any statement very seriously when it is made in an election context. Hanan Ashrawi
If a politician, during a campaign, finds it necessary to resort to flattery, he should spread it on, not in thin layers, but with a trowel, or better yet, a shovel. Henry F. Ashurst
The politician must always tell people what they want to hear. Henry F. Ashurst
Voters never grow weary of illusory promises. Henry F. Ashurst
Every morning at seven o'clock [you] spend an hour and a half figuring out what you are going to do to get on the news that night. Lee Atwater
I am used to changing tactics to adapt to the climate. Lee Atwater
Political campaigns are only a slightly more polite form of ground battle. Lee Atwater
The small things are the big things. Lee Atwater
There is constantly a war going on between the two parties for the populist vote. The populist vote is always the swing vote. Lee Atwater
We can't continue to always base our strategy on the fact that the other guy is going to mess up all the time. Lee Atwater
You can never get your message across if you're always answering their [reporter's] questions. Lee Atwater
I've heard one of the candidates' wives says she loves every minute of the race, and all I can say is, either she's lying or she's wacko. Hattie Babbitt
Campaigns are not for educating. They're for linking up with the public mood. Douglas Bailey
I have no heart to campaign for a job I did not seek. Alben W. Barkley
Presidential elections are always pocketbook elections. Fred Barnes
I will not be a party to any attacks upon your personal integrity or personal life. We seem to have different views regarding the philosophy of government and on that alone am I willing to contend against you. Bernard Baruch
Sure those quotations were irrelevant, but we had one objective: to keep him [Sinclair] from becoming Governor. But because he was a good man, we were sorry we had to do it that way. Leon Baxter
Senator and Mrs. Birch Bayh have slashed the price of their Potomac [MD] home to way below market. They haven't been so beaten down since Dan Quayle did it to 'em in 1980. Birch Bayh
He's changed from the hatchet man to the chain saw man. Robert Beckel
Review" is a great word in politics. It will last you almost an entire election cycle if you play it right. Robert Beckel
Do not prove things too much. Henry Ward Beecher
[Candidates are] more motivated by the fear of losing than the joy of winning. Paul Begala
Running a country is much more difficult than running a campaign. Paul Begala
I am a Catholic ... If you reject my on account of my religion, I shall thank God that he has spared me the indignity of being your representative. Hilaire Belloc
If it doesn't go [fit] on a bumper sticker, we don't listen. Richard Ben Cramer
It's best not to appear to believe what you say but to believe what you say. William Bennett
Let him say not one single word about his principles, or his creed—let him say nothing—promise nothing. Let no Committee or Convention—no town meeting ever extract from him a single word, about what he thinks now, or what he will do hereafter. Let the use of pen and ink be wholly forbidden as if he were a mad poet in Bedlam. Nicholas Biddle
If your opponent can make a charge in 10 words and you need 30 or more words to answer, you are going to lose that argument. Jeffrey Biggs
[Describing his opponent:] ... a cross between a hyena and a mongrel ... begotten in a graveyard at midnight, suckled by a sow and educated by a fool. Theodore G. Bilbo
Anything done [in politics] is all right unless you get caught. Theodore G. Bilbo
All this colonial business is a sham but we need it for elections. Otto Von Bismarck-Schoenhausen
You win elections with coalitions. You don't win elections by ideologically cleansing your party. Tony Blankley
In 59 years I haven’t had to reinvent myself once. Michael Bloomberg
Gauge your public carefully, and be all things to all men. Samuel G. Blythe
With reference to political speeches in political campaigns or with reference to discussions in the Senate, I do no more than make a skeleton outline of the line of argument I wish to pursue. I do not undertake to reduce the speech to manuscript form. Many of my speeches which have been most satisfactory to me I have prepared in a few hours. I think it is quite accurate to say that the manuscript is practically unknown in my speaking. Furthermore, I should say that even the skeleton outline referred to above is generally forgotten after I begin my speech. I try to get the subject and the outline of the subject and the objective thoroughly in my mind, and all the preparations are with a view of doing this rather than with the idea of having something before me to follow. William E. Borah
Without bogymen, it is hard to raise money and harder to grab at grass-roots America. Gloria Borger
Every member of Congress is shaped by his or her first election. Gloria Borger
Where you have close races, money can make all the difference in the world. Gloria Borger
I believe I have learned much from the mistakes that I made when I was Mayor, that I have grown from these experiences. [He won!] Mike Boyle
If you run for public office today you must be prepared for a massive invasion of privacy. William W. Bradley
Candidates run on the strength of their ideas, not the weight of their wallets. William W. Bradley
[On political campaigns:] Get an elbow, give an elbow. William W. Bradley
My ability matches the national moment. William W. Bradley
He managed to hit all the keys on the great American political piano. David Brinkley
Every politician higher up than assistant water commissioner knows how to avoid tough questions [from reporters]: Don't answer them. David Brinkley
If you're mean to a gentle man, it makes your meanness worse. Edmond G. Brown
The way you have to campaign in this country is you have to beg for money from the very people who need to be brought under control. Edmund G. Brown Jr.
You can get on television all the time if you have the money to buy the time. Ronald H. Brown
As important as issues are, as important as money is ..., you've got to have good candidates. Ronald H. Brown
Positive messages don’t work. Ron Brownstein
There is no longer a value judgement on the need to tailor a message to television. It's now a matter of survival, not a matter of ethics or intellectual honesty. John Buckley
If they can beat me, fine. But I'm not leaving until they beat me. Quentin N. Burdick
There’s nothing more humbling than losing a few elections. George W. Bush
[I am] cautious about wearing my religion on my sleeve. George W. Bush
I’ve had foreign policy experience as governor of Texas—with Mexico. George W. Bush
My opponents can't get elected unless things get worse. And things aren't going to get worse unless they get elected. George W. Bush
We tried to kick a little ass last night. George W. Bush
Would you please shut up and sit down. George W. Bush
Let's face it. If I was funnier than Ronald Reagan, I would have won in 1980. And he'd be up here tonight trying to laugh away the Bush deficit. George W. Bush
There’s all this Christian right, and abortion. These are not the issues that drive people’s concerns. John Ellis Bush
Running for President of the United States requires everyone on the family working on it. Laura Bush
Each man swore to do his best To damn and perjure all the rest Samuel Butler
The election campaign is no time to get involved in very, very serious issues. Kim Campbell
The first thing you've got to do in any kind of election campaign is be flexible. Kim Campbell
There have been a lot of mistakes made in this campaign. I know because I've made most of them. Kim Campbell
If anybody ever finds out where your district is, they'll beat you. Joseph Cannon
Confound their politics, Frustrate their knavish tricks. Henry Carey
Direct mail [campaigning] is never moderate by definition. Tucker Carlson
No. That's how I won the nomination. Jimmy Carter
The problems of the country look very different from the Oval Office than they do from the campaign trail. Jimmy Carter
We're always looking for candidates that have new approaches to problems. Rosalynn Carter
I’m Mrs. Jimmy Carter and I thought you might want to interview me. Roslyn Carter
Turning a campaign around when you’re behind is like pushing a wet noodle up a hill with your nose. James Carville
Don't get mad. Don't get even. Get elected. James Carville
Every election is a matter of definition. James Carville
If you can’t run against a political candidate, run against his campaign manager. James Carville
If you're going to get into the political business, you've got to be intensively competitive. James Carville
In politics there are no bad questions; there are only bad answers. James Carville
In something as important as an election, a little name-calling sometimes breaks out. James Carville
In the poultry business, you sit on an egg and it hatches. In the political business, you sit on a lead and it rots. James Carville
It's the economy, stupid! James Carville
We want to say the same thing. The press wants something different. The people who are successful in our end of the business are those who find different ways of saying the same thing. James Carville
When a campaign is over, boom, it's over. James Carville
You cannot expect people to react to information they don't have. James Carville
You have to stay very basic. You have to stay very focused. You have to stay very disciplined. James Carville
I never like being hit without striking back. Joseph Chamberlain
Never make a defense or apology before you be accused. Charles I
Once you give a politician five minutes of free airtime, he’s going to go somewhere else and spend the money he saved at your station. Perry Chester
You don't achieve anything by playing it safe. Shirley Chisholm
Deny what they didn't charge and charge what they can't deny.... If it's our charge, we're revealing the facts; if it's theirs, it's a smear. Murray Chotiner
It's not a smear, if you please, if you point out the record of your opponent. Murray Chotiner
[Political] Victory is all that matters. Murray Chotiner
A man’s natural manner best becomes him. Marcus Tullius Cicero
A most wretched custom is our electioneering and scrambling for office. Misserima omnimo est ambitio honorumque contentio. Marcus Tullius Cicero
All men prefer a false promise to a flat refusal. Quintus Tullius Cicero
If you make a promise, the thing is still uncertain and depends on a future day .. but if you refuse, you alienate people to a certainty and immediately. Quintus Tullius Cicero
This office seeking is a disease. It is even catching. Grover Cleveland
was probably the last campaign where the candidate went out personally to the people. Clark M. Clifford
Most people who run for political office have another job. Hillary Clinton
A campaign conversion isn't the same as a lifetime of conviction. Bill Clinton
One of the great strengths of the Republicans is that they have no guilt and no shame. They’ll say anything. Bill Clinton
The only test of electability is getting elected. Bill Clinton
... it's better to be in session than go home and face the voters. Daniel R. Coates
The campaign can’t be run by 100 outsiders. Tony Coelho
Congressman are spending too much time raising money. Tony Coleho
No thank you, I don't engage in criminal practice. Roscoe Conkling
I do not choose to run for President in nineteen twenty-eight. Calvin Coolidge
With the exception of the occasion of my notification, I did not attend any partisan meetings or make any purely political speeches during the campaign. I spoke several times at the dedication of a monument, the observance of the anniversary of an historic event, at a meeting of some commercial body, or before some religious gathering. Calvin Coolidge
In a democracy, as a matter of course, every effort is made to seize upon and create publick opinion, which is, substantially, securing power. James Fenimore Cooper
A political campaign is a movement. It's built around a single candidate. It will evaporate when he or she gets elected. Ernesto Cortes Jr.
Republican pundits always believe Republicans are going to win; Democratic pundits always believe Democrats are going to win. Ann Coulter
You can promise anything in this world because it isn't a real world. We don't have to balance the budget. Larry Craig
I'm not throwing pink triangles at the Farm Bureau convention. I talk to them about pesticides. Bill Crews
Promise all that is asked and more if you can think of anything. Offer to build a bridge or a church, to divide a county, create a batch of new offices, make a turnpike, or anything they like. Promises cost nothing, therefore deny nobody who has a vote. David Crockett
Rail against taxes of all kinds. David Crockett
Promises cost nothing. Say "no" to nobody. David Crockett
Some of my constituents let me know, that they would not listen to me on such a dry subject as the welfare of the nation, until they had something to drink, and that I must treat them. David Crockett
When the day of election approaches, visit your constituents far and wide. Treat liberally, and drink freely, in order to rise in their estimation, though you fall in your own. True, you may be called a drunken dog by some of the clean shirt and silk stocking gentry, but the real rough necks will style you a jovial fellow, their votes are certain, and frequently count double. David Crockett
Do all you can to appear to advantage in the eyes of the women. That's easily done—you have but to kiss and slabber their children. David Crockett
They could not listen to my on such a dry subject as the welfare of the nation until they had had something to drink. David Crockett
If I win, I win. And if I lose, I spare myself untold agony. John Crosbie
People have to believe that government can work, and you have to show them that government can work. Andrew Cuomo
I propose to be mayor for the Republicans, Progressives, Socialists, and independent voters as well as the Democrats. James M. Curley
It [television] has locked candidates into ridiculous positions because only ridiculous positions can be compacted into 30-second commercials. John C. Danforth
That’s true, but all of our rallies were integrated from the standpoint that we welcomed the participation of everybody and discriminated against nobody. Donald Dawson
The choice is De Gaulle or anarchy. Charles de Gaulle
This flag does not belong to the right wing of the Republican party. It belongs to all of us. Howard Dean
Keep it simple and repeat it over and over and over again until he gets the country to pass it. Michael Deaver
The media, while they won't admit it, are not in the news business; they're in entertainment. We tried to create the most entertaining, visually attractive scenes ... so that the networks would have to use it. Michael Deaver
The people want a blood-and-thunder campaign. Thomas E. Dewey
I'm not asking for the support of the powerful, the strong and the mighty—but of the average Canadian, the group to which I belong. John G. Diefenbaker
They say I've made mistakes, but they've been mistakes of the heart. John G. Diefenbaker
American politics shows again and again that the best explanation is an accusation. John Patrick Diggins
Politics ... is going to be diluted down into a 10-second window, where you whack the guy as hard as you can and then get out of there. Alan J. Dixon
The story in its facts and in its inferences is totally inaccurate. Gary Hart will not dignify it with a comment because it's character assassination. It's harassment. He's offended and he's outraged. He's furious. He's a victim. Someone has got to say at some point that enough is enough. William Dixon
Contrary to reports that I took the loss badly, I want to say that I went home last night and slept like a baby—every two hours I woke up and cried. Bob Dole
Stop lying about my record. Bob Dole
The only way a challenger can compete with the built-in advantages of incumbency is to spend money. Bob Dole
There's something about winning that's contagious. Bob Dole
You never know whether you're elected because people know who you are or people don't know who you're are. Bob Dole
Any time you put your name on a ballot, there is a risk of election. Curt Donaldson
To avoid the issues you make up bogus issues. Helen Gahagan
A candidate has to reach people's heads and reach their hearts. Thomas J. Downey
I hold everybody responsible for Mr. Lincoln's reelection, and I will countenance nothing else! Simeon Draper
The impulse to surrender electoral advantage does not course strongly through the politicians veins. Elizabeth Drew
The door to the White House hinges on timing. Tom Dunkel
I don't think politics has gotten too negative. I ... believe in going after the opposition on the issues. Jennifer Dunn
The Bible would be cast into a bonfire, our holy worship changed into a dance of [French] Jacobin phrensy, our wives and daughters dishonored, and our sons converted into the disciples of Voltaire and the dragoons of Marat. Timothy Dwight
A 30 second negative ad can matter more to a candidate's career than a lifetime voting record. Dennis E. Eckart
If you can't explain your vote in 30 seconds, its the wrong vote. Dennis E. Eckart
If a state can't be first, it better be big. Jim Edmunson
We [members of Congress] tend to be gregarious or we tend not to get elected. Vernon Ehlers
It’ll play in Peoria John D. Ehrlichman
I don't believe in mud slinging. I don't think it does any good. Dwight D. Eisenhower
It is mere cowardice to seek safety in negations. George Eliot; Mary Ann Cross
There is a certain satisfaction in coming down to the lowest ground of politics, for we get rid of cant and hypocrisy. Ralph Waldo Emerson
When you strike at a king, you must kill him. Ralph Waldo Emerson
Counsel passes all things to him which thinketh to be a king. English Proverb or Saying
If you’re an athlete and you tend to be political, you tend to alienate half the public. Julius Erving
He wanted to win in the worst way. Don Eslinger
A bloody battle leaves even the victor bloodied. But compromise also has its costs—particularly when it alienates the majority and is taken as a sign of weakness. Susan Estrich
The politics of crime is not about a party's record or a candidate's proposals, but about perceived character and values. Susan Estrich
We need a new stump speech. Susan Estrich
No matter what was written or what was charged, the harmful effect was largely washed away as soon as the reassuring voice of the President of the United States started coming through the ether into the family living-room. James A. Farley
Everybody's out there to make a case and sometimes a little hypocrisy gets involved with that case. Dianne Feinstein
Modern politics is really a battle between lawyers and marketeers. David Fenton
Women are getting a lot smarter. Before they were very adventuresome. Today, women are not going to take chances on higher office unless there's a good chance of winning. Geraldine Ferraro
Personal religious convictions have no place in political campaigns or in dictating public policy. Geraldine Ferraro
For every speech given by a politician there should be a tax levied thereon. James Ferris
The present age ... prefers the sign to the thing signified … for in these days illusion only is sacred, truth profane. Ludwig Andreas von Feuerbach
By honest I don't mean that you only tell what's true. But you make clear the entire situation. You make clear all the information that is required for somebody else who is intelligent to make up their mind. Richard P. Feynman
Campaigns have consequences. Paul Gigot
All other things being equal, the smiling candidate usually wins Paul Gigot
I believe that [Bill] Clinton is the best tactical politician, certainly in my lifetime. Newt Gingrich
There are many people who would rather lose with what they are comfortable with than changing and doing what it takes to win. Newt Gingrich
The secret is to success sincerity. If you can fake that, you've got it made. Jean Giraudoux; George
There is nothing wrong with a political joke as long as it doesn't get elected. Miles Godwin
Because he drives Lyndon Johnson crazy Barry Goldwater
You could have whipped my butt in 1964, but I went out and worked a helleva lot harder than you did over the years. As a result, a lot of people worked for me. Barry Goldwater
I'm going to fight the force of emotions by that of intellect Viktor Gonchar
Humane, visionary, confident, hard-working, reformer [for yourself] Sick, pathetic, liberal, tax-spending, traitor [for your opponent.] GOPAC
Relax, smile, attack! Pauline Gore
Every campaign is unique. Tipper Gore
I was assailed so bitterly that I hardly knew whether I was running for the Presidency or the penitentiary. Ulysses S. Grant
If a negative ad is run against you and you don't answer it, it becomes the truth. Charles Grassley
You cannot possibly persuade people that what they have firmly in mind is not so. Harold H. Greene
In politics, demonstration not description is the name of the game. Meg Greenfield
The only way and incumbent can lose a debate is to eat a live rat on stage. Alan Gregg
If any politician tells you he likes campaigning, you are either dealing with a liar or a psychopath. Barney Frank
For an office-seeker [candidate], sticks and stones are greatly to be preferred to an adhesive adjective. Charles Paul Freund
Middle class voters are the mega-prize in American politics. Al From
In America candidates run for office while in England they just stand for office. David Frost
In many cases they [members of congress] go outside their district [to raise money.] They in effect trade policy positions for money. Then they go back to their districts and use the money to run campaigns on a nonpolicy basis. Thomas Furguson
As long as words are in your mouth, you are their lord; once you utter them, you are their slave. Solomon Ibn Gabirol
It is never the case that a surrogate can deliver [votes] like a principle can. Curtis Gans
It now appears we are defeated by the combined power of rebellion, Catholicism, and whiskey, a trinity very hard to conquer. James A. Garfield
Fratricide dominates our public debate, and America is held hostage with tactics of smear and fear. Richard A. Gephardt
The more you expose yourself by coming out with specific positions, the more you alienate various groups. David Firestone
Twenty five point leads don’t typically hold up. Ari Fleischer
The new wave of mass immigration … reinforced the leftist campaign to destroy Christendom Thomas Fleming
You cannot ... transmute some incoherent mixture of words into sense merely by introducing the three-letter word “God” to be its grammatical subject. Antony Flew
… an influential gang of Jews Henry Ford
Now we shall see whether I can build anything but automobiles, tractors and ships. Henry Ford
Go back to your constituencies and prepare for government. Michael Forsyth
The Internet provides the campaign with an unbiased filter to get its information out. Max Fose
Why should I let them beat up on me? Let them argue with each other. Mike Foster
Peace at any price Millard Fillmore
It's tough on somebody who is a elected official to talk sense about crime Philip B. Heymann
He laugheth that winneth. John Heywood
Always to let the losers have their words. John Heywood
What is politics but persuading the public to vote for this and support that and endure these for the promises of those. Gilbert Highet
He does not shake hands, having experienced some injury by the frequent and too forcible use the "dear people" have made of that avenue to his heart. Philip Hone
I enjoy campaigning because my husband makes the speeches and I receive the roses. Lou Henry Hoover
In political warfare, you do not fight to prevail in an argument, but to destroy the enemy's fighting ability. David Horowitz
Half the promises people say were never kept, were never made. Edgar Watson Howe
That the politicians are permitted to carry on the same old disgraceful campaign from year to year is as insulting to the people as would be a gang of thieves coming back to a town they had robbed, staging a parade, and inviting the citizens to fall in and cheer. Edgar Watson Howe
American government has seemed to mean naught but impotence and unavailing words. Charles Evans Hughes
In most national debates, though the reasons may not be equally balanced, yet there are commonly some plausible which may be pleaded, even in favor of the weaker side. David Hume
Winning the presidency, for me, is not worth the price of silence on the issue of human [civil] rights. Hubert Horatio Humphery
I did not approve of the TV spot, and when my opinion was asked, I recommended that it be removed from the air. Hubert Humphrey
It's not what they take away from you that counts. It's what you do with what you have left. Never give up and never give in. Hubert Humphrey
Bad politics tends to drive out good politics, just as bad money drives out good money. Aldous Huxley
In politics you win by division. Henry Hyde
The Decalogue and the Golden Rule have no place in a political campaign. The commander who lost the battle through the activity of his moral nature would be the derision and jest of history. John James Ingalls
The purification of politics is an iridescent dream. Government is force.... The Decalogue and the Golden Rule have no place in a political campaign. The commander who lost the battle through the activity of his moral nature would be the derision and jest of history. John James Ingalls
Slime has reached Hawaii. For a long time we thought that this was only a mainland type of campaigning. Daniel Inouye
I never war against females, and it is only the base and cowardly that do. Andrew Jackson
If the AMA [American Medical Association] is against you, you must be doing something right. Andrew Jacobs Jr.
No, honey. This is for you. Kay Coles James
If you have to tell the truth about the fat content in a hamburger, why shouldn’t you have to tell the truth about another individual who is offering for public office. Jeanette Jamieson
Political advertising works, particularly when it’s unrebutted. Kathleen Hall Jamieson
The storm through we have passed has been tremendous indeed. The tough sides of our Argosie have been thoroughly tried. Her strength has stood the waves into which she was steered, with a view to sink her. We shall put her on her republican tack, & she will now show by the beauty of her motion the skill of her builders. Thomas Jefferson
I was like a lamb that is led to the slaughter. Book of Jeremiah
If you have run with footmen and they have wearied you, then how can you contend with horses? Book of Jeremiah
[Asked if she campaigned:] No indeed ... I just go along ... and sit on the platform to show that I don't have a club foot. Lady Bird Johnson
We have to change. Lady Bird Johnson
Politicians must let voters know what they think about issues before the election. Judges should not. John Kyl
Extremism in the pursuit of the presidency is an unpardonable vice. Lyndon B. Johnson
History must only guess at the effect that television would have had during earlier conflicts over the future of the nation. Lyndon B. Johnson
No, I don't have any favorite opponent. It is not my duty to select my opposition. Lyndon B. Johnson
I hear you're losing Ohio, but we're doing fine in Pennsylvania. Lyndon B. Johnson
Alexandria has been chosen as the first stop for one of the greatest campaigners in America, and I am very proud to announce that I am her husband. Lyndon B. Johnson
You're losing in Ohio, but, don't worry, we're winning in Pennsylvania. Lyndon B. Johnson
Compliments of your Senator, Lyndon Baines Johnson—the greatest good for the greatest number. Lyndon B. Johnson
Think of the effect it would have if 2,000 of our best friends in the District had personal notes from you written at the rate of 25 a day for 60 days. I don’t know how you are going to find time to do all this and still take the people to lunch that I want you to take, and see the people in the evening that you must see, but I guess with your methodical planning you can work it out. Lyndon B. Johnson
Treating your adversary with respect is giving him an advantage to which he is not entitled. Samuel Johnson
If we promise as public officials, we must deliver. Barbara Jordan
Southern regional pride can be used to great advantage without unnecessarily alienating potential anti-Southern votes. Hamilton Jordan
I feel very uncomfortable supporting a political candidate from afar. Michael Jordan
If you would know the depth of meanness of human nature, you have got to be a prime minister running for a general election. John A. MacDonald
The old flag. The old policy. The old leader. John A. MacDonald
The injury done to a man ought to be such that vengeance cannot be feared. Niccolo Machiavelli
The day of billboard and bumper sticker elections is over. Kevin Mack
If you have sacred principles which you must defend, or certain credos which are sacred, please leave their defense until after the election. F. R. MacKinnon
If he makes out Pierce to be either a brave or a great man, then it will be the greatest work of fiction he ever wrote. Horace Mann
It’s attack advertising. It’s dirty tricks advertising. It’s dishonest and lowers the level of the political conversation. Burt Manning
Teflon breaks if you keep hitting hard enough. M. Boyd Marcus Jr.
For too long, politicians have been telling people what they want to hear. Majorie Margolies-Mezvinsky
I had my kids convinced it was a civics lesson rather than child abuse. Majorie Margolies-Mezvinsky
You've got to be prepared to lose before you can win. Majorie Margolies-Mezvinsky
Don't bother about the complicated details. The issue is hot. Edward Markey
If they're not voting, we're not touching their heads and hearts. Lynn Martin
Men are uncomfortable running against women because they've had so little experience doing it. Lynn Martin
There's nothing more exhilarating than being out on the campaign trail. Lynn Martin
Everyone wants a whack at the speech. Mary Matalin
Campaigns are not, and should not be, democratic processes. Otherwise nothing would ever get done. Mary Matalin
In a campaign, if the phone rings at 6 o'clock in the morning, it's not good news. Good news does not happen at 6 in the morning. Mary Matalin
You must have a rationale for your candidacy. Mary Matalin
You're not trying to win 100 percent of the vote. You're after 50 percent plus one. It doesn't matter if you tick off the other 49 percent. Mary Matalin
You've got to control the agenda. You've got to be on the offensive. Mary Matalin
It's not that people voted for me because I was an athlete, but what did help was that people knew my name.... The two Olympic gold medals were the most important contributions to my campaign fund. Bob Mathias
What does democracy come down to? The persuasive power of slogans invented by wily self-seeking politicians. W. Somerset Maugham
Challengers do not have a level playing field. John McCain
[Campaign life] demands a wife and family, ever faithful, ever admiring, ever at the side of the ideal husband and father. Abigail McCarthy
The First Law of Politics: Never say anything in a national campaign that anyone might remember. Eugene McCarthy
Illuminate choice. Michael D. McCurry
Never attack a politician through his children. Mary McGrory
I might as well put up a trapeze on my front lawn and compete with some professional athlete, as go out speaking against Bryan. William McKinley
The struggle, begun this morning upon the hustings of your old town, is not a struggle between two men—it is a struggle between two countries. On the one side, the side of the Whig candidate, hangs the red banner beneath which your senate has been sacked, your commerce has been wrecked, your nobility has been dishonored, your peasants have been starved. On the other side … floats the green flag beneath which your senate sat, your commerce thrived, your nobility honored, your peasants prospered. Thomas Francis Meagher
If he [Franklin Delano Roosevelt] became convinced tomorrow that coming out for cannibalism would get him the votes he so sorely needs, he would begin fattening a missionary on the White House backyard come Wednesday. H. L. Mencken
A national campaign is better than the best circus ever heard of, with a mass baptism [the convention] and a couple of hangings thrown in. It is better, even, than war. H. L. Mencken
The voice of the intelligence ... is drowned out by the roar of fear. It is ignored by the voice of desire. It is contradicted by the voice of shame. It is hissed away by hate, and extinguished by anger. Most of all it is silenced by ignorance. Karl A. Menninger
If I were the Archangel Gabriel, madam, I’m afraid you would not be in my constituency. Robert Menzies
Habitually I go without a vest so that I can’t be accused of standing for the vested interests. Aloysius Meyers
If you feel so strongly about it, why don't you make it an issue and run against me. Harvey Milk
Not only the candidate should not be required, he should not be permitted, to incur any but a limited and trifling expense for his election. John Stuart Mill
Another important consideration is the great mischief of unintermitted electioneering. When the highest dignity in the State is to be conferred by popular election once in every few years, the whole intervening time is spent in what is virtually a canvass. President, ministers, chiefs of parties, and their followers, are all electioneerers: the whole community is kept intent on the mere personalities of politics, and every public question is discussed and decided with less reference to its merits than to its expected bearing on the presidential election. John Stuart Mill
A campaign appearance is judged much like that of an actor. Is the performance persuasive? Not what is said, and I find that too bad. Arthur Miller
Every American knows that political campaigns are too long and too expensive. George J. Mitchell
I work every day like I was running for re-election and the race was tight. That's the only way I know how. That's what my mother taught me. Rose Mofford
Anybody who says negative commercials are wrong and shouldn't be used doesn't know anything about politics. The fact is people respond to those commercials. Guy V. Molinari
In order to implement your convictions you must win. Walter F. Mondale
Mr. Reagan will raise taxes and so will I. He won't tell you. I just did. Walter F. Mondale
Doing my job well is the best way to campaign. Constance A. Morella
Demagoguery from the pulpit is no different from demagoguery on the campaign trail. If anything, it is worse, because it clothes itself in self-righteousness. Robert B. Morgan
waving the bloody shirt Oliver Perry Morton
Everyone runs on an education platform. We have Education Presidents and Education Governors and Education Dog Catchers, but the dollars never match the rhetoric. Carol Moseley-Braun
Politicians are waving the diaper as often as they wave the flag. Bill Moyers
Television has become the primary precinct of politics. Bill Moyers
It's been proven with consistency. The only way to win [municipal elections] is to walk. You have to like going out and pressing the flesh and placing yourself at risk. Ron Mullin
Sink all partisanship—America first. Charles Murphy
... in these elections of 1970, something has gone wrong. There has been name-calling and deception of almost unprecedented volume. Honorable men have been slandered. Faithful servants of the country have had their motives questioned and their patriotism doubted.... The danger from this assault is not that a few more Democrats might be defeated—the country can survive that. The true danger is that the American people will have been deprived of that public debate, that opportunity for fair judgment, which is the heartbeat of the democratic process. And that is something the country cannot afford. Edmund S. Muskie
Theodore Roosevelt is the ablest living interpreter of what I would call the superficial public sentiment of a given time, and he is spontaneous in his reactions to it. Robert M. La Follette
Do after election as before election you said you would. Fiorello H. La Guardia
I ring 8,000 to 10,000 doorbells every time I run. Louis LaPolla
I'm not stiff. I'm normal. It's not normal to walk down the street shaking hands with five thousand people. Ronald Lauder
Campaigning is uncomfortable when you start. James Madison Leach
Issue definition implies the possibility of offending various constituency or interest groups—but if you don't offend them, you'll offend the body politic. James Madison Leach
I've never been able to look someone in the eye and say, "Can you give me $500. James Madison Leach
We elect people who are good at getting elected rather than good at representing. James Madison Leach
You've got to lose a few [elections] before you learn what the American system is all about. James Madison Leach
First we pin the convict's badge on him: then we examine his case. Vladimir Lenin
First, he demands votes; second, he asks for votes; third, he begs for them; fourth, he weeps for them. Sol Levitan
Candidates talk about issues that voters want to hear about. Ann F. Lewis
No amount of promises to the needy at election time will make the wrong policies rights; nor would lessen the enormous price we have to pay for them. David Lewis
The politics of character tend to drive out the politics of substance. Judith Lichtenberg
Gemstone G. Gordon Liddy
I’ll use prostitutes to go out and seduce … high campaign officials. G. Gordon Liddy
Campaigns are partisan. Governing should not be partisan. Joseph I. Lieberman
Today, as some of us weep for what could have been, we look to the future with faith that on another morning joy will surely come. Joseph I. Lieberman
In a political contest, the use of some [money] is both right, and indispensable. Abraham Lincoln
I leave it to my audience. If I had another face, do you think I would wear this one? Abraham Lincoln
It has been my purpose, since I have been placed in my present position, to make no speeches. Abraham Lincoln
Stand with anybody that stands right. Stand with him while he is right and part with him when he goes wrong. Abraham Lincoln
We should give full and efficient protection to the rights of all classes of citizens, whether native or naturalized, both at home and abroad. Abraham Lincoln
I would despise myself if I thought that I was procuring your votes by concealing my opinions, and by avowing one set of principles in one part of the state and a different set in another. Abraham Lincoln
I am not a candidate for renomination or election. Abraham Lincoln
I cannot run the political machine. I have enough on my hands without that. It is the people's business. Abraham Lincoln
If we stand firm, we shall not fail. Abraham Lincoln
If you would win a man to your cause, first convince him that you are his sincere friend. Abraham Lincoln
In politics, you ask the rich for money, the poor for votes, and ask each of them to believe you. Abraham Lincoln
In the absence of formal written platforms, the antecedents of candidates become their platforms. On just such platforms all our earlier and better Presidents were elected. Abraham Lincoln
It seems exceedingly probable that this Administration will not be re-elected. Then it will be my duty to cooperate with the President-elect, as to save the Union between the election and the inauguration, as he will have secured his election on such ground that he cannot possibly save it afterward. Abraham Lincoln
I think too much reliance is placed in noisy demonstrations, importing speakers from a distance and the like. They excite prejudice and close the avenues to sober reason. The "home production" principle in my judgment is the best. Abraham Lincoln
We [Republicans] have to fight this battle [against slavery] upon principle alone, so I hope those with whom I am surrounded have principle enough to nerve themselves for the task, and leave nothing undone that can fairly be done to bring about the right result. Abraham Lincoln
You suggest that a visit to the place of my nativity [Kentucky] might be pleasant to me. Indeed it would. But would it be safe? Would not the people lynch me? Abraham Lincoln
The election of any man avowing the principles of Mr. Jefferson would ... destroy religion, introduce immorality and loosen all the bonds of society. William Linn
Fotball strategy does not originate in a scrimmage. It is useless to expect solutions in a political campaign. Walter Lippmann
There is always more spirit in attack than in defense. Livy
What I've had to do is divide my time between black churches and white garden clubs. I want to be Atlanta's mayor, but I would also like to be Georgia's governor or senator. I can't be that without white support. Michael L. Lomax
For me, a few hours ago, this campaign came to an end. For all those whose cares have been our concern, the work goes on, the cause endures, the hope still lives, and the dream shall never die. Edward M. Kennedy
Do you know what is going to happen to Bobby? The same thing that happened to Jack. Jacqueline Kennedy
I’m not criticizing Richard Nixon except to say that he’s a conservative. John F. Kennedy
So young and so wrong. John F. Kennedy
The New Generation Offers a Leader John F. Kennedy
We’re going to sell Jack like soap flakes. There are no accidents in politics. Joseph P. Kennedy
Painfully often the legislation our politicians pass is designed less to solve problems than to protect the politicians from defeat in our never-ending election campaigns. They are … too frightened of us to govern. Anthony King
The promises of yesterday are the taxes of today. Mackenzie King
[Describing a presidential campaign:] A three year diet of rubber chicken and occasional crow. Charles Krauthammer
When you run a campaign the idea is not to appeal to pundits but to appeal to people. Charles Krauthammer
Keep the ball rolling Anonymous
Public [campaign] financing and free television time are the things that will diminish the high influence that money has on politics. John Edwards
If the American people are going to choose you to be their President, they’re entitled to know an awful lot about you. John Edwards
A little too late, is much too late. German Proverb
Yesterday's promise, like tomorrow's never comes. German Proverb
We judge ourselves by what we feel capable of, while others judge us by what we have already done. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
All of our freedoms – All of the time. Aaron Russo
Billboards paid for by the government, which feature the exploits or image of any candidate should not appear within 90 days before an election Paul Simon
In my campaign, people and their needs come before everything else. Paul Simon
Almost one-fourth of our children are living in poverty. No other western industrialized nation has anything close to that figure. This is not an act of God. There is no divine intervention that says children in America have to live in poverty more than children in Italy, or Denmark, or Great Britain, or Canada, or other western industrialized nations. It a result of flawed policy. It is a result of policy that panders to those who make campaign contributions rather than to needs Paul Simon
I never heard of these bulls and encyclicals and books. Alfred E. Smith
A whiter, brighter Rhodesia Ian Smith
The reason I lost the Governor’s race to Patterson is that I was out niggered. No one is ever going to out nigger me again. George C. Wallace
Part of politics is redundancy. You’ve got to say the same thing over and over even if you get tired of it…not everyone has heard it. Barack Obama
Ozone Man George W. Bush
Friends, I will disown and repudiate any man of my party who attacks with … vile, foul slander and abuse any opponents of another party. Theodore Roosevelt
I saw my father march with Martin Luther King Mitt Romney
We have to understand how we would act if some other country did to us what we do to them. Ronald E. Paul
The president lost the popular vote but won the election by litigation. David Inglesius
Leaders need to be optimists. Rudy Guliani
We've learned how to use the alternative media-political direct mail and talk radio and cable TV-to build our movement and convert more and more Americans to our cause. "Liberal" is now such an unpopular label with the American people that every liberal I know has run for cover and calls himself a "progressive. Richard A. Viguerie
I am very anxious and think it most important that you should always be surrounded with numbers Quintus Tullius Cicero
It confers a great reputation, and great distinction to be accompanied by those whom you have defended and saved in the law courts. Quintus Tullius Cicero
It often happens that people when they visit a number of candidates, and observe the one that pays special heed to their attentions, leave off visiting the others, and little by little become real supporters of this man. Quintus Tullius Cicero
Take pains to get on your side the young men of high rank, and keep the friendship of those whom you already have. They will contribute much to your political position. Quintus Tullius Cicero
Trace out also individuals in every region, inform yourself about them, seek them out, secure that in their own districts they shall canvas for you, and be, as it were, candidates in your interest. Quintus Tullius Cicero
You should be strenuous in seeing as many people as possible every day of every possible class and order, for from the mere numbers of these you can make a guess of the amount of support you will get on the balloting Quintus Tullius Cicero
God doesn’t speak to me at all. The only way we can live with each other is to have a civil society that is really civil. Barack Obama
The problem with smear campaigns is that too often they work Mark Shields
He survived politically for forty years. No matter what the issue was, it did not concern him. He knew that if he could call a man’s name in a crowd, shake hands with him and ask him about his wife and children, whose names were also in the little book, he had that man’s vote. William Allan White
[Campaign] Promises forecast governance. Kathleen Hall Jamieson
I Did Not Vote For That Son of a Bush Anonymous
Our country is in danger, not only from foreign enemies, but from our own policies. Robert Kennedy
In a close election no one is going to pass up an opportunity to mix politics with a little sex. Carlos Watson
Backbiting and second guessing are endemic to losing campaigns. Mark Shields
Euphemisms are worrisome… Presidential words matter… Kathleen Hall Jamieson
Every moment wasted looking back prevents us from moving forward. Hillary Clinton
There are no acceptable limits and no acceptable prejudices in the 21st century. Hillary Clinton
We have just carried an election on principles fairly stated to the people. Now we are told in advance, the government shall be broken up, unless we surrender to those we have beaten, before we take the offices. Abraham Lincoln
… were I president of the United States, by the voice of a virtuous people, I would honor the old paths of the venerated fathers of freedom; I would walk in the tracks of the illustrious patriots. who carried the ark of the government upon their shoulders with an eye single to the glory of the people and when that people petitioned to abolish slavery in the slave states, I would use all honorable means to have their prayers granted; and give liberty to the captive; Joseph Smith, Jr.
It's a bumper sticker culture. People have to get it like that, and if they don't, if it takes three seconds to make them understand, you're off their radar screen. Lawrence Lessig
The Republicans are much better at negative ads than we are. But we have the 24 hour rule. If they hit you, you get your response on the media within 24 hours. Charles E. Schumer
Saying is one thing and doing is another. Michel de Montaigne
I campaign all the time. Stephanie Tubbs Jones
Would America ever elect a woman President? We won’t know until we try. Hillary Clinton
Candidates for president are always leery of war, but presidents are also Commanders in Chief and have a different perspective…. Presidents are more martial and candidates more peace-loving. Carl Cannon
To Stop the Duke, Go for the Gold. Anonymous
People who live in glass dude ranches should not question the patriotism of real soldiers who fought and bled for this country on a real battlefield. Jim Webb
Those of you who believe that the nigger is your equal and ought to be on the same plane as the white have a perfect right to believe that and vote for Mr. Lincoln. Abraham Lincoln
You cannot limit this country by boundary lines. Stephen Douglas
It’s the people verses the special interests and I’m going to fight this out till the end. Harry S Truman
No socialist system can be formed without some form of political police – a Gestapo Winston Churchill
In the long run, trade works for America. Fred Thompson
We live in a country that has shed more blood for the freedom of other people than all the rest of the world combined. Fred Thompson
The Constitution reminds us that the government that produces free people is one of divided power. Fred Thompson
If you tell people something often enough, they will believe it. Ray LaHood
You never had it so good. Democratic Party
Citizens are refined, cultivated, and very political. I believe in the legitimacy of their participation. Segolene Royal
We learned early that when dirty campaign tactics are used against you, you respond, pivot and then deck them. Connie Schultz
Attired in white, with socialism as bait they set out on a cynical sport… vote hunting. Secularism as fig-leaf, the political bed-switching begins. Gigolos blush. Randeep Wadehra
No person…, being a candidate or standing for election to any magistracy … in order to seek such magistracy, or during the year in which he is a candidate, or stands for or intends to stand for such magistracy with malice aforethought shall provide entertainments, or invite any person to dinner, or hold or provide a banquet, or with malice aforethought cause another person to hold a banquet or invite any person to dinner with a view to his candidature, but, nevertheless, the said candidate himself, who is seeking a magistracy, may invite, if he so desires, without malicious intent, during the said year daily any persons not exceeding nine. No candidate seeking office shall, with malice aforethought, give or make largess of any gift or present or any other thing with a view to his candidature. Nor any person, with a view to the candidature of another, shall provide entertainments, or invite any person to dinner, or hold a banquet, or, with malice aforethought, give or make largess of any gift or present or any other thing… Marc Antony
The president refuses to say… refuses to say that the objective over there is victory. Barry Goldwater
We Don’t Want A Prostitute in the White House Anonymous
During a political campaign everyone is concerned with what a candidate will do on this or that question if he is elected except the candidate; he's too busy wondering what he'll do if he isn't elected Everett Dirksen
Campaigns consume you. Karen Hughes
The ball game; it had to be the ball game. Ralph Nader
Any political leader who tolerates political terrorism as a legitimate tool for his political campaign—is a terrorist. Milos Zeman
Handshaking is friendly until your hands bleed. Confetti looks festive until you’re forced to spit out mouthfuls hurled directly into your face. Applause is wonderful until you can hardly hear yourself speak. A crush of screaming women is flattering until they tear your clothes. Ralph G. Martin
We love the blather and boast, the charge and countercharge of campaigning. Governing is a tougher deal. Hugh Sidey
Howard Dean is just like that reel-to-reel tape in Mission Impossible. He gave the party its instructions and then self-destructed. Eric Alterman
In campaigns we concentrate on the differences [between the candidates.] Howard Dean
Whenever the economy is bad, the economy is the only issue. Mark Shields
Kentucky has a strong separationist constitution, but Kentucky politicians and the general public have been terribly remiss by ignoring those provisions. The state also has religious groups wanting public money and politicians wanting the votes of religious people, which makes for strong temptations on both sides. Paul D. Simmons
For President: Convict No. 5693 Eugene V. Debs
Don't talk of what you're "going to do!" Do it! William Morris Hunt
I desire the undisguised opinion of some experienced and sagacious Pennsylvania politician, as to how the vote of that state, for governor, and president, is likely to go. In casting about for such a man, I have settled upon you; and I shall be much obliged if you will write me at Springfield, Illinois. Abraham Lincoln
The president refuses to say… refuses to say that the objective over there is victory. Barry Goldwater
President James Buchanan's margin of victory in the election was fifty thousand dollars. Thurlow Weed
In campaigning, you want to slay your opponent. In governing, you want to make love to your opponent. Kenneth M. Duberstein
The politician who tries to ape his rival or predecessor is, almost by definition, a second rater, inferior to the real thing. Mungo Wentworth MacCallum
You can’t win a Presidential election in this country with just a base. Adam Nagourney
Upton Sinclair is a darn nice fellow, and just plum smart, and if he could deliver even some of the things he promises, should not only be governor of one state, but president of all of 'em. Will Rogers
The political innovation that produced the strongest impact was the manipulation of moving pictures. Alarmed by the Sinclair threat, MGM's Louis B. Mayer and Irving Thalberg produced fake newsreels, using Hollywood actors. W.R. Hearst helped distribute them. For the first time, the screen was used to demolish a candidate, a precursor of political attack ads on television. Greg Mitchell
The 1934 Republican response to the Upton Sinclair campaign for California Governor marked a stunning advance in the art of public relations, in which advertising men now believed they could sell or destroy political candidates as they sold one brand of soap and defamed its competitor. In another twenty years, these techniques would spread East, achieve a new refinement, and begin to dominate the politics of the nation. Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr.
You’ve never had a Presidential re-election that was so successful as the second George W. Bush term, but at what price governance? Christine Todd Whitman
The men who run the Eisenhower Administration evidently believe that the minds of Americans can be manipulated by shows, slogans and the arts of advertising. This idea that you can merchandise candidates for high office like breakfast cereal -- that you can gather votes like box tops -- is, I think, the ultimate indignity to the democratic process Adlai Stevenson
Never look past the next election, because if you do, you may not get past the next election. Bill Clinton
The Big Lie: Hitler Invented It. Stalin Perfected It. Nixon Uses It. Helen G Douglas
Choose to get ahead—not get even. Jesse Jackson
Make Him Spend It All Anonymous
Every candidate has to say ‘change’. That’s what the people expect. George W. Bush
Get them to sing your song, and then they will know who you are. Paul Robeson
Peace without surrender. Jack Kemp
I urge you to help me in my battle for Christian values. Randy Duke Cunningham
We’ve got $10,000 already … to make sure that your son does not get elected Randy Duke Cunningham
Every thing in Congress revolves around the campaign—to hell with the country. Ernest F. Hollings
The rich have all the speech they want; the poor have lockjaw. Ernest F. Hollings
The last I checked, this is an election, and in an election we play politics. Shannon F. Reeves
It’s a strange thing in American politics that everyone who runs for office in Washington, runs against Washington. William Press
We need you! Franklin D. Roosevelt
The spirit of ’76 is not dead, It has only been slumbering. The body of the American people is substantially republican .  But their virtuous feelings have been played on by some fact with more fiction; they have been the dupes of artful maneuvers, & made for a moment to be willing instruments in forging chains for themselves. Thomas Jefferson
When the economy is bad, the economy is the only issue. Mark Shields
Can’t you control your wife? Or are you like me? Robert Kennedy
I get sick ... not because of drink but because I am forced to listen to the ranting of my honourable opponent. John A. MacDonald
I am an enemy of racism Wendell Wilkie
Have patience awhile; slanders are not long-lived. Truth is the child of time; erelong she shall appear to vindicate thee. Immanuel Kant
No sane person with a life really wants to be a political activist. When activism is exciting, it tends to involve the risk of bodily harm or incarceration, and when it's safe, it is often tedious, dry, and boring. Activism tends to put one into contact with extremely unpleasant people, whether they are media interviewers, riot cops, or at times, your fellow activists. Not only that, it generates enormous feelings of frustration and rage, makes your throat sore from shouting, and hurts your feet. Miriam Simos; Starhawk
I am deeply disturbed by the senseless violence instigated by some leaders in pursuit of their personal political agenda. Mwai Kibaki
Politics is just like show business. You have a hell of an opening, coast for a while, and then have a hell of a close Ronald Reagan
The most dangerous untruths are truths moderately distorted. Georg C. Lichtenberg
People can choose between the sweet lie or the bitter truth. I say the bitter truth, but many people don't want to hear it. Avigdor Lieberman
We can't talk about community values without being prepared to invest in those very same communities. Joseph I. Lieberman
I must say I'm not very fond of oratory that's so full of energy it hasn't any room for facts. Sinclair Lewis
We're very poor because the sports ministry has not done enough. If elected, I will sit down with the federation and come up with plans that will turn our country into a football superpower. Ibrahim Lipumba
In running for Congress, you have to raise over $2 million. You are going to end up shaking hands with people with whom you would rather not shake hands. 95 percent of all the candidates with the most money, win. George Clooney
White people, wake up before it is too late. Do you want Negroes working beside you, your wife and your daughters, in your mills and factories? Frank Graham favors mingling of the races. Willis Smith
Seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses ... let us run with patience the race that is set before us. Book of Hebrews
Tough trade policies make good political fodder back home. Joel Hefley
Politicians reach high and stoop low to get elected. Unfortunately, there has been more stooping than reaching as of late. Robert Heilbroner
I have supported a great many who promised to do things that I thought ought to be done, who proved faithless to their promises. William Randolph Hearst
I will make the further pledge now that if I find that I cannot keep my pledges I will resign. William Randolph Hearst
Returned last night from Ohio Day at the Centennial. It was an enthusiastic and prodigious crowd which greeted me. I managed to shake some four thousand people by the hand and to make half a dozen speeches from steps, windows and roof of the Ohio Building, without saying anything I regret—without "slopping over. Rutherford B. Hayes
[McKinley] is on a stumping tour ... I criticized the bloody-shirt course of the canvass [campaign]. It seems to me it is bad "politics," and of no use.... An increasing number of people are interested in good relations with the South. Rutherford B. Hayes
An officer fit for duty who at this crisis would abandon his post to electioneer for a seat in Congress ought to be scalped. Rutherford B. Hayes
If you can't control these rumheads when you're their candidate, how the hell do you expect to control them if you become President? Wayne L. Hays
From the Jail House the White House. Eugene V. Debs
There's nothing in politics that's worse than being caught unaware. Mark Hatfield
The duty of the church is to march to the ballot box, an army of Christ, with the banners of the cross, and deposit, as she can, a million votes for her true representative … Gilbert Haven
Let's stick together, let's see it through. Robert Hawke
I knew that my staying up would not change the result if I were defeated, while if elected I had a hard day ahead of me. Benjamin Harrison
Cheer up everybody. This is no life and death affair. I am very happy here in Indianapolis and will continue to be if not elected. Benjamin Harrison
It is increasingly difficult to run a campaign of substance in an atmosphere which increasingly focuses on personality. Gary Hart
I have a great risk of meeting a fool at home, but the candidate who travels cannot escape him. Benjamin Harrison
John, I need for you to write an editorial urging me to run for the State Senate. Fred R. Harris
You have to have a system that vets everything that comes out of a candidate’s mouth. Ed Rollins
We drew to a pair of deuces and filled. Warren G. Harding
Don't read our lips. Read our record. Tom Harkin
... erred in relying so much on the rectitude and utility of their measures as to have neglected the cultivation of popular favor by fair and justifiable expedients. Alexander Hamilton
You sell your candidates and your programs the way a business sells its products. Leonard Hall
If I am nominated [for the presidency], I will not run. If I am elected, I will not serve. But if you beg me, I just might reconsider. Alexander Haig
In the 1972 election campaign the citizen would be the victim of the most sophisticated sales blizzard ever inflicted on any voting population anywhere. John W. Gardner
For every jail that Mr. Nixon would build, Mr. Humphrey would also build a house. For every policeman Mr. Wallace would hire, Mr. Humphrey would also hire a good teacher. Tony Schwartz
Americans no longer gather in the streets to hear candidates; television is the new focal point of politics. H. R. Haldeman
Without television, Richard Nixon would not have a chance. He would not have a prayer of being elected because the press would not let him get through to the people. Frank J. Shakespeare
The Senator’s objections to “legislating morality,” his criticisms of the Supreme Court, and his advocacy of “states’ rights” all became the shorthand for an anti-civil rights appeal -- and were clearly understood as such by voters in the North and South Ripon Society
I’d cut down government spending and I’d move to keep down the size of government, too. Barry Goldwater
The Republican party is the peace party because we understand the enemy We seek peace for everyone in this land and this world The Republican party, this party of peace through strength, has no clearer message. Peace has no greater hope Barry Goldwater
Democratic (campaign) commercials subjected American citizens to the most uncouth mental torture. Thruston Ballard Morton
Do you know what people used to do? They used to explode atomic bombs in the air. Now children should have lots of Vitamin A and Calcium, but they shouldn’t have any Strontium 90 or Cesium 137. These things come from atomic bombs and they’re radioactive. They can make you die. Do you know what people finally did? They got together and signed a nuclear test ban treaty and then the radioactive poison started to go away. But now, there’s a man who wants to be president of the United States and he doesn’t like the treaty. He fought against it, even voted against it. Anonymous
… the most famous ad produced in the history of political television Kathleen Hall Jamieson
In politics, you have a one-day sale. You have every customer allowed in the store for one or two minutes on that day, and you have to sell a majority or plurality of the market or you are out of business. Tony Schwartz
If I should lose on the real issues, I shall return to my seat in the Senate satisfied that I tried my best and was fairly judged. But if this election was decided on the basis that forty million Americans lost their chance of being President on the day they were baptized, then it is the whole nation that will be the loser in the eyes of Catholics and non-Catholics around the world, in the eyes of history and in the eyes of our own people. John F. Kennedy
Can freedom be maintained under the most severe attack it has ever known? I think it can be. And I think in the final analysis it depends upon what we do here. John F. Kennedy
The men who run the Eisenhower Administration evidently believe that the minds of Americans can be manipulated by shows, slogans and the arts of advertising … The men who run the Eisenhower Administration evidently believe that the minds of Americans can be manipulated by shows, slogans and the arts of advertising Adlai Stevenson
The public relations phases of this campaign call for the same careful planning and strategy as you and your staff employed in setting up the invasion of Normandy, and the same careful planning that we, in our business, employ in order to insure the successful introduction to the public of a new product or service Sigurd S. Larmon
During the last 20 years the advent of radio changed all the old rules of political campaigning( Now the successful advent of television, available for the first time this year in a presidential campaign, must again influence the planning of the campaign Sigurd S. Larmon
I stand for expanded Social Security and more real benefits. Believe me, sir, if I’m president, I’ll give you older folks action not just sympathy. Dwight D. Eisenhower
On election eve, [Thomas E.] Dewey conducted an eighteen-hour “talkathon” which ... also featured questions phoned in by callers from across the state. Bernard Benjamin Yamron
You can’t have people make you what you are not. You can have advisers and political consultants, but at the end of the day, you are who you are. Jon Huntsman, Jr.
If somebody asks me where I stand, I tell them. And that's not a way to get elected, generally. Nobody's going to elect me president of the United States. What I'd like to do is to be able to influence the dialogue. I'm a citizen Michael Bloomberg
Political campaigns are designedly made into emotional orgies which endeavor to distract attention from the real issues involved, and they actually paralyze what slight powers of cerebration man can normally muster. James Harvey Robinson
Political language -- and with variations this is true of all political parties, from Conservatives to Anarchists -- is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind. George Orwell Blair
If we got one-tenth of what was promised to us in these acceptance speeches there wouldn't be any inducement to go to heaven. Will Rogers
The 40% tariff on cotton finished goods meant that the manufacturer actually invades your barns, and plunders you of 40 out of every 100 bales that you produce. George McDuffie
Political debates, which are considered central to modern American political campaigns, appear useless as they put pressure on each candidate to put on some sort of act, to show in an impossibly brief time a superior, distinctive personality and command of the issues; the debates therefore are…fake Elizabeth Drew
It was not until late in the month of August that I received from the Government directors an official report establishing beyond question that this great and powerful institution had been actively engaged in attempting to influence the elections of the public officers by means of its money…. Not only was the evidence complete as to the past application of the money and power of the bank to electioneering purposes, but that the resolution of the board of directors authorized the same course to be pursued in future… It was established by unquestionable proof that the Bank of the United States was converted into a permanent electioneering engine…. the efforts of the bank to control public opinion … are equally apparent, and, if possible, more objectionable. Andrew Jackson
I don’t think that you have to run down someone’s reputation in order to run for the Presidency. Jon Huntsman, Jr.
“I’m going to stop crime in the streets.” A president is pressured to make that promise even though a President can’t do anything about street crime. Alice Rivlin
Part of his ride was to warn the British that were already there. Sarah Palin
People are always using the past for political purposes…. If they do, they should at least do their homework. l Daniel K. Richter
We followed you before and you took us on the road to defeat. Everett Dirksen
The spree of big money campaigning—and the corruption that goes with it—seems guaranteed to worsen …. Campaign money handlers will keep pushing the limits wherever and however they can—and the integrity of our electoral system will pay the price. New York Times
I love my country, but I love my country more. Mitch Daniels
Vilifying members of other political parties is a puerile exercise. Richard Harris
When you can’t sell the man, sell the plan. Anonymous
I don’t remember the name of the last opponent I have had. Charles B. Rangel
[Referring to election campaigns:] The partisan strife in which the people of the country are permitted to periodically engage does not tend to the development of ugly traits of character, but merely discloses those that preexist. Ambrose Bierce
To win [elections] in this country these days you've got to campaign down to a 13-year-old's level of mental development. Willie Brown
I’ll be with you until the last dog dies. Bill Clinton
One of the reasons I am running for Governor is to make sure that every child in Arkansas has a chance to go to kindergarten. Bill Clinton
Satan has set his sights on the United States of America. If you were Satan who would you attack? Rick Santorum
Look at those Republican [Presidential Primary Nomination] debates. I feel embarrassed as an American when I hear them orate. Zbigniew Brzezinski
To frame an issue is to reduce it to a story for which there is only one possible outcome Geoffrey Nunberg
Van Buren Van Buren deserves the hottest place in Hell Van Buren Anonymous
This race has degenerated into an onslaught of negative and personal attacks, not worthy of the American people and not worthy of this critical time in our nation’s history. Jon Huntsman, Jr.
I am not a politician. A politician is someone who does things to get elected. He's a guy who says things to please the public, that he thinks the public wants to hear, and his story changes with every passing day. I want to be elected, but I am not going to say a damn thing for your benefit, or that person's benefit out there on the street, or anybody's Julius W. Hobson Jr.
I’m always amused by politicians running against Washington, when they desperately want to get to Washington. Gwen Ifill
Money does not always win elections. Usually it does however. Bill Maher
Lying is particularly prevalent in democratic states, where leaders need the support of the citizenry in order to execute their policies. Joe Keohane
One of the advantages of no longer running for public office is that I don’t have to pretend to be nice to people I dislike. Barney Frank
We have to keep the old man’s money coming into the campaign but keep him out of it. John F. Kennedy
Willkie stood head and shoulders above all the others. If his party had permitted him to act independently, he might possibly even have rivaled my husband's New Deal, or President Truman's Fair Deal, in an effort to give the people what he felt they were entitled to have. His defeat, I believe, was largely due to the fact that many people realized how well organized and conservative was the backbone of the Republican party and did not dare trust him at that time to meet the complicated problems arising which might call for the courage to use new and untried methods. Eleanor Roosevelt
The Republican high command thinks that Henry Wallace will take so many votes away from the Democrats, and so little from the Republicans, that it does not matter what the Republican Party does. Victory will be theirs, they assure themselves. When any political party gets this feeling, it is time for that party to beware. Eleanor Roosevelt
The more you have in print, the more they can use it against you. Sharron Angle
I’m really not concerned about the very poor. They have a safety net. Mitt Romney
It is hard to oppose an ideology with a tradition. Theodore Dalrymple; Anthony Daniels
Candidates in primary campaigns always say they are in it to the end until they quit. Candy Crowley
What succeeds best politically does not always do so policy wise and vice versa. William Galston
In the campaign of 1890 she made speeches so full of fiery eloquence, of righteous wrath, and fierce denunciation of the oppressors, that she became the delight of the people of the new party and the detestation of the followers of the old. Seldom, if ever, was a woman so vilified and so misrepresented by malignant newspaper attacks. A woman of other quality would have sunk under the avalanche. She was quite competent to cope with all that was visited upon her. Indeed, the abuse did her much service. The people but loved her the more for the enemies she made. Her chiefest distinguishing gift is her powerful voice; deep and resonant, its effect is startling and controlling. Her speeches are philippics. She hurls sentences as Jove hurled thunderbolts. Annie LaPorte Diggs
All that is needed to make us the finest race on Earth is to engraft upon us the negro element, which Providence has placed by our side on this continent.... The white people of America are dying for want of fresh blood . . . until church and state and society recognize not only the propriety but the necessity of the marriage of white and black.... in short, until the great truth shall be declared in our public documents and announced in the messages of our Presidents, that it is desirable that the white man shall marry the black woman and the white woman the black man. David. G. Croly
Unfortunately when we get to the “debates” as we all know these are never debates. There are questions where there is never a follow up, where you ask a question and I the candidate give an answer that has nothing to do with your question, and then we go on and somebody else asks the other person and back and forth. It is not just the fault of the candidates. We tend to have to have a simple short answer to complex problems for the sound byte requirements of modern journalism and perhaps the education levels of the average citizen. Complex problems can’t be reduced to that. Michael Bloomberg
You don't have to be a career politician to serve in public office. You don't have to be well-connected. You don't even have to be a Democrat or a Republican. You can stand on your own two feet and speak your mind, because if people like where you're coming from, they will vote you in. The will of the people is still the most powerful force in our government. Jesse Ventura
Does success, a clean record and experience count for anything in Milwaukee? Daniel Webster Hoan
The number one rule of today's marketing – the key secret of those who seek to control your beliefs and habits in order to take your money, your votes, your time or whatever else it is they desire from you – is to always keep in mind that nobody really believes they can be manipulated. Brian W. Vaszily
I think politicians and movie actors … are similar in more ways than they’re different. There is an egocentric quality about both; there is a very sensitive awareness of the public attitude, because you live or die on public favor or disfavor. There is the desire for publicity and for acclaim, because, again, that’s part of your life... And in a strange and bizarre way, when movie actors come to Washington, they’re absolutely fascinated by the politicians. And when the politicians go to Hollywood, they’re absolutely fascinated by the movie stars. It’s a kind of reciprocity of affection by people who both recognize in a sense they’re in the same racket. Jack Valenti
You never can say too much in praise of your country and its inhabitants. Two nations in Europe are really almost ridiculous in their own exaggerated praises of themselves; these are the English and the French. Leopold II
Any officer fit for duty who at this crisis would abandon his post to electioneer for a seat in Congress, ought to be scalped. Rutherford B. Hayes
A candidate could easily commit political suicide if he were to come up with an unconventional thought during a presidential tour. E. B. White
I personally am deeply distressed that there has been so much talk about religion in this campaign …. Adlai Stevenson
War is never a good environment in which to run. Karl Rove
I don't believe in anti-anything. A man has to have a program; you have to be for something, otherwise you will never get anywhere. Harry S Truman
It isn't important who is ahead at one time or another in either an election or horse race. It's the horse that comes in first at the finish line that counts. Harry S Truman
If you want to see me again, don't bring signs saying "Trudeau is a pig" and don't bring signs that he hustles women, because I won't talk to you. I didn't get into politics to be insulted. And don't throw wheat at me either. If you don't stop that, I'll kick you right in the ass Pierre Trudeau
Had some inscrutable decree of fate ordained and made it certain, with a certainty not to be disturbed, that no candidate could be returned to Parliament who would not assert the earth to be triangular, there would rise immediately a clamorous assertion of triangularity among political aspirants. The test would be innocent. Candidates have swallowed, and daily do swallow, many a worse one. As might be this doctrine of a great triangle, so is the doctrine of Home Rule. Anthony Trollope
I court not the votes of the fickle mob. Horace; Quintus Horatius
Elections are not about solving anything. Elections are about winning. Mike Murphy
I’m don’t remember what I said, but whatever I said, I stand behind it. Mitt Romney
The Governor has been as blind, deaf and dumb as Tammany Hall could wish him to be. Charles Henry Tuttle
Never affirm anything unless you are sure it is true Teresa of Avila
I’m running for Governor so that all our children can go to kindergarten. Bill Clinton
By exploiting envy and fear, politicians can portray themselves as the saviors and protectors of the public — doing and saying whatever is necessary to gain the support needed to remain in power. Lawrence M. Ludlow
…the bad judgment which is going on in the campaign is beyond all words, but the people of the country are in a humor where they don’t want to hear any reason…They want a change, and I think they are going to get it… Henry L. Stimson
…a very dangerous and contrary man … I would never see him alone. Herbert Hoover
When a man hears himself somewhat misrepresented, it provokes him—at least, I find it so with myself; but when misrepresentation becomes very gross and palpable, it is more apt to amuse him. Abraham Lincoln
Mr. Lincoln has not character enough for integrity and truth. Stephen Douglas
Having formed this new party for the benefit of deserters from Whiggery, and deserters from Democracy, and having laid down the Abolition platform which I have read, Lincoln now takes his stand and proclaims his Abolition doctrines Stephen Douglas
Advertising isn't a science. It's persuasion. And persuasion is an art. William Bernbach
… no government, so called, can reasonably be trusted for a moment, or reasonably be supposed to have honest purposes in view, any longer than it depends wholly upon voluntary support Lysander Spooner
The history of the world shows us that men are not to be counted by their numbers, but by the fire and vigor of their passions Sydney Smith
Winners celebrate and losers mobilize. William Galston
I intend to do what little one man can do to awaken the public conscience, and in the meantime I am not frightened by your menaces. I am not a giant physically; I shrink from pain and filth and vermin and foul air, like any other man of refinement; also, I freely admit, when I see a line of a hundred policeman with drawn revolvers flung across a street to keep anyone from coming onto private property to hear my feeble voice, I am somewhat disturbed in my nerves. But I have a conscience and a religious faith, and I know that our liberties were not won without suffering, and may be lost again through our cowardice. I intend to do my duty to my country. Upton Sinclair
I will improve the economy. At least, I think I can. Chen Shui-bian
To address crowds and make promises does not require very much brains Eduard Shevardnadze
We live in a world where people don't all have the same scruples, where all blows can be given, and where, in order to down somebody, all means can be used. Nothing will lead me astray from the path that I have chosen. Nicolas Sarkozy
We must not say every mistake is a foolish one. Marcus Tullius Cicero
When you’re responding, you’re losing. Mitt Romney
This election is not about me. It is about you. Barack Obama
If you do not define yourself, your opponent will do it for you. Mitt Romney
As the age of television progresses, the Reagans will be the rule, not the exception. To be perfect for television is all a President has to be these days. Gore Vidal
Every senator I know would like to be President. The question is do they want to run to be President. John McCain
Don’t fear this campaign, my fellow Republicans, join it. John McCain
I do not question people’s motives in politics. I think we do too much of that. John McCain
Nothing in life is more exhilarating than fighting for something larger than you. John McCain
For too long we have let history outrun our government’s ability to keep up with it. John McCain
Presidential nomination debates have turned into mud wrestling instead of expositions of the candidates’ views. John McCain
I do not intend to step aside at anyone's request. John F. Kennedy
The congressional leadership is never in a hurry to go home and campaign. They all have safe seats. Lee H. Hamilton
He's in this race until hell freezes over! Florence Harding
Our government should not make promises we cannot keep. And we must keep the promises we have already made. Barack Obama
In the art of governing you have to almost make love to your opponents and say “No” to some of your fiercest supporters. In campaigning it’s the exact opposite. Kenneth M. Duberstein
Whoever controls the question determines the answer. Frank Luntz
Voters will not give you a chance to solve their problems if they think you don’t understand them. Frank Luntz
Mr. Jefferson's Congo Harem Anonymous
A falsehood, to have its full and lasting effect, must contain a fraction of a grain of truth. James Parton
That product of the human intelligence which we denominate the Campaign Lie, though it did not originate in the United States, has here attained a development unknown in other lands. It is the destiny of America to try all experiments and exhaust all follies. In the short space of seventy-seven years, we have exhausted the efficiency of falsehood uttered to keep a man out of office. James Parton
I’ll whip his ass! Jimmy Carter
The tone of a portion of the press of the country toward public men, and especially toward political opponents, is degrading, all forms of coarse and noisy slander being apparently considered legitimate weapons to employ against men of the opposite party or faction. Theodore Roosevelt
This election is not about Obama. It’s about your Mama. Al Sharpton
You keep on trying to airbrush history. Barack Obama
Anarchists know that a long period of education must precede any great fundamental change in society, hence they do not believe in vote begging, nor political campaigns, but rather in the development of self-thinking individuals. Lucy E. Parsons
I think the boy [Richard Nixon] should be attacked, but frontally, not obliquely. . . . Reference was made to lampoons and satires in times past. What we did not discuss was whether they were successful. Did Swift ever win an election? . . . The more I think of it the less convinced I am that it is a good, meaning effectual, plan at all. We need direct attacks-- kidney punch zingers, like “Nixon plays both sides of the gutter” or “Part Boy Scout and part scorpion” … All of these are dirty, but as I said, the man who tries Queensberry against gutter fighting is going to get the hell kicked out of him. John Steinbeck
I have never seen a poll elect anyone Roland Martin
The difference between a horse race and a political race is that in a horse race the whole horse runs. Patricia Schroeder
Not everything I say is elegant. Mitt Romney
Perhaps the Romney campaign should invest in a muzzle for its candidate. It might even be tax-deductible! Nicholas Kristof
If something is not immediately and vigorously denied, and is repeated over and over again, it becomes a fact because it ends up on Google. Anita Dunn
Romney is pretending to be something he is not. He is renting the Republican party in order to fulfill his ambition of being President. The Republican party is renting Romney in order to fulfill its ambition of beating Barack Obama. Thomas Friedman
You didn’t elect me to tell you what you wanted to hear. You elected me to tell you the truth. Barack Obama
Take two taxcuts, roll back some regulations, and call me in the morning. Barack Obama
Champion of White Men's Rule and Woman's Virtue Benjamin Ryan Tillman
You’ve got to give him one thing. A guy has to have some brass for attacking someone for what he did himself. Bill Clinton
Democracy does not have to be a blood sport … Bill Clinton
Start a small business, borrow money from your parents if you have to. Mitt Romney
As a politician, you can run from your problems or run toward your problems. John King
We are becoming too much of a gaff-centric political culture. Jon Huntsman, Jr.
People really don’t care if politicians attack each other with untrue stories. They figure if you don’t want to get hurt, you shouldn’t have filed for office. They figure whatever happens to us, our lives will be better than theirs. Bill Clinton
When I am abroad I always make it a rule never to criticize or attack the Government of my country. I make up for lost time when I am at home. Winston Churchill
...to make a pledge of any kind is to declare war against nature; for a pledge is a chain that is always clanking and reminding the wearer of it that he is not a free man. Mark Twain
Get your facts first, and then you can distort them as much as you please. Mark Twain
If we would learn what the human race really is at bottom, we need only observe it in election times. Mark Twain
There is no character, howsoever good and fine, but it can be destroyed by ridicule Mark Twain
People will forget almost any slander except one that's been fought. Booth Tarkington
No man, for any considerable period, can wear one face to himself and another to the multitude, without finally getting bewildered as to which may be the true. Nathaniel Hawthorne
I’ll be down there pressing the flesh. Lyndon B. Johnson
As societies grow decadent, the language grows decadent, too. Words are used to disguise, not to illuminate, action … Words are to confuse, so that at election time people will solemnly vote against their own interests. Gore Vidal
I’ll do my best but I can’t promise anything. t Jun-Jun Sotto
Demographics are changing and we have to change, not necessarily our core believes, but the tone of our message and the intensity… . Long term, conservative principles if they are to be successful and implemented there has to be a concerted effort to reach out to a much broader audience than we do today. Jeb Bush
When you are not running for office, the people in the party listen to you more. Jeb Bush
Well, I think you hit a reset button for the fall campaign. Everything changes. It’s almost like an Etch A Sketch. You can kind of shake it up and restart all over again. Eric Fehrnstrom
Precisely because our political speeches are meant to be reported, they are not worth reporting. Precisely because they are carefully designed to be read, nobody reads them. Gilbert K. Chesterton
Paul Ryan gave a fact free speech. Debbie Wasserman Schultz
All right, there are 47 percent who are with him [President Obama], who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them… These are people who pay no income tax…. My job is not to worry about those people. I'll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives. Mitt Romney
We’re not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact-checkers. Neil Newhouse
One of Mitt Romney’s spokespeople said, “we will not be dictated to by the fact checkers”. What that really means is “we will not be dictated to by the facts.” But the changing demographics is a fact. The Republicans may not compromise with the Democrats, but they are going to have to compromise with reality. Martin Amis
Do Nothing Congress Harry S Truman
Politicians are the only people in the world who create problems and then campaign against them. Charlie Reese
A typical vice of American politics — the avoidance of saying anything real on real issues, and the announcement of radical policies with much sound and fury, and at the same time with a cautious accompaniment of weasel phrases each of which sucks the meat out of the preceding statement. Theodore Roosevelt
Be sincere, be brief, be seated. Franklin D. Roosevelt
Repetition often becomes fact. Tom Daschle
John McCain may pay hundreds of dollars for his shoes, but we're the ones who will pay for his flip-flops. William B. Richardson
I saw Mr. Lincoln a number of times during the canvass for his second election. The characteristic which struck me most was his superabundance of common sense. His power of managing men, of deciding and avoiding difficult questions, surpassed that of any man I ever met. Chauncey Depew
I just wish that he had just one time run for dog catcher. Sam Rayburn
It is indeed a law of politics as well as of physics, that a body in action must overcome a body at rest. Fisher Ames
Truth is a very powerful political weapon against those who are trying to conceal it. Margaret Thatcher
Labour Isn’t Working Margaret Thatcher
I’ll put the “Great” back into Great Britain Margaret Thatcher
I come from the heart of America. Dwight D. Eisenhower
There was no secrecy about the ambitions of the Nazis. The Nazis themselves advertised them in innumerable books and pamphlets, and in every issue of their numerous newspapers and periodicals. Nobody can reproach the Nazis with having concocted their plots clandestinely. He who had ears to hear and eyes to see could not help but know all about their aspirations. Ludwig von Mises
People want to cut the childish political posturing. With the problems facing the country, our campaigns have become an embarrassment to democracy. John Edward Porter
I actually did vote for the $87 billion before I voted against it. John Kerry
If you’re the majority party, you want to use dollars to buy votes. Ideology is not relevant. David Brooks
Democracy in the United States takes politicians who are reasonable in private and it churns them through a public process that is almost tailor-made to undermine their virtues. Perpetually kissing up to the voters destroys the leadership qualities the voters are looking for in the first place: tranquility of spirit, independence of mind and a sensitivity to the contours and complexity of reality. David Brooks
Mudslinging – In politics, anything bad the opponent says about our candidate; in contrast, when our candidate does this, it is called 'making a good point. Rich Turner
Television has supplanted people as the only audience that campaigners are interested in. Lynn Sherr
Criticism of the sexual rectitude of politicians first surfaced as a regular part of American public life in the acrimonious milieu of the 1780s and 1790s. During those transitional decades ... older notions of deference and reticence began to recede. In their place emerged a fierce brand of political combat that regarded personal morality as a legitimate field of battle. John H. Summers
I shall ask you to be as quiet as possible, I don’t know if you fully understand that I have just been shot. But it takes more than that to kill a Bull Moose. Theodore Roosevelt
It is very dangerous for a government, judge or jury to determine what is deceptive advertising in a political context…. We pay a price for freedom of speech, and that price includes falsehoods that can be repeated thousands of time. Floyd Abrams
A [Presidential] candidate, confident of winning or sure of losing a bare majority of a state’s popular vote has no reason to expend resources there. Adam Liptak
Each of the participants [in a Presidential Debate] has a major objective and a minor one, in addition, of course, to appearing presidential. The major one is to get his messages across even if the questions don’t ask for them. The minor one is to avoid seeming unresponsive. That is why you will see the debaters answer some of the questions quickly, leaving time for what the candidate wants to talk about. Michael I. Sovern
A candidate challenging an incumbent president has the advantage [in a debate]. The president of the United States is an awesome figure. Merely to share the platform with him on equal terms is to gain in stature: a good performance will be judged even better. Michael I. Sovern
Claire McCaskill acted more ladylike during her previous campaign. Todd Akin
If it's a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down. Todd Akin
… because … gerrymandering makes the districts less competitive, candidates are freed to pander to their bases while ignoring moderate and independent voters. More ever, politicians who do not pander face primary challenges from ideologically purer candidates. Nolan Matthew McCarty
Of their serious presidential candidates, and even of their presidents, Americans demand constant reassurance that their country, their achievements and their values are extraordinary. Scott Shane
How far would [a] truth-telling candidate get? Nowhere fast. Such a candidate is, in fact, all but unimaginable in our political culture. Scott Shane
I think there’s more of a tendency now than in the past to avoid discussion of serious problems. It has a pernicious effect on our politics and on governing, because to govern, you need a mandate. And you don’t get a mandate if you don’t say what you’re going to do. Allan Lichtman
Champion of the People’s Rights Samuel J. Tilden
I was a partisan attack dog. There’s a lot of things that went down that I feel terrible about. Joseph Steffan
The world of messaging is the world of campaign consultants, of politicians, who are like trained seals who are given their message and then they perform. I’m not into that. Edmund G. Brown Jr.
We can’t go on pretending to Americans that we can have everything. John Kerry
Today’s cabinet members are yesterday’s board members … I am running for President to eliminate this kind of crony capitalism. John Kerry
Do not run a campaign that would embarrass your mother. Robert Byrd
I had been given some training in my past CIA career to do just this sort of thing ... floating forged newspaper accounts, telegrams, that sort of thing. E. Howard Hunt
You can pander, but you've got to do it in a way that doesn't seem like pandering. Jack Germond
Mo Udall wanted to run for president [in 1976] in the worst way ... and he did. David Broder
No people ever recognize their dictator in advance. He never stands for election on the platform of dictatorship. He always represents himself as the instrument — the Incorporated National Will. ... When our dictator turns up, you can depend on it that he will be one of the boys, and he will stand for everything traditionally American Dorothy Thompson
Sometime between elections we should concentrate on doing something. Thomas S. Foley
You don’t address their brains. You address their hearts. Nelson Mandela
It is difficult for people to listen to you about taxes and government if they believe you want to deport their grandmother. Marco Rubio
The tactics and strategy of every Presidential election campaign is most influenced by the previous Presidential election. Stan Salett
This stands as an election in which only one side understood that the message and the messenger have to adjust to the world as it is. Howell Raines
If you’re one of the more than 250 million who already have health insurance, you will keep your insurance. Barack Obama
It’s a good thing in politics that candidates run against each other; otherwise no one would win. Alex Castellanos
If you can’t fit your argument on a bumper sticker, you’ve lost the debate. James P. Moran
If we should see ladies attending conventions, traveling about the country in great carts drawn by many yoke of oxen, waving their pocket handkerchiefs to assembled multitudes, it would greatly shock our sensibilities. Lydia Drake
We’re going to send Mr. Obama home back to Kenya. Mark Meadows
They can not go from door to door and not directly contact other people's lives. Their sympathy and understanding is bringing I believe, a new note into political life and is going to have a more far-reaching effect upon the policies of governments, than any of us realize. Eleanor Roosevelt
All [political] headquarters make these little mistakes … I was particularly interested to receive this, however, because it has such a startling heading, a quotation from Lincoln's Gettysburg Address: "That this nation [...] shall not perish from the earth." The inference of course, is that there is a possibility that the nation will perish if one of the candidates in the present campaign is elected! Eleanor Roosevelt
Campaign trains always give me a little feeling of a busy factory, because so many people are busily engaged in turning out ideas to meet different situations as they arrive. If you sit in the President's car and see streams of people go by and hear him ask the inevitable questions:—"How are things in your state; did the drought do much harm; what are you people counting on to help you in your recovery", and then see him picking up everybody's ideas, discarding some, remolding some into his own speeches, you realize that you are really watching an idea factory at work, through which the American people get a picture of the President's thinking, his character, and his plans for the future. Eleanor Roosevelt
I didn’t think that I would ever get elected. After all, you don’t vote for somebody who is attacking Santa Claus. Ronald E. Paul
India’s democracy has dissolved into … a system totally dominated by electoral victories and defeats. The moment you enter office, you begin to think of the next election. Ashis Nandy
It wouldn’t hurt to remind the voters of what scoundrels your opponents are and to smear them at every opportunity…. Quintus Tullius Cicero
If you break a promise, the outcome is uncertain and the number of people affected is small. But if you refuse to make a promise, the result is certain and produces immediate anger in a larger number of voters.. Quintus Tullius Cicero
You should not make specific pledges either to the Senate or to the People. Stick to vague generalities. Quintus Tullius Cicero
A candidate must be like a chameleon, adapting to each person he meets, changing his expression and speech as necessary…. Tell the Senate that you will maintain their traditional powers and privileges. Let the business community and the wealthy citizens know that you are for stability and peace. Assure the common people that you have always been on their side. Quintus Tullius Cicero
Promise everything to anyone, unless clear obligation prevents it. Only live up to those promises which are of advantage to you. Lucius Aurelius Cotta
It will help your campaign tremendously to have the energy of young people on your side to canvas voters, gain supporters, spread news, and make you look good. Quintus Tullius Cicero
You should pay special attention to … businessmen and moderately wealthy citizens. Get to know the leading members of these groups which should not be difficult as they are not great in number. Quintus Tullius Cicero
Voters will judge you on what sort of crowd you draw [when making public appearances] both in quality and numbers. Quintus Tullius Cicero
You must diligently cultivate relationships with … men of privilege. Both you and your supporters should work to convince them that you have always been a traditionalist. Never let them think that you are a populist. Quintus Tullius Cicero
There are laws against threats and intimidation; and harsh criticism, short of unlawful action, is a price our people have traditionally been willing to pay for self-governance. Requiring people to stand up in public for their political acts fosters civic courage, without which democracy is doomed. For my part, I do not look forward to a society which ... campaigns anonymously … and even exercises the direct democracy of initiative and referendum hidden from public scrutiny and protected from the accountability of criticism. This does not resemble the Home of the Brave. Antonin Scalia
We need more spending on elections. Most people don’t even know who their congressman is—don’t even know the name or their party… [There] is a lack of relevant information. James Bopp Jr.
Most of these people habitually led rather gray lives. And they came to see the president much as they would have come to see the circus. It was something to talk over and remember and tell their children about. But I think that besides the mere curiosity there was good feeling behind it all, a feeling that the president was their man and symbolized their government, and that they had a proprietary interest in him and wished to see him and that they hoped he embodied their aspirations and their best thoughts. Theodore Roosevelt
The people have nominated you without any pledges or engagements of any sort … and they want you to do nothing at present but allow yourself to be elected…. Make no speeches, write no letters as a candidate, enter into no pledges, make no promises. William Cullen Bryant
[Presidential] Campaigns are like an MRI for the soul. Whoever you are, eventually people find out. David Axelrod
The reach of the individual campaigner doesn’t add up to diddly-squat in votes. H. R. Haldeman
The Presidency is not an office to be either solicited or declined. William Jones Lowndes
Abolish Poverty Indira Gandhi
Information that is gathered and managed in secret is a potent weapon – and the temptation to use it in political combat … can be irresistible. Max Frankel
It’s the Vietnam Flu. It lasts for most of the year and goes away two weeks before election day. Johnny Carson
Increasingly, campaigns treat the fact-checkers not as arbitrators who must be heeded, but as participants in the ever-roiling political tussle. David Corn
Even when they’re winning, they can’t stop spinning. Arianna Huffington
Many people hardly ever see a politician as a person anymore. Instead, a politician is a shadow they watch on television, not knowing whether he is speaking impromptu or reading a text written for him by anonymous advisers or experts from a screen hidden behind the cameras. Citizens no longer perceive their politician as a living human being, for they never have and will never see him that way. They see only his image, created for them by TV, radio and newspaper commentators. It also happens, rather often, that politicians do not actually talk to each other but only to one another's shadows as they appear in the media. Vaclav Havel
Elections are won ... chiefly because most people vote against somebody rather than for somebody. Franklin P. Adams
There is not alternative to speechwriters. You can’t run for president and write your own speeches. John Kenneth Galbraith
No wonder Americans hate politics when, year in and year out, they hear politicians make promises that won't come true because they don't even mean them -- campaign fantasies that win elections but don't get nations moving again. Bill Clinton
This planet is run by crazy people. Remember what they have to do to get where they are. Their perspective is so narrow, so...brief. A few years. In the best of them a few decades. They care only about the time they are in power.. Carl Sagan
That is the best case for [George W.] Bush; that, among other things, he liberated Iraq. It is good enough for me. Boris Johnson
Voting Tory will cause your wife to have bigger breasts and increase your chances of owning a BMW M3. Boris Johnson
I would like to thank first the vast multitudes who voted against me - and I have met quite a few in the last nine months, not all of them entirely polite. Boris Johnson
People don’t care what you know until they know that you care. Ralph E. Reed Jr.
If we don’t win, we don’t govern. Chris Christie
Do I think I am being held to a different standard than a man who would be in this exact same race with the exact same story? Might be? Yes. But that’s reality. Wendy Davis
Great Schools. Great Texas Wendy Davis
This is my compass, my North Star, it gives me comfort and guidance to do what’s best for Arkansas. The Bible is not a rule book for political issues … everybody can see it differently Mark Pryor
If the United States really wanted to increase political diversity, it would provide the option for candidates to run with public funds. Jay R. Mandel
I chose to compromise my principles. I broke my promise to always tell the truth. John McCain
If you don’t do something for somebody, you are not going to win.. Dana Bash
Our political debate is about as exciting as a wet sponge. Geert Mak
If you are not willing to spill blood between elections, you’ll spill it on Election Day, and it’ll be yours. Gillis William Long
… the truth is Walter Mondale in 1984 had a perfectly unified campaign — every interest group was behind him …. In party politics, unity is very much overrated. Al From
Democratic politics—that is modern mass politics—is a battlefield in which the most important move is that which decides what the battle is about, what the issue is. Donald Sassoon
Frontlash Lyndon B. Johnson
In your guts, you know he’s nuts. Anonymous
My friends, in this country we are entitled to many viewpoints. You are entitled to yours, but right now, I am entitled to mine. Lady Bird Johnson
We shouldn’t use fear for political purposes—scaring people to death so that they will vote for you or scaring people to date so that we can create a terror-industrial complex. Colin Powell
Vote for Women – Vote Communist! Italian Communist Party
In a campaign, impressions can be much more important than facts and debate. Al Gore
I will rejoin the national debate …. America’s economic house is no longer in order. Al Gore
I’ve run for President twice. There are other ways to serve. Al Gore
You simply cannot ever refuse to be on the attack in a campaign. James Baker
We have to deal in 30 second sound bites. It's not your fault. It's not our fault. James Baker
I don't think its particularly smart [in a campaign] to spend your time responding to the other candidate. James Baker
Two forms of government are favorable to the prevalence of falsehood and deceit. Under a Despotism, men are false, treacherous, and deceitful through fear, like slaves dreading the lash. Under a Democracy they are so as a means of attaining popularity and office, and because of the greed for wealth. Albert Pike

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