46 episodes

On February 10th, 1796, Vice President John Adams wrote to his wife Abigail, lamenting the state of discourse in the country. The election was nearing—and becoming heated. Newspapers screamed, factions warred, and John Adams was dismayed with what he called “the wicked Game.”

Americans in 2023 can relate. They still have to endure months of shouting, outrage, and the worst sort of political rancor as the country once again chooses its president.

But it’s almost always been this way. And to prove it, American Elections: Wicked Game will review the entire history of presidential elections, from the unanimous and inevitable election of George Washington in 1789 to Donald Trump’s surprise electoral victory in 2016—and his contested defeat in 2020.

From the host of the American History Tellers and American Scandal, this podcast will explore all 59 presidential elections to discover that there never never was a “good ol’ days,” and that presidential politics has always been played dirty.

American Elections: Wicked Game Airship

    • History
    • 4.7 • 3.1K Ratings

On February 10th, 1796, Vice President John Adams wrote to his wife Abigail, lamenting the state of discourse in the country. The election was nearing—and becoming heated. Newspapers screamed, factions warred, and John Adams was dismayed with what he called “the wicked Game.”

Americans in 2023 can relate. They still have to endure months of shouting, outrage, and the worst sort of political rancor as the country once again chooses its president.

But it’s almost always been this way. And to prove it, American Elections: Wicked Game will review the entire history of presidential elections, from the unanimous and inevitable election of George Washington in 1789 to Donald Trump’s surprise electoral victory in 2016—and his contested defeat in 2020.

From the host of the American History Tellers and American Scandal, this podcast will explore all 59 presidential elections to discover that there never never was a “good ol’ days,” and that presidential politics has always been played dirty.

    1960, Nixon vs. Kennedy: Behind the Curtain

    1960, Nixon vs. Kennedy: Behind the Curtain

    Democrat John F. Kennedy and Republican Richard Nixon fight for the White House on new technological turf: the rise of television sets the stage for an unprecedented campaign defined by race, religion and dirty tricks. But on the campaign trail, “Tricky Dick” Nixon meets his match in John F. Kennedy’s relentless brother, Bobby Kennedy. 
    ***
    To listen to the entire series—all 59 episodes—right now and ad-free, become a subscriber at IntoHistory.com, a channel of history podcasts made just for history lovers like you. Enjoy ad-free listening, early releases, bonus content and more, only available at IntoHistory.com.
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    • 47 min
    1956, Stevenson vs. Eisenhower: A Chance for Peace

    1956, Stevenson vs. Eisenhower: A Chance for Peace

    In the run up to the 1956 contest, Ike battles severe health issues, an intensifying Cold War and enemies in the Democratic party. But his greatest struggle during the campaign isn’t with Adlai Stevenson and the Democrats, it’s with his Secretary of State: John Foster Dulles. The conflict between these two political titans comes to a head in the middle of a contentious domestic election largely defined by foreign affairs. 
    ***
    To listen to the entire series—all 59 episodes—right now and ad-free, become a subscriber at IntoHistory.com, a channel of history podcasts made just for history lovers like you. Enjoy ad-free listening, early releases, bonus content and more, only available at IntoHistory.com.
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

    • 44 min
    1952, Stevenson vs. Eisenhower: The Fund Crisis

    1952, Stevenson vs. Eisenhower: The Fund Crisis

    Dwight “Ike” Eisenhower takes on a determined Democratic party united behind the popular Illinois governor, Adlai Stevenson. But in the run up to the 1952 contest, Ike’s biggest cross to bear is not the Democrats; it’s a member of his own party. As Ike defies the Republican establishment and fights for the White House on his own terms, he does his best to reign in his Vice President; a political power house named Richard Nixon.
    ***
    To listen to the entire series—all 59 episodes—right now and ad-free, become a subscriber at IntoHistory.com, a channel of history podcasts made just for history lovers like you. Enjoy ad-free listening, early releases, bonus content and more, only available at IntoHistory.com.
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

    • 47 min
    1948, Dewey vs. Truman: The Gangbuster

    1948, Dewey vs. Truman: The Gangbuster

    In the wake of World War II, as President Truman fights to establish a new peace, Republican Governor Thomas Dewey gears up for a second run at the White House. As Truman strives to fulfill Franklin D. Roosevelt’s progressive legacy with his “Fair Deal” for America, Dewey tries to capitalize on a growing anti-Truman sentiment brewing all across the nation.
    ***
    To listen to the entire series—all 59 episodes—right now and ad-free, become a subscriber at IntoHistory.com, a channel of history podcasts made just for history lovers like you. Enjoy ad-free listening, early releases, bonus content and more, only available at IntoHistory.com.
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

    • 44 min
    1944, Dewey vs. Roosevelt: The Last Stand

    1944, Dewey vs. Roosevelt: The Last Stand

    As World War II rages on, FDR is in the political fight of his life against a young political newcomer, Republican Thomas Dewey. Riding the wave of Republican gains in the 1942 midterms, the youthful, fresh-faced Dewey attacks the tired old man in the White House by promising to bring about a swift end to the war.
    ***
    To listen to the entire series—all 59 episodes—right now and ad-free, become a subscriber at IntoHistory.com, a channel of history podcasts made just for history lovers like you. Enjoy ad-free listening, early releases, bonus content and more, only available at IntoHistory.com.
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

    • 49 min
    1940, Willkie vs. Roosevelt: Storm on the Horizon

    1940, Willkie vs. Roosevelt: Storm on the Horizon

    Against the backdrop of World War II, FDR’s position of neutrality is threatened as he seeks to become the first president to serve three terms in office. To win the White House in the 1940 contest, FDR must get the best of business tycoon Wendell Willkie, a former Democrat and an affable political outsider with an axe to grind.
    ***
    To listen to the entire series—all 59 episodes—right now and ad-free, become a subscriber at IntoHistory.com, a channel of history podcasts made just for history lovers like you. Enjoy ad-free listening, early releases, bonus content and more, only available at IntoHistory.com.
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

    • 48 min

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5
3.1K Ratings

3.1K Ratings

Zeegha ,

Lindsay Graham Does it Again!

I’ve been listening to Mr. Graham’s podcasts (American History Tellers & American Scandal) for several years and thoroughly enjoy them. Just discovered this one about American elections. And it’s as well done as the other 2, thank-you, Lindsay!

MKG# ,

Fantastic!

Listened to this the first time during the last election cycle. Love revisiting it now.

erin_sue ,

So Close

I was so excited to listen to this. Truly. It was so close to being an awesome podcast - giving perspective on past elections and political history is so valuable and important… but listening to the first episode was a bummer and made me not want to continue.
The sensationalized narrative and political bias toward President Trump and those that support him was disappointing. Felt like the same old mainstream media echo chamber.

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