Running for Office: Candidates, Campaigns, and the Cartoons of Clifford Berryman

William Jennings Bryan: The Perpetual Candidate, 1860–1925

William Jennings Bryan was the Democratic nominee for President in 1896, 1900, and 1908, and lost all three elections. Despite his defeats, speculation continued to turn to Bryan as a possible candidate during nearly every Presidential election season.

"Mr. Bryan in 1899––‘I stand just where I stood three years ago!’" (undated)
In this cartoon William Jennings Bryan is shown staring through the White House fence contemplating a second run for President. Bryan had lost the 1896 election, and in 1899 he is standing in the same place––outside the gates of the White House looking in.

"So Near and Yet So Far!" May 13, 1908
This cartoon shows William Jennings Bryan attending a State Dinner at the White House hosted by departing President Theodore Roosevelt. Bryan is shown looking longingly at the Presidential chair while Roosevelt tries to guide the fixated Bryan back to the dining area. The teddy bear is shown commenting on Bryan’s Presidential dreams.

Please Note: Additional images for media use are available from the National Archives Public Affairs staff, call 202-357-5300.

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