George S. McGovern

Richard M. Nixon

Electoral Count



Popular Vote



Key Terms: 1972 Election

  1. Chappaquiddick/Kennedy gone

  2. assassination attempt/Wallace gone
  3. CREEP and Watergate
  4. Liddy and Hunt/dirty tricks/Muskie gone
  5. the Eagleton debacle
  6. Kissinger: "peace is at hand"
  7. "the hippie candidate" McGovern
  8. American "withdrawal from Vietnam"
  9. Nixon visits Beijing and Moscow


Key Terms: Nixon Administration

Alger Hiss/HUAC
Checkers Speech
kitchen Debate
TV Debate/'60
New Nixon/'68
Buger Court
Secret Plan/Vietnam
Cambodia/Secret War
"Peace With Honor"
War Powers Act
China Card/détente/SALT I
wage and price freeze [Keyensian?]
Pentagon Papers/CREEP
Watergate/Creditability Gap

When McGovern spoke to the Gridiron Club in Washington after his calamitous defeat, he told the journalists: "Last year we opened the doors of the Democratic party, as we promised we would, and twenty million Democrats stalked out." He added: "For years, I wanted to run for President in the worst possible way-and I'm sure I did!"

Though most Democratic leaders pressed McGovern to drop Eagleton because he had been treated for mental illness, a few McGovernites took the issue lightly. "At least we know ours had treatment," said Georgia's Julian Bond. "What about theirs?"

Presidential Campaigns, Paul F. Boller, Jr., Oxford University Press, New York, 1984.