Button, Eugene V. Debs, 1908

Button, Eugene V. Debs, 1908

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Socialist candidate Eugene V. Debs ran for president five times. During his third campaign in 1908, he gave a speech in Girard, Kansas that became one of his most famous and included these words: “When we are in partnership and have stopped clutching each other's throats, when we have stopped enslaving each other, we will stand together, hands clasped, and be friends. We will be comrades, we will be brothers, and we will begin the march to the grandest civilization the human race has ever known.” After this speech, an image of clasped hands was added to many of Debs’s campaign items. The Socialist finished a distant third in 1908, behind William Howard Taft, the victorious Republican candidate and William Jennings Bryan, the Democratic candidate who also lost for the third, and in his case last, time.
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Political Campaigns
See more items in
Government, Politics, and Reform
American Democracy: A Great Leap of Faith
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National Museum of American History
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