Inside views of presidential candidate anxiety. By Elizabeth Mitchell

John F. Kennedy tracking election results in Hyannis Port, Mass., on morning of Nov. 9, 1960, the day after vote but before Nixon conceded. (Image taken from the book “The Kennedy Years,” Viking Press.) Credit: Jacques Lowe

Election night cooks up a unique tension. The result means the victory of one person. But it also holds sway over people around the globe. In few instances does the outcome of an event profoundly change one individual’s life while altering the fate of millions.

So how have presidential candidates absorbed that high-stakes moment? Their responses are often not what you would expect. On election night 1864, Lincoln waited to hear if he would secure a second term. After more than forty months of Civil War carnage and many hundreds of thousands of casualties, the American people went to the…

Elizabeth Mitchell

Elizabeth Mitchell is a journalist and author of LINCOLN’S LIE: A True Civil War Caper Through Fake News, Wall Street and the White House (Oct 2020)

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