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McGovern, George (1922–)

George Stanley McGovern served as a U.S. representative (1957–1961) and senator from South Dakota (1963–1981) and was the Democratic nominee for president in 1972 against Richard M. Nixon. McGovern secured 38% of the popular vote to Nixon's 61%, winning only 17 electoral votes to Nixon's 520. Although the famous Watergate break-in scandal occurred during this campaign, the investigations leading to Nixon's implication in the scheme and his eventual resignation did not occur until after the campaign was over. McGovern never reaped the benefits of Nixon's wrongdoing. He also conducted unsuccessful campaigns for the Democratic presidential nomination in 1968 and 1984.

McGovern's 1972 campaign was characterized by an emphasis on the primary system, controversy over his choice for vice president, and antiwar themes. The campaign was managed ...

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