Political Name-calling Is Nothing New

By now, you've probably heard about President Obama cancelling a meeting with Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte because he called Obama, "son of a b**ch" on television.

Between this and the fact that Trump has built his campaign around insulting people, it seems like political discourse has hit a new low.

Except it hasn't.

Politicians have been slinging mud at each other since politics have been a thing. So, here are some of our favorite political burns throughout the centuries.

First up, the one and only Teddy Roosevelt. When speaking about President McKinley he said he had “no more backbone than a chocolate éclair,” which is just as funny as when Pat Buchanan said, “Bill Clinton's foreign policy experience is pretty much confined to having had breakfast once at the International House of Pancakes.”

Those are pretty tame compared to Thomas Jefferson, back in 1800, who called John Adams, “a blind, bald, crippled, toothless man who is a hideous hermaphroditic character with neither the force and fitness of a man, nor the gentleness and sensibility of a woman."

All the way back in the 1700s, John Montagu shouted to John Wilkes during an argument, “sir, I do not know whether you will die on the gallows or of the pox!” To which Wilkes replied, "that, sir, depends on whether I first embrace your Lordship's principles or your Lordship's mistresses.”

But the most baller of political insults might just be from Andrew Jackson who once said, “I have only two regrets: I didn't shoot Henry Clay and I didn't hang John C. Calhoun.” If the quote wasn't cold as-is, when you know John C. Calhoun was Jackson's own Vice President, the quote becomes legendary.

Political discourse has always been mean and dirty. The only thing that has changed is the language used.

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