Top Ten Presidential Scandals
Nothing is better than a good scandal. Well maybe when it is a scandal that involves the leader of our free nation, which makes things a little more interesting.
According to Yahoo Voices, the top 10 scandals by a United States president are:
10. Woodrow Wilson’s Engagement
Wilson met Edith Galt just a few short months after his wife Ellen Louise Axson had passed, and by May they were engaged. In 1914, this was very scandalous. Rumors even started that Wilson murdered Axson so that he could marry Galt. Rumors are rumors and Wilson hadn’t even met Galt until after his wife had passed.
9. Grover Cleveland has an Illegitimate Son
In his first campaign in 1884, Cleveland stated that he had fathered an illegitimate child, ten years prior. Even with this, Cleveland was elected president and was even re-elected for a second term!
8. Andrew Jackson’s Secretary of War’s Marriage
John Henry Eaton had married a recently widowed woman named Margaret Timberlake. Problem is, Timberlake’s husband had committed suicide and on top of that, rumors started that the two were having an affair which caused Timberlake’s husband to commit suicide. Despite the rumors, Jackson supported Eaton and because of this almost all of Jackson’s cabinet resigned over the matter. Jackson’s vice president, John C. Calhoun, was also replaced in the second elected because of his lack of support. Jackson’s second term vice president was Martin Van Buren, who was also the only cabinet member to support the Eatons, thus gaining Jackson’s liking.
7. The Credit Mobilier Scandal
In 1867, several Republican congressmen were given and/or purchased below market prices in stock in the Credit Mobilier of America Company. This company was involved in the funding and construction of the Union Pacific Railroad. The congressmen, who were supporters of soon to be President Ulysses S. Grant, then granted a number of public subsidies and other gifts to the company to help themselves out. Another famous future president involved in the act was James A. Garfield.
6. Thomas Jefferson has an affair with his slave
In 1802, Jefferson was charged with having an affair with his slave, Sally Hemmings. On top of that, he even fathered a child with her. After denying the charges, Jefferson still remained president for the next 7 years. In 1998, the truth was shown with a DNA test that proved Jefferson was most likely the father of Hemmings’s children.
5. Ulysses S. Grant and the Whiskey Ring Scandal
Grant not only had the Whiskey Ring scandal happen during his presidency but he also had another scandal happen too. He is said to have the most corrupt presidency in history. The Whiskey Ring Scandal involved bribery and tax evasion. Many high ranking cabinet members, Grant’s private secretary, and whiskey distillers were involved. Due to this, William Belknap, secretary of war, was impeached. He resigned before he was convicted.
4. Iran-Contra Scandal
The Reagan administration was selling arms to Iran and using the profits to support the Contra rebels of Nicaragua. Congress had forbidden this. While Admiral John M. Poindexter and Lt. Colonel Oliver North were the targets of the scandal, they were convicted for their roles but later released on appeal. Fourteen other people were charged in the scandal.
3. The Teapot Dome Scandal
In 1921, Warren G. Harding transferred control of the naval oil reserve lands to the Department of Interior. Albert B. Fall, the Secretary of Interior, used this for his own personal gain. In return for bribes, he gave rights to the Teapot Dome in Wyoming to the Mammoth Oil Company. The Supreme Court eventually ruled this illegal. Even though Harding died in office, this is still something that plagues him even in the grave.
2. Bill Clinton’s affair with Monica Lewinsky
The second presidential impeachment in United States history belongs to Bill Clinton for his affair with his intern Monica Lewinsky. He was later acquitted of any crime. The Starr Report is one of the more comical and unusual documents in history, describing in detail the affair.
It all started with a break-in at the Democratic headquarters in the Watergate Hotel in Washington, D.C. Five members of Richard M. Nixon’s campaign were involved. Nixon was never involved in the break-in but he did cover it up. When it was discovered that Nixon knew about the break-in, it shocked the nation, obviously.