Tagged: Martin Van Buren

LONG BEFORE C-SPAN

February 8th in history:

Strong Koppel

The U.S. has had three vice-presidents named Johnson. The first one was Richard Johnson, who served under President Martin Van Buren. Johnson was chosen for VP by the Senate on February 8th, 1837, when no candidate could get a majority in the Electoral College.

Lyndon Johnson was vice-president in the summer of 1963, when Ted Koppel began his journalism career as the youngest reporter ever hired by ABC Radio. Koppel was only 23 — born on February 8th, 1940.

Koppel was anchoring the late-night news show “Nightline” in 1984, the year actress Cecily Strong was born on this date.  At the time of her birth, Strong’s father was head of the Associated Press Capitol bureau in Springfield, Illinois.  Cecily co-anchored “Weekend Update” on “Saturday Night Live” for one season, and emceed the 2015 White House Correspondents Dinner.  She’s well-known for her SNL impersonation of First Lady Melania Trump, and her character “The Girl You Wish You Hadn’t Started a Conversation With at a Party.”

Actor Jack Lemmon played Chicago newspaper reporter Hildy Johnson in the 1974 movie remake of the play “The Front Page.” Lemmon was born on this day in 1925. He won Oscars for “Mister Roberts” and “Save the Tiger,” and is also known for his roles in “Some Like It Hot,” “Days of Wine and Roses,” and several movies with “Front Page” co-star Walter Matthau.

A session of the U.S. Senate was broadcast for the first time on the radio, on February 8th, 1978, during debate on a Panama Canal treaty.  And radio made its way into the White House for the first time on this day in 1922, when President Warren Harding brought the new invention into the mansion.

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THE ONE-TERMERS CLUB

December 5 in history:

George Washington became America’s first two-term president in 1792.  On December 5th that year, the Electoral College unanimously chose Washington to continue as president.  John Adams was re-elected as vice president.

Adams and his son, John Quincy, both were one-term presidents.  John Quincy Adams was voted out of the White House in 1828, but won a seat in the House of Representatives two years later.  He took office as a Congressman on December 5th, 1831.

J.Q. Adams served in the House under five presidents, including Martin Van Buren, born on this day in 1782.  Van Buren, also a one-term chief executive, was the first U.S. president born after 1776.

James K. Polk was Speaker of the House under President Van Buren.  Polk also became president for just one term, and is credited with setting off the California gold rush during his last months in office.  In his State of the Union message to Congress on December 5th, 1848, Polk announced that gold had been discovered in the California territory earlier that year, and he claimed that most male residents of the territory were busy searching for gold.