|Rachel Jackson, wife of Andrew Jackson**|
Just the other day, I stated here that I think it's disingenuous to constantly bemoan the state of political affairs between the two parties. I'm a leftist, basically, and I find the "middle of the road" desire for reasoned, temperate individuals to debate serious issues and find commonality by virtue of one's citizenship to be a farce, to tell you the truth. I'm not going to find common ground with anyone who believes the country should be run like a corporation, or that women shouldn't have the right to make choices about their fertility. I'm not going to shake the hand of anyone who believes homosexuality is evil or even that one must love the sinner and not the sin. I'm not sure I can be friends with someone who believes government is the root of all evil and we should be living like that grotesque character in Ayn Rand's libertarian The Fountainhead. If you're certain that God founded the United States of America and because of that, we're the greatest nation on earth, well, then, I'm going to fight you -- in words, that is, not with the mighty military or drones, but the only ability I have, as Faulkner said, in that tiny, inexhaustible voice. That's what I'm grateful for as an American citizen -- that I can fight like that, my rights assured -- at least for now.
The president, any president, should go negative early, often, and without apology if the goal is victory. The notion that negative campaigning is some toxic modern aberration in American democracy is bogus. No campaign may ever top the Andrew Jackson–John Quincy Adams race of 1828, in which Jackson was accused of murder, drunkenness, cockfighting, slave-trading, and, most delicious of all, cannibalism. His wife and his mother, for good measure, were branded a bigamist and a whore, respectively. (Jackson won nonetheless.)
Frank Rich, Nuke 'Em, in New York Magazine
** During the 1828 campaign for the Presidency, the attacks aimed at Rachel became even more vicious than before. Jackson successfully shielded her from all assaults until after his election, when she traveled alone to Nashville for a shopping trip in December of 1828. There she discovered a pamphlet brutally attacking her morals and ethics. She was so distressed by the accusations that she suffered a severe heart attack. Several days of illness later, she had another heart attack, which killed her. Read more about President Jackson's beloved Rachel here.