Focus: "Dirty Politics & Negative Campaigning: A Historical Perspective"

On this edition of FOCUS, Gary L. Knepp, local historian, author and an adjunct professor of American history and political science at the University of Cincinnati's Clermont College, talks about some of history’s most unusual tactics that have been used in an attempt to gain advantages over a political opponent.


Mr. Knepp takes us back through history with anecdotes about why Martin Van Buren was criticized for wearing silk underwear; why the 1840’s campaign involved huge balls of string being rolled across the country; the political origins of the word “booze;” a political rally in Batavia, Ohio that involved 10,000 people; the James Buchannan vote buying scandal; and the derogatory campaigning against Abraham Lincoln.



For additional information about Gary L. Knepp:




Funding for “Focus: Dirty Politics & Negative Campaigning” was generously provided by The Stephen H. Wilder Foundation.



27 minutes
Date Recorded: 
Location Recorded: 
CET Studios