In the presidential election of 1820, James Monroe found himself riding a wave of popularity, what was known as the “era of good feeling.” He was so popular, in fact, that he almost unanimously swept the Electoral College.
Faithless Elector: But instead of receiving all 232 Electoral College votes, one New Hampshire elector, William Plumer, Sr., voted for John Quincy Adams instead, arguing that Monroe was incompetent. Plumer would be considered a “faithless elector” since he was originally pledged to support Monroe.
The Legend: A legend has grown up that Plumer’s reason for not voting for Monroe was so that only George Washington would have the honor of a unanimous win in the Electoral College.
Mike Purdy’s Presidential History Blog
© 2012 by Michael E. Purdy