Nickname: Poppy

Years in office: 1989–1993

Political party: Republican

Birthday: June 12, 1924

Official presidential portrait of George Bush

by Herbert E. Abrams, 1994

Bush — Quayle, 1988 (Image from the Library of Congress)

This campaign poster is from the 1988 presidential election. The color is blue, but the elephant in the center signifies that these are the candidates for the Republican Party.

In the election of 1988, George Bush promised to build on the legacy of Ronald Reagan.  His opponent, Massachusetts governor Michael Dukakis, was the more liberal candidate. With debates, commercials, and t.v. coverage, this election is well-known for its famous soundbites and gaffes.  Bush assured, “Read my lips: no new taxes.”  The Dukakis campaign took a major hit when he was filmed in a tank with a helmet and smile.  And, Lloyd Bentsen famously told Dan Quayle, “Senator, you’re no Jack Kennedy,” after Quayle compared his record to that of Kennedy’s. Bush won the election with 79% of the electoral votes.

In the election of 1992, incumbent George H. W. Bush faced the Democratic governor of Arkansas, Bill Clinton. Both candidacies had their issues. Clinton had some personal indiscretions to overcome, and Bush broke his first term promise to not raise taxes. This election also had a strong third party candidate, Ross Perot. Perot won 19% of the popular vote, disproportionately affecting President Bush. In the end, Clinton won with 69% of the electoral votes.


Milton, MA


Kennebunkport, ME


College Station, TX


College Station, TX


Davis, Kenneth C., and Pedro Martin. Don’t Know Much about the Presidents. New York: HarperCollins Publishers, 2014.

DeGregorio, William A., and Aaron Jaffe. The Complete Book of U.S. Presidents. Fort Lee, NJ: Barricade Books, Inc., 2017.

Kane, Joseph Nathan, and Janet Podell. Facts about the Presidents: A Compilation of Biographical and Historical Information. New York: H.W. Wilson, 2009.


Encyclopedia Britannica, britannica.com

Library of Congress, loc.gov

Miller Center, University of Virginia, millercenter.org/the-presidency

The White House, whitehouse.gov

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