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Top 10 Most Ballots at a Republican Presidential Convention


1. 36 ballots, James A. Garfield, 1880
U.S. Grant, seeking a third term as President, came in second to Garfield, who began picking up support on the 35th ballot.

2. 10 ballots, Warren G. Harding, 1920
Harding received only 61 and a half votes on the first ballot but eventually won on the final tally with 692 and one-fifth votes.

3. 8 ballots, Benjamin Harrison, 1888
Fourteen candidates vied for nomination. Harrison went on to defeat Democrat Grover Cleveland in the general election even though Cleveland won the popular vote.

4. 7 ballots, Rutherford B. Hayes, 1876
Sen. James G. Blaine of Maine led on the first six ballots before his rivals threw their support to Hayes.

5. 6 ballots, Wendell Willkie, 1940
Willkie was third on the first ballot, behind Thomas Dewey and Robert Taft.

6. 4 ballots, James G. Blaine, 1884
Blaine, a twenty-year veteran of Congress, finally secured the nomination on his third attempt, but he couldn’t defeat Democrat Grover Cleveland in the general election.

7. 3 ballots, Abraham Lincoln, 1860
New York Senator William H. Seward was the favorite going into the convention.

8. 3 ballots, Charles Evan Hughes, 1916
Supreme Court Justice Charles Evan Hughes won the nomination after beating back a challenge from former President Teddy Roosevelt.

9. 3 ballots, Thomas E Dewey, 1948
Dewey’s chief rival for the nomination was conservative favorite Sen. Robert A. Taft of Ohio.

10. 2 ballots, John C. Fremont, 1856
Army hero Fremont won the first presidential nomination of the new Republican Party.