04 January 2012

A Clear Choice

Although in 2008 the candidates of both of the major parties (John McCain and Barak Obama) were both left handed, this year will be different. Although we do not yet know the Republican Party's nominee, Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum, Ron Paul, Rick Perry, Newt Gingrich and even Michelle Bachman are all right handed. U.S. voters will have a clear choice in 2012 between left-handed and right-handed nominees.

The Republicans, although seen as the party of the right, have more often than not put forth left-handed nominees for the office of President of the United States in recent decades. (See previous post.) Ronald Reagan, Gerald Ford, George H. W. Bush and John McCain were left handed. Bob Dole, although raised right handed, was rendered left handed by his war wounds. Only George W. Bush, of the recent Republican nominees, was right handed. He won, but only against other right-handed nominees. (See Wikipedia article.)

The Democratic Party has not leaned to the left in its recent nominees, but it has been more successful when it has. Jimmy Carter, Walter Mondale, and Michael Dukakis are right handed. Carter beat left-handed Gerald Ford, but lost to left-handed (or at least ambidextrous--he was forced to learn to use his right in childhood) Ronald Reagan. Mondale and Dukakis lost, both to left handers. The Democrats learned their lesson, and Bill Clinton won. But then they tried right handers Al Gore and John Kerry. They returned to winning form with left-handed Barak Obama.

Why do left-handers seem to have the edge in winning the U.S. presidency? If you think you know please comment.