Greater Prosperity Builder

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Text on Button Greater PROSPERITY BUILDER
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Black text on a gold background

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This button was for the 1940 U.S. presidential campaign of incumbent Franklin D. Roosevelt. Emphasizing "Greater" prosperity was in response to the "Prosperity Builder" slogan of Roosevelt's opponent, Wendell Willkie, as shown on the button above. A businessman from New York, Willkie campaigned against Roosevelt's New Deal programs as wasteful and ineffective in ending the Great Depression, and promoted better economic times if he were elected. Yet Willkie was hurt by being a symbol of big business, which many felt helped cause the economic crisis in the first place. Roosevelt won with 54.7% of the vote to Willkie's 44.8%, 449 electoral votes to 82.

Roosevelt became the second of only three U.S. presidents to win re-election with a lower percentage of both the electoral vote and the popular vote than in the previous election (James Madison in 1812 and Barack Obama in 2012 were the other two). Roosevelt continued his New Deal policies during his third term and won a fourth in 1944. Upon his death in April 1945, FDR  was succeeded by Vice President Harry S Truman.

Catalog ID PO0351