James Madison Inaugurated as President of the United States of America

In the United States presidential election of 1808, the Democratic-Republican candidate James Madison defeated Federalist candidate Charles Cotesworth Pinckney.

Madison had served as United States Secretary of State under incumbent Thomas Jefferson, and Pinckney had been the unsuccessful Federalist candidate in the election of 1804.

Sitting Vice President George Clinton, who had served under Thomas Jefferson, was also a candidate for President, garnering six electoral votes from a wing of the Democratic-Republican Party that disapproved of James Madison.

This election was the first of only two instances in American history in which a new President would be selected but the incumbent Vice President would continue to serve. (The re-election of John C. Calhoun in 1828 was the other instance.)

It would prove to be the last election in which Virginia dominated the electoral college; after the Congressional reapportionment following the 1810 census, New York would have the most electoral votes for the first time, and continued to have the most votes until 1972.