In the long history of presidential campaigns, it was a relatively brief period, stretching from 1976 to 1992, but during any one of the four elections in that period which saw a new person thrust into the White House, by Election Day each of them had become inextricably linked to one identifiable, easily portable snack food.
Salty, sweet, fattening, or low-calorie, it was no New Deal or Camelot, no New Beginning or Great Society, but rather a delicious moment in time largely forgotten as, “The Presidential Campaign Snack Era.”
Simply by virtue of the fact that the most colorful aspect of Jimmy Carter’s biography was that he owned a Georgia peanut farm, the media covering him in 1976 rarely failed to associate him with the legume (it isn’t a nut, in fact). Inheriting the property after his father’s 1953 death, Jimmy Carter decided to increase the acreage of peanut crop and peanut seed, which he sold along with a variety of agricultural supplies. The entire enterprise, known as “the Carter Warehouse” proved successful.
Campaign photographs showing Carter in the fresh air of the open green fields, or shoveling peanuts into a storage container in his warehouse would create a distinct link in the public imagination between the candidate and the “healthy fat” snack which has the highest protein content of any nut or legume.
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