Tracking TV Politics: 'The Living Room Candidate'

'Ike for President' screen grab

Ike liked TV: Dwight D. Eisenhower's 1952 presidential campaign was the first to use TV ads to troll for votes. This image was among that campaign's earliest. Museum of the Moving Image hide caption

itoggle caption Museum of the Moving Image

Starting in the '50s, TV became an indispensable tool in any presidential candidate's belt. David Schwartz, Chief Curator of Film at the Museum of the Moving Image, talks with Terry Gross about some of the earliest campaign ads — and the most influential ones.

Schwartz lectures in the cinema-studies program at New York's Purchase College, and he helped curate The Living Room Candidate, an online exhibition surveying campaign ads from 1952 through the present.

The project can be experienced online at, where ads from the current campaign season will be posted starting in September.



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