Historically, has there ever been a general election in the U.S. like this where both (presumptive) nominees were so intensely disliked by significant percentages of their own parties?
Donald Trump is the most unpopular presidential candidate since the former head of the Ku Klux Klan • 2016 Mar 21 • Emily Guskin • The Fix • Washington Post
Americans’ Distaste For Both Trump And Clinton Is Record-Breaking • 2016 May 5 • Harry Enten • FiveThirtyEight
Why are our Presidential Choices the Most Hated Candidates in History? • 2016 May 12 • Carbonated.TV • HuffPost Politics
While obviously there won’t be any polling data prior to the advent of modern polling, I would think there’d be some primary sources documenting an election where both candidates where despised.
When I asked Google “historical presidential elections where both candidates were hated”, the closest it comes up with is the 1928 election between Herbert Hoover and Al Smith.
Hoover was machine-like and unlikable (the descriptions remind me of Al Gore) and he supported Prohibition. Al Smith was despised because he was Catholic. But Hoover still won in a landslide.
As an aside, it seems to presage the grotesque slander and dirty politics that is standard operating procedure of our current political system, though.
Dirty Campaigning in the Roaring Twenties: Herbert Hoover vs. Al Smith • 2008 Oct 17 • Joseph Cummins • Mental Floss