National Party Conventions 1831-2008 provides focused, detailed, and wide-ranging information on national party conventions, which have been a key element of the U.S. electoral process since the early nineteenth century. A comprehension of the history and evolving structure of the conventions is essential to understanding how presidential leaders are chosen in the United States. This reference presents a thorough examination of U.S. nominating conventions, including pre-convention politics, descriptions of the convention system, and in-depth information on specific conventions and political parties through the election of Barack Obama in 2008. A wide variety of information is provided for each convention, including important excerpts from party platforms, key ballots for presidential nominees, and significant votes on rules and delegate disputes. Additional chapters cover pre-convention history and presidential primaries with a biographical directory of party nominees and profiles of political parties. Those new to this topic will appreciate the clarity of presentation of National Party Conventions, and the broad scope of this reliable resource will satisfy the research needs of experienced scholars and professionals.