The United States of America has existed for over 200 years, and due to it being a Democracy, has had many possible candidates for its presidency. Your challenge is to make the most original idea for a president of the USA possible, I'll start with my own idea:

Elbridge Gerry would become close friends with Thomas Jefferson during the Revolutionary War, eventually becoming one of the early members of the Democratic-Republican Party after its creation. Gerry runs for governor of Massachusetts in 1799, barely winning the gubernatorial election. During the 1800 election, Jefferson chooses Gerry as his Vice-president, winning the electoral college as well as the election. Gerry's success as Vice-President and his large boost in popularity would see him become the main candidate for the Democratic-Republicans in 1804, winning the presidential election in a landslide.

That was my idea, can you do better?

edit: I know this is in pre1900, but any time period would be cool.
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Okay, I'll bite (if you'll allow a post-1900):

William "Wild Bill" Langer of North Dakota. In OTL he was a mercurial politician sometimes associated with the Nonpartisan League and other times with its rival Independent Voter Association. Although starting out in the NPL, he was a staunch rival with it's founder Townley, and this would lead him to join the opposition before returning to the NPL to secure his own election as Governor ... at which point he was caught up in a corruption scandal and forced from office. He took this about as well as anyone known widely as "Wild Bill" would and immediately announced the succession of North Dakota from the United States and hold himself up in the State Capitol (a, likely apocraphyl story has him throwing a spitton out of the top floor window at the police below). He eventually submits, is acquitted, runs for election again and eventually moves onto the US Senate until he passed away in the 1950s.

So: how do we get this man as President? I think we need to go back a bit further and have the GOP holding the bag during WWI. Hughes wins in '16 and oversees US entry into the War. Although the US intervention is successful (and US reaction to the treaty is better because Hughes lacks Wilson's messiah complex), 20 is still a rough year for the incumbant party. Hughes manages to squeek through by an embarassingly narrow victory for a President victorious in war. However, by 1924 voter fatigue with Republicans has set in and the Roaring 20s are overseen by the Dems.

Naturally, the Great Depression kicks in in 1930 and in 1932 the GOP turns towards the only man who could possibly save the country ... not Wild Bill Langer. Oh no, of course not - that guy has just found himself elected governor two years before and though he's done a good job so far and there's no corruption scandle, he's from a small state and not the sort of guy that you'd want heading a ticket. No, they turn to Herbert Hoover, of course - who finally agees to run having hemmed and hawed for years (likely not wanting to, you know, LOSE. The Dems were proving rather popular during the Roaring 20s).

But Hoover has a problem and that's because the Dems took a page from their late 19th century playbook and in an effort to gin up excitement and support after being left in the lurch by an economic downtown, nominate a rabblerousing populist: Huey P. Long. Hoover wants to run a good clean campaign and save his image, but needs someone who can go after Long blow for blow on the ticket, and here's where our good North Dakota governor (who in this timeline has NOT attempted to secceed from the United States to avoid going to court) comes in. He has that populist appeal, he can rabble rouse himself, and he's certainly ... colorful. Besides, not like that guy is ever going to end up as President, and once Hoover has won, it will be easy enough to shut Langer off to the side until its time to brush him off for the next election.

Hoover wins, of course - though the margins are closer than you'd think. Long gave the election his all and did surprisingly well as a result - good enough that he actually has emerged as one of the leaders of the Democratic Party and most certainly hasn't burnt himself out in the party. Hoover isn't worried though - he saved Belgium, he'll fix the US economy as well. Or he would should some Deux Ex Machin ... uh, an assassin, pop up and shoot Hoover dead in the opening months of his administration. William "Wild Bill" Langer - a man that very few people actually wanted to see sitting in the oval office - is the new President of the United States.

Dun dun DUUUUHH :)