For the Election of 1808, the Republican choice was basically a formality. James Madison had been Jefferson’s Secretary of State for eight years and was basically his right-hand man. There was not much difference between the two men, both were Virginia slave holding aristocrats who held the same ideas of government. The only issue was the V.P. they chose, George Clinton from New York, to round out the ticket.
The Federalists held little power outside of New England and it mattered little who they ran. They made it easy and just ran the same man they had since the 1800 election, Charles Pinckney.