As the mud starts to fly in the last days of Campaign 2012, historian and author David McCullough tells Morley Safer that the current name-calling pales in comparison to the days of old. Recounting how Thomas Jefferson defeated John Adams in 1800, McCullough says Jefferson paid a journalist to write that his opponent was a mentally unbalanced hermaphrodite. Adams spread the word that a Jefferson victory would mean murder, rape, and robbery in the streets. But the two candidates never got along apparently.
Philadelphia's historic Carpenter's Hall is a backdrop for this "60 Minutes" story that looks at elections and the country's current state through the prism of history.
Safer's story will be broadcast on "60 Minutes" Sunday, Nov. 4 at 7:30 p.m. ET and 7:00 p.m. PT.