José Miguel Gómez was a general in the Cuban War of Independence who went on to become an important politician.
At the Constitutional Convention, Gómez was one of those who voted in favor of adopting the Platt Amendment. Gómez went on to govern Santa Clara and became quite popular in Cuba.
In 1905 Gómez planned to run for the presidency with Alfredo Zayas on behalf of the Liberals. Violence prevented the Liberals from winning much in the election, so Gómez dropped out of the running.
Gómez and Zayas began to split the Liberal party. A strong showing by the Conservatives against the divided Liberals convinced them to rejoin. Gómez and Zayas won the 1908 election.
He was very well-liked among the people and Gómez also was a kind president. However, political corruption boomed during his presidency and several major scandals occurred.
The government also began funding newspapers, influencing them towards pro-government positions.
Zayas beat Gómez for the presidency in 1920. Cheating probably occurred, and Gómez would very likely have won had the elections been fair and honest.
Gómez went to the United States to tell President Harding about the unfair election. He died in New York on June 13, 1921.
A friend of Gómez, Gerardo Machado y Morales, would become dictator of Cuba a few years later. Gómez's son, Miguel Mariano Gómez, would later become President of Cuba.