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| | |-+  why did Humphrey do so (relatively) well in Texas in 1968?
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Author Topic: why did Humphrey do so (relatively) well in Texas in 1968?  (Read 2410 times)
freepcrusher
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« on: May 04, 2012, 09:01:22 am »
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This is something I've always been fascinated by looking at election maps. It seemed at the time that Texas, out of any of the southern states, had the largest "bloc" of liberal voters in comparison to the rest of the south.

What's interesting is that Wallace wasn't that strong in the state compared to other southern states and there were certain pockets where Humphrey won an outright majority of the votes including: Central Texas (Bell, Williamson, Milam, Robertson etc) and in general the old 11th district; a pocket of counties in the west central part of the state such as Hardeman, Foard, Cottle, Haskell, Throckmorton etc and all of South Texas (Corpus Christi, Brownsville, Laredo, McAllen).

There were also the cities, which compared to other southern states, were more loyally Democrat. Humphrey won the [city of] San Antonio with around 70 percent of the vote and won the 8th district (northern and eastern sides of Houston) with 54 percent.
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« Reply #1 on: May 04, 2012, 09:07:55 am »
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Texas had the strongest pro-national party Democratic machine (not "liberal").  Also LBJ.
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« Reply #2 on: May 04, 2012, 09:12:49 am »
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Johnson.
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Rockingham
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« Reply #3 on: May 04, 2012, 10:27:19 am »
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I wouldn't be have surprised if their was some corruption behind it as well. Election fraud was pretty damn common back then(not so much today due to technology making it harder to get away with), and Texas had a particularly corrupt reputation.
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« Reply #4 on: May 04, 2012, 12:10:14 pm »
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Bitter die hard yellow dogged loyalty.

That's why.
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Beet
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« Reply #5 on: May 04, 2012, 03:47:56 pm »
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An acquaintance who was a kid in Texas in the '80s once said that her teacher used to tell her that Texas was a Democratic state and California was a Republican state.
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They call me PR
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« Reply #6 on: May 04, 2012, 03:51:25 pm »
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An acquaintance who was a kid in Texas in the '80s once said that her teacher used to tell her that Texas was a Democratic state and California was a Republican state.

Which was true at the time, of course.
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freepcrusher
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« Reply #7 on: May 04, 2012, 04:50:44 pm »
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An acquaintance who was a kid in Texas in the '80s once said that her teacher used to tell her that Texas was a Democratic state and California was a Republican state.

Which was true at the time, of course.

for Texas yes but California not really. Both Texas and California were really swing states at the national level, and democrat at the local level. Throughout much of the 70s and 80s, they both had a split senate delegation with Cranston and Bentsen and then Tower/Gramm/Hayakawa/Wilson. CA was probably more republican at the gubernatorial level having elected Reagan and Deukemukijan while Bill Clements was the only republican governor of Texas during that era.

At the congressional level, CA usually had a majority democrat delegation, usually around 60 percent of the seats. In Texas OTOH, the democrats always had at least 2/3 of the U.S. House seats. In the legislative level, California usually had between 55-60% of the legislative offices while Texas often had 65-70% democrat majorities.

The main reason is that areas like Eastern Ventura County, Orange County, much of San Diego, and parts of the San Gabriel Valley made up a larger % of the statewide vote at the time. Texas had comparable areas like West Houston and North Dallas that were just as republican, but didn't make up that much of the electorate.
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« Reply #8 on: May 04, 2012, 04:56:53 pm »
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Texas never jumped on the Lost Cause bandwagon with the Deep South. The state Democratic Party backed Truman over Thurmond in '48 and Humphrey over Wallace in '68. I attribute that to the following:

1) Texans were a major part of the national Democratic establishment for most of the 20th century. You had powerbrokers in elected office (John Nance Garner, Sam Rayburn, LBJ, Wright Patman) and behind the scenes (Jesse H. Jones, Robert Strauss). It would have been counterintuitive for Texas to buck the national party when the national party was so good to them.

2) Integration was not the inflammatory issue in Texas that it was in the Deep South and in Northern inner cities. There basically weren't/aren't any blacks west of the Brazos River, so it was a non-issue for half the state. Houston's business establishment and the black community had a gentlemen's agreement that desegregation would be phased in gradually (i.e. movie theaters one month, swimming pools the next). That basically leaves Dallas (which by that time had declared allegiance to Goldwater-style Sunbelt conservatism rather than Dixiecrat revanchism) and rural East Texas (which, coincidentally, is the only part of the state where Wallace got any votes). As a result, the conservative Democrats either stuck with Humphrey or voted for Nixon.
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« Reply #9 on: May 05, 2012, 07:07:12 pm »
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The Dems maximized the black turnout all over Texas including Dallas-FT Worth before 1980. Once the Bushs came along the blacks weren't anymore the swing group in prez elections in Texas.
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« Reply #10 on: May 05, 2012, 07:08:03 pm »
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« Reply #11 on: May 07, 2012, 07:46:35 pm »
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That'd make sense except that LBJ was privately for Rockefeller in '68.
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« Reply #12 on: May 09, 2012, 12:27:48 am »
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Would Humphrey still have carried Texas if George HW Bush had been on the opposite ticket?
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« Reply #13 on: May 09, 2012, 05:44:21 am »
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That'd make sense except that LBJ was privately for Rockefeller in '68.

He supported Humphrey in the general.
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« Reply #14 on: May 09, 2012, 07:43:17 am »
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That'd make sense except that LBJ was privately for Rockefeller in '68.

I thought he was privately for Humphrey, even in the primary?
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« Reply #15 on: May 09, 2012, 12:10:29 pm »
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That'd make sense except that LBJ was privately for Rockefeller in '68.

I thought he was privately for Humphrey, even in the primary?

I think Kennedy being in the race and all that happened following Johnson had an easier way to keep his favorite candidate a secret. We may never know who exactly he supported during the primary.
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« Reply #16 on: May 09, 2012, 12:32:34 pm »
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Re LBJ's covert Rocky support: Sources are far from unanimous on this. To me the pro-Rocky arguments are more convincing than the antis but that's just my personal opinion.
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« Reply #17 on: May 10, 2012, 04:32:47 pm »
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Johnson was almost certainly a factor; home state pride and all that.

Wallace drew 19 percent of the vote, and unlike in much of the rest of the country, he probably drew disproportionately from Nixon in the South.

Texas was in general a D-leaning state at the time (1972 was the first time since Reconstruction that it was more R than the national average), so it shouldn't be a surprise that it would vote for a Democratic candidate who lost narrowly nationally.
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They call me PR
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« Reply #18 on: May 11, 2012, 01:19:15 pm »
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The Texas GOP was still developing in the emerging suburbs of the state. Texans were still willing to vote for Jimmy Carter in 1976 (Southern evangelical Christian Democrat). It helped Carter that Ford was a moderate Northern Republican.

It was not until 1980 that Texas really became a firmly Republican state. Both Reagan and Bush Sr. contributed to this development. However, it should be noted that some of the rural counties in Texas and other Southern states that voted for Wallace, also voted for Carter in both 1976 and 1980. It was the suburbs of Southern cities that provided the base of support for the GOP to emerge as the dominant party in the South.
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« Reply #19 on: May 11, 2012, 01:21:47 pm »
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The Texas GOP was still developing in the emerging suburbs of the state. Texans were still willing to vote for Jimmy Carter in 1976 (Southern evangelical Christian Democrat). It helped Carter that Ford was a moderate Northern Republican.

It was not until 1980 that Texas really became a firmly Republican state. Both Reagan and Bush Sr. contributed to this development. However, it should be noted that some of the rural counties in Texas and other Southern states that voted for Wallace, also voted for Carter in both 1976 and 1980. It was the suburbs of Southern cities that provided the base of support for the GOP to emerge as the dominant party in the South.

Texas also was a solid Democratic state at the non-Presidential level until 1994.  I actually wouldn't say it could be confirmed as a solid Republican state for President until 1992 when they didn't vote for Clinton.
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The Mikado
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« Reply #20 on: May 11, 2012, 05:30:47 pm »
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Saying solid at the state level until 1994 is a bit of an exaggeration: Texas' slide towards the GOP at the state level really starts in 1978 and is pretty prominent through the 1980s.  Ann Richards winning by the skin of her teeth in 1990 just delayed the inevitable.
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benconstine
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« Reply #21 on: June 04, 2012, 09:24:19 am »
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Would Humphrey still have carried Texas if George HW Bush had been on the opposite ticket?

No, not at all.  HW wasn't exactly a household name (after all, he lost the 1970 race to Bentsen by 7%).
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« Reply #22 on: June 04, 2012, 02:08:26 pm »
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An acquaintance who was a kid in Texas in the '80s once said that her teacher used to tell her that Texas was a Democratic state and California was a Republican state.

Which was true at the time, of course.

for Texas yes but California not really.

From 1948 to 1988 California voted only twice for a Democratic presidential nominee (Truman in 1948 and Johnson in 1964). So it was a Republican state in presidential elections.
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