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  South Carolina: 1952 and 1956
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Author Topic: South Carolina: 1952 and 1956  (Read 1123 times)
Arbitrage1980
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« on: August 27, 2019, 06:08:39 pm »

The most solid Democratic state but in 1952 Eisenhower lost the state by just 1.5%! But in 1956 he lost it by 20 points. What happened? My only theory is that South Carolina has a lot of veterans, so war hero Eisenhower overperformed. But his support for civil rights cost him the state in 1956. Pretty interesting result.
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TDAS04
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« Reply #1 on: August 27, 2019, 06:10:29 pm »

Strom Thurmond endorsed Ike in 1952.
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WeAreDoomed
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« Reply #2 on: August 28, 2019, 06:19:23 am »

Strom Thurmond endorsed Ike in 1952.

I also did not know that, thanks for the info! That makes a ton of sense.
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RINO Tom
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« Reply #3 on: August 28, 2019, 09:49:46 am »

Strom Thurmond endorsed Ike in 1952.

Did he not in ‘56?
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DINGO Joe
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« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2019, 10:34:42 am »


1954 Brown vs Board of Education--Southern Manifesto--Massive Resistance=NO.
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PR
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« Reply #5 on: August 28, 2019, 11:51:06 am »


In addition to what DINGO Joe said, from the Wikipedia article on the campaign:

Quote
The Eisenhower administration had supported the Brown v. Board of Education ruling in 1954; this ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court ended legal segregation in public schools. Meanwhile, Stevenson voiced disapproval about federal court intervention in segregation, saying about Brown that "we don't need reforms or groping experiments."[8] This was an about-face from the national Democratic party platform's endorsement of civil rights in the 1948 campaign. Although Eisenhower "avoid[ed] a clear stand on the Brown decision" during the campaign,[9] in the contest with Stevenson, he won the support of nearly 40% of black voters; he was the last Republican presidential candidate to receive such a level of support from black voters.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1956_United_States_presidential_election#General_election

I wonder if Stevenson's scaling back the national Democrats' commitment to civil rights was him throwing a bone to the Dixiecrats to keep them in line, especially since he had picked the more progressive Estes Kefauver in 1956 as opposed to the segregationist John Sparkman in 1952 - which clearly didn't stop Thurmond's endorsement of Ike that first time around!

Also, it's important to remember that Eisenhower's 1952 campaign was actually seen quite favorably by southern conservatives like Thurmond, and other conservatives (in both parties) who wanted a more muscular, militaristic anti-Communist foreign policy - as opposed to the more traditional non-interventionist anti-Communism of Republicans like Robert Taft. The fact that Truman had been moving more decisively in support of civil rights (desegregation of the armed forces) + Humphrey's civil rights speech and DNC platform plank which instigated the Dixiecrat walkout in 1948 also obviously pissed off Thurmond and other segregationist Democrats.

As for foreign policy (and this is key to Truman being so unpopular by the end of his Presidency)...well, events like the USSR getting the bomb, "losing China", the Korean War, Truman's  firing of General MacArthur, the trial of the Rosenbergs, and the rise of Joseph McCarthy all seemed to strengthen support for a new, aggressively interventionist conservative foreign policy of "rollback" (brought to you by the Dulles brothers) - and who better to head that policy than the likable, massively popular war leader General Eisenhower? Plus, he had picked as his running mate the populist Republican from California who brought down Alger Hiss in the House, red-baited Helen Douglas to a Senate seat, and was consequently the bane of liberals everywhere. After having both the Presidency and Congress dominated by the despised New Deal Democrats for two decades, the Eisenhower/Nixon ticket seemed to be about as good as it got for many hardline anti-Communist conservatives in 1952, some jaded Taft holdouts notwithstanding.

Also important to note that the "Sun Belt" conservatives of the South and West (again, still well-represented in both parties at this point) were particularly on-board with the new, militaristic and muscular anti-Communist foreign policy. In addition to Thurmond (South Carolina), you had Barry Goldwater (Arizona) as a solid Eisenhower man at the 1952 RNC,  and Ronald Reagan (California) breaking with the Democratic Party for the very first time by  joining "Democrats for Eisenhower." And for what it's worth, Ike won Texas and Florida both times and Louisiana the second time. Intriguing...
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Wazza
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« Reply #6 on: August 29, 2019, 12:30:31 am »

Its important to note though, that whilst Stevenson increased his margin considerably in South Carolina, he actually got a lower proportion of the votes in 1956 (45% compared to 51% in 1952). This was because the unpledged electors slot that was on the ballot in South Carolina in 1956 won 30% of the overall vote. This slot siphoned votes mostly from Eisenhower as he went from getting 49% of the vote to 25% of the vote. Additionally, the unpledged elector slot swept up the lowland counties which Ike had won in 1952.

So for the most part the lowland South Carolinians that had voted strongest for Thurmond in 48 and then for Ike in 52 did not return to the national Democratic Party ticket in 56 and instead got behind the unpledged "Dixiecrat" electors, and then returned to backing the Republican ticket with Nixon in 1960 and of course Goldwater in 1964.
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Southern Senator North Carolina Yankee
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« Reply #7 on: August 29, 2019, 12:57:00 am »

When SC was the most Democratic State, it had very low turnout compared to just eight years later in 1952.

Most of the South was this way and beginning in 1952 you had a massive surge in turnout and voter participation. This occurred at the same time as the revival of two party competition and the post above about foreign policy really does a good job illustrating that issue. Also Wazza talked about the GOP support being concentrated in low country.

If you look at the 1960 map, you see the lowland versus upland divide quite clearly:
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Pericles
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« Reply #8 on: August 29, 2019, 05:29:38 am »

In 1952, Eisenhower ran as an Independent in South Carolina, while in 1956 he ran as a Republican. For 1952 "From the time Eisenhower announced he would run on an independent slate nominated by the many dissident Democrats, he gained substantial support, most especially in the small black-majority rural counties where only whites voted." https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1952_United_States_presidential_election_in_South_Carolina#Vote In 1956, a Dixiecrat electors slate actually beat Eisenhower for second place. So the Republican brand in the 1950s may have still been a significant liability in South Carolina. As for SC being close in 1960, that was could be due to Kennedy's Catholicism, as well as a general trend away from Democrats there.
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morgankingsley
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« Reply #9 on: August 30, 2019, 06:53:08 pm »

When SC was the most Democratic State, it had very low turnout compared to just eight years later in 1952.

Most of the South was this way and beginning in 1952 you had a massive surge in turnout and voter participation. This occurred at the same time as the revival of two party competition and the post above about foreign policy really does a good job illustrating that issue. Also Wazza talked about the GOP support being concentrated in low country.

If you look at the 1960 map, you see the lowland versus upland divide quite clearly:


Wasn't turn out in several southern states back in the day like low double digit percentages?
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Southern Senator North Carolina Yankee
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« Reply #10 on: August 31, 2019, 12:59:31 am »

When SC was the most Democratic State, it had very low turnout compared to just eight years later in 1952.

Most of the South was this way and beginning in 1952 you had a massive surge in turnout and voter participation. This occurred at the same time as the revival of two party competition and the post above about foreign policy really does a good job illustrating that issue. Also Wazza talked about the GOP support being concentrated in low country.

If you look at the 1960 map, you see the lowland versus upland divide quite clearly:


Wasn't turn out in several southern states back in the day like low double digit percentages?

These states had are grouped by electoral vote and are thus roughly similar in size and yet you see a massive difference in turnout.

1944:
13   
WI   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   674,532   50.37%   12
   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   650,413   48.57%

1.3 Million


GA   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   268,187   81.74%   12
   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   59,880   18.25%   0

320,000


10
IA   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   547,267   51.99%   10
   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   499,876   47.49%   0

1 million

LA   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   281,564   80.59%   10
   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   67,750   19.39%   0

350,000


8
KS        Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   442,096   60.25%   8
   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   287,458   39.18%   0

700,000

SC   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   90,601   87.64%   8
   No Candidate   -   Southern Dem.   7,799   7.54%   0
   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   4,610   4.46%   0
   Claude Watson   Andrew Johnson   Prohibition   365   0.35%   0

100,000
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Southern Senator North Carolina Yankee
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« Reply #11 on: August 31, 2019, 01:04:19 am »

In 1952, Eisenhower ran as an Independent in South Carolina, while in 1956 he ran as a Republican. For 1952 "From the time Eisenhower announced he would run on an independent slate nominated by the many dissident Democrats, he gained substantial support, most especially in the small black-majority rural counties where only whites voted." https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1952_United_States_presidential_election_in_South_Carolina#Vote In 1956, a Dixiecrat electors slate actually beat Eisenhower for second place. So the Republican brand in the 1950s may have still been a significant liability in South Carolina. As for SC being close in 1960, that was could be due to Kennedy's Catholicism, as well as a general trend away from Democrats there.

Its an uneven process to be sure, but low country/Cities/suburbs were the GOP base in the region by 1968, at least those such areas that weren't flipped b/c of the increase in African American Registration and Voting.

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Southern Senator North Carolina Yankee
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« Reply #12 on: August 31, 2019, 01:10:26 am »

This is also relevant to the turnout discussion, its a snippet from a longer post in the thread last month comparing the GOP to the mid 20th century Southern Dems:

Basically, that Conservatives (actual conservatives and not populists of varying degrees) among Democrats would be typically found among black belt whites. This makes sense when you think about it for several reasons.

1. These areas were heavily stratified economically
2. There weren't many poor whites in these areas
3. Blacks couldn't vote
4. Many poor whites that were there couldn't vote either.

This means that districts representing a relatively equal space (though not a given though pre-OMOV) in terms of population, but would in effect function as rotten boroughs (like those of English fame) for the Southern Aristocracy. Kevin Phillips lists three examples in Alabama on page 223 of "The Emerging Republican Majority"

               Whites          Blacks            WR                BR
Macon     4,777            25,784            3,016           1,100
Lowndes  3214             14804            2306             0  
Wilcox      4912              18564           3183              0

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morgankingsley
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« Reply #13 on: August 31, 2019, 01:14:20 am »

When SC was the most Democratic State, it had very low turnout compared to just eight years later in 1952.

Most of the South was this way and beginning in 1952 you had a massive surge in turnout and voter participation. This occurred at the same time as the revival of two party competition and the post above about foreign policy really does a good job illustrating that issue. Also Wazza talked about the GOP support being concentrated in low country.

If you look at the 1960 map, you see the lowland versus upland divide quite clearly:


Wasn't turn out in several southern states back in the day like low double digit percentages?

These states had are grouped by electoral vote and are thus roughly similar in size and yet you see a massive difference in turnout.

1944:
13   
WI   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   674,532   50.37%   12
   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   650,413   48.57%

1.3 Million


GA   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   268,187   81.74%   12
   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   59,880   18.25%   0

320,000


10
IA   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   547,267   51.99%   10
   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   499,876   47.49%   0

1 million

LA   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   281,564   80.59%   10
   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   67,750   19.39%   0

350,000


8
KS        Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   442,096   60.25%   8
   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   287,458   39.18%   0

700,000

SC   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   90,601   87.64%   8
   No Candidate   -   Southern Dem.   7,799   7.54%   0
   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   4,610   4.46%   0
   Claude Watson   Andrew Johnson   Prohibition   365   0.35%   0

100,000

Crazy how few people turned out in those years
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DINGO Joe
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« Reply #14 on: August 31, 2019, 10:36:39 am »

When SC was the most Democratic State, it had very low turnout compared to just eight years later in 1952.

Most of the South was this way and beginning in 1952 you had a massive surge in turnout and voter participation. This occurred at the same time as the revival of two party competition and the post above about foreign policy really does a good job illustrating that issue. Also Wazza talked about the GOP support being concentrated in low country.

If you look at the 1960 map, you see the lowland versus upland divide quite clearly:


Wasn't turn out in several southern states back in the day like low double digit percentages?

These states had are grouped by electoral vote and are thus roughly similar in size and yet you see a massive difference in turnout.

1944:
13   
WI   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   674,532   50.37%   12
   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   650,413   48.57%

1.3 Million


GA   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   268,187   81.74%   12
   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   59,880   18.25%   0

320,000


10
IA   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   547,267   51.99%   10
   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   499,876   47.49%   0

1 million

LA   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   281,564   80.59%   10
   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   67,750   19.39%   0

350,000


8
KS        Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   442,096   60.25%   8
   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   287,458   39.18%   0

700,000

SC   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   90,601   87.64%   8
   No Candidate   -   Southern Dem.   7,799   7.54%   0
   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   4,610   4.46%   0
   Claude Watson   Andrew Johnson   Prohibition   365   0.35%   0

100,000

Crazy how few people turned out in those years

Uh, you do know why don't you?
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morgankingsley
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« Reply #15 on: September 01, 2019, 05:00:19 am »

When SC was the most Democratic State, it had very low turnout compared to just eight years later in 1952.

Most of the South was this way and beginning in 1952 you had a massive surge in turnout and voter participation. This occurred at the same time as the revival of two party competition and the post above about foreign policy really does a good job illustrating that issue. Also Wazza talked about the GOP support being concentrated in low country.

If you look at the 1960 map, you see the lowland versus upland divide quite clearly:


Wasn't turn out in several southern states back in the day like low double digit percentages?

These states had are grouped by electoral vote and are thus roughly similar in size and yet you see a massive difference in turnout.

1944:
13   
WI   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   674,532   50.37%   12
   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   650,413   48.57%

1.3 Million


GA   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   268,187   81.74%   12
   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   59,880   18.25%   0

320,000


10
IA   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   547,267   51.99%   10
   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   499,876   47.49%   0

1 million

LA   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   281,564   80.59%   10
   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   67,750   19.39%   0

350,000


8
KS        Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   442,096   60.25%   8
   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   287,458   39.18%   0

700,000

SC   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   90,601   87.64%   8
   No Candidate   -   Southern Dem.   7,799   7.54%   0
   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   4,610   4.46%   0
   Claude Watson   Andrew Johnson   Prohibition   365   0.35%   0

100,000

Crazy how few people turned out in those years

Uh, you do know why don't you?

I am well aware of why, yes. In fact, I probably know why more than 90 percent of the people I know in real life. That doesn't make it any less interesting or crazy to me. Just because you are aware of something doesn't instantly make it lose its appeal as a fact.
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DINGO Joe
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« Reply #16 on: September 06, 2019, 07:38:03 pm »

When SC was the most Democratic State, it had very low turnout compared to just eight years later in 1952.

Most of the South was this way and beginning in 1952 you had a massive surge in turnout and voter participation. This occurred at the same time as the revival of two party competition and the post above about foreign policy really does a good job illustrating that issue. Also Wazza talked about the GOP support being concentrated in low country.

If you look at the 1960 map, you see the lowland versus upland divide quite clearly:


Wasn't turn out in several southern states back in the day like low double digit percentages?

These states had are grouped by electoral vote and are thus roughly similar in size and yet you see a massive difference in turnout.

1944:
13   
WI   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   674,532   50.37%   12
   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   650,413   48.57%

1.3 Million


GA   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   268,187   81.74%   12
   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   59,880   18.25%   0

320,000


10
IA   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   547,267   51.99%   10
   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   499,876   47.49%   0

1 million

LA   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   281,564   80.59%   10
   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   67,750   19.39%   0

350,000


8
KS        Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   442,096   60.25%   8
   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   287,458   39.18%   0

700,000

SC   Franklin Roosevelt   Harry Truman   Democrat   90,601   87.64%   8
   No Candidate   -   Southern Dem.   7,799   7.54%   0
   Thomas Dewey   John Bricker   Republican   4,610   4.46%   0
   Claude Watson   Andrew Johnson   Prohibition   365   0.35%   0

100,000

Crazy how few people turned out in those years

Uh, you do know why don't you?

I am well aware of why, yes. In fact, I probably know why more than 90 percent of the people I know in real life. That doesn't make it any less interesting or crazy to me. Just because you are aware of something doesn't instantly make it lose its appeal as a fact.

I've been trying arrange a bus tour of the rural south for OSR, maybe we can get you on the bus too, and it all wouldn't seem so crazy.
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RINO Tom
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« Reply #17 on: September 06, 2019, 09:57:05 pm »

^ Would you be a big ‘Pub back then, Mr. DINGO?
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DINGO Joe
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« Reply #18 on: September 06, 2019, 10:16:42 pm »

^ Would you be a big ‘Pub back then, Mr. DINGO?

Oh who can say, but most importantly, I would have been in the North.
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« Reply #19 on: October 07, 2019, 06:31:31 pm »

The thing I still just don't understand is the shift toward Nixon in 1960. He did essentially as well as Eisenhower without an independent fusion slate.
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morgankingsley
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« Reply #20 on: October 07, 2019, 07:01:42 pm »

Strom Thurmond endorsed Ike in 1952.

I also did not know that, thanks for the info! That makes a ton of sense.

It is amazing to know how much of a lock Thurmond had on that state back in the day
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darklordoftech
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« Reply #21 on: October 07, 2019, 07:18:44 pm »

Strom Thurmond endorsed Ike in 1952.

I also did not know that, thanks for the info! That makes a ton of sense.

It is amazing to know how much of a lock Thurmond had on that state back in the day
In fact, South Carolina wasn’t going to have a primary or caucus in 1980 until Atwater talked Thurmond into it.
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morgankingsley
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« Reply #22 on: October 07, 2019, 07:37:53 pm »

Strom Thurmond endorsed Ike in 1952.

I also did not know that, thanks for the info! That makes a ton of sense.

It is amazing to know how much of a lock Thurmond had on that state back in the day
In fact, South Carolina wasn’t going to have a primary or caucus in 1980 until Atwater talked Thurmond into it.

In my opinion, Strom Thurmond was the most powerful man in South Carolina political history
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swamiG
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« Reply #23 on: October 11, 2019, 12:46:07 am »

The thing I still just don't understand is the shift toward Nixon in 1960. He did essentially as well as Eisenhower without an independent fusion slate.

JFK’s Catholicism as well as his last-minute call that freed MLK from prison in neighboring GA certainly didn’t do him any favors in voter suppressed af SC
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