1948 United States presidential election in Mississippi Article

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United States presidential election in Mississippi, 1948

←  1944 November 2, 1948 1952 →
  StromThurmond.png Harry S. Truman.jpg
Nominee Strom Thurmond Harry S. Truman
Party Dixiecrat Democratic
Home state South Carolina Missouri
Running mate Fielding L. Wright Alben W. Barkley
Electoral vote 9 0
Popular vote 167,538 19,384
Percentage 87.17% 10.09%

President before election

Harry S. Truman
Democratic

Elected President

Harry S. Truman
Democratic

The 1948 United States presidential election in Mississippi took place on November 2, 1948, in Mississippi as part of the wider United States presidential election of 1948.

The Democratic Party candidate, South Carolina governor Strom Thurmond, overwhelmingly won Mississippi against fellow Democrat, incumbent President Harry S. Truman by a margin of 148,154 votes, or 77.08 percent. Although Truman was the national Democratic Party candidate, Thurmond managed to be placed on the ballot in Mississippi, South Carolina, Louisiana, and Alabama as the official Democratic candidate. Outside of these four states, Thurmond was forced to run under the label of the States' Rights Democratic Party. The Republican Party candidate, New York governor Thomas E. Dewey, had no impact on the race in Mississippi, only obtaining 5,043 votes total, or 2.62 percent of the popular vote.

Background

Mississippi in this era was a one-party state dominated by the Democratic Party, so that the only competitive contests were Democratic primaries that were by law excluded to non-whites until the landmark court case of Smith v. Allwright. Ever since seeing the potential effect on the United States' image abroad (and ability to win the Cold War against the radically egalitarian rhetoric of Communism) [1] of the beating and blinding of Isaac Woodard three hours after being discharged from the army, President Truman was attempting to launch a Civil Rights bill, involving desegregation of the military. Southern Democrats immediately made such cries as "unconstitutional", "Communist inspired," "a blow to the loyal South and its traditions," "unwarranted and harmful," "not the answer," and "does irreparable harm to interracial relations". [2]

Southern Democrats walked out at the party's national convention in Philadelphia [3] because of Truman's endorsement of civil rights for African Americans, and Mississippi, the state with the highest proportion of blacks in its population, was alongside neighbouring Alabama the most committed to an immediate bolt. [2] Indeed, whereas only half of Alabama's delegation walked out, all of Mississippi's did. [4]

This segregationist faction met on July 17, 1948, in Birmingham, Alabama, nominating South Carolina governor Strom Thurmond as its nominee for president. Mississippi governor Fielding L. Wright was nominated for vice president. Mississippi pledged its Democratic electors to Thurmond on August 3 without debate, [5] and although a group of nine students from Mississippi State College qualified as Truman/Barkley electors after that ticket had sought to find electors from University of Mississippi students, all the nine nominated Truman electors personally supported the Dixiecrats rather than the national party. [6]

Vote

Thurmond carried all of Mississippi's 82 counties, forty-seven with over ninety percent of the vote and seventy with over eighty percent. The "weakest" region for Thurmond came from the northeastern corner where he failed to break sixty percent in four counties. These northeastern counties are the least fertile in the state and were (and remain) populated by the smallest proportion of African Americans. They were also within the one-party Democratic primary system always opposed to the free-market business and landowning interests who were Thurmond's chief support base. Consequently, whites in the far northeast of Mississippi – even those with enough money to pay the poll tax – supported the public works, minimum wage laws, and working hour laws of President Truman's " Fair Deal" which were strongly opposed by Black Belt landowners. [7] In these northeastern hill counties preoccupations with race were also less overwhelming.

Thurmond's vote constitutes the highest ever statewide vote percentage for a candidate who was not a national major party nominee. [8]

Results

United States presidential election in Mississippi, 1948 [9]
Party Candidate Votes Percentage Electoral votes
Dixiecrat J. Strom Thurmond 167,538 87.17% 9
Democratic Harry Truman 19,384 10.09% 0
Republican Thomas E. Dewey 5,043 2.62% 0
Progressive Henry A. Wallace 225 0.12% 0
Totals 192,190 100.00% 9
Voter turnout (Voting age) 16.0% [10]

Results by county

County Thurmond# [11] Thurmond% Dewey# [12] Dewey% Truman# [12] Truman% Wallace# [13] Wallace% Total votes cast
Adams 2,032 92.36% 95 4.32% 71 3.23% 2 0.09% 2,200
Alcorn 1,984 64.19% 91 2.94% 1,013 32.77% 3 0.10% 3,091
Amite 1,559 95.59% 17 1.04% 55 3.37% 0 0.00% 1,631
Attala 2,299 93.19% 32 1.30% 130 5.27% 6 0.24% 2,467
Benton 679 83.83% 11 1.36% 118 14.57% 2 0.25% 810
Bolivar 2,579 88.50% 115 3.95% 219 7.52% 1 0.03% 2,914
Calhoun 1,074 56.59% 36 1.90% 786 41.41% 2 0.11% 1,898
Carroll 1,138 92.82% 14 1.14% 74 6.04% 0 0.00% 1,226
Chickasaw 1,826 93.45% 12 0.61% 115 5.89% 1 0.05% 1,954
Choctaw 1,110 86.31% 43 3.34% 131 10.19% 2 0.16% 1,286
Claiborne 741 95.61% 14 1.81% 19 2.45% 1 0.13% 775
Clarke 1,763 91.44% 17 0.88% 144 7.47% 4 0.21% 1,928
Clay 1,604 95.14% 22 1.30% 59 3.50% 1 0.06% 1,686
Coahoma 1,959 84.48% 113 4.87% 246 10.61% 1 0.04% 2,319
Copiah 2,523 95.90% 19 0.72% 89 3.38% 0 0.00% 2,631
Covington 1,532 90.81% 16 0.95% 135 8.00% 4 0.24% 1,687
DeSoto 1,299 89.59% 14 0.97% 137 9.45% 0 0.00% 1,450
Forrest 5,296 90.07% 167 2.84% 406 6.90% 11 0.19% 5,880
Franklin 1,160 94.54% 12 0.98% 55 4.48% 0 0.00% 1,227
George 1,032 88.51% 25 2.14% 108 9.26% 1 0.09% 1,166
Greene 885 86.94% 14 1.38% 118 11.59% 1 0.10% 1,018
Grenada 1,405 91.17% 26 1.69% 109 7.07% 1 0.06% 1,541
Hancock 1,400 78.87% 151 8.51% 222 12.51% 2 0.11% 1,775
Harrison 6,325 84.81% 415 5.56% 692 9.28% 26 0.35% 7,458
Hinds 13,705 89.84% 492 3.23% 1,041 6.82% 17 0.11% 15,255
Holmes 2,139 96.18% 24 1.08% 61 2.74% 0 0.00% 2,224
Humphreys 1,116 97.55% 11 0.96% 17 1.49% 0 0.00% 1,144
Issaquena 209 92.89% 5 2.22% 11 4.89% 0 0.00% 225
Itawamba 1,050 60.52% 50 2.88% 634 36.54% 1 0.06% 1,735
Jackson 2,671 71.94% 238 6.41% 783 21.09% 21 0.57% 3,713
Jasper 1,795 92.43% 26 1.34% 121 6.23% 0 0.00% 1,942
Jefferson 967 97.09% 14 1.41% 15 1.51% 0 0.00% 996
Jefferson Davis 1,452 94.04% 51 3.30% 41 2.66% 0 0.00% 1,544
Jones 5,709 87.45% 193 2.96% 599 9.18% 27 0.41% 6,528
Kemper 1,389 91.56% 29 1.91% 98 6.46% 1 0.07% 1,517
Lafayette 1,184 59.80% 48 2.42% 744 37.58% 4 0.20% 1,980
Lamar 1,342 91.35% 36 2.45% 91 6.19% 0 0.00% 1,469
Lauderdale 5,322 87.55% 171 2.81% 578 9.51% 8 0.13% 6,079
Lawrence 1,261 94.03% 13 0.97% 66 4.92% 1 0.07% 1,341
Leake 2,387 92.38% 12 0.46% 180 6.97% 5 0.19% 2,584
Lee 3,127 81.31% 82 2.13% 636 16.54% 1 0.03% 3,846
Leflore 2,749 92.47% 80 2.69% 139 4.68% 5 0.17% 2,973
Lincoln 3,082 97.01% 40 1.26% 52 1.64% 3 0.09% 3,177
Lowndes 2,755 93.80% 66 2.25% 116 3.95% 0 0.00% 2,937
Madison 1,831 93.18% 51 2.60% 81 4.12% 2 0.10% 1,965
Marion 2,491 90.75% 49 1.79% 205 7.47% 0 0.00% 2,745
Marshall 1,215 86.97% 29 2.08% 152 10.88% 1 0.07% 1,397
Monroe 2,281 77.09% 54 1.82% 624 21.09% 0 0.00% 2,959
Montgomery 1,573 91.77% 35 2.04% 105 6.13% 1 0.06% 1,714
Neshoba 2,833 90.51% 33 1.05% 260 8.31% 4 0.13% 3,130
Newton 2,439 92.04% 39 1.47% 169 6.38% 3 0.11% 2,650
Noxubee 1,031 91.89% 17 1.52% 74 6.60% 0 0.00% 1,122
Oktibbeha 1,786 89.12% 58 2.89% 158 7.88% 2 0.10% 2,004
Panola 1,935 89.17% 38 1.75% 195 8.99% 2 0.09% 2,170
Pearl River 1,925 90.76% 46 2.17% 146 6.88% 4 0.19% 2,121
Perry 764 87.12% 25 2.85% 87 9.92% 1 0.11% 877
Pike 3,648 92.59% 69 1.75% 221 5.61% 2 0.05% 3,940
Pontotoc 1,535 80.16% 28 1.46% 348 18.17% 4 0.21% 1,915
Prentiss 988 59.34% 74 4.44% 602 36.16% 1 0.06% 1,665
Quitman 1,046 90.17% 21 1.81% 91 7.84% 2 0.17% 1,160
Rankin 2,677 97.03% 23 0.83% 57 2.07% 2 0.07% 2,759
Scott 2,339 92.60% 15 0.59% 170 6.73% 2 0.08% 2,526
Sharkey 745 95.76% 10 1.29% 23 2.96% 0 0.00% 778
Simpson 2,342 91.06% 59 2.29% 171 6.65% 0 0.00% 2,572
Smith 1,900 85.24% 33 1.48% 295 13.23% 1 0.04% 2,229
Stone 1,053 93.77% 17 1.51% 50 4.45% 3 0.27% 1,123
Sunflower 2,482 92.85% 55 2.06% 136 5.09% 0 0.00% 2,673
Tallahatchie 2,122 86.75% 37 1.51% 287 11.73% 0 0.00% 2,446
Tate 1,196 84.70% 16 1.13% 199 14.09% 1 0.07% 1,412
Tippah 1,658 77.04% 66 3.07% 425 19.75% 3 0.14% 2,152
Tishomingo 1,073 56.95% 98 5.20% 711 37.74% 2 0.11% 1,884
Tunica 715 95.33% 12 1.60% 23 3.07% 0 0.00% 750
Union 1,420 72.30% 63 3.21% 478 24.34% 3 0.15% 1,964
Walthall 1,202 93.03% 5 0.39% 85 6.58% 0 0.00% 1,292
Warren 3,602 86.38% 245 5.88% 320 7.67% 3 0.07% 4,170
Washington 2,447 82.14% 271 9.10% 260 8.73% 1 0.03% 2,979
Wayne 1,235 89.75% 4 0.29% 137 9.96% 0 0.00% 1,376
Webster 1,078 76.78% 47 3.35% 277 19.73% 2 0.14% 1,404
Wilkinson 809 92.56% 21 2.40% 43 4.92% 1 0.11% 874
Winston 1,828 86.84% 33 1.57% 240 11.40% 4 0.19% 2,105
Yalobusha 1,382 88.14% 49 3.13% 135 8.61% 2 0.13% 1,568
Yazoo 2,297 95.99% 26 1.09% 70 2.93% 0 0.00% 2,393
Totals 167,538 87.17% 5,043 2.62% 19,384 10.09% 225 0.12% 192,190

References

  1. ^ Geselbracht, Raymond H. (editor); The Civil Rights Legacy of Harry S. Truman, p. 53 ISBN  1931112673
  2. ^ a b Boyd, William M.; 'Southern Politics 1948-1952', Phylon, Vol. 13, No. 3 (3rd quarter, 1952), pp. 226-235
  3. ^ Kehl, James A.; 'Philadelphia, 1948: City of Crucial Conventions', Pennsylvania History: A Journal of Mid-Atlantic Studies, vol. 67, no. 2 (Spring 2000), pp. 313-326
  4. ^ Krane, Dale and Shaffer, Stephen D.; Mississippi Government and Politics: Modernizers Versus Traditionalists, p. 82 ISBN  080327758X
  5. ^ Frederickson, Kari; The Dixiecrat Revolt and the End of the Solid South, 1932-1968, p. 144 ISBN  0807875449
  6. ^ Frederickson; The Dixiecrat Revolt and the End of the Solid South, p. 178
  7. ^ Phillips, Kevin P.; The Emerging Republican Majority, pp. 208, 210 ISBN  9780691163246
  8. ^ Thomas, G. Scott; The Pursuit of the White House: A Handbook of Presidential Election Statistics and History, p. 403 ISBN  0313257957
  9. ^ Dave Leip's U.S. Election Atlas; 1948 Presidential General Election Results – Mississippi
  10. ^ Gans, Curtis and Mulling, Matthew; Voter Turnout in the United States, 1788-2009, p. 481 ISBN  9781604265958
  11. ^ Geoelections; Popular Vote for Strom Thurmond (xlsx file for €15)
  12. ^ a b Scammon, Richard M. (compiler); America at the Polls: A Handbook of Presidential Election Statistics 1920-1964; pp. 249-250 ISBN  0405077114
  13. ^ Geoelections; Popular Vote for Henry Wallace (xlsx file for €15)