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November 06, 1960 - Image 16

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1960-11-06
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The Solid South- Solid in '60?

Can Nixon Hope To Hold the States -
Ike Carried for the Republicans?,

T WAS A cold November day in
1860 when a group of delegates in
Charleston ominously announced
that South Carolina considered the
recent election of President Abra-
ham Lincoln a distinct threat to
the very existence of that state.
In view of that, South Carolina,
"with deep regret," seceeded from
the Union, ultimately touching off
a bitterness which was to last the
better part of a century.
When Ulysses S. Grant refused
the sword of Robert E. Lee at Ap-
pomattox, the physical conflict
ended, but the political conflict
had only begun.
As soon as the carpetbaggers
were ousted and the reconstruc-
tion ended, the Republican Party
was "banned" from the South-a
political boycott unparalleled in
recent history.
The "Radical Republicans" in
Congress had been ruthless with
the defeated, but still proud,
Southern aristocracy. The South
vowed the Republicans would nev-
er humiliate them again, and

they tied themselves firmly to thel
Democratic Party, resolving they
would never break the bond.
AT WAS about 1860. Now,
some hundred years later,
the*. South is still bound to the
Democratic Party, but the Demo-
crats seem to ,have deserted them.
Semingly, the proud South will
have to stand alone, defending her,
states' rights, her segregation, and
her sovereignty against those
whom she used to count as her
It would be a losing battle, but
the South is ready to fight tothe
end-and fight alone. Yet, help
has come to them once again, and
this time from a most unlikely
quarter-the Republican Party.
Timidly, as though it were a for-
bidden alliance, the two parties
pooled their Congressional vot-
sophomore in the literary col-
lege and is a member of The
Daily staff.

ing power to control the special
sission of Congress this summer.
A deep "crack" has split the
"solid" South.
The Republican inroads in Dixie
started during the first years of
the Eisenhower Administration,
when the fearful Southerners
found Ike much more sympathetic
to their pleas for states' rights
than had been either Franklin D.
Roosevelt or Harry Truman. For
the first time since many could
remember, the South had an "al-
ly" in the White House.
N 1956, Eisenhower won growing
Southern support. He gained on
Adlai Stevenson in every Southern
state and added staunchly Demo-
cratic Louisiana to the GOP col-
umn, along with Florida, Texas,
and Virginia.

Angeles, the South went "all the
way with LBJ," and Johnson was
defeated, just as Southern con-
tenders always lose. The victorious-
forces of Sen. John Kennedy ex-
pected the South to go along si-
lently as sh'e had for the last
hundred years save once in 1948
when they formed a third party,
but she balked--not even accept-
ing Johnson's selection to be the
running-mate as appeasement.
Some prominent Southerners,
such at Texas' Allen Shivers and
South Carolina's James Byrnes,
openly endorsed the GOP nation-
al ticket. Others, such as Virgin-
la's Sen. Harry F. Byrd and Mis-
sissippi's Gov. Ross Burnett, sub-
bornly refused to have anything to
do with Kennedy or Johnson. Still
others, such as South Carolina's
Sen. J. Strom Thurmond and Mis-
sissippi's Sen. John Stennis, gave
the nod to Kennedy so silently and
reluctantly, that the nation al-
most missed it and soon forgot it.
NOW, WITH election close at
hand, Southerners are doing
a lot of soul-searching. They are
torn between two desires: Demo-
cratic tradition and Republican

tegration in a state where it is
not making much headway.
The Republican tide is not ebb-
Ing, however. Former governor
Shivers is still popular, andt he is
working hard for Nixon and Lodge..
The lone GOP congressman, Bruce
Alger of Dallas, appears to be safe-
by a tremendous margin. Never-
theless, downstate along the bord-
er, the Mexican population leans
to Kennedy.
LOYALTY TO Lyndon Johnson
cannot be discounted. A man
popular as a Senator does not all
of a sudden lose popularity run-
ning for a higher spot.
Flordia which went with Ike in
'52 and '56, is no longer a typical
Southern state. The heavy influx
of retired couples from the North,
added to the growing number of
businessmen now residing in the
state, tends to offset the tradi-
tional Democratic vote on a na-
tional level. Besides, retiring Gov.
Leroy Collins and Sen. Spessard
Holland won't lift a finger for the
Kennedy ticket, while active Sen..
George Smathers seems to cam-
paign for the ticket only outside
the South. Smthers is chairman
of the Democratic Senatorial Cam-
paign Committee and he is not
helping Kennedy by lavishing
- funds on conservatives, such as
Oklahoma's Sen. Robert S. Kerr,
who is many times a millionaire
and without a hard race, and vir-
tually cutting out Michigan's Sen.
Patrick V. McNamara, who is
haid pressed for re-election.
Florida's Negro population is
significant, and it is restless. Race
riots in Jacksonville point this
up. Here Kennedy benefits.
wherever there is dissatisfac-
tion on the part of Negroes with
regard to integration, because
those who might normally have

voted for Nixon will be drawn to
Kennedy, in view of the Demo-
-rats' strong stand on the Integra-
tion issue. The Negroes see Nixon
as somewhat'- less sympathetic to
their problems.
Georgia, the heart of the Solid
South, has voted the Democratic
ticket since Andrew* Jackson in-
vented it. The state was formerly
sold on the candidacy of Johnson,
no matter what the capacity. But,
since the Texan had to literally
drag an endorsement from Sens.
Richard B. Russell and Herman
Talmage, the folks in Georgia
say they aren't too sure where
things stand.
An aerial surveyor voiced a ris-
ing sentiment. "Ike has been good
to us," he said. "I was brought up
to hate Republicans, but I can't
hate Ike. He's the first man to
give us a break. That settles it so
far as I'm concerned. I'm voting
straight Republican." This is not
an ominous threat, however. Sen.
Richard Russell is unopposed and
Gov. Ernest Vandiver has two
more years left in his term. There-
fore, no important races are up
for- decision.
N I X o N'S noontime crowd of
100,000, lining Peachtree Street
in downtown Atlanta is only a
foreboding, but it's enough to rate
the Georgia race as closer than
ever before.
Tennessee, an Eisenhower state,
will also have a close race. There
is a rising tide of Republicanism
in the eastern portion of the
state, which is not being offset by
a rise in the normally Democratic
Memphis area. This might be sig-
nificant, were it not for the over-
whelming primary victory of Sen.
Estes Kefauver.
Mississippi, always Democratic,
also shows signs of unrest. Gov-
ernor Burnett openly urges the
Continued on Page Twelve

for casual living,

: . . ; :




Again in the four years
followed, Ike did not let t
down, and today Southerners
back on eight years of let-up f
a constant struggle for st
This summer, at the Democ
ic National Convention in


Can Ike transfer his
to Nixon?



from temptation. The resulting con-
ates' fusion varies from state to state.
In Virginia, where Ike won in
rat- '52 and '56, Vice-President Richard
Los M. Nixon is showing tremendous
popularity, boosted by the silent
endorsement of politically power-
Jul Sen. Byrd. "Twice we put our
faith in President Eisenhower and
twice we were rewarded. That's a
good record for Virginia, and it's
good enough for me," one Virgin-
ian commented.

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Apparently that man is not
alone in his thoughts, for 23,000
people turned out to see the Nix-
ons in Roanoke, 12,000 in Rich-
mond, 8000 in Newport News. One
man said he traveled 75 miles to
see Nixon in Roanoke. "Friends
have to stick together. The grand
Old Dominion is solid with the
Grand Old Party."
IN LOUISIANA, an Eisenhower
state in '56, the sentiment runs
on sectional lines. Downstate areas
around New Orleans and Baton
Rouge have a heavy concentration
of Roman Catholics. (Louisiana's
Catholic population is one-third
again the size of the national av-
erage per state.) However, up-
state around Shreveport the con-
centration of Baptists is equally
The state's 518,000- voting Ne-
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siana elections, and polls find them
largely undecided. They helped
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'56. Also, Sen. Allen Ellender, who
rarely mentions the Kennedy-
Johnson ticket, is campaigning
against GOP National Committee-
man George Reese, Jr., a big
name in Louisiana politics, who al-
ways mentions Nixon and Cabot
Lodge. Ellender, however, is a sure
bet; Kennedy isn't.
South Carolina, solid for Steven-
son both times, is listening to Sen.
Thurmond, running unopposed,
openly endorse Eisenhower at
regular intervals and constantly
praise GOP Senator Barry M.
Goldwater of Arizona.
This is powerful, for Goldwater
is presently stumping the South
for Nixon, and he outdraws either
Kennedy or Johnson in crowds.
Goldwater and his conservatism
are popular in the South, and his
words are well noted.
T*H E LONE STAR State of Texas
went for Ike in '52- and '56.
Johnson is double-running there,
campaigning for Vice-President
and Senator simultaneously. As
an El Paso realtor said, "We Tex-
ans are lucky .This is the only
place in the nation where you get
to vote against old Lyndon twice."
Johnson the senator, however,
is a shoo-in; Johnson, the vice-
president has an uphill battle, be-
cause his running-mate Kennedy
is distrusted. Oil interests, domi-
nant in Texas, think that Nixon
will give them a better deal than
Kennedy. However, the state's
624.000 Negroes of voting age are

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