1932 Democratic National Convention

The 1932 Democratic National Convention was held in Chicago, Illinois June 27 – July 2, 1932. The convention resulted in the nomination of Governor Franklin D. Roosevelt of New York for President and Speaker of the House John N. Garner from Texas for Vice President. Beulah Rebecca Hooks Hannah Tingley was a member of the Democratic National Committee and Chair of the Democratic Party of Florida. She seconded the nomination of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, becoming the second woman to address a Democratic National Convention.

1932 Democratic National Convention
1932 presidential election
Vincenzo Laviosa (Italian - Franklin D. Roosevelt - Google Art Project (3x4 B)
John Nance Garner (3x4)
Roosevelt and Garner
Date(s)June 27 – July 2, 1932
CityChicago, Illinois
VenueChicago Stadium
Presidential nomineeFranklin D. Roosevelt of
New York
Vice Presidential nomineeJohn N. Garner of Texas

The candidates

The three major candidates:

Candidate Born [1] Office Held State Delegates, 1st ballot Final ballot
Franklin D. Roosevelt
January 30, 1882
(age 50)
Hyde Park, New York
Governor of New York
Flag-map of New York
New York
666.25 945
Al Smith
December 30, 1873
(age 58)
Manhattan, New York
Governor of New York
(1919-1920, 1923-1928)
Flag-map of New York
New York
201.75 190.25
John Nance Garner
John Nance Garner
November 22, 1868
(age 63)
Detroit, Texas
Speaker of the
House of Representatives

Flag-map of Texas
90.25 Nominated for
Vice President


Franklin D. Roosevelt - NARA - 197120 (cropped)
Roosevelt listens to radio coverage of the balloting on July 1 from his residence in Hyde Park

The three major contenders for the presidential nomination were Roosevelt, Garner and former governor of New York and 1928 presidential candidate, Al Smith. They roughly represented three competing factions of the Democratic Party. Smith was supported by the Tammany Hall machine in New York City, and had many supporters in the Democratic National Committee, as well as in Chicago. Chicago mayor Anton Cermak packed the hall with Smith supporters.

Roosevelt was supported by a solid majority of the delegates, and had the support of Senators Burton Wheeler, Cordell Hull, Alben Barkley, and Huey Long, who held the Deep South for Roosevelt. The new Democratic coalition would begin at this convention: Roosevelt brought into the Democratic fold western progressives, ethnic minorities, rural farmers, and intellectuals. Supporters of Roosevelt pushed for the abolition of the two thirds rule (which required the presidential nominee to win the votes of two thirds of the delegates), but backlash killed the idea.[2]

Garner had support from two powerful individuals, California newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst and Senator William Gibbs McAdoo. But he was never a serious threat, and never bothered to campaign for the position. However, the faction that supported Garner was important because it could break a potential deadlock between Smith and Roosevelt.

After three ballots, Roosevelt had not secured the 770 votes necessary for the nomination, and his campaign feared that his support had peaked. As New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, and Connecticut did not support Roosevelt, he needed McAdoo, who had the California delegation, and Garner, who had Texas's. Roosevelt's campaign was able to persuade Garner to release his delegates to vote for Roosevelt, possibly with the help of Hearst, who disliked Roosevelt but hated Smith and Newton D. Baker, a possible compromise candidate. When McAdoo, who himself had been denied nomination by the two thirds rule at the 1924 convention, announced that California would back Roosevelt, the convention realized that Roosevelt had the necessary number of delegates to win the nomination.[2] Roosevelt received 945 votes on the fourth ballot to Smith's 190. Garner became the vice-presidential candidate, likely as part of a deal for his delegates.[3] McAdoo had also hoped to be on the ticket, but his inclusion was opposed by Hearst.[4]

Presidential Balloting, DNC 1932
ballot 1 2 3 4
Gov. Franklin D. Roosevelt 666.25 677.75 682.79 945
Former Gov. Al Smith 201.75 194.25 190.25 190.25
House Speaker John Nance Garner 90.25 90.25 101.25
Gov. Albert Ritchie 21 23.5 23.5 3.5
Gov. George White 52 50.5 52.5 3
Melvin Alvah Traylor 42.25 40.25 40.25
Sen. James A. Reed 24 18 27.5
Former Gov. Harry F. Byrd 25 24 24.96
Will Rogers 22
Gov. William "Alfalfa Bill" Murray 23
Former War Secretary Newton D. Baker 8.5 8 8.5 5.5
Former Gov. James M. Cox 1

Roosevelt's acceptance speech

Newsreel footage of Roosevelt's acceptance speech

In his acceptance speech, Roosevelt broke tradition and established the precedent of formally accepting the nomination in person at the convention. In his speech, he pledged "a new deal for the American people".[3]

See also


  1. ^ Candidate ages listed as they were during the convention in 1932
  2. ^ a b Krock, Arthur (2 July 1932). "Roosevelt Nominated on Fourth Ballot; Garner Expected to be His Running Mate; Governor Will Fly to Convention Today". New York Times. Retrieved 8 October 2015.
  3. ^ a b Gunther, John (1950). Roosevelt in Retrospect. Harper & Brothers. pp. 270–272.
  4. ^ Krock, Arthur (3 July 1932). "Roosevelt Puts Economic Recovery First in His Acceptance Speech at Convention; Garner for Vice President by Acclamation". New York Times. Retrieved 8 October 2015.

Pietrusza, David 1932: The Rise of Hitler & FDR: Two Tales of Politics, Betrayal, and Unlikely Destiny Guilford CT: Lyons Press, 2015.

External links

Preceded by
Houston, Texas
Democratic National Conventions Succeeded by
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
1932 Democratic Party presidential primaries

The 1932 Democratic presidential primaries were the selection process by which voters of the Democratic Party chose its nominee for President of the United States in the 1932 U.S. presidential election. New York Governor Franklin D. Roosevelt was selected as the nominee through a series of primary elections and caucuses culminating in the 1932 Democratic National Convention held from June 27 to July 2, 1932, in Chicago, Illinois.

1932 Republican National Convention

The 1932 Republican National Convention was held at Chicago Stadium in Chicago, Illinois, from June 14 to June 16, 1932. It renominated President Herbert Hoover and Vice President Charles Curtis for their respective positions.Hoover was unopposed for the nomination, despite a lackluster Republican Party. Nonetheless, the convention praised Hoover and pledged itself to maintain a balanced budget.

1932 United States presidential election

The United States presidential election of 1932 was the thirty-seventh quadrennial presidential election, held on Tuesday, November 8, 1932. The election took place against the backdrop of the Great Depression. Incumbent Republican President Herbert Hoover was defeated in a landslide by Democrat Franklin D. Roosevelt, the Governor of New York. The election marked the effective end of the Fourth Party System, which had been dominated by Republicans.

Despite poor economic conditions, Hoover faced little opposition at the 1932 Republican National Convention. Roosevelt was widely considered the front-runner at the start of the 1932 Democratic National Convention, but was not able to clinch the nomination until the fourth ballot of the convention. The Democratic convention chose a leading Southern Democrat, Speaker of the House John Nance Garner of Texas, as the party's vice presidential nominee. Roosevelt united the party around him, campaigning on the failures of the Hoover administration. He promised recovery with a "New Deal" for the American people.

Roosevelt won by a landslide in both the electoral and popular vote, carrying every state outside of the Northeast and receiving the highest percentage of the popular vote of any Democratic nominee up to that time. Hoover had won over 57% of the popular vote in the 1928 presidential election, but saw his share of the popular vote decline to 39.7%. Socialist Party nominee Norman Thomas won 2.2% of the popular vote. Subsequent landslides in the 1934 mid-term elections and the 1936 presidential election confirmed the commencement of the Fifth Party System, which would be dominated by Roosevelt's New Deal Coalition.

1940 Republican Party presidential primaries

The 1940 Republican presidential primaries were the selection process by which voters of the Republican Party chose its nominee for President of the United States in the 1940 U.S. presidential election. The nominee was selected through a series of primary elections and caucuses culminating in the 1940 Republican National Convention held from June 24 to June 28, 1940, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.In the months leading up to the opening of the 1940 Republican National Convention, the three leading candidates for the GOP nomination were considered to be Senators Robert A. Taft of Ohio and Arthur Vandenberg of Michigan, and District Attorney Thomas E. Dewey of New York. Taft was the leader of the GOP's conservative, isolationist wing, and his main strength was in his native Midwest and parts of the South. Vandenberg, the senior Republican in the Senate, was the "favorite son" candidate of the Michigan delegation and was considered a possible compromise candidate. Dewey, the District Attorney for Manhattan, had risen to national fame as the "Gangbuster" prosecutor who had sent numerous infamous mafia figures to prison, most notably "Lucky" Luciano, the organized-crime boss of New York City. All three men had campaigned vigorously during the primary season, but only 300 of the 1,000 convention delegates had been pledged to a candidate by the time the convention opened. However, each of the three leading candidates had exploitable weaknesses. Taft's outspoken isolationism and opposition to any American involvement in the European war convinced many Republican leaders that he could not win a general election, particularly as France fell to the Nazis in May 1940 and Germany threatened Britain. Dewey's relative youth - he was only 38 in 1940 - and lack of any foreign-policy experience caused his candidacy to weaken as the Nazi military emerged as a fearsome threat. In 1940 Vandenburg was also an isolationist (he changed his foreign-policy stance during World War II ) and his lackadaisical, lethargic campaign never caught the voter's attention. This left an opening for a dark horse candidate to emerge.

A Wall Street-based industrialist named Wendell Willkie, who had never before run for public office, emerged as the unlikely nominee. Willkie, a former Democrat who had been a pro-Roosevelt delegate at the 1932 Democratic National Convention, was considered an improbable choice. Willkie had first come to public attention as an articulate critic of Roosevelt's attempt to break up electrical power monopolies. Willkie was the CEO of the Commonwealth and Southern power company, and he opposed the federal government's attempts to compete with private enterprise, claiming that the government had unfair advantages over private companies. Willkie did not dismiss all Roosevelt's social welfare programs, and in fact he supported those he believed free enterprise could not do better. Furthermore, unlike the leading Republican candidates, Willkie was a forceful and outspoken advocate of aid to the Allies, especially Britain. His support of giving all aid to the British "short of declaring war" won him the support of many Republicans on the East Coast, who disagreed with their party's isolationist leaders in Congress. Willkie's persuasive arguments impressed these Republicans, who believed that he would be an attractive presidential candidate. Many of the leading media magnates of the era, such as Ogden Reid of the New York Herald Tribune, Roy Howard of the Scripps-Howard chain and John and Gardner Cowles, publishers of the Minneapolis Star and the Minneapolis Tribune, as well as the Des Moines Register and Look magazine, supported Willkie in their newspapers and magazines. Even so, Willkie remained a long-shot candidate; the May 8 Gallup Poll showed Dewey at 67% support among Republicans, followed by Vandenberg and Taft, with Willkie at only 3%.

The Nazi Army's rapid blitz into France in May 1940 shook American public opinion, even as Taft was telling a Kansas audience that America must concentrate on domestic issues to prevent Roosevelt from using the international crisis to extend socialism at home. Both Dewey and Vandenburg also continued to oppose any aid to Britain that might lead to war with Germany. Nevertheless, sympathy for the embattled British was mounting daily, and this aided Willkie's candidacy. By mid-June, little over one week before the Republican Convention opened, the Gallup poll reported that Willkie had moved into second place with 17%, and that Dewey was slipping. Fueled by his favorable media attention, Willkie's pro-British statements won over many of the delegates. As the delegates were arriving in Philadelphia, Gallup reported that Willkie had surged to 29%, Dewey had slipped 5 more points to 47%, and Taft, Vandenberg and former President Herbert Hoover trailed at 8%, 8%, and 6% respectively. Hundreds of thousands, perhaps as many as one million, telegrams urging support for Willkie poured in, many from "Willkie Clubs" that had sprung up across the country. Millions more signed petitions circulating everywhere.

Carl C. Donaugh

Carl Clinton Donaugh (December 25, 1900 – November 8, 1965) was an American lawyer and politician from Oregon.

Charles E. Dietrich

Charles Elmer Dietrich (July 30, 1889 – May 20, 1942) was a Democratic member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Pennsylvania.

Charles P. Gillen

Charles Patrick Gillen (August 6, 1876 – June 30, 1956) was the Democratic mayor of Newark, New Jersey from 1917 to 1921. He was the first mayor under the reincorporation as a City Commission form of government.

Daniel J. Gallagher

Daniel J. Gallagher (August 31, 1873 – March 23, 1953) was an American attorney and political figure who served as a delegate to the Massachusetts Constitutional Convention of 1917-1918, the United States Attorney for the District of Massachusetts from 1920 to 1921, and a delegate to 1932 Democratic National Convention from Massachusetts.His son, Owen A. Gallagher, was a member of the Massachusetts General Court.

David I. Walsh

David Ignatius Walsh (November 11, 1872 – June 11, 1947) was a United States politician from Massachusetts. A member of the Democratic Party, he served as the 46th Governor of Massachusetts before serving several terms in the United States Senate.

Born in Leominster, Massachusetts to Irish Catholic immigrants, Walsh practiced law in Boston after graduating from the Boston University School of Law. He served in the Massachusetts House of Representatives from 1900 to 1901, establishing a reputation as an anti-imperialist and isolationist. In 1912, he won election as the Lieutenant Governor of Massachusetts, becoming the state's first Democratic lieutenant governor in seventy years. He served as governor from 1914 to 1916 and led a successful effort to call for a state constitutional convention.

Walsh won election to the Senate in 1918, lost his re-election bid in 1924, and returned to the Senate with a victory in the 1926 special election to succeed Henry Cabot Lodge. Walsh became increasingly opposed to an activist government after 1924. He supported Al Smith over Franklin D. Roosevelt at the 1932 Democratic National Convention and gave lukewarm support to President Roosevelt's agenda. Walsh introduced and helped pass the Walsh–Healey Public Contracts Act of 1936, which established labor standards for employees of government contractors. Prior to the Japanese Attack on Pearl Harbor, Walsh opposed American involvement in World War II and was a leading member of the America First Committee. He lost his 1946 re-election bid to Henry Cabot Lodge Jr. and died the following year.

Electoral history of Franklin D. Roosevelt

Electoral history of Franklin D. Roosevelt, 32nd President of the United States (1933–1945); 44th Governor of New York (1929–1932).

Isabella Greenway

Isabella Selmes Ferguson Greenway King (March 22, 1886 – December 18, 1953) is best known as the first U.S. congresswoman in Arizona history, and as the founder of the Arizona Inn of Tucson. During her life she was also noted as a one-time owner and operator of Los Angeles, Calif.-based Gilpin Air Lines, a speaker at the 1932 Democratic National Convention, and a bridesmaid at the wedding of Eleanor and Franklin D. Roosevelt.

John H. McCooey

John Henry McCooey (June 18, 1864 – January 21, 1934) was an American politician most notable for his involvement as a political boss in the Democratic Party political machine of Brooklyn. McCooey served as chair of the Kings County Democratic Party from 1910 until his death in 1934.

McCooey was born in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, in 1864. He was the oldest of six children. He developed the Madison Club, which became the strongest political organization in Kings County. At an early age, McCooey became friends with John Francis Hylan, a future Mayor of New York City.McCooey married Catherine I. Sesnon on January 17, 1899. McCooey served as secretary and president of the New York City Civil Service Commission from 1899 through 1903. He succeeded Hugh McLaughlin as Brooklyn boss in 1904. He was named to the Executive Committee of the county in 1909.McCooey joined with Tammany Hall in 1925. In 1932, McCooey was chosen by the New York delegation to succeed Norman E. Mack as a member of the Democratic National Committee. McCooey and Tammany Hall leader John F. Curry joined to support Al Smith's candidacy for President of the United States over Franklin D. Roosevelt; after Roosevelt's triumph over Smith in the 1932 Democratic National Convention, the two backed Roosevelt. McCooey continued to serve on the Executive Committee until his death in 1934.McCooey was brother-in-law of James J. Byrne, a member of the New York State Assembly and Brooklyn Borough President. His son, John H. McCooey, Jr., served as Justice of the New York Supreme Court.

John Nance Garner

John Nance Garner III (November 22, 1868 – November 7, 1967), known among his contemporaries as "Cactus Jack", was an American Democratic politician and lawyer from Texas. He was the 32nd vice president of the United States, serving from 1933 to 1941. He was also the 39th speaker of the United States House of Representatives from 1931 to 1933. Along with Schuyler Colfax, Garner is one of only two individuals to serve as Vice President of the United States and Speaker of the United States House of Representatives.

Garner began his political career as the county judge of Uvalde County, Texas. He served in the Texas House of Representatives from 1898 to 1902 and won election to represent Texas in the United States House of Representatives in 1902. He represented Texas's 15th congressional district from 1903 to 1933. Garner served as House Minority Leader from 1929 to 1931, and was elevated to Speaker of the House when Democrats won control of the House following the 1930 elections.

Garner sought the Democratic presidential nomination in the 1932 presidential election, but he agreed to serve as Franklin D. Roosevelt's running mate at the 1932 Democratic National Convention. Roosevelt and Garner won the 1932 election and were re-elected in 1936. A conservative Southerner, Garner opposed the sit-down strikes of the labor unions and the New Deal's deficit spending. He broke with Roosevelt in early 1937 over the issue of enlarging the Supreme Court, and helped defeat it on the grounds that it centralized too much power in the President's hands. Garner again sought the presidency in the 1940 presidential election, but Roosevelt won the party's presidential nomination at the 1940 Democratic National Convention. Garner was replaced as Vice President by Henry A. Wallace and retired from public office in 1941.

Katherine Whelan Brown

Katherine Brown (née Whelan; November 15, 1872 – October 3, 1942) was the first female Democrat elected to the New Jersey State Legislature. She subsequently served on the Hudson County Board of Chosen Freeholders.

Brown organized the Democratic women of Jersey City's eighth ward immediately after the passage of the 19th Amendment and remained leader of their club until her death.

As a two-term assemblywoman (1922–23), she introduced early efforts at gun control and helped to pass a night work bill, which was intended to protect women by prohibiting them from working in factories during the overnight hours. As a freeholder (1925-1935), she was responsible for oversight of the county hospitals and institutions at Snake Hill (which she renamed Laurel Hill) and oversaw the planning and grand opening of the Margaret Hague Maternity Hospital.

An ally of Jersey City Mayor Frank Hague, she campaigned for Democrats across the state and attended both the 1932 Democratic National Convention and Franklin D. Roosevelt's 1933 inauguration.

Martin R. Bradley

Martin R. Bradley (April 1, 1888 – December 21, 1975) was a Democratic politician from Michigan who served in the Michigan House of Representatives, including as Speaker during the 57th Legislature. He was the first Speaker to come from the Upper Peninsula and sponsored the legislation which created the Michigan Legislative Council (as Speaker, he served as its first chairman).Prior to his election to the House, Bradley was a school teacher in Huron County, later moving to Hermansville and serving as the superintendent of schools and as postmaster. He was also a delegate to the 1932 Democratic National Convention which nominated Franklin D. Roosevelt for President of the United States. In 1935, Bradley was appointed the customs collector for Michigan and made his home in Detroit.Bradley died on December 21, 1975 in Leavenworth, Washington.

Newton D. Baker

Newton Diehl Baker Jr. (December 3, 1871 – December 25, 1937) was an American lawyer, Georgist, politician, and government official. He served as the 37th mayor of Cleveland, Ohio from 1912 to 1915. As U.S. Secretary of War from 1916 to 1921, Baker presided over the United States Army during World War I.

Born in Martinsburg, West Virginia, Baker established a legal practice in Cleveland after graduating from Washington and Lee University School of Law. He became progressive Democratic ally of Mayor Tom L. Johnson. Baker served as city solicitor of Cleveland from 1901 to 1909 before taking office as mayor in 1912. As mayor, he sought public transit reform, hospital improvement, and city beautification. Baker supported Woodrow Wilson at the 1912 Democratic National Convention, helping Wilson win the votes of the Ohio delegation. After leaving office, Baker accepted appointment as Secretary of War under President Wilson. He was one of several prominent Georgists appointed to positions in the Wilson Cabinet.Baker presided over the U.S. military's participation in World War I. He selected General John J. Pershing to command the American Expeditionary Forces, which he insisted act as an independent unit. He left office in 1921 and returned to BakerHostetler, the legal practice he co-founded. He served as an attorney in Village of Euclid v. Ambler Realty Co., a landmark case that established the constitutionality of zoning laws. He was a strong supporter of the League of Nations and continued to advocate American participation in the League during the 1920s. Beginning in 1928, he served as a member of the Permanent Court of Arbitration. He was a candidate for the presidential nomination at the 1932 Democratic National Convention, but the convention chose Franklin D. Roosevelt.

Paul Brown (Georgia politician)

Paul Brown (March 31, 1880 – September 24, 1961) was an American politician and lawyer, who served in the United States House of Representatives.

Brown was born in Hartwell, Georgia, and graduated from the University of Georgia School of Law in Athens with a Bachelor of Laws (LL.B.) degree in 1901. He was admitted to the state bar in that year and began practicing law in Lexington, Georgia. He farmed and also served as the Mayor of Lexington from 1908 to 1914. Brown served in the Georgia House of Representatives in 1907 and 1908.

In 1920, Brown moved to Elberton, Georgia in Elbert County and served as that county's attorney from 1928 to 1933. In 1932, he was a delegate to the 1932 Democratic National Convention. The next year Brown successfully ran in a special election to fill the vacant seat in Georgia's 10th congressional district in the United States House of Representatives caused by the death of incumbent Charles Hillyer Brand. Brown finished the rest of that term in the 73rd United States Congress and was reelected to 13 additional terms in that position.

A staunch segregationist, in 1956, Brown signed "The Southern Manifesto."

In 1960, he did not seek reelection. Brown died the next year on September 24, 1961, in Elberton and was buried in that city's Elmhurst Cemetery.

The Story of Will Rogers

The Story of Will Rogers is a 1952 Technicolor film biography of humorist and movie star Will Rogers, directed by Michael Curtiz and starring Will Rogers Jr. as his father. The supporting cast features Jane Wyman, Slim Pickens, Noah Beery Jr., Steve Brodie, and Eddie Cantor. The film's screenplay was based on the true short story "Uncle Clem's Boy" by Rogers' widow Betty Blake, which was published in The Saturday Evening Post in 1940.

Bing Crosby secretly made a screen test for the lead role available for viewing at the Paley Center for Media in New York City and Los Angeles but was deemed too different in persona from Rogers to play the part.

Warren J. Duffey

Warren Joseph Duffey (January 24, 1886 – July 7, 1936) was a U.S. Representative from Ohio.

Born in Toledo, Ohio, Duffey attended the public schools.

Duffey graduated from St. John's University in Toledo, Ohio, in 1908 and from the law department of the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor in 1911. Duffey was admitted to the bar the same year and commenced the practice of law in Toledo, Ohio.

Duffey served in the Ohio House of Representatives in 1913 and 1914 and as a member of the Toledo City Council in 1917 and 1918. He served as chairman of the Lucas County Democratic central committee from 1919 and 1932 and was a delegate to the 1932 Democratic National Convention.

Duffey was elected as a Democrat to the Seventy-third and Seventy-fourth Congresses and served from March 4, 1933, until his death. He was an unsuccessful candidate for renomination in 1936.

Duffey died in Toledo, Ohio on July 7, 1936. He is interred in Calvary Cemetery.

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