The Lincoln Plawg - the blog with footnotes

Politics and law from a British perspective (hence Politics LAW BloG): ''People who like this sort of thing...'' as the Great Man said

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Sunday, February 20, 2005

Minnesota senatorial two-step

Another warning against busking it.

Continuing my examination (for want of a better word) of the process of the desolidification of the South, I'm looking, with Keith Finley's help, at the votes in the 1940s on poll taxes and FEPC.

And come to the vote on November 23 1942, RC 189, to end debate on HR 1024, an anti-poll tax bill. Trying to tie up the votes cast with the DW-NOMINATE scores for the senators concerned, I note that one senator from Minnesota cast a vote on RC 189 who was not in the list of senators scored for the 77th Congress: one Arthur Emanuel Nelson.

Reference to the Political Graveyard page for MN senators and the Congressional biography pages linked therefrom, one ascertains the following bizarre facts:

In the 1936 general election, Arthur Lundeen was elected US senator from MN, joining his F-L colleague Henrik Shipstead. Lundeen died in a plane crash on August 31 1940; and one Joseph Ball was appointed to fill the vacancy, serving from October 14 1940 to November 17 1942.

The afore-mentioned Nelson, elected on November 3 1942 to fill the balance of Lundeen's term, served from November 18, 1942 to January 3, 1943, and did not seek election to the following term.

Ball did so, was elected, also on November 3 1942, to a term commencing on January 3 1943.

Quite how many days' work Nelson did in the Capitol, or which other important votes he took part in, I'm not sure. It seems bizarre that Ball should serve out almost the whole of the balance of Lundeen's term as an appointee, whilst the guy who wins an election to do so no sooner takes his seat than he's ousted by the appointed guy, who's now won an election, too!

Note that both Nelson and Ball were Republicans; Ball was appointed by Governor Harold Stassen, who's cropped up here before. He lost in the 1948 general to DEWDROPs' wet dream [1] Hubert Humphrey.

  1. Not always the darling of the left; in 1968, the slogan was Dump the Hump!

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