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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Tuesday, February 08, 2005
 

Those pro-lynching Northern Democrats!


More precisely, anti-antilynching.

I'm just re-reading Keith Finley's thesis with the benefit of the Voteview gizmo (February 7), and have got up to the House vote on the Dyer anti-lynching bill (p2 of Chapter 1) [1].

You'd expect a united Southern delegation voting against. The shock (for those who may have imbibed the Democrat Kool Aid) is that Northern Dems mostly joined their colleagues in leaving the Negro to fry - in some cases, literally.

(Not something genial Al Franken mentions on his show much, that I've heard. Funny, that.)

The exceptions:

RAINEY, J.W IL
JOHNSON, B. KY
GALLIVAN, J MA
O'BRIEN, C. NJ
CULLEN, T.H NY
RIORDAN, D. NY
COCKRAN, W. NY
MEAD, J.M. NY
CAMPBELL, G PA

  1. Roll Call 169 on passage of HR 13 on January 26 1922. Finley gives the result as 231-119 with 8 Dems voting for, Voteview as 230-120, with 9.

MORE

The Dyer in question was Leonidas Carstarphen Dyer of Missouri. A Republican.

(The extreme Dem partisanship - way beyond majority of the majority extended so far as preferring to see Negroes shorn of their manhoods for the amusement of the gentlefolk of Dixie than support a measure sponsored by a Republican.

And, of course, those gentlefolk would all be solid Democrats - so it worked all ways round for Northern Dems.)

Interesting that, among the Northern Dem renegades, over half have Irish names (or names that look Irish to me, at least). My understanding - yielding to cogent evidence, as available - was that the Northern Irish (that is, Catholics largely from the South of Ireland) shared with their Scots-Irish Southern brethren (Protestants from the North of Ireland) a visceral contempt for the Negro [1].

Interesting to see the full Indiana delegation - GOP to a man - supporting the Dyer bill. The state was a centre of Ku Klux Klan activity in the North, under the direction of David Stephenson, of Madge Oberholtzer fame.

The Missouri delegation was 15 strong, with 13 GOP, all supporting the bill [2]. What was the Pendergast machine doing? The two Dems, Rucker and Hawes, represented the 2nd and 13th Districts respectively. Do those Kansas City? Lack of basic information (Congressional District maps for all Congresses) stymies once more.

  1. The New York Draft Riots of 1863 were a demonstration of this. An interview with James McPherson on the Democratic Party's exploitation of Irish race hatred. Tammany Mayor Fernando Wood suggested that New York City should secede from the Union. (Earlier Plawg pieces on Wood.)

    Interesting to explore the differences between the sentiments of each group of Irishmen: in the North, the Negro was hated - I'd hypothesise - as a potential competitor for their low-paid jobs; in the South, it would be more of a caste superiority.

  2. In the 109th, MO is worth just nine seats, five of which are GOP.


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