1952 Republican National Convention(Election 1952)

1952 Republican National Convention

Attendees at the 1952 convention

When the 1952 Republican National Convention opened in Chicago, most political experts rated Robert Taft and Dwight Eisenhower as neck-and-neck in the delegate vote totals.

Eisenhower's managers, led by New York Governor Thomas Dewey and Massachusetts Senator Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr., accused Taft of "stealing" delegate votes in Southern states such as Texas and Georgia. They claimed that Taft's leaders in these states had illegally refused to give delegate spots to Eisenhower supporters and put Taft delegates in their place. Lodge and Dewey proposed to evict the pro-Taft delegates in these states and replace them with pro-Eisenhower delegates; they called this proposal "Fair Play".

Taft and his supporters angrily denied this charge. Ultimately the convention voted down Fair Play 623-583, letting Taft retain his control over those states.

Former Minnesota Governor Harold Stassen, who had also run for the nomination, released his delegates to Taft. Rumours swirled that Stassen was promised the by Taft to be named his running mate if he did so.

The final nail in the Eisenhower campaign's coffin came when several uncommitted state delegations agreed to support Taft.

After much squabbling Robert Taft won the Republican Nomination. Harold Stassen was nominated for Vice President by acclamation.

The Convention had a bitter atmosphere, many Eisenhower delegates furiously disapproved of how it had turned out. Dewey, in his convention speech, announced his support of Taft and called for unity in the GOP.

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