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1932 Democratic National Convention
1932 Presidential Election
FDR in 1933.jpg JohnNanceGarner.jpg
Convention
Date(s) June 27 - July 2
City Chicago, Illinois
Venue Chicago Stadium
Candidates
Presidential Nominee Franklin D. Roosevelt of New York
Vice Presidential Nominee John N. Garner of Texas
1928  ·  1936

The 1932 Democratic National Convention was held in Chicago, Illinois from June 27 - July 2, 1932. The convention resulted in the nomination of Governor Franklin Roosevelt of New York for President and Speaker of the House John Nance Garner of Texas for Vice-President.

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.

Garner had support from newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst and Senator William Gibbs McAdoo. 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 two-thirds majority necessary for the nomination. At this point, Smith believed the delegates were anxious about a deadlocked convention, and attempted to stampede all the delegates' votes toward his surrogate, Cleveland Mayor Newton D. Baker. The stalemate lingered for several days, however, until a late night call was made by leading Democrat Joseph P. Kennedy, Sr.(then a Roosevelt supporter) to Hearst. Kennedy reminded Hearst that if the convention continued in the same way, Smith or Baker would be nominated, two people who embodied all the political beliefs diametrically opposed to Hearst's own. Kennedy managed to convince Hearst to notify Garner to bow out of the race, and to support Roosevelt. When McAdoo learned of this decision, he threw California's delegates to Roosevelt, and the other states fell in line behind Roosevelt.

Presidential Balloting, DNC 1932
ballot 1 2 3 4
Gov. Franklin Roosevelt 666.5 677 682 945
Former Gov. Al Smith 201 194 190 190
Speaker of the U.S. House John Nance Garner 90.25 90.25 101.3 -
Governor George White 52 50.5 52.5 -
Former Gov. Harry F. Byrd 25 24 25 -
Melvin A. Traylor 42.5 40 40 -
Sen. James A. Reed 24 18 27 -
Gov. Albert C. Ritchie 21 23 23 -
Gov. William "Alfalfa Bill" Murray 23 - - -
Will Rogers - 22 - -

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."

See also

Preceded by
1928
Democratic National Conventions Succeeded by
1936

External links

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