Local politics were confused a century ago

If you think present-day politics is confusing, just take a look at what it was like a little more than a century ago. In 1890, the Republicans renominated D. S. Hall for representative in Congress from this District. So far, so good. The problem was that there was another Hall — this one nominated by the Democrats for the same office. The question went deeper than party affiliation — it was also a matter of personality. O.M. Hall, who had been nominated by the Democrats, was an educated man, while Republican D. S. Hall, whose grammar, among other things, was ridiculous, and the target of a lot of contempt. At that time, the state Democratic party regarded Kandiyohi County as a complete loss.

That was when J.M. Spicer, a member of the Democratic State Campaign Committee, promised his fellow committee members that he would, with a $300 budget, deliver Willmar to his party, which he did.In 1890, the farmers in the county still felt that the milling interests were completely controlling the sale of grain. Those milling interests owned all the grain elevators in the county, and could set the prices of grain at any level they wished, and the farmers had to accept them or starve

This brought the Farmers Alliance into the picture when it held a very large convention in Willmar, which produced a resolution which read, “Whereas the old political parties have proven unfaithful to their trust and have time and again broken faith with their promises, therefore, be it resolved that we favor independent political action and that a full state slate be put into the field.”

Once again, the politics got snarled. The Farmers Alliance nominated slates for county offices, which many of the nominees refused, saying that they were Republicans and would run on the Republican ticket.

Then the Alliance presented another slate, with many of the nominees who had already been nominated by the Prohibitionists.

If a man were elected under these circumstances, which party would he represent?

What would happen today under like circumstances?

What would happen to the party system?

Whatever your choice, get out and vote!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>