posted on Aug, 28 2012 @ 03:59 PM
This would not be the first time the GOP ripped off a challenger to the establishment's selected candidate. People may still like Eisenhower to this
day, and no one knows if he personally was involved in the corruption, but the fact remains the party screwed over Robert A. Taft; the
Libertarian-esque challenger from Ohio.
Taft won 35.84% of the primary vote to Eisenhower's 26.30%. Taft won 6 states to Eisenhower's 5.
Eisenhower's managers, led by Governor 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". Although Taft and his supporters angrily denied this charge, the convention
voted to support Fair Play 658-548, and Taft lost many Southern delegates; this decided the nomination in Eisenhower's favor. However, the mood at
the convention was one of the most bitter and emotional in American history; in one speech Senator Everett Dirksen of Illinois, a Taft supporter,
pointed at Governor Dewey on the convention floor and accused him of leading the Republicans "down the road to defeat", and mixed boos and cheers
rang out from the delegates.
You must also remember that voting in party primaries were not that common. Most states until the 1970s did not even have voting for Presidential
candidates in party primaries. The candidates were chosen by the delegates, but I am not sure how the delegates were chosen. They would sit in smoke
filled rooms and hammer out deals to get their candidate nominated. Whoever the party bosses felt most favorable towards they pushed the hardest and
almost always won. Take Wendell Willkie, no one would have chosen that guy; he was a wet wash cloth candidate if there ever was one. There was even a
joke that support from his candidacy popped up from every country club in America.
Even with that stated, I do not recall any state's delegates just simply being discarded.