Prohibition Party

Last updated

Prohibition Party
ChairmanRandy McNutt
Founded1869;150 years ago (1869)
Ideology Temperance
Paleoconservatism
Christian democracy
Green conservatism
Political position Economic: Center-left to left-wing
Social: Right-wing
ColorsBlue, red, white
Seats in the Senate
0 / 100
Seats in the House
0 / 435
Governorships
0 / 50
State Upper Houses
0 / 1,921
State Lower Houses
0 / 5,411
Website
www.prohibitionparty.org

The Prohibition Party (PRO) is a political party in the United States best known for its historic opposition to the sale or consumption of alcoholic beverages. It is the oldest existing third party in the US.[ citation needed ] The party is an integral part of the temperance movement. While never one of the leading parties in the United States, it was once an important force in the Third Party System during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. It declined dramatically after the repeal of Prohibition in 1933. The party's candidate received 518 votes in the 2012 presidential election [1] and 5,617 votes in the 2016 presidential election. [2] The platform of the party is liberal in that it supports environmental stewardship and free education, but is conservative on social issues, such as supporting temperance and advocating for an anti-abortion stance. [3]

Political parties in the United States Political parties in the United States

Political parties in the United States are dominated by two major parties. Since the 1850s they have been the Democratic Party and the Republican Party, This two-party system is based on laws, party rules and custom. Various small minor parties come and go and occasionally win major offices at the state level. Local offices, however, are often nonpartisan.

Third party (United States) American political parties other than the Republican and Democratic parties

Third party is a term used in the United States for American political parties other than the Republican and Democratic parties.

Contents

History

National Prohibition Convention, Cincinnati, Ohio, 1892 National Prohibition Convention 1892.jpg
National Prohibition Convention, Cincinnati, Ohio, 1892

The Prohibition Party was founded in 1869. Its first National Committee Chairman was John Russell of Michigan. [4] It succeeded in getting communities and also many counties in the states to outlaw the production and sale of intoxicating beverages.

John Russell was a Methodist preacher who became a leading advocate for prohibition during the 1870s. Russell helped organize the Prohibition Party, was its first National Committee Chairman, and was the party's running mate for James Black in the 1872 United States presidential election. As a journalist, Russell published the Detroit Peninsular Herald as the first prohibition newspaper. He was born in 1822 in Livingston, New York. He died on November 4, 1912 in Detroit.

At the same time, its ideology broadened to include aspects of progressivism. The party contributed to the third-party discussions of the 1910s and sent Charles H. Randall to the 64th, 65th and 66th Congresses as the representative of California's 9th congressional district. Democrat Sidney J. Catts of Florida, after losing a close Democratic primary, used the Prohibition line to win election as Governor of Florida in 1916; he remained a Democrat.

Progressivism is the support for or advocacy of social reform. As a philosophy, it is based on the idea of progress, which asserts that advancements in science, technology, economic development and social organization are vital to the improvement of the human condition.

64th United States Congress

The Sixty-fourth United States Congress was a meeting of the legislative branch of the United States federal government, composed of the United States Senate and the United States House of Representatives. It met in Washington, DC from March 4, 1915, to March 4, 1917, during the third and fourth years of Woodrow Wilson's presidency. The apportionment of seats in the House of Representatives was based on the Thirteenth Census of the United States in 1910. Both chambers had a Democratic majority.

65th United States Congress

The Sixty-fifth United States Congress was a meeting of the legislative branch of the United States federal government, composed of the United States Senate and the United States House of Representatives. It met in Washington, DC from March 4, 1917, to March 4, 1919, during the fifth and sixth years of Woodrow Wilson's presidency. The apportionment of seats in this House of Representatives was based on the Thirteenth Census of the United States in 1910. The Senate had a Democratic majority, and the House had a Republican plurality but the Democrats remained in control with the support of the Progressives and Socialist Representative Meyer London.

The Prohibition Party's proudest moment came in 1919, with the passage of the 18th Amendment to the United States Constitution, which outlawed the production, sale, transportation, import and export of alcohol. The era during which alcohol was illegal in the United States is known as "Prohibition".

Eighteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution Amendment establishing Prohibition in the United States of America

The Eighteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution established the prohibition of "intoxicating liquors" in the United States. The amendment was proposed by Congress on December 18, 1917, and was ratified by the requisite number of states on January 16, 1919. The Eighteenth Amendment was repealed by the Twenty-first Amendment on December 5, 1933.

Prohibition in the United States Constitutional ban on alcoholic beverages

Prohibition in the United States was a nationwide constitutional ban on the production, importation, transportation, and sale of alcoholic beverages from 1920 to 1933.

During the Prohibition era, the Prohibition Party pressed for stricter enforcement of the prohibition laws. During the 1928 election, for example, it considered endorsing Republican Herbert Hoover rather than running its own candidate. However, by a 3/4 vote, its national executive committee voted to nominate its own candidate, William F. Varney, instead. They did this because they felt Hoover's stance on prohibition was not strict enough. [5] The Prohibition Party became even more critical of Hoover after he was elected President. By the 1932 election, party chairman David Leigh Colvin thundered that "The Republican wet plank [i.e. supporting the repeal of Prohibition] means that Mr. Hoover is the most conspicuous turncoat since Benedict Arnold." [6] Hoover lost the election, but national prohibition was repealed anyway in 1933, with the 21st Amendment during the Roosevelt administration.

Herbert Hoover American politician

Herbert Clark Hoover was an American engineer, businessman, and politician who served as the 31st president of the United States from 1929 to 1933. A member of the Republican Party, he held office during the onset of the Great Depression. Prior to serving as president, Hoover led the Commission for Relief in Belgium, served as the director of the U.S. Food Administration, and served as the 3rd U.S. Secretary of Commerce.

William Frederick Varney was an American politician who ran as a Prohibition Party candidate in 1928.

David Leigh Colvin was an American politician and member of the Prohibition Party and the Law Preservation Party.

Women and the Prohibition Party

The 19th Amendment, which gave women the right to vote, did not pass until 1920. Yet, in 1869, the Prohibition Party became the first to accept women as party members [7] and even gave women who attended its first national convention full delegate rights. This was the first time any party had afforded women this right. [8] These women "spoke from the floor, entered debates, introduced resolutions, and voted on the party platform". [9] Women's suffrage appeared on the Prohibition Party platform in 1872. In 1892, the platform included the idea of equal pay for equal work. Delia L. Weatherby was an alternate delegate from the 4th congressional district of Kansas to the National Prohibition Convention in 1892, and also secured, the same year, for the second time by the same party, the nomination for the office of superintendent of public instruction in her own county. By contrast, women’s suffrage did not appear on the platform of either the Democratic or Republican platform until 1916. The Woman’s Christian Temperance Union (WCTU), which later became instrumental in the passage of the 18th Amendment, started out as the women’s branch of the Prohibition Party. It went on to become more influential than the party itself. It was "the largest women’s organization of the nineteenth century and the heart of the organized demand for prohibition and women’s rights as well as for prison and labor reform, for public support for neglected children, and for peace – in short for a transformed society dedicated to social justice". [8]

Nineteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution Grants women the right to vote; prohibiting denial of voting rights on the basis of sex

The Nineteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution prohibits the states and the federal government from denying the right to vote to citizens of the United States on the basis of sex. Initially introduced to Congress in 1878, several attempts to pass a women's suffrage amendment failed until 1919, when suffragists pressed President Woodrow Wilson to call a special congressional session. On May 21, 1919, the proposed amendment passed the House of Representatives, followed by the Senate on June 4, 1919; it was then submitted to the states for ratification. On August 18, 1920, Tennessee was the last of the necessary 36 states to secure ratification. The Nineteenth Amendment was officially adopted on August 26, 1920: the culmination of a decades-long movement for women's suffrage at both state and national levels.

Delia L. Weatherby American social reformer, author

Delia Lionia Stearns Weatherby was a temperance reformer and author.

Some of the most important women involved in this movement were:

Post World War II

The Prohibition Party has faded into obscurity since World War II. When it briefly changed its name to the "National Statesman Party" in 1977 (it reversed the change in 1980), Time magazine suggested that it was "doubtful" that the name change would "hoist the party out of the category of political oddity". [17]

The Prohibition Party has continued running presidential candidates every four years, but its vote totals have steadily dwindled. It last received more than 100,000 votes for president in 1948, and the 1976 election was the last time the party received more than 10,000 votes.

The Prohibition Party experienced a schism in 2003, as the party's prior presidential candidate, Earl Dodge, incorporated a rival party called the National Prohibition Party in Colorado. [18] [19] An opposing faction nominated Gene C. Amondson for President and filed under the Prohibition banner in Louisiana. Dodge ran under the name of the historic Prohibition Party in Colorado, [20] while the Concerns of People Party allowed Amondson to run on its line against Dodge. [21] Amondson received 1,944 votes, nationwide, while Dodge garnered 140.

One key area of disagreement between the factions was over who should control payments from a trust fund dedicated to the Prohibition Party by George Pennock in 1930. [22] The fund pays approximately $8,000 per year, and during the schism these funds were divided between the factions. [23] Dodge died in 2007, allowing the dispute over the Pennock funds to finally be resolved in 2014. [24] The party is reported as having only "three dozen fee-paying members". [25]

In the 2016 election, the party nominated James Hedges. He qualified for the ballot in three states, Arkansas, Colorado, and Mississippi, and earned 5,514 votes.

The party met via telephone conference in November 2018 to nominate its 2020 presidential ticket. Bill Bayes of Mississippi, the 2016 Vice-Presidential nominee, was nominated for President on the first ballot over Adam Seaman of Massachusetts and Phil Collins of Nevada. Conservative activist C.L. "Connie" Gammon of Tennessee was nominated as the Vice-Presidential candidate without opposition. [26] Bayes, who was a neo-Confederate activist espousing the view that each state was sovereign and that the United States was only a voluntary confederation of states, resigned as the nominee, accusing some party activists of sabotaging his run because they opposed his views. [27] As a result, another telephone conference call was held in March 2019, resulting in the nominations of C.L. Gammon for Presidential and conservative activist Phil Collins for Vice Presidential. [28] Gammon was forced to resign as the nominee in August 2019 due to health problems, and the party held a third telephone conference that month to select a new ticket: Phil Collins for President and Billy Joe Parker of Georgia for Vice President. [29] Like Bayes, Parker is a vocal Confederate heritage activist, although Parker scrubbed all the Confederate heritage images and memes from his Facebook page after being nominated. [30]

Platform

The Prohibition Party platform, as listed on the party's web site in 2018, includes the following points: [31]

Electoral history

Presidential campaigns

The Prohibition Party has nominated a candidate for president in every election since 1872, and is thus the longest-lived American political party after the Democrats and Republicans.

Prohibition Party National Conventions and Campaigns
YearNo.Convention Site & CityDatesPresidential nomineeVice-Presidential nomineeVotesVotes %
1872 1stComstock's Opera House, Columbus, Ohio Feb. 22, 1872 James Black (Pennsylvania) John Russell (Michigan)5,6070.1
1876 2ndHalle's Hall,
Cleveland, Ohio
May 17, 1876 Green Clay Smith (Kentucky) Gideon T. Stewart (Ohio)6,9450.08
1880 3rdJune 17, 1880 Neal Dow (Maine) Henry Adams Thompson (Ohio)10,3640.11
1884 4thLafayette Hall,
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
July 23–24, 1884 John P. St. John (Kansas) William Daniel (Maryland)147,4821.50
1888 5thTomlinson Hall,
Indianapolis, Indiana
May 30–31, 1888 Clinton B. Fisk (New Jersey) John A. Brooks (Missouri)249,8192.20
1892 6thMusic Hall,
Cincinnati, Ohio
June 29–30, 1892 John Bidwell (California) James B. Cranfill (Texas)270,8792.24
1896 7thExposition Hall, PittsburghMay 27–28, 1896 Joshua Levering (Maryland) Hale Johnson (Illinois)131,3120.94
[7th]PittsburghMay 28, 1896 Charles Eugene Bentley (Nebraska) James H. Southgate (N. Car.)13,9680.10
1900 8thFirst Regiment Armory,
Chicago, Illinois
June 27–28, 1900 John G. Woolley (Illinois) Henry B. Metcalf (Rhode Island)210,8641.51
1904 9thTomlinson Hall, IndianapolisJune 29 to
July 1, 1904
Silas C. Swallow (Pennsylvania) George W. Carroll (Texas)259,1021.92
1908 10thMemorial Hall, ColumbusJuly 15–16, 1908 Eugene W. Chafin (Illinois) Aaron S. Watkins (Ohio)254,0871.71
1912 11thon a large temporary pier,
Atlantic City, New Jersey
July 10–12, 1912208,1561.38
1916 12th St. Paul, Minnesota July 19–21, 1916 J. Frank Hanly (Indiana)Rev. Dr. Ira Landrith (Tennessee)221,3021.19
1920 13th Lincoln, Nebraska July 21–22, 1920 Aaron S. Watkins (Ohio) D. Leigh Colvin (New York)188,7870.71
1924 14thMemorial Hall, ColumbusJune 4–6, 1924 Herman P. Faris (Missouri) Marie C. Brehm (California)55,9510.19
1928 15thHotel LaSalle, ChicagoJuly 10–12, 1928 William F. Varney (New York) James A. Edgerton 20,1010.05
[15th][California ticket] Herbert Hoover (California) Charles Curtis (Kansas)14,394
1932 16th Cadle Tabernacle,
Indianapolis
July 5–7, 1932 William D. Upshaw (Georgia) Frank S. Regan (Illinois)81,9050.21
1936 17thState Armory Building,
Niagara Falls, New York
May 5–7, 1936 D. Leigh Colvin (New York) Alvin York (Tennessee) (declined);
Claude A. Watson (California)
37,6590.08
1940 18thChicagoMay 8–10, 1940 Roger W. Babson (Mass.) Edgar V. Moorman (Illinois)57,9250.12
1944 19thIndianapolisNov. 10–12, 1943 Claude A. Watson (California)Floyd C. Carrier (Maryland) (withdrew);
Andrew N. Johnson (Kentucky)
74,7580.16
1948 20th Winona Lake, Indiana June 26–28, 1947 Dale H. Learn (Pennsylvania)103,7080.21
1952 21stIndianapolisNov. 13–15, 1951 Stuart Hamblen (California) Enoch A. Holtwick (Illinois)73,4120.12
1956 22ndCamp Mack,
Milford, Indiana
Sept. 4–6, 1955 Enoch A. Holtwick (Illinois) Herbert C. Holdridge (California) (withdrew);
Edwin M. Cooper (California)
41,9370.07
1960 23rdWestminster Hotel,
Winona Lake
Sept. 1–3, 1959 Rutherford Decker (Missouri) E. Harold Munn (Michigan)46,2030.07
1964 24thPick Congress Hotel,
Chicago
August 26–27, 1963 E. Harold Munn (Michigan)Mark R. Shaw (Massachusetts)23,2670.03
1968 25thYWCA, Detroit, Mich. June 28–29, 1968 Rolland E. Fisher (Kansas)15,1230.02
1972 26thNazarene Church Building,
Wichita, Kansas
June 24–25, 1971 Marshall E. Uncapher (Kansas)13,4970.02
1976 27thBeth Eden Baptist Church Bldg, Wheat Ridge, Colo. June 26–27, 1975 Benjamin C. Bubar (Maine) Earl F. Dodge (Colorado)15,9320.02
1980 28thMotel Birmingham,
Birmingham, Alabama
June 20–21, 19797,2060.01
1984 29th Mandan, North Dakota June 22–24, 1983 Earl Dodge (Colorado)Warren C. Martin (Kansas)4,2430.00
1988 30thHeritage House,
Springfield, Illinois
June 25–26, 1987 George Ormsby (Pennsylvania)8,0020.01
1992 31st Minneapolis, MinnesotaJune 24–26, 19919610.00
1996 32nd Denver, Colorado1995 Rachel Bubar Kelly (Maine)1,2980.00
2000 33rd Bird-in-Hand, Pennsylvania June 28–30, 1999 W. Dean Watkins (Arizona)2080.00
2004 34th Fairfield Glade, Tennessee February 1, 2004 Gene Amondson (Washington) Leroy Pletten (Michigan)1,9440.00
[34th] Lakewood, Colorado August 2003 Earl Dodge (Colorado) Howard Lydick (Texas)1400.00
2008 35thAdam's Mark Hotel,
Indianapolis
Sept. 13–14, 2007 Gene Amondson (Washington) Leroy Pletten (Michigan)6550.00
2012 36thHoliday Inn Express,
Cullman, Alabama
June 20–22, 2011 Jack Fellure (West Virginia) Toby Davis (Mississippi)5180.00
2016 37thConference call [32] [33] July 31, 2015 James Hedges (Pennsylvania)Bill Bayes (Mississippi)5,617 [34] 0.00
2020 38thConference call [35] August 24, 2019Phil Collins (Nevada)Billy Joe Parker (Georgia)N/A

Elected officials

The Drunkard's Progress: A lithograph by Nathaniel Currier supporting the temperance movement, January 1846 The Drunkard's Progress - Color.jpg
The Drunkard's Progress: A lithograph by Nathaniel Currier supporting the temperance movement, January 1846

See also

Primary sources

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The Temperance movement began long before the Eighteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution was introduced. Across the country different groups began lobbying for temperance by arguing that alcohol was morally corrupting and hurting families economically, when men would drink their family's money away. This temperance movement paved the way for some women to join the Prohibition movement, which they often felt was necessary due to their personal experiences dealing with drunk husbands and fathers, and because it was one of the few ways for women to enter politics in the era. One of the most notable groups that pushed for Prohibition was the Woman's Christian Temperance Union. On the other end of the spectrum was the Women's Organization for National Prohibition Reform, who were instrumental in getting the 18th Amendment repealed. These women argued that Prohibition was a breach of the rights of American citizens and frankly ineffective due to the prevalence of bootlegging.

References

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Further reading