Friday, October 31, 2008

Humbert H Humphrey, Cuba, and Doyle-Style Politics

There's nothing like a story from Roeser to illuminate the dark (and I MEAN 'dark') corners of Democrat politics.

Humphrey and his Democrat (DFL) allies had a lock on the Mesabi Range voters, all of whom were convinced that the mining companies had screwed them silly. In fact, the DFL's increasingly extortionate taxation of mining had brought the enterprise to its financial knees. Unemployment on the Range would not go away.

Then, the discovery that taconite (the waste product of mining) could be processsed--manufactured---into viable iron ore. Millions could be spent on the necessary machinery and technology, and thousands could be employed. Were jobs to be had, the DFL resentment-vote would slowly disappear, endangering Hubert H Humphrey's empire.

But in order to make that happen, the Minnesota Constitution had to be amended.

Of course, the (R) Governor of Minnesota made it a priority to amend the Constitution. This item would be on the 1962 ballot, as would the Governor.

Minnesota was always to be a Democratic state but as the fall of 1962 loomed, it looked like we were ahead and the taconite amendment might be accepted by the voters for consideration later. Humphrey saw this as a great threat. We were on the way to reelection in mid-October, 1962 when the Cuban Missile Crisis hit the Kennedy administration

Suddenly the whole complexion of the campaign changed. We were shut out of the news for more than a week because the national and Minnesota media concentrated on the heroic figure of John F. Kennedy facing yet another test in national security policy

...The nation thrilled to see the Russians supposedly…supposedly… back down. Kennedy was adjudged the winner and with it came a gigantic surge of pro-JFK admiration across the land

...Unknown at the time was that Bobby Kennedy had cut a secret deal with the Kremlin that we would remove missiles from Turkey if they would recompense in Cuba…and keep it quiet so his brother could savor the favorable press. We dismantled our missiles in Turkey which gravely weakened the defenses of the West but the media portrayed it as a glorious victory for this young photogenic president

The Gubernatorial/Amendment campaign continued apace, and it appeared that the (R) Governor would prevail, as well as the Amendment.

...Hubert Humphrey took care of that. In the last few hours of October he unveiled a so-called “scandal” involving 13 feet of concrete poured at unacceptably cold temperatures for a stretch of Interstate 35 near Hinckley…poured, he charged, in cold weather at the insistence of my governor so he could dedicate the portion of the highway for his own political aggrandizement. Then to make it official, Humphrey got the U.S. Bureau of Public Roads (then in the Commerce Department) to cancel the portion of the interstate that was to be paid by the feds-90%. I discovered that the highway worker responsible for orchestrating the “scandal” was a brother of a high DFL operative. Did the media care? Nope

(That's for those of you who think that media antipathy for Pubbies is of recent ain't so, folks...)

With that supposed contract cancellation in his pocket, Humphrey announced that the taxpayers of Minnesota would have to pay the entire cost of the Interstate at a cost of tens of millions of dollars due to the Republican governor’s piggish, loutish insistence on pouring the concrete. Of course the pouring of the concrete wasn’t done at our behest. Dedicating a portion of the Interstate was of minimal significance and we never bothered thinking about it. But between the Kennedy aura and the Humphrey charge of evil collusion, we lost reelection by…get this…91 votes out of 1,250,000 cast

Think that "the national interests," or even "the PEOPLE'S interests" ever get between a Dem politician and the power-goal?

Think again.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Lost by only 91 votes? This sounds a typical ACORN victory nowadays.