Sunday, December 29, 2013

Some Republicans Like Ideas, Honest.

Dwight Evans with William Ecenbarger. Making Ideas Matter: My Life as a Policy Entrepreneur. Philadelphia: Fels Institute at the University of Pennsylvania, 2013.

Evans at age 21 was elected President of the Concerned Citizens of the 10th Ward Iin Philadelphia) and served as a campaign coordinator of Bill Ewing’s campaign for State Senators. He worked to block an arcade and a bar from opening in the neighborhood as well as the get people to oppose allowing the Philadelphia Mayor to run for a third term. He worked 40 hours a week at his Urban League job and another 40 hours a week with the Concerned Citizens group.

Evans ran for state legislator at age 26 in a primary against an incumbent and two other candidates. He had few funds and campaigned by building relationships with individual voters. He received twice the number of votes of the candidate finishing second and went on to be elected.

In his first term, he delved into the lack of minorities receiving state government contracts. He questioned the General Services Secretary regarding this at a legislative hearing only to have the Committee Chair to then suspend the hearing.

Evans personally acted to rid eyesores in the district. He attempted to personally purchase a slum property and have it rehabilitated. He learned that would be a conflict as a legislator. He formed the Ogontz Avenue Rehabilitating Corporation to handle neighborhood economic development projects. He and others worked to fix broken windows and make empty buildings appear occupied. A shopping plaza was created.

Evans supported construction a new civic center. He saw it as providing needed employment opportunities. He knew Rep. Samuel Morris was interested in farmland preservation, Evans invited Morris to Philadelphia to explain the importance of farmland preservation to urban voters while showing the Morris the important of urban economic development. Evans personally lobbied legislators from different parts of the state including Reps. Huck Gamble and Bud George. The state legislature voted against funds for the convention center in two votes. A third vote, the last allowed under House Rules which then killed the issue disallowing any more votes, found the tally heading towards defeat when the voting board malfunctioned. Evans believes Speaker Irvis saved the convention by having someone pull the plug on the vote board. The tally board reappeared and Irvis moved to the next issue. On the third vote, Rep. Ed Wiggins was missing and a helicopter was sent to bring him to vote. The convention center passed on a third vote with one vote more than needed.

Evans also wanted to guarantee employment for previously discriminated against racial minorities. The Supreme Court had struck down hiring quotas by race. Evans successfully urged the Philadelphia Convention Center to hire an Affirmative Action Officer and then make a commitment to affirmative action hiring. He also involved the Opportunities Industrialization Center, who provides job training especially to racial minority students, to be involved in providing employees to work at the convention center.

The Philadelphia Convention Center has been successful, Evans notes. It annually attracts about 350,00 convention and trade show guests and about 600,000 attending ticketed events. The center expanded in 2011 to accommodate increased demand.

Evans observes there is great political power in being Appropriations Committee Chair. He sees this has having more power than being Speaker. Matt Quay previously had similar thoughts. Evans decided to run for Appropriations Committee Chair in 1990. He had to convince Rep. David Richardson, who had more seniority and also wanted to be Chair, that Evans could be more effective that Richardson, who had a more confrontational style of legislating. Rep. William Rieger helped unite the Philadelphia delegation behind Evans. He sought for support outside his home city delegation, winning support from legislators such as Rep. David Mayernik who was against the seniority system method of selecting leadership positions. Evans aligned with Rep. Fred Belardi from Northeast Pennsylvania who was running for Caucus Administrator which created a union between Philadelphia and Northeast Pennsylvania legislators.He won support from Rep. Phyllui Mundy by promising more transparency as chair.He visited legislators such as Dan Surra and Pat Carone in their homes.

Evans had the necessary 55 votes tallied while his opponent had 19 votes. The tally was not completed. Evans became the youngest as well as first ever African American elected Appropriations Commttee Chair, an office once held by Benjamin Franklin.

Evans created a staff handbook and annual performance evaluation system. He created a staff controller who has the only person who could say “no” to him. Evans also insisted on appointing the other Democratic legislators who served on the Appropriations Committee. He wanted members who were worried about reelections so they would more apt to make the tough necessary votes.

His first task was getting a budget passed for Fiscal Year 1991-1992. The fiscal year ended without a budget agreement between the Democratic Governor Robert Casey, a Senate with a Republican majority, and a House with a Democratic majority. State employees were working yet not getting paid. An agreement was reached with increased spending and higher taxes that included House Republican Leader Matthew Ryan and the budget passed the legislature 36 days afterwards. He got Rep. Fred Taylor to vote the budget by appropriating $500,000 for a statute of George Marshall for his district.

Evans learned how to persuade legislators to vote for budgets. Some had budget requests that, if there were no funds that year, Evans would seek to place in the next year’s budgets. Evans reminded legislators they were elected to serve and passing a budget was a major responsibility they had.

Evans studied the budget. He knew every line item in the budget When the Democrats were the minority party when Democrat Ed Rendell was Governor, the Republicans realized Rendell placed great faith in what Evans proposed for the budget. This gave Evans great leverage in budget negotiations. Among items Evans won approval of was $30 million for the Fresh Food Finance Initiative. This initiative became a national model    for selling healthy grocery food in low income neighborhoods that was presented at the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Evans realized budgets have little flexibility. There are items that have to be paid, such as debt services and pensions and obligations such as education, Medicaid, and prisons.

Evans used campaign contributions to gain favor with other legislators. This included promising Republican legislators who were helpful in his budget efforts that Evans would not contribute to their Democratic opponents.

Evans notes the costs of legislative campaigns has increased greatly. An average House campaign costs $100,000 with contested races costing even much more.

Evans was ousted as Appropriations Committee Chairman by 45 to 43. He had supported the primary opponent who lost to Rep. Bill DeWeese. DeWeese was under indictment and was later convicted. Evnas was defeated by Joseph Markosek who was from Western Pennsylvania. Markosek received some support from a few Philadelphians.

Evans recalls visiting Fayette County where residents did not have running water. They carried water from wells. The wells were getting polluted and some were dry. A home burned to the ground when the fire department had no water. Evans saw to it to allocate $1 million to get water to these residents. This is an example of the positive uses of earmarks. Earmarks are a legislative tradition dating back to the 18th century where funds are specified for specific projects in local areas. Pennsylvania has the Redevelopment Assistant Capital Program begun under Governor Dick Thornburgh to administer these local programs. Legislators present the needs of these constituents hat can be served by these funds.

Evans fought for job training and job programs funding. He observed a Philadelphia employer could not find enough machinists so he created a program to train more people to become machinists.

Bipartisan cooperation is important to Evans. He notes that bipartisan cooperation was useful in helping Philadelphia improve its financial difficulties. He was part of a bipartisan group of Philadelphia legislators, three of whom were Republican, John Taylor, John Perzel, and George Kenney, along with Democrat Anthony Williams, who worked together on solving local Philadelphia issues such as getting the police to focus more on neighborhood level crimes and creating a School Reform Commission to manage Philadelphia schools. He had legislation that moved powers from a central education office and gave it to the neighborhoods.

The secret to success is hard work. Evans worked hard and mastered policy issues and the legislative process. He calls politics a contact sport where one has to be prepared to get hit. Even when one is hit, the key is to keep working hard.

Democrats Were Very Involved In All This as Well

Brad Bumsted. Keystone Corruption: A Pennsylvania Insider’s View of a State Gone Wrong. Philadelphia, Pa.: Camino Books, 2013.

G. Terry Madonna notes that county and local political organizations used to play an important role in selecting state legislative candidates. As these political organizations lost political power, legislative leaders increased their influence as they could conduct centralized fund raising and disperse funds to those candidates who would ally with them. This shift in political power made legislative leaders more involved in various local legislative elections. The strong contests between the political caucuses as to which political party would have a majority intensified the political battles. Much of the recent corruption cases prosecuted were over matters where legislative leaders crossed legal limits in what they could do when campaigning.

It is interesting to note that much previous state corruption cases through Pennsylvania history involved matters such as improperly awarding state contracts or taking kickbacks in contracts. The type of corruption cases prosecuted have moved from the manner of governance to the manner of campaigning. This also caught many legislative leaders by surprise as they often argued their improprieties were part of past traditional campaigning that was done by both political parties. Yet these were legal violations that led to the state convictions of those were formerly were a Democratic House Speaker H. William DeWeese, a Republican House Speaker John Perzel, a Republican House Majority Whip Brett Feese, a Democratic House Minority Whip Mike Veon, a House Democratic Caucus Chairman Steve Stetter, a Democratic Senate President Pro Tem Robert Mellow, and a Republican Senate Majority Whip Jane Orie, In addition there was the Federal conviction of former Senate Democratic Appropriations Committee Chairman Vincent Fumo on matters beyond electioneering. Senate Republican Majority Leader Joseph Loeper was also convicted on tax evasion matters.

Madonna rightfully sees the beginning of the downfall tied to a July, 2005 vote by the legislature to increase their salaries as well as salaries of administrators and judges. In the past, these pay increases resulted in a few days of negative press and the pay raise issue traditionally had minimal impact in the general elections. This pay raise was different. For one, there were no prior public hearings and no chance for the issue to be publicly debated prior. Second, the press, especially at Bumsted’s Pittsburgh newspaper, and other papers around the state chose not to let the issue die. It was frequently revived as front page news. Public outrage was stirred and several incumbents lost reelection.

What also resulted was political panic as incumbents realized they were vulnerable. This panic motivated several to violate laws for political purposes. They were caught and convicted.

Bumsted compares the Pennsylvania corruption to political corruption in Columbia and elsewhere where politicians and candidates are murdered and pay-offs are rampant. While the Pennsylvania cases pale in comparison, Bumsted notes that the American system catches corruption at the lower political levels. The American public becoming enraged at these lesser crimes makes the American political system operate better than in countries where the citizens accept major corruption as a norm.

Former Speaker John Perzel was convicted of diverting $14 million in public funds into computer operations and other activities that included political purposes. His crimes, in this series of convictions, involved the greatest abuse of funds. Busted writes of his personal conflicting reactions to seeing someone he covered for years being sent to prison.

Bumsted is critical of grants legislators give to organizations in their districts. The theory is legislators better know which local groups are most deserving. It is also likely that awarding these grants help their reelection prospects. Busted is critical of legislators denying there is “walking around money”, which refers to the practices decades ago, no longer practiced, where legislative leaders gave funds to legislators for favored projects in return for security their votes on issues important to leaders. While that practice is illegal and legislators deny is still happens, the correct terms legislators use is “legislative initiatives”, which is their current practice of awarding grants to favored local groups.

Pennsylvania government has a history of corruption. While others state also have faced struggles with public ethics and laws violations, the Pennsylvania Capitol itself stands as a monument to over-billings and graft in its very construction. There was a highway construction graft conviction in the 1930s. Sun Oil and the Pennsylvania Railroad legally had seats for its lobbyists on the Senate floor until the 1960s. A Senate President Pro Tem reportedly took commissions in awarding state insurance contracts and used the funds for electing Republican Senate candidates, a practices that was then legal. In the 1970s, columnist Jack Anderson investigated state government and claimed organized crime was influential. 28 people were convicted for forcing employees to kick back part of their salaries to the Democratic Party. A leading prosecutor, Dick Thornburg, was elected Governor. Political corruption continued through the 2000s,  which also saw a key prosecutor Attorney General Tom Corbett then being elected Governor.

There were convictions, including of Auditor General Al Benedic,t in the 1980s of selling jobs and promotions in the Auditor General’s office. Even a man who couldn’t speak English bought a job. State Treasurer R. Budd Dwyer was convicted in illegally awarding a contract in return for campaign contributions and committed suicide in public.

Attorney General Ernie Preate was charged with promising to not prosecute illegal video poker operators in return for campaign contributions. Hw pled guilty to mail fraud for not reporting the $20,000 he received from them and resigned. Preate served his time. He later became an advocate against the mandatory minimum sentences he had previousl supported, claiming too many people were being imprisoned who should not be..

State Rep. Thomas Druce was convicted of vehicular manslaughter and insurance fraud for a hit and run accident which killed a man.

State Rep. Frank Gigliotti was convicted of taking bribes in assisting people bidding on public contracts.

State Sen. Joseph Loepper was convicted of supporting legislation that helped a tax colleciton agency that employed him He pled guilty to obstructing an investigation into his hiding taxable income. The plea agreement allowed him to keep his state pension, a penalty that occurs when convicted of a crime committed against the public as the income was considered his private income.

State Sen. Daniel Delp was convicted for hiring two underage prostitutes. He used his state expense account during the transaction.

State Rep. Frank Serafini was convicted of lying about campaign contributions regarding his landfill company.

State Sen. William Slocum pled guilty in a matter where he illegal dumped over 3.5 million pounds of raw sewage into a river.

State Rep. Tracy Seyfert was convicted of improperly obtaining a generator meant for use in firefighting for her personal use and for intimidating a witness in the case

The pay raise legislative vote that happened in 2005 happened at 2 am. It included a pay raise for Judges that Supreme Court Justice Ralph Cappy had advocated. This provided a nod to legislators that the courts would uphold a court challenge to the pay raise bill. Governor Rendell had indicated he would sign a pay raise bill if the legislature also approve his legislative agenda..There was public outcry as the legislature had previously approved an automatic cost of living adjustment to their salaries which then was thought was no longer require a pay raise legislative action.

As a legislative pay raise during the current legislative term is against the state Constitution, what was approved was an unvouchered expense account. This meant legislators received the money for expenses yet they did not need to provide a public record for what was spent.

The legislature also supported created slots casinos, a measure supported by Governor Rendell and Sen. Vincent Fumo. Some theorize this was part of the agenda the Governor sought in return for supporting a pay raise bill.

The public outcry make legislators nervous about their reelection chances. The House Democratic Caucus provided bonuses paid with state money in return for staff who volunteered. It is noted that some staff volunteered without any prior knowledge that bonuses would be paid.

Democratic Leader Bill DeWeese removed as committee chairs those Democrats who had voted against the pay raise. DeWeese claims he thought Speaker John Perzel was going to do the same with Republican chairs who opposed the pay raise. Perzel saw the resulting public outcry and did not so act.

Senate President Pro Tem Robert Jubelirer saw polling data indicating his reelection prospects were in trouble due to the pay raise vote. Jubelier proposed revoking the unvouchered expenses. Lt. Gov. Catherine Baker Knoll made her first business to call upon Sen. Sean Logan was proposed a complete repeal of the pay raises. The pay raises were repealed with only Rep. Mike Veon voting against the repeal. The Supreme Court struck down the repeal and the pay raises continued. Jubelirer still would be defeated in the Republican Primary by eventual winner John Eichelberger.

State Rep. Jeff Habay was accused of forcing his state paid employees to work in his political campaign. His conviction established a court rule that a person benefitted personally by having a public employee working for personal advancement.

Despite this, other legislative offices continued using state paid employees for campaign work during working hours. Mike Veon’s Chief of Statt Jeff Foreman was later convicted for recruiting legislative employees for such purposes. For disclosure, this reviewer worked as a policy specialist for the legislature. I was never approached by Foreman or anyone else to volunteer for campaign purposes  My knowledge of what happened comes from press accounts and this book. Ironically, long after the conviction of Veon, Foreman, and others, I was finally requested to volunteer legally for campaign work by being requested to provide my home email to volunteer after work. I left employment there shortly after this without engaging in any of this political work. While all appears legal, indeed, it is all presented as happening in legal means, I do fear that this apparent continued, and now seemingly expanded, desire to get employees to do campaign work could eventually lead to people once again cutting corners. Hopefully people are now aware of what is legal and what is not and this will not occur.

If I have any concern I have observed about the legislature, it is not campaign work yet a seeming increased reliance on lobbyists along with sharp increases in campaign contributions, especially from interests such an businesses and insurance, that could cause the most potential harm to the legislative process.

Mike Veon ironically had been elected to the legislature defeating an incumbent Barry Alderette over accepting a pay raises. As the only legislator defending the pay raise at the end, he was defeated for reelected by Jim Marshall. Rep. Todd Eachus, who headed the House Democratic Campaign Committee (HDCC) sent Rep. Veon’s campaign $40,000 to pay off its debts. Eachus did so without informing the HDCC Treasurer or other members of HDCC.

The story of the illegal bonuses in return for political work was leaked to the press. While the press rightfully declines who leaked the story, I note that every rumored name was someone who had run afoul of Bill DeWeese. The press learned that three of the four causes also paid bonuses, with some suspicions some were based upon campaign work. The Senate Democrats did not pay bonuses yet the author suspects some received higher salaries for political and personal work, especially for Senator Fumo. Sen. Eichelberger requested the Attorney General investigate as he witnessed Senate staff people campaigning for his opponent, then Sen Jubelirer. Rep. Veon and several House Democratic staff members were indicted and later convicted.

Sen. Vincent Fumo was Democratic Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee. He was convicted of having staff attend to several personal tasks including house cleaning, home repair, and tending to his farm. The author writes his case had the most “breadth of criminal activity”. Fumo earlier was a leader in getting slots casinos legalized in Pennsylvania.

Former Rep Frank LaGrotta pled guilty to having arranged with Rep, Veon to put his sister on the public payroll in return for their performing little work.

Rep. Sean Ramaley was charged and found not guilty of working on the state payroll for little work while campaigning to be elected to the legislature. He did appear at his part time job yet prosecutors were unable to prove to the jury if was campaigning during work.

Rep. Veon was convicted again in a separate trial on misusing state funds provided to some non-profit organizations he established. A former legislator testified the organization paid him $5,000 for no work in return. Other irregularities of improperly spending state funds were presented including payments to staff members, hiring a State Senator’s wife with an annual salary that peaked at $122,000, renting an office outside the area the organization was meant to serve, serving as an office for a lobbying organization. As the author discovered in his own research, there are few records as to what these groups spent about $10 million of state funds

Rep. DeWeese cooperated with the Attorney General’s investigator. He turned over evidence leading to convictions of Rep. LaGrotta and his own Chief of Staff. To DeWeese’s surprise, Attorney General Corbett indicted him on matters not related to those investigations. The author believes DeWeese’s had an informal commitment to immunity on the Bonusgate investigation, which the Attorney General upheld, Ignoring the advice of his attorney, DeWeese voluntarily appeared before a Grand Jury. DeWeese was later charged and convicted of having staff members illegally perform campaign activities.

Rep. Perzel was convicted of abusing $10 million of state funds in computer work for campaign purposes. Staff testified they did political work during time they should be working. Perzel’s Chief of Staff had an annual state salary of $160,000 and also received $56,000 in 2005 to manage Perzeo’s reelection campaign.

Former Rep. Brett Feese was also convicted in the misuse of computer funds for political purposes.

It is noted the Senate Republicans gave large bonuses to some of their employees who also did campaign work. Critics of Corbett argue he did not go after current leaders of his political party. The author believes it was more difficult to gather evidence on Senate Republicans as they did not use emails as much, which was a primary source of evidence in other cases. The author also speculates that the Habay case drove the Senate Republican Caucus to act more responsibly. Northampton County District Attorney John Morganelli, who was defeated by Corbett for Attorney General, speculates that timing and resources could have made an important difference in how cases were handled. The focus began on the House Democrats and the other causes could have had time to prepare for their investigations. He also notes the focus on political corruption could have claimed resources that were not as available to investigate and convict Jerry Sandusky of child sex abuses at Penn State University.

Sen. Jane Orie was convicted of using state staff in her political campaign. She was prosecuted by the Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zapalla. Orie claimed that prosecution was payback for her Senate inquiry into the Pennsylvania Casino Association which employed Zapalla’s sister and into the “Kids for Cash” scandal where Zapalla’s brother had an ownership interest in one of the involved juvenile detention centers. Her first trial was declared a mistrial when it was discovered that Orie altered documents in the case.

Former Sen. Robert Mellow was convicted of illegally using his influence on awarding state contracts from bidders who rewarded him with gifts and travel.

The author provides recommendations on how to reform Pennsylvania politics to avoid future corruption. Readers may determine which they favor. It is my recommendation that they seek reforms that make institutions more ethical rather than reforming for the sake of reform. It is my observation that the increased costs of campaigns and greater reliance on campaign contributors with deep pockets is the greatest threat to public integrity. Avoid reforms that will only strengthen the role of contributors and focus on ways to make elections more democratic that most closely involve the general public.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Something Tea Party Republicans Do Not Like

Amy Gutman and Dennis Thompson. The Spirit of Compromise: Why Governing Demands It and Campaigns Undermine It Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2012.

Compromise has been an element of politics through the present. The recent financial crisis and avoiding default issues (circa 2012) required compromises when forging agreements within Congress and between Congress and the President. While it is often difficult to arrive at compromises, it is more difficult to enact new lasts most any other way.

The political process is changing in a manner that makes achieving compromises more difficult. The increasing costs of political campaign creates more focus on political fund raising and less attention upon political duties. Further, the increased reliance on campaign contributions from outsiders grants increase political attention to these outsiders. It is often more difficult to address the concerns of political supporters and then compromise on their views. An abandonments from their positions could led to their contributions switching to future political opponents.

Compromise is achieved when governing officials realize that compromise is more desirable than the alternatives. Compromise is achieved once enough official recognize this such that a compromise is achieved and new policy created.

The increased, almost perpetual political campaign process holds candidates and then elected officials to accepting the views of their constituencies that elected them. These constituencies generally do not demand compromise. They usually seek specific goals and desire them without compromise. Compromise may not satisfy those advocating for their political priorities.

Recently enacted legislation still finds compromise occurs where no side gets all they seek. “Classic compromise” involves reaching agreement for a common good where each side gains something. In more polarized political circumstance, compromise may require “shared sacrifice”, which is usually harder to achieve compared to “classic compromise”. It is accomplished once it is recognized that a problem requires solutions justifying the sacrifices.

Mary Parker Follett wrote of “problem solving” or “win win” solutions where both sides can divide something such that both sides benefit. It may not necessarily be an equal split yet could be a distribution where each gets components of the distribution more beneficial to each side.

If compromise fails to be reached, the legislative process usually then slows. The failure to achieve compromise can stall the progress of resolving problems facing legislative bodies.

The Tea Party is an example of a political movement that actively argues against political compromises.

Compromise is a long held political standard. The creation of Congress itself was a compromise between states’ powers (leading to the creation of a Senate where each state received two Senators) and popular power (in creating a Congress based mostly upon population).

There can be a cognitive bias against compromise when one is in a political mindset that avoids seeking compromise. On some issues, people place a high priority on principles and refuse to compromise their principles. Some scholars observe compromises are reached more on issues involving interests than upon principles. Compromise involving principles generally occur only when a part of principle is forgone to achieve the compromise.

Mutual mistrust can make is difficult to for parties to achieve compromise.

Former Senator Alan Simpson declared “If you can’t lean to compromise on an issue without compromising yourself, then you shouldn’t be a legislator.” Grover Norquist, on the other hand, seeks to commit legislators to prior agreements to not compromise on issues such as raising taxes.

“Principled prudence” is the recognition that compromise is  necessary component of achieving legislative enactments. A compromise occurs when it is seen as better than the status quo. Principled prudence often allows those who do not wish to compromise to have political cover for approving compromise.

John Stuart Mill believed compromises occur when they embody a component of each party’s principles.

When the failure to achieve a compromise creates public harm, the need to compromise   may become a moral imperative.

A compromise should include mutual respect for each party involved in the compromise. Compromises may be achieved more easily when parties lessen their focus on their differences and focus more on where they agree. Sometimes separating several issues or introducing new issues may allow parties to obtain a goal on an important issue in return for dropping opposition on another issue. During negotiations on achieving compromises, parties should reduce their rhetoric and avoid aggravating explosive issues.

It is important to note that tactics such by a majority caucus could later be used in retaliation against them when they become the minority caucus. Compromise occurs more often when parties agree not to hold grudges for past actions and to end a cycle of retaliation.

In the 1950s, an American Political Science Association committee faulted the two major political parties for not having enough differentiation between the two parties. In the 2010s, there are far sharper differences between the Democratic and Republican Parties. The increased time spent campaigning, which makes politicians less prone to compromise, and the sharper differences make compromise more difficult.

Democracies with more than two competitive political parties generally find a greater need to compromise in order to avoid political gridlock.

When legislators personally know each other better, it makes it easier for them to discuss and reach compromise. The extended campaign season requires legislators to spend more time in their district seeking reelection and less time developing contacts and friendships with other legislators.

“If politics is the art of the possible, then compromise is the artistry of democracy” the authors conclude. Greater public awareness of the political process and the need for compromise will better allow politicians to achieve compromises.

Monday, December 02, 2013

There Was a Time in the USA Before Republicans, and It Was Scary

Charles E. Myers. A Connecticut Yankee in Penn’s Woods: The Life and Times of Thoas Bennett. Wilkes-Barre, Pa.: Wilkes Univesity Press, 1993.

Connecticut residents entered the Wyoming Valley in 1762. Connecticut and Pennsylvania both had titles to this land from the British King. This led to the Yankee-Pennamite Wars of armed conflicts from 1770 to 1784. While Congress gave title to Pennsylvania, many Connecticut settlers remained. The Connecticut settlers did not obtain clear ownership of their lands until the late 18th century.

One of the Connecticut settlers was Thomas Bennet. The author is a fifth generation descendant of Bennett.

The Connecticut settlers fought Indians, British, and Pennsylvanians. A massacre in Wyoming in 1778 led General George Washington to agree to General John Sullivan’s request that successfully drove the Iroquois and British into northern New York and Canada.

After the Revolutionary War, Congress declared the Wyoming settlements were part of Pennsylvania Congress also began determining how to handle property rights, an issue sensitive to Connecticut settlers who had property in what then became under Pennsylvania governance.

Thomas Bennett and other Connecticut settlers appreciated the rich land and beauty of the area. The Connecticut settlers formed a close community Thomas Bennett was separated from his wife Martha and his children for two years after the 1778 Wyoming Massacre. Martha and a daughter made clothes to survive using flax due to a shortage of wood. The Bennett family returned to rebuild and replant. Thomas Bennett joined the 24th Regiment and the Continental Army.

It is noted that the 1972 flood waters from Hurricane Agnes rose up to but did not reach Thomas Bennett’s grave.

The Bennetts disliked the rigidness of Massachusetts Bay Colony leaders who initially sought religious liberty yet beame less tolerant of different religions. Others of similar minds established towns in Windsor, Hartford, and Westerfield that later joined togehr in forming the Connecticut colony.

In 1662, the King of England, 20 years before a grant was given to William Penn that conflicted with this grant, granted Connecticut land from sea to sea. This included land that today is parts of 14 states reaching California. It is noted that the British government lacked proper maps and may not have been familiar with the colonail areas. The grant to William Penn was repayment on debt owed to Penn’s father.

The Susquehanna Company was formed by 250 men on July 18, 1753. The Connecticut General Assembly approved their buying Wyoming land from the Indians and settling there.

Three men went to Wyoming to examine the land. They were permitted to sell shares along their journey for 2 milled Spanish dollars per share. This alerted neighboring resident Pennsylvanians in Northampton County (which today is Monroe County). and Indians along the Susquehanna River that new settlers would be arriving into the unsettled valley. They also learned the Six Nations claimed the land.

By January 1754 there were 400 men belonging to the Susquehanna Company. They increased membership to 4 Spanish milled dollars per share.

Pennsylvanians were upset. Meetings were held in Albany, N.Y. in June to July, 1754. On July 6, 1754, 20 Indian chiefs representing eery tribe in the Six Nations sold Southwestern Pennsylvania for 400 pounds of New York currency On July 11, 1754, 14 chiefs and sachems deeded the Wyoming Valley to the Susquehanna Company of 753 embers for 2,000 pounds New York currency.

It would later be falsely claimed, according to the author, that the Susquehanna Company transaction was a reckless one. Scrutiny shows those involved were responsible leaders and the Indians received full payment. The Connecticut General Assembly approved petitioning the King to establish a colonial government in the Wyoming Valley.

The Iroquois and their leader King Hendricks declined to sell the Wyoming Valley to anyone Thus, while the Iroquois did not recognize the Six Nations transaction, neither did Pennsylvania have a claim from the Iroquois.

In 1748, Pennsylvanians obtained 12,000 acres around the Wallenpaypack Creek. Pennsylvania settlers arrived there between 1750 and 1760 and made this part of Northampton County.

In 1754, aother company formed in Connecticut, the Delaware Company. Many belonged to both the Susquehanna and Delaware companies. The Delaware Company purchased from the Delaware Indians Coshecton along the Delaware River. This land was near the Pennsylvania settlement along the Wallenpaypack Creek.

France and England engaged in hostilities that erupted in the colonies British settlers fought the French and the Indian allies from 1754 to 1763.

The first 16 Connecticut settlers arrived in Capouse Meadows (today Scranton) in Wyoming in 1762. Chief Teedyuscung, a baptized Christian from an Indian village in what today is Wlkes-Barre, advised the settlers to leave or race death from the Indians. The settlers left.

In July, 79 men joined the 16 returning settlers in arriving in Wyoming.

Pennsylvanians objected to the settlement. England ordered Connecticut to halt these settlements The order arrived after the settlements happened. Connecticut received a second deed from Mohawk sachem affirming the earlier deed. Colonel Dyea appealed the order for Connecticut. A legal opinion was issued in England that the Connecticut Charter was affirmed as it predated the grant to Penn. Pennsylvania would have to prove they had a prior charter, which they did not have.

Indians massacred Connecticut settlers at Mill Creek on October 15, 1763. Most survivors returned to Connecticut.

There was some violence between white settlers due to border disputes between New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania, Several small scale raids occurred.

In 1768, a great Council of the Indians with sachems from each of the Six Nations sold the land already sold to the Susquehanna and Delaware companies to Thomas Penn and Richard Penn. Several Indians cited they were pressured into making the sale as they knew they had already sold the land to the Connecticut settlers. Pennsylvania then established settlements in the Manor of Stokes.

40 Susquehanna Company settlers arrived and completed settling Wyoming in Jnauary, 1769. 200 more joined them in the spring.

Major John Durkee established a fort for Connecticut settlers. Major Durkee named the area Wilkes-Barre after two members of the British Parliament who supported colonial rights that King George III opposed, John Wikes and Isaac Barre.

Colonel Tubor Francis and a group of Pennsylvanians referred to as Pennaites from Fort Augusta (now Sunbury) arrived and demanded to take control of the fort and houses, or else all would be killed and burned. The Connecticut settlers refused. Francis realized he had insufficient capabilities for a fight. He withdrew his men. A few skirmishes with some wounds occurred in September, 1769.

Governor Penn ordered 20 men with an four ppunder iron cannon to take Fort Durkee. Sheriff Jennings led 200 men from Easton to help drive out the Connecticut settlers Major Durkee was arrested in a surprise raid and jailed in Pennsylvania. The Connecticut settlers surrendered under the condition that 14 could remain to tend to the livestock and crops while legal disputes went forward. A few days later, the Pennamites broke the agreement by burning everything and driving away the horses and cattle.

Ironically, there were some 50 Pennsylvanians from Hanover who had joined the Susquehanna Company. Lazarus Stewart and about 40 people from this Hanover group prepared to go to Wyoming to assist the Connecticut settlers. Eight to te settlers who were among those who surrendered the fort joined with Stewart. Captain Zebulon Butler and Stewart led a retaking of Fort Durkee and drove out the Pennamites. A Pennamite force led by Captain Nathan Ogden remained in the area. In April, Major Durkee arrived with reinforcements and convinced Ogden and his forces to leave the area.

For several months afterwards, the Connecticut settlers destroyed several Pennamite properties and forced Pennamites away from the area. The Connecticut settlers created five towhships, Nanticoke (now Hanover), Pittstown (now Pittston), the Forty (now Kingston), and Plymouth. 238 names were listed as proprietors in these five townships. The proprietors randomly drew for housing lots and for meadow and field lots,

Pennamies attacked Fort Durkee. 140 men formed a possee led by Nathan Ogden..Amos Ogden an Captain Dick from EAston captured Connecticut settler work parties. This was accomplished with little violence. Fort Durkee was seized with some wounded but no deaths. Captain William Gallup wrote that the Pennsylvanians beat him brutally,gave him only coarse bread and water for 20 daysm and then released him without trial.

The author notes Governor Penn was unpopular and that there was much support among Pennsylvanians for the Connecticut settlers.

Nathan Ogden had 20 men kept at the fort. The Pennamites assumed the Connecticut settlers had left for good.

Lazarus Stewart evaded Pennamite arrest. He led a group of about 30 known as the Paxtang Boys who retook Fort Durkee from the Pennamites.

Pennsylvania issued arrest writs for Lazarus Stewart and 12 others for seizing Fort Durkee. A posse of 100 men was sent. Nathan Ogden was killed in the clash. Most affidavits attested Lazarus Stewart killed him.

The Pennamites retook Fort Durkee who then destroyed it. Several Connecticut leaders were arrested.

In April 1771 the Susquehanna Company paid 34 pounds to bail out Major Durkee and four pounds each for for others.

Pennsylvania had 30 men occupy Wyoming.

Pennsylvanians surveyed land which confused land titles for decades. Titles were given to prominent Pennsylvanians who never lived there. Fort Washington grew while Fort Durkee was torn down.

Captain Zebulo Butler, after release from jail in April, 1771, brought 60 Connecticut men returning to Wyoming. 82 Pennsylvanians took refuge inside Fort Wyoming. The Connecticut men surrounded the Fort for about four days. Under Colonel Asher Clayton, the Fort was surrendered. It was agreed all Pennsylvanians would leave within two weeks.

From 1771 to 1776, many Connecticut settlers moved to Wyoming. Townships were created, fortifications established, plus laws and taxes created. A representative of each community was elected to a Committee of Settlers. A meeting of proprietors heard appeals and made revisions of court orders. Each township had a common court and a constable. The settlers had a school system 62 years before Pennsylvania created schools.

In 1773 the Committee of Settlers was changed to a Board of Directors. A Sheriff was elected.

Congregationalism and its puritanical lifestyle dominated the lives of Connecticut settlers.

The first road was created in 1770. It ran nine miles from Pittston to Plymouth and Kingston and exists today. Other roads followed.

A grist mill, saw mill, and ferry were created.

The Connecticut General Assembly selected three commissioners to negotiate with Governor Penn in hopes of resolving issues Penn refused to recognize any Connecticut claim.

In 1774, Connecticut formally established the settlement as Westmoreland. Pennsylvania responded with a March 7, 1774 proclamation requiring the residents to adhere to Pennsylvania laws.

Westmoreland prepared a military defense. The Connecticut Assembly authorized them to create the Twenty-fourth Regiment, commanded by Colonel Zebulon Butler with Lt. Col. Nathan Denison as second in command.

All males 16 to 50 were legally in the militia and must drill and muster Anyone over 45 could decline to serve. Among those exempt from serving were physicians, surgeons, attorney, Upper House Assembly members, school masters, grist mill operators, and Justices of the Peace. Each soldier was required to have a working firelock with a barrel at least three and a half feet long or another firearm a commissioned officer found as satisfactory, a cartridge box, a pound of powder, four pounds of bullets, ad 12 flints. There was a three shilling fine for not having all this.

Most made their own gun powder from salt peter, obtained from the white decayed matter in animal waste that is properly washed, boiled, and reboiled and then kept dry.

The soldiers wore identifying badges. There were no uniforms although ore likely they wore their frontiersmen clothing.

In 1775, several men led by Col. William Plunkett from Sunbury, Pa captured several Connecticut residents, took their livesotck property, and brought them to jail

Plunnkett then obtained 600 to 700 men as a Posse Comitatus, a civil unit, and joined the Northumberland County Sheriff. They marched against about 250 Connecticut settlers. The Connecticut settlers took a strategic position in a valley. The Pennamites suffered casualties and they fell apart in confusion. Plunkett withdrew his troops with no Pennamite shooting back.

At midnight, the Pennamites returned with a small cannon in a boat. Connecticut settlers known as Yankees, fired into the boat killing one and wounding others. The Pennamites withdrew.

the Pennamites attacked the right flank, a maneuver Col. Butler anticipated. A day long battle caused casualties on both sides until Plunkett retreated.

Westmoreland settlers agreed with Connecticut’s declaration of independence from England. they agreed to create an agreement with Pennsylvania for the common goal of defeating the British. Tories were arrested.

In 1776, about 2,900 lived in Westmoreland. Two companies were established for the Revolutionary Way with Robert Durkee and Samuel Ranson as their Captains and Colonel Zebulon Butler as 24th Regiment commander. The soldiers often faced short supplies and some had no gun powder.

A stockade was created around the house of John Jenkins o counter any Pennamite attack. A Fort was built at Pittston although it was not finished until 1778. A blockhouse already exised in Plymouth, Hanover, and two others nearby.

In 1777, the British formed a rangers corps of men who were familiar with Indian customs and could speak with the Indians. John Butler, who was born in New London, Ct. and was a career British officer, led this Rangers Corps. The Indian ally leader was Joseph Brant.

Wyoming was one of the most populated settlements not along the coast It made for an attractive British target.

Major Butler led an atack of 350 Senecas, 250 British, and 100 various types of Indians. They captured the forts and armaments.

A Private, Lazarus Stewart, urged for action and claimed Lt. Col. Zebulon Butler was a coward for not advancing. Captain Milkerachan resigned and Stewart took command.

The British and Indians ambushed, killing Stewart and 300 others were dead or missig Some were tortured first 302 were reported killed versus two British Rangers and one Indian killed All forts were destroyed.

There are scholars who argue Congress was aware of the Indians preparing for an attack yet did nothing to defend Wyoming. They argue Congress should receive some blame for the massacre.

Many Yankees fled to Stroudsburg.. The Stroudsburg residents were friendly to Connecticut settlers.

In July, 1778, there were 113 who returned to Wyoming under Lt. Col. Zebulon Buler. Animals were recapured. Some were used for food as crops had been destroyed. A new fort was built.

In August to December, 1778, Indians killed 23 settlers and captured five.

On March 23, 177, there was an attempt by about 250 Indians that was repelled with cannon and small arms fire with no serious casualties to settlers.

General Washington used Wyoming as a base in attacking Iroquois. Most there were Connecticut settlers. THis would be an important in Connecticut settlers land claims later on.

It is estimated that 40 Indians towns were destroyed. Only one Indian town remained near Genessee Castle.

Indian raids continued form 1780 to 1783.

Congress created a Court of Commissioners that heard the dispute of Wyoming. A trail lasted 41 days. The Court decided the lad belonged to Pennsylvania.

Pennsylvania troops arrived at Wlkes-Barre. They insisted the Connecticut settlersleave by May 1784. Widows of Indian attacks had an additional year to leave. They wre allowed to move to waste land if they voluntarily gave up their land. The troops burned homes, robbed property, drove cattle away, and subjected women “to a lawless soldiery”.”

Lt. Col. Zebulon Butler was arrested for high treason. He was held three days and released.

Eleven Connecticut soldiers were required to be in “cold filth and ire for several days and then dismissed without a trial.”

Colonel John Franklin persuasively convinced the Pennsylvania Assembly to remove their troops.

Four detachments from Pennsylvania went to destroy Yankee homes. They attacked the port yet had to retreat. The Pennsylvania required a meeting. The Yankees attending the meeting were arrested, which caused Col. Franklin to never again trust Pennsylvanians.

A Council of Censuses elected under Pennsylvania Constitutional requirement, criticized the Pennsylvania General Assembly for its activities against the Connecticut settlers. The Censures Council report helped drive public sympathy for the Yankees.

Yankees attacked those Pennamites that remained at Fort Dickson. After several days of fightings with casualties on both sides, the Yankees withdrew. Two Yankees were killed.

130 Pennamites surrounded Yankees at Fort Defence. Raids were conducted on both sides. Yankees destroyed Fort Dickson to end the war.

The issues of who owned the Wyoming Valley land remained.More Connecticut settlers arrived many having purchase half shares.

The Pennsylvania General Assembly created Luzerne County for the Wyoming Valley after the Frenh Minister to the U.S. Le Chevalier de la Luzerne. 146 residents signed allegiance to Pennsylvania and were eligible to vote. Col. Franklin was elected to the General Assembly but declined the offer, reaffirming his commitment to creating a new state rather than being part of Pennsylvania.

The Pennsylvania General Assembly recognized all Connecticut land claims before the Trenton Decree which they determined as ending Connecticut claims. This divided the settlers between those seeking separation from Pennsylvania and those accepting the Pennsylvania recognition of their land titles.

The Pennsylvania legislature passed the Compromising Act in April, 1799 to ascertain all land claims in the 40,000 acres of land in question. Ultimately, most Connecticut setters required certification of their land titles.

Back When Republicans Nominated a Liberal Democrat as Their Nominee

James A. Farley. Jim Farley’s Story: The Roosevelt Years. New York: McGraw-Hill Book Co, Inc., 1949.

Farley was elected Democratic Town Chairman of Stony Point, N.Y. in 1909. He was elected to the first of four terms as Town Clerk in 1911. In 1918, he was elected Chairman of the Rockland County Democratic Party. He then encouraged New York City Alderman President Alfred Smith to run for Governor. Smith was elected. Farley was named a New York City Post Wardon, a position that didn’t enthuse him. In 1923, Farley was appointed to the New York State Athletic Commission and later became its Chairman, a position he labeled “honorary and stormy.”

Farley got to know Franklin Roosevelt (FDR) at the 1924 Democratic National Convention which deadlocked for 102 ballots Farley supported FDR  when he ran and was elected Governor of New York.

Farley managed FDR’s two successful campaigns for Governro and his first two successful campaigns for President. The campaign were marked by extensive letter writings and long distance telephoning. There was an extensive effort to reach out to others.

Joseph P. Kennedy was one of the earliest contributors to the Roosevelt campaign.

In 1931, Farley went out selling FDR’s candidacy for President for Democratic Party leaders across the nation. Farley was also active in the Elks and introduced FDR to fellow Elks.

The six delegates from the Alaska Terriroty were the first delegates to pledge to vote for FDR.

The Democratic Party platform came out for repealing Prohibition.

Al Smith was among those running against FDR for the Presidential nomination. This divided the New York delegation. Some believed that Smith was a stalking horse to be replaced by former War Secretary Newton Baker.

William Randolph Hearst, a newspaper publisher living in California, detested Baker. Joseph Kennedy met with Heast and Farley later called Heart to get him to help switch California delegates to FDR to block Baker. A while later, Baker switched to FDR.

Texas delegates, with Speaker Sam Rayburn and John Nance Garner, helped break the deadlock that nominated FDR. The Vice Presidency was not discussed as part of the switch. Garner did not want the Vice Presidency yet was told by Rayburn FDR had selected him.

FDR was elected. Farley was named Postmaster General and Democratic National Chairman.

FDR, as Presidenet-elect, declared his support for granting the Philippines their independence. Yet he wanted them to be protected against Japan, whom he predicted would be seeking expansionary trouble within the decade.

The first Cabinet meeting dealt with Japan invading China. It was determined not to make any move to involved the U.S. in war. It was believed Japan could be defeated by starvation but it could take three to five years to achieve that.

To protect the Philippines and U.S. Pacific islands, the Navy was based in Hawaii and air force bases created in the Aleutians in Alaska. These air force bases were to be the primary defense as naval efficiency decrease over distances as more ships would have to transfer into supplies and communications ships.

FDR urged the World Economic Conference to create “a more real and permanent financial stability and a greater prosperity to the masses of nations” rather than minor temporary stabilization actions. The Conference, though, collapsed. Some believe had there been proper economic changes that war could have been averted.

FDR formally recognized the Soviet Union. This allowed the U.S. to collect $150 million in debt.

In 1934, Farley ended domestic air mail contracts. The contracts had been awarded without competitive bids and were considered improper. The Army took over the flyig, which they had for 15 years prior. Sadly, ten pilots died carrying mail. Public opinion blamed the canceled contracts. Two months later private contracts took over the air mail flying.

Huey Long attacked Farley with “unrelated truth, half-truths, innuendos, insinuations, and downright lies”, Farley writes. A Senate committee mostly on a political party vote, declared Long failed to prove any wrongdoing. Three Republicans supported Farley over their party.

The 1936 Presidential campaign Farlye managed went mostly well FDR won easily over Alf Landon.

After the defeat of his “court packing” reform proposal, FDR began supporting only New Deal supporters and sought to purge Democratic incumbents who opposed him. Farley stayed out of the primary battles, except in Pennsylvania where he favored Gov. George Earle for Senator and Thomas Kennedy for Governor. Kennedy lost the primary to Charles AlvinJones while Earle defeated Samuel Wilson. They then lost the general elections.

FDR respected that Treasury Secretary Henry Morgenthau supported FDR’s policies. FDR stated he couldn’t have appointed Joseph Kennedy as Treasury Secretary because Kennedy would have operated how Kennedy wanted.

Japanese aircraft sunk the USS Panay in the Yangtze River. The Cabinet discussed war The U,S. asked for reparations.

FDR suspected Harold Ickes leaker details about Cabinet meetings to Drew Pearson, a reporter.

In New York, Governor Lehman ran for reelectio against Thomas Dewey. Wagner and Meade were nominated for U.S. Senate races. All three won their elections.

The purge effort mostly failed. U.S. Rep. John J. O’Connor was the only member pursed, losing to James Fay. Ironically, Rep. O’Connor had fought being ousted by Tammany Hall for being too supportive of FDR.

In the 1939 general elections, Republicans gained 8 Senate seats, 81 House seats, d 11 Governorships, although Democrats retained the majority.

Pennsylvania Governor Earle in 1937 suggested FDR run for a third term. FDR responded to that question in the negative. When Robert Post of the New York Times also asked if FDR would run for a third term that “Bob Post should put on a dunce cap and stand in the corner.”

Wendell Willkie met with Farley in December 1938 and stated he was a solid Democrat who was voting Democratic in 1938 who agreed with FDR on all but national power policy.

Dewey’s close loss for New York Governor led people to consider him for the Republican Presidential nomination in 1940.

Numerous Democratic Senators urged Farley to advise FDR not to run for a third term. They feared it would hurt the Democratic Party. Vice President Garner stated he would oppose a third term. Garner assured Farley he was not going to run for President.

FDR and Farley discussed the 1940 elections. FDR believed it was in the national interest that Democrats continue the economic recovery plan. FDR told Farley he was not going to run for a third term but would hold off announcing it to keep his Presidential role stronger.

FDR was not happy with most of the Democratic Presidential candidates. He feared each would lose the general election.

FDR was disappointed over Senate rejection of his support for repeal of the neutrality act. He feared this would encourage Germany and Italy in their aggressiveness.

Farley toured Europe. Polish Premier Beck pleaded for arms worried that Germany would invade them.

Germany invaded Poland in 1939. FDR became more concerned about foreign policy. He refused to recognize Italy’s capturing Ethiopia, similar to his not recognizing Japan taking over Manchuria.

Farley advised FDR that Mussolini appeared to be on the fence and would enter the war on which side he believed woud wi. FDR agreed with that assessment.

FDR was critical of his Ambassador to England Joe Kennedy who FDR admitted he never really liked. FDR criticized British policies for protecting their upper classes. FDR felt England cared only about England, FDR, though, did like Winston Churchill.

Rep. James Fay and William Kenneally ran against each other for Tammany district leadership. Gen. Edwin Watson, an aide to FDR, reported Fay was concerned because Assistant Treasury Secretary Steve Gibbons had pledged several thousand dollars in support of Fay yet had not carried through with his promise. Farley told Watson that FDR had told Farly to forget politics during wartime.

 Farley told FDR that Farley was going to file for President in the Massachusetts and New Hampshire primaries. FDR did not object. FDR stated he would vote for a Republican if Senator Burton Wheeler won the Democratic nomination.

FDR publicly stated he did not want Farley on the ticket He feared the problems of a Catholic on the ticket and in displeasing liberal voters.

Gallup Poll results in 1940 found Cordell Hull as he strongest Democratic candidate, even more so than FDR.

Farley was against FDR running for a third term. He believed the Republicans would use it effectively as an isue against FDR.

Gov, Edwin Watson, military aide and secretary to FDR, favored nonintervention He questioned providing England with planes and was concerned it would damage U,S. defenses. FDR asked for Watson’s resignation, which Watson did. 50 destroyers left New London, Ct. for England. In return, the U.S. leased bases in Newfoundland and New Guinea.

After Willkie was nominated by the Republicans for President, FDR told Farley he didn’t want to run for a third term. He planned on telling the Democratic Convention this. Farley agreed with the decision and believed there were Democrats who could be elected.

FDR ran for a third term. Joseph Kennedy, Jr was the sole Massachusetts delegatoe to oppose FDR by voting for Farley for President.

Barkely read FDR’s statement to the Democratic convention that FDR had no desire to be renominated. Delegates responded “We want Roosevelt” in response to loudspeakers chanting that. It was later determined that Chicago Superintendent of Sewers had taken over the loudspeaker at the bequest of Chicago Democratic boss Mayor Edmund Kelly.

The convention vote was FDR 946 1/2, Farley 72 1/2, Garner 61, Tydings 9 1/2. Farley and others moved to make the nomination unanimous.

Farley recommended Jesse Jones for Vice President. FDR worried about Jones’s health since he was hurt in an airplane crash. FDR thought Henry Wallace was honest and had integrity. Farley countered that Wallace wouldn’t help the ticket politically. FDR though Wallace would help in the Farm Belt. Farley thought he would hurt in the East.

Speaker William Bankhead vied for the nomination again tWallace. They were almost evenly divided on the first ballot which Wallace won.

Farley resigned as Democratic National Chairman. FDR asked him to stay on. Mrs. Roosevelt also asked him to stay on, at least nominally, as he knew all the party leaders.

Farley also resigned as Postmaster General.

Farley was New York Democratic State Committee Chairman at the 1942 when he supported Attorney General John Bennett for Governor. FDR, Governor Lehman, Senaotrs Wagner and Mead, Ed Flyn, the Democratic National Chairman, and Tammany Hall leader Michae Kennedy, among others, opposed Bennett. Bennett was nominated but lost to To Dewey in the general election.

Farley was a delegate to the 1944 Democratic National Convention. He went opposed to renominating Roosevelt and Wallace. He voted for Senator Alben Barkely for Vice President over Harry Truman.