On the night of Nov. 9, 1960, Vice President Richard Nixon said that Democratic candidate John Kennedy would have his “wholehearted support” as president.
What Nixon was thinking, though, was that he had been cheated out of the presidency by corrupt local officials in Chicago and around Texas.
Historians and partisans debate the issue to this day. Did famously corrupt Chicago Mayor Richard Daley and mob boss Sam Giancana really steal enough votes to give Kennedy an 8,858-vote victory in a state that had gone for Dwight Eisenhower and Nixon by more than 800,000 votes four years before?
And don’t forget “Landslide” Lyndon Johnson who brought Texas in for himself and his running mate in something of a squeaker.
Both states had rich histories of election fraud, including the old favorites: buying votes, fake registrations and, best of all, destroying ballots. It’s far easier to steal an election by destroying the other guy’s votes than it is to fake votes for yourself. Could it have happened? Sure. But, did it?