The year was 1932, it was Election time and Eugene Talmadge decided he throw his hat in the ring for Georgia Governorship. It wasn’t long before he dominated the race with personality and with the strong bonds with the farmers he built while Commissioner of Agriculture in the late 20’s. Talmadge didn’t have as much backing as he had before from the politicians in Atlanta as last time do to the fact, they had really more disliked the previous Commissioner than they actually supported Talmadge. Plus, the big money urbanites thought snobbishly that Talmadge was “too much of a bumkin and redneck” for their city dwelling tastes. Talmadge wouldn’t forget that neither.
1932 Campaign Trail
Talmadge was a master on the campaign trail, his campaigns were legendary. He loved the campaigning lifestyle and so did the poor Ruralites. He gave them a fun and good time where they could take a break from a hard back breaking day of work. It was a time away from the fields. They loved hearing ole Gene speak on a colorful platform, arms waving and red suspenders blaring. By far and away he was the most entertaining man running for Georgia governor that year. This shouldn’t be taken in the modern way of bread & circuses, you know what I mean the “Muh football” crowd. No, this is better liken with a good old fashion southern revival with some barbecue mixed in. One must remember this was the height of the Great Depression and White ruralite Georgians had it especially bad . These were your hardworking farmers who had to work exhaustingly day to day to make ends meet, sometimes that still wasn’t enough.
This was a time for the rural Georgians to come out as a community and have some rare fun and get some free food. The most memorable rally was the Telfair County 4th of July rally where huge amounts of flavorsome barbecue were made in days in advance for the hungry Talmadgites. Described as “Never before Telfair County history had such excitement and energy been generated.” (Anderson 68) The place was packed out as many Talmadge rallies would come to be, in fact one could say this marked a reinterest in politics for Rural Georgians. This is something that we Southern folk crave, not some weak knee’d solf talking neo-cons like Lindsey Graham or Gov. Nathan “Double” Deal. Talmadge was the man who the forgotten white Georgian could vent their frustrations through while having a hell of a time doing so. This conquers up the image of Trump and his 2016 campaign. The difference being that Talmadge wasn’t just talk but was also action as we’ll come to see, Talmadge was truly our guy!
The campaign issues were little except for the 3 dollar tax which Talmadge zealously supported saying “ I do not know of anything that would help the people more and help businesses more” and the Cotton Holiday. The Cotton Holiday idea Talmadge got from Huey Long while sent by Gov Richard Russell as COA , from then on Talmadge religiously pushed for it believing it would bump the cotton prices up. Talmadge was a firm advocate of cotton and would remain so throughout his career.
By August it was the eve of the White primary, which basically decided who’d win in GA since the GOP was nonexistent in Georgia, Talmadge had made over 50 speeches and spoke to over 75,000 Georgians (Anderson 78). He had declared to a mass of farmers that “You farmers haven’t had anyone speak to you since Tom Watson” and a Reporter even said, “The statement struck fire from the crowd”, “one man yelled we got you now Gene!” (Anderson 78). When the White primary appeared in Sept 13th, Talmadge dominated winning 264 against the146 county votes of all his rivals combined. He won 114 counties out of 159 winning in a massive landslide in rural Georgia.
GOVERNOR TALMADGE 1933-34
On January 10th, 1933 Gene was sworn in as Governor of Georgia. Gene would from the beginning be block by the do-nothing state legislature similar to how Trump’s plans are constantly shut down by the insane political activist judges. Gene however wasn’t one to stop at tweeting and then move on to shilling and fill the rest of his terms with tax cuts for the rich. No, Gene had no time to play “muh 4D chess”. One must understand that since Georgia was a one-party state men were elected on their personality/personal platform and with Talmage this was especially the case. One of the opposing state legislators was quoted as saying “Talmadge was elected one a 3-dollar tag platform and we were not” (Anderson 31). Like the modern GOP the old Democrat party was a big tent party and it was more complex than “ tHe DeMoCrATs Are DuH WEEL RacISTS”. So, Talmadge’s platform was soon whipped in the state legislature branch.
“Gene’s planks fell one by one. The house refused to pass his reduced ad valorem and utility rates and his badly needed highway organization bill died in the senate. The cherished three-dollar tag did not survive the senate either.” (Anderson85).
However, Talmadge was no push over and would in turn veto 40 out of the 200 Bills that the state legislators sent him. One of the few things passed was a Bill for the aging Confederates which no Legislator who dare opposed and it’s highly doubtful they would if they could. Gov. Talmadge heavily pushed for the Bill, he was one who heavily gloried (rightly so) his confederate heroes. Governor Talmadge also wanted to get bills passed keeping the younger folks of Georgia in the fields so they could keep their tie with the land. Talmadge rightly worried about the numbers of youth leaving to go to the northern cities where they could be brainwashed and be worked to death in yankee sweat shops. In April Talmadge would order that taxes on motors be dropped down to three dollars overriding the bums In the State House & Senate. In May 1933 Talmadge would take on the Highway Board Chairmen Barnett and would attempt to fire many of the bums who wasted founds. The highway Department was filled up with your typical lazy government employees and Talmadge wanted to bring taxes and fix the terrible highway roads up. Chairmen Barnett sneakily hinted that he might cut federal founds if Talmadge didn’t back off, Talmadge wasn’t one to be backed down. Talmadge loved a good fight both physically and in politics he had since he was a mere boy. He wasn’t your B conservative who could be ran off like a scared rabbit by threats of cutting federal funding. In June Talmadge would leave for Flag Day heading up to New York where reports spread that Talmadge might put the Capital (Atlanta) under military occupation. Georgia National Guardsmen were seemed roaming the streets with machine guns on the Capital grounds. The Highway board had been seen taking money for a suit against Talmadge in federal court. “It was noted that Gene’s New York entourage included four smartly dressed national guardsmen. When asked by reporters about the sight of armed men on state grounds and the movement of money, Gene would only smile and say, “military matters must necessarily be secret” (Anderson89). Gene was playing a masculine card from the arsenal of his governorship something that we rarely see now. Just imagine if Trump grew a pair and started placing Troops on the streets of D.C to throw out the DACA scumbag protesters and strong-arm congress. Talmadge wasn’t done yet; especially since the pompous Highway bureaucrat Barnett wasn’t impressed yet. On June 13th Talmadge declared marshal law alarming the do-nothing urbanites in Atlanta. Talmadge was done playing games with Barnett and now was heading to personally going to take over the Highway Department. Talmadge then cited a list of grievances he had against the Board of Directors of the Highway including the fact that the Board was cutting the lower employees’ salaries. He called the board out for profiteering, then when two board members, Vereen and the leader Barnet, decided to make a run for it and skip town. Governor Talmadge called them out as “As abiding and abetting” “practices circulated to incite insurrection”. Governor Talmadge was going to make sure he fulfilled his promises no matter what so that he would help the ruralite farmers. Barnett would go crying to the courts that he was still the head of the department to the superior courts. Dupty Sheriff Sideny Wooton came to give Talmadge the order of the court order to which Talmadge pissed off ordered Adjutant General Lindsey Camp to arrest the dupty!
The whole thing would play itself out ending in federal courts, the situation got so heated that Talmadge would order for military guards be given to him and the Treasure & Comptroller at all times .The main thing to get from this is “Gene had exploded on the scene like a thunderbolt” (Anderson 90) . Talmadge was going to make sure he did what he promised no matter what the cost. One might notice how many times we’ve had sly two faced politicians run and dog whistle us with notions of defending our social order but then turn around and do nothing but shill for their filthy rich donors . Talmadge’s handling with the Highway Board is exactly what Trump should be doing in D.C. Of course, Trump has basically sold us out at this point. We all knew nothing was going to happen through the crooked system of Weimar America unless WE FORCE IT TO. Talmadge understood that if you must use force to get a do-nothing system to move, you do it! At the same time Talmadge was giving the little man of Georgia a battle and means to vent his anger at the political elite of the time. Talmadge first year in office is something we wanted and should have got with Mr. Trump, but we didn’t. This is why we push for Southern Independence. We are done being betrayed by a Federal system controlled by rich ((oligarchs)) who HATE YOU and SEEK to REPLACE US!