The election of 1944 was actually somewhat anticlimactic compared to everything that came before it. Franklin Roosevelt, despite being in faltering health and overseeing the crisis of World War II, did not appear to have much trouble in defeating New York governor Thomas Dewey on Election Day. But, political observers of the time thought that the election would be close. And Roosevelt’s fourth win was far from a given.
David M. Jordan authored this entertaining book about an election that was much more about backroom deals and shrouded mysteries about Roosevelt’s health than it was about campaigning. There was a lot going on in 1944, more than people might realize.
Although Roosevelt did not officially announce that he was seeking a fourth term and would only accept a “draft,” he was making arrangements to get nominated and run again. All this despite his health failing to the point that he was sometimes unaware of his surroundings or was unable to finish sentences. This was caused by a heart problem that greatly hampered his circulation. Continue reading