52 Facts About James Farley


James Aloysius Farley was an American politician and Knight of Malta who simultaneously served as chairman of the New York State Democratic Committee, chairman of the Democratic National Committee, and Postmaster General under President Franklin Roosevelt, whose gubernatorial and presidential campaigns were run by Farley.

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James Farley was commonly referred to as a political kingmaker, as he was responsible for Roosevelt's rise to the presidency.

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James Farley was the campaign manager for New York State politician Alfred E Smith's 1922 gubernatorial campaign and Roosevelt's 1928 and 1930 gubernatorial campaigns as well as Roosevelt's presidential campaigns of 1932 and 1936.

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James Farley predicted large landslides in both, and revolutionized the use of polling data.

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James Farley was responsible for pulling together the New Deal Coalition of Catholics, labor unions, African Americans, and farmers.

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James Farley handled most mid-level and lower-level appointments, in consultation with state and local Democratic organizations.

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James Farley opposed Roosevelt for breaking the two-term tradition of the presidency; the two broke on that issue in 1940.

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In business, James Farley guided and remained at the helm of Coca Cola International as chairman for over 30 years and was responsible for the company's global expansion as a quasi-government agency in World War II.

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In 1947, President Harry S Truman appointed Farley to serve a senior post as a commissioner on the Hoover Commission, known as the Commission on Organization of the Executive Branch of the Government.

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James Farley was born in Grassy Point, New York, one of five sons whose grandparents were Irish Catholic immigrants.

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In 1911, James Farley officially began his service as a politician, when he was elected town clerk of Stony Point, New York.

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James Farley was elected chairman of the Rockland County Democratic Party in 1918, and he used the position to curry favor with Tammany Hall boss Charles F Murphy by convincing him that Alfred E Smith would be the best choice for governor.

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James Farley managed to secure the upstate vote for Smith north of the Bronx line, when he ran for governor the same year.

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The Democrats could not win north of the Bronx line before James Farley organized the Upstate New York Democratic organization.

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James Farley was the last Democrat to hold the post, which was later taken over by the Port Authority of New York.

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James Farley ran for the New York State Assembly in 1922 and won in Rockland County, normally a solid Republican stronghold.

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James Farley sat in the 146th New York State Legislature in 1923, but he lost it at the next election for having voted "wet, " for the repeal of the Mullan–Gage Act, the state law to enforce Prohibition.

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James Farley was appointed to the New York State Athletic Commission at the suggestion of State Senator Jimmy Walker in 1923, and James Farley served as a delegate to the 1924 Democratic National Convention, where he befriended Roosevelt, who would give his famous "Happy Warrior" speech for Smith.

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James Farley fought for civil rights for black Americans as chairman of the New York State Athletic Commission.

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In 1926, James Farley threatened to resign his post as Athletic Commissioner if boxing champion Jack Dempsey did not fight the mandatory challenger, African-American fighter Harry Wills.

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James Farley banned Dempsey from fighting Gene Tunney and publicly threatened to revoke Tex Rickard's Madison Square Garden license if he ignored the ruling of the commission.

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James Farley's public stand for black rights proved to be a valuable asset to the Democratic Party for generations, and it would sow the seeds of the black bloc of the New Deal.

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Meanwhile, James Farley merged five small building supply companies to form General Builders Corporation, which would become the city's largest building supply company.

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James Farley was an appointed official and resigned his post from General Builders when he joined Roosevelt's cabinet.

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James Farley orchestrated Roosevelt's narrow victory in the 1928 gubernatorial election.

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James Farley was named secretary of the New York State Democratic Committee and orchestrated Roosevelt's reelection in 1930.

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James Farley was named chairman of the New York State Democratic Committee, which he held until his resignation, in 1944.

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James Farley helped bring to Roosevelt's camp the powerful newspaper publisher William Randolph Hearst and helped Roosevelt win the 1932 presidential nomination and election.

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James Farley was constantly criticized by Roosevelt's opposition for insisting on keeping both posts simultaneously.

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James Farley expanded the DNC, adding divisions to deal with women, labor unions and blacks.

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James Farley worked hard to keep the Post Office going through the Depression.

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James Farley was instrumental in revolutionizing transcontinental airmail service and reorganized the Post Office's airmail carriers.

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James Farley worked in concert with Pan American World Airways' president, Juan Trippe, to see that the mail was delivered safely and cost-effectively.

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James Farley oversaw and was responsible for the flight of the first China Clipper.

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James Farley's role is remembered among stamp collectors for two things.

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James Farley controlled federal patronage in the new administration and was very influential within Roosevelt's Brain Trust and the Democratic Party throughout the United States.

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James Farley used his control of the patronage to see that Roosevelt's first 100 days of New Deal legislation was passed.

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James Farley masterfully used the patronage machine to line up support for the New Deal's liberal programs.

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James Farley helped to bring about the end to Prohibition and the defeat of the Ludlow Amendment.

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James Farley began seeking support for a presidential bid of his own after Roosevelt refused to publicly seek a third term but indicated that he could not decline the nomination if his supporters drafted him at the 1940 convention.

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James Farley opposed the Judicial Procedures Reform Bill of 1937 to "pack" the Supreme Court.

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James Farley was asked by Roosevelt to seek the governorship of New York multiple times but always refused.

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James Farley appeared as a featured speaker at the American Negro Exposition, known as the Black World's Fair and the Diamond Jubilee Exposition, which was a world's fair held in Chicago from July until September in 1940, to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the end of slavery in the United States at the conclusion of the Civil War in 1865.

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James Farley resigned as postmaster general and party chairman after placing second in delegates at the 1940 Democratic National Convention in Chicago in which Roosevelt was "drafted" for a third term.

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James Farley is the second Roman Catholic in American history to have his name placed as a candidate for nomination of the presidency by a major political Party .

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James Farley was the first Irish-American Catholic to achieve success as a national figure when Roosevelt appointed Farley to his cabinet and chairman of the Democratic National Committee.

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James Farley defeated a Roosevelt bid to name the party's candidate for New York governor in 1942.

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James Farley became an important national political force when his old friend, Harry Truman, became president in 1945.

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In 1965 James Farley served as the campaign chairman for the failed first Mayoral bid of Abraham Beame who would go on to be the first practicing Jewish Mayor of New York in 1973.

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James Farley was given in 1974 the Laetare Medal by the University of Notre Dame, the oldest and most prestigious award for American Catholics.

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James Farley remained vigorous, outspoken, and active in politics until his death two years later, at 88, at his residence in the Waldorf Astoria in New York City where he was one of the landmark's most notable residents for many years.

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Towards the end of his career, James Farley was an elder statesman and pushed for campaign finance reform and a reduction of the influence of special interest groups and of corporations in politics.

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