Friday, June 22, 2012

The cautionary tale of Marion Zioncheck

According to Phil Campbell, Marion Zioncheck was the only US Congressman sent to an insane aslyum. He was also:
 an ambitious and charismatic young man growing up in Seattle in the 1920s. He was only in his twenties when he led a successful recall election against Seattle Mayor Frank Edwards after Edwards dared tinker with the city's utilities company in ways that hurt regular citizens. Soon after that Zioncheck was running for Congress. Few in establishment politics took him seriously, but he got media attention by visiting the local jail and passing out cigars to inmates while asking for their vote. When he won, in 1932, people attributed his victory to the force of his personality alone.

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