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Henry Wallace's 1948 Presidential Campaign and the Future of Postwar Liberalism$
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Thomas W. Devine

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9781469602035

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: July 2014

DOI: 10.5149/9781469602042_Devine

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A Frenchman Named Duclos: The Communists and the Origins of the Progressive Party

A Frenchman Named Duclos: The Communists and the Origins of the Progressive Party

Chapter:
(p.1) 1 A Frenchman Named Duclos: The Communists and the Origins of the Progressive Party
Source:
Henry Wallace's 1948 Presidential Campaign and the Future of Postwar Liberalism
Author(s):

Thomas W. Devine

Publisher:
University of North Carolina Press
DOI:10.5149/northcarolina/9781469602035.003.0001

This chapter describes how the origins of Henry A. Wallace's Progressive Party occasioned heated debate among political partisans throughout the presidential campaign. They remain a topic of some controversy. Beginning in 1948, critics of the Progressive Party contended that the Communists, on orders from Moscow, had conceived the idea, organized the party according to a “detailed time-table,” chosen Wallace as the candidate, and pressured him relentlessly until he accepted his predetermined role. In their view, the Wallace candidacy was an entirely synthetic, top-down venture that the Communists had created with the sole purpose of serving Soviet foreign policy. Accordingly, they portrayed non-Communist Progressives—including Wallace himself—as a motley collection of innocent dupes consciously or unconsciously doing the Kremlin's bidding by dividing and discrediting American liberalism and thus paving the way for the victory of “reaction.”

Keywords:   Henry A. Wallace, Progressive Party, political partisans, presidential campaign, Communists

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