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A LEAD OF 125,000

DATE OF EVENT: Tuesday, Aug. 7, 1934

DATE PUBLISHED: Wednesday, Aug. 8, 1934, in The Kansas City Times

Editor’s note: Harry S. Truman’s victory in the 1934 Missouri Democratic primary meant he was a shoo-in come fall in the U. S. Senate race. Winning the primary also would push Truman onto a national stage and eventually lead him to the White House. Truman’s margin of victory in this race was rooted in Jackson County, where he received an overwhelming total — more than half of all the votes he would receive statewide.

Truman had been a popular political figure in this area and, of course, had the support of the Pendergast organization.



In a demonstration of vote producing power never before shown in a primary election, the Kansas City Democratic machine yesterday amassed a lead of at least 125,000 for its senatorial candidate, Judge Harry S. Truman of Independence.

With the city returns complete and only seventeen of Jackson County’s eighty-five precincts missing, Truman had 133,595 votes. Jacob L. Milligan of Richmond fell far below even the most pessimistic estimates of his strength here, receiving 8,146 votes. John J. Cochran of St. Louis tagged along with 1,444 and Longstreet Cleveland of Columbia received 200. …

Only once has the machine exceeded the total vote cast in Kansas City. That was in the bitterly contested city election last March, when it turned in more than 159,000.

The story is only slightly different in the contest between Mitchel J. Henderson, the machine candidate for probate judge, and Judge Jules E. Guinotte, whom the machine repudiated. Henderson rolled up 124,692 votes to Guinotte’s 15,765.

The lopsided majorities were not confined to the city. In the sixty-eight county precincts reported, Truman led off with 13,4747, while Milligan received 2,295, Cochran 154 and Cleveland 75.

All down the line on the Democratic side, the story was the same. …

On the Republican side, the vote was lighter, with fewer than 25,000 ballots cast in the city. …

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