Lehman Certain of Re-election; 500,000 Plurality is Predicted
Menu JTA Search

Lehman Certain of Re-election; 500,000 Plurality is Predicted

Download PDF for this date

When the last election returns come in tomorrow night Governor Lehman will be found in the van of all rivals by the comfortable margin of half a million votes, expert political forecasters predicted yesterday.

With the enthusiastic endorsements of President Roosevelt and former Governor Smith tucked securely in his political hip pocket, and backed by the support of a united Democratic party, the first Jewish Governor of New York State appeared to be standing on the threshold of a second term of two years as the State’s Chief Executive.

Serene in his outlook for the future, the Governor, in the opinion of many independent observers, has earned the right to look back with equal serenity upon his record of the past.


This is a record which goes back far beyond his two years in the Capitol building at Albany as Governor. During those two years he is conceded by all but the most prejudiced of his opponents to have achieved a notable roll of accomplishments. His incumbency has been marked by the enactment of much progressive legislation, outstanding examples of which are: creation of the municipal housing authorities to eradicate slums; $100,000,000 program for direct unemployment relief; assurance through defeat of the public utilities lobby, of lower electricity rates for the home; enforcement of mandatory fair wage standards through which exploitation of women and children in industry is being wiped out; setting up of the Poor Man’s Courts, by which justice is being brought within reach of those of limited means; and the backing of unemployment insurance and adoption of the Federal child labor amendment.

In addition to these accomplishments, Governor Lehman during his two years as Chief Executive has succeeded in reducing the State’s deficit by approximately one-third and has made considerable headway in the fight to modernize all forms of local government.


Announcing his unqualified approval of Governor Lehman’s stewardship during two years of trying times, President Roosevelt paid his successor the following tribute:

“He is a man who has the knowledge, a man who knows every nook and corner of the State, who knows every principle of the details of government, a man who understands how to run things in a business way, but more important than that, a man with an understanding heart, a man to whom social justice is not an unknown word, a man who has courage— and you need lots of guts to be a Governor. “

Former Governor Smith endorsed him in the following words:

“I don’t know of any man that ever occupied the office of Governor who went through any more perilous times, gave more attention and devotion to it than did Herbert H. Lehman. The State has never been more prudently managed, never been better supervised. “

Governor Lehman’s record in Albany extends further than the two years he occupied the State’s highest office. Prior to his election as Governor by a plurality of almost $50,000, he was Lieutenant Governor under Governor Roosevelt for a period of two terms, four years. During this period he is conceded by all political observers to have acquitted himself with great credit both to himself and the party that nominated him. In his four years under the guidance of Governor Roosevelt he was frequently called upon to act in more than an advisory capacity, particularly in connection with fiscal problems.

As a man, also, Governor Lehman has proved himself the type of character that merits the plaudits of his fellow citizens. He has been for many years extremely active in innumerable philanthropic and charitable causes. He is actively identified with such organizations as the United Jewish Appeal and the Federation for the Support of Jewish Philanthropic Societies. He is one of the founders of the Joint Distribution Committee and has served as chairman of its Reconstruction Committee.


Also he is an organizer of the Palestine Loan Bank and the Palestine Economic Corporation, which has enabled many Jews to rebuild their lives in the Holy Land. And he is an officer, director or trustee of numerous other educational and social service organizations.

Born in New York City on March 28, 1878, Herbert H. Lehman started his business career soon after graduation from Williams College in 1899, with the textile firm of J. Spencer Turner Company. In 1906 he became vice-president and treasurer of the firm. From 1908 until he resigned to enter politics he was a partner in the banking house of Lehman Brothers.

Elkan Nathan Adler, born in London in 1861, collected Hebrew manuscripts.

Founding Funders

The digitization of the JTA Archive would not have been possible without the generous support of the following donors:
  • The Gottesman Fund
  • Righteous Persons Foundation
  • Charles H. Revson Foundation
  • Elisa Spungen Bildner and Robert Bildner, in honor of Norma Spungen
  • George S. Blumenthal
  • Grace and Scott Offen Charitable Fund