Search JTA's historical archive dating back to 1923

Rep. Rankin Loses Seat in Congress; Was Strongly Anti-jewish

August 28, 1952
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Rep. John Rankin, whose 32-year Congressional career was marked by consistent attempts to inferentially link Jews with communism, lost his seat in Congress today.

Rankin was defeated by Rep. Thomas Abernethy in a Mississippi primary election. The two congressmen were forced to seek the same seat when the state legislature combined their districts last April to eliminate a Congressional post, lost because of the 1950 census.

An advocate of anti-Negro and anti-Semitic measures, Rankin opposed the Nuremberg trial of Nazi war criminals and said that Germans should be given priority over Jews as displaced persons. He introduced a resolution which demanded a Congressional investigation of the B’nai B’rith Anti-Defamation League and frequently denounced prominent Jewish organizations and individuals from the floor of Congress. For many years he was the favorite of pro-Nazi elements and anti-Semitic agitators.

Rep. Abernethy’s voting record on civil rights and similar measures is exactly the same as Rankin’s, but Abernethy is not generally known to openly express bias against Jews. Rep. Abernethy described Rankin as his “close friend.” “We have for 10 years been a close friend to our distinguished and honorable opponent.” he said. “I regret we found ourselves in the same district, thus making our opposition unavoidable.”

Recommended from JTA