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Excerpt from Oral History Interview with George Wallace, July 15, 1974. Interview A-0024. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) See Entire Interview >>

The death of regionalism

Wallace declares the death of regionalism in United States politics.

Citing this Excerpt

Oral History Interview with George Wallace, July 15, 1974. Interview A-0024. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) in the Southern Oral History Program Collection, Southern Historical Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Full Text of the Excerpt

JACK BASS:
Suppose they have someone who's not of the new left as a presidential candidate and he has a running mate from the South who is not from Alabama. Would you support the ticket actively?
GOV. GEORGE WALLACE:
Well, you talking about the new left. You talking about a new left candidate and platform like they had in '72?
JACK BASS:
No, I'm talking about a different type candidate.
GOV. GEORGE WALLACE:
But still with a new left platform. Well, you're asking highly, very highly hypothetical questions and very speculative questions. I don't believe that will be the case. Now I don't believe that the people will go for. . . . Had I been on the ticket with George McGOV.ern, I don't know that the people who supported me would have gone with that ticket because I was on there with the platform they had. Alabama or anyplace else. People just don't follow you blindly, you know. They've got intelligence. And I think if you deserted and left what you'd advocated . . . I don't think they would have had any respect for you. And as far as nominating a fellow from a region. . . . Regionalism is gone in this country. Sectionalism is gone. And a man in Alabama would vote for a good middle of the road candidate from Michigan quicker than he would a new left candidate from Georgia. And the people in Alabama would vote for a good middle of the road candidate in Pennsylvania instead of a new left candidate from Mississippi. Just being a southerner—you put a southerner on the ticket that means we're all going to vote. . . . Why, there are many southerners that southerners won't vote for. There are many Alabamians that Alabamians wouldn't vote for for the presidency or vice presidency. I went to North Carolina and ran against their former GOV.ernor up there. President of Duke. Well, they didn't say "Oh, he's from North Carolina. We're going to vote for him." They voted for me, didn't they?