United States Senate special election in Massachusetts, 1962
The United States Senate special election of 1962 in Massachusetts was held on November 6, 1962.


Senator John F. Kennedy
John F. Kennedy
John Fitzgerald "Jack" Kennedy , often referred to by his initials JFK, was the 35th President of the United States, serving from 1961 until his assassination in 1963....

 resigned the seat to become President of the United States
President of the United States
The President of the United States of America is the head of state and head of government of the United States. The president leads the executive branch of the federal government and is the commander-in-chief of the United States Armed Forces....

 after winning the presidential election in 1960
United States presidential election, 1960
The United States presidential election of 1960 was the 44th American presidential election, held on November 8, 1960, for the term beginning January 20, 1961, and ending January 20, 1965. The incumbent president, Republican Dwight D. Eisenhower, was not eligible to run again. The Republican Party...

. Benjamin A. Smith II
Benjamin A. Smith II
Benjamin Atwood Smith II was a United States Senator from the state of Massachusetts from December 1960 until November 1962.-Family and education:...

, a Kennedy family
Kennedy family
In the United States, the phrase Kennedy family commonly refers to the family descending from the marriage of the Irish-Americans Joseph P. Kennedy, Sr. and Rose Elizabeth Fitzgerald that was prominent in American politics and government. Their political involvement has revolved around the...

 friend, was appointed to succeed Kennedy, serving as a placeholder for Ted Kennedy
Ted Kennedy
Edward Moore "Ted" Kennedy was a United States Senator from Massachusetts and a member of the Democratic Party. Serving almost 47 years, he was the second most senior member of the Senate when he died and is the fourth-longest-serving senator in United States history...

, who at the time was too young to be constitutionally eligible for the seat.

Ted Kennedy first faced a Democratic Party primary challenge from Edward J. McCormack, Jr.
Edward J. McCormack, Jr.
Edward "Eddy" Joseph McCormack, Jr. was a former Attorney General of Massachusetts.-Personal life and education:...

, the state Attorney General
Massachusetts Attorney General
The Massachusetts Attorney General is an elected executive officer of the Massachusetts Government. The office of Attorney-General was abolished in 1843 and re-established in 1849. The current Attorney General is Martha Coakley....

. Kennedy's slogan was "He can do more for Massachusetts", the same one John had used in his first campaign for the seat ten years earlier. McCormack had the support of many liberals and intellectuals, who thought Kennedy inexperienced ("I back Jack but Teddy ain't ready") and knew of his suspension from Harvard, a fact which subsequently became public during the race. Kennedy also faced the notion that with one brother President and another U.S. Attorney General, "Don't you think that Teddy is one Kennedy too many?" But Kennedy proved to be an effective street-level campaigner. In a televised debate, McCormack said "The office of United States senator should be merited, and not inherited," and said that if his opponent's name was Edward Moore rather than Edward Moore Kennedy, his candidacy "would be a joke." Voters thought McCormack's performance overbearing; combined with the family political machine's finally getting fully behind him, Kennedy won the September 1962 primary by a two-to-one margin.

In the Republican primary, George C. Lodge
George C. Lodge
George Cabot Lodge II is an American professor and former politician.-Early life:His father was Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr., a U.S. Senator from Massachusetts, U.S. Ambassador to United Nations and South Vietnam, and 1960 vice presidential candidate for Richard Nixon against John F. Kennedy-Lyndon B....

, a former member of the Eisenhower administration and the son of Henry Cabot Lodge
Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr.
Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr. was a Republican United States Senator from Massachusetts and a U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, South Vietnam, West Germany, and the Holy See . He was the Republican nominee for Vice President in the 1960 Presidential election.-Early life:Lodge was born in Nahant,...

, defeated Laurence Curtis
Laurence Curtis
Laurence Curtis was a United States Representative from Massachusetts. He was born in Boston. He graduated from Groton School in 1912 and from Harvard University in 1916. He served in the Foreign Diplomatic Service...

, the Representative
United States House of Representatives
The United States House of Representatives is one of the two Houses of the United States Congress, the bicameral legislature which also includes the Senate.The composition and powers of the House are established in Article One of the Constitution...

 from Massachusetts's 10th congressional district
Massachusetts's 10th congressional district
Massachusetts's 10th congressional district is a political constituency that includes parts of the South Shore of Massachusetts, and all of Cape Cod and the islands. With a population of 635,901 and a land area of , it is the most populous of Massachusetts's ten congressional districts and the...

 in the Republican primary.

In the November special election, Kennedy defeated Lodge, whose father had lost this seat to John F. Kennedy in 1952 U.S. Senate election
United States Senate election in Massachusetts, 1952
The United States Senate election of 1952 in Massachusetts was held on November 4, 1952. This election marked the end of the Lodge family dynasty and the beginning of the Kennedy family dynasty.-The campaign:...

. In winning, Kennedy gained 55 percent of the vote.


Source: Our Campaigns - MA US Senate - D Primary Race - Sep 18, 1962

General election

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