Subversive Historian – 04/01/09

NY Assembly Expels Socialists

Back in the day on April 1st, 1920, the New York State Assembly voted by an overwhelming margin to expel five socialist members from its legislative body. Finding the democratic will of the people to be an “April Fools Joke,” the action taken against them was not enough for one Assemblyman, Louis Cuvillier, who was on record of having favored their execution rather than expulsion. Three months prior to their dismissal, the five socialist members were singled out during a session and accused by newly elected Assembly Speaker Thaddeus Sweet of belonging to a political party whose principles he deemed “inimical to the interests of the United States government and the state of New York.” In a statement addressed to their constituents, the suspended socialists said, “The brutal Republican majority, aided by the spineless Democratic minority, has taken the position that you have no right to be represented by persons of your own choice.”

After the “Albany Disaster,” as it was dubbed, special elections were held in which all five socialists were returned to their seats by the voters of New York.


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