James M. Cox


In 1920 Warren G. Harding was not the only Ohio newsman turned politician who had an interest in running for President.  Born in 1870 James Cox had started in the newspaper business at The Middletown Signal in 1886 in Middletown, Ohio. In 1894 he became an assistant to Middletown businessman and Congressman Paul J. Song, and spent three years in Washington with him.  song helped Cox acquire The Dayton Evening News, which Cox renamed The Dayton Daily News, the cornerstone of a huge newspaper empire that Cox would go on to build.  In 1909 Cox, running as a progressive Democrat was elected to Congress.  In 1912 he was elected Governor of  Ohio.  Defeated for re-election in 1914, he won it back in 1916 and won re-election in 1918.  He gained a well-deserved reputation as a progressive reformer.  He was a reluctant supporter of the League of Nations.

Unusual for a politician of his time, Cox had divorced and remarried.  With each of his two wives he had three children.  When he began eyeing the Presidency he realized that if he was nominated by the Democrats in 1920 he would be the first divorced man to run for President on a major party ticket.

Published in: on June 16, 2020 at 5:30 am  Comments Off on James M. Cox  
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