The Senator in the Coonskin Hat

17 Sep

Did you know that a Tennessean tried to end gambling in Las Vegas? Estes Kefauver was born in Madisonville, Tennessee and practiced law in Chattanooga. Interested in politics, he won a seat in the House of Representatives in 1939 and became a Senator in 1949. Kefauver’s trademark was wearing a coonskin hat.

During his time in the Senate, Kefauver became chairman of the Special Committee on Organized Crime and used this seat as a platform to gain national exposure. He attacked the influence of organized crime in the casinos of Las Vegas and urged the federal government to put a stop to legalized gambling in Nevada.

In 1952, Kefauver attempted to take advantage of his nationwide fame by running for president. His campaign failed, as did a run for the vice presidency in 1956. If Estes Kefauver had succeeded in his fight against legalized gambling, then what happens in Vegas would…not be all that much.

6 Responses to “The Senator in the Coonskin Hat”

  1. javaj240 September 17, 2012 at 03:18 #

    Thanks for teaching me something today!

    • surroundedbyimbeciles September 17, 2012 at 03:28 #

      You’re welcome. I throw some history out there every now and again.

  2. Butterfly September 17, 2012 at 17:49 #

    Thanks! I’ll remember his name and story so I can surprise my American friends from Tennessee. Lol.

    • surroundedbyimbeciles September 17, 2012 at 19:26 #

      You’re welcome. There’s a building in Nashville named in his honor. Other than that, he is a forgotten person from the past.

  3. Madame Weebles September 19, 2012 at 01:28 #

    I never knew this about ol’ Estes. Vegas would be quite un-Vegaslike if he had his way.

    • surroundedbyimbeciles September 19, 2012 at 02:21 #

      It might be like Davy Crockett, though.

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