Excerpts From the Platform and Principles
(official, white-only) Mississippi State Democratic Party
Adopted June 30, 1960

[By 1960, Blacks are increasingly asserting their human rights with school desegregation lawsuits, bus boycotts and sit-ins. Within the national Democratic Party, demands are rising for stronger stands on civil rights and white southerners view John Kennedy, the likely Democratic nominee, as unsympathetic to segregation. The Mississippi Democratic Party — white-only and pro-segregation — adopted this platform as an opposition statement and to lay a foundation for possibly opposing the national candidate. Two weeks later, the national party convention nominated Kennedy, and adopted platform planks on civil rights calling for an end to discrimination in voting, education, lunch counters, employment, and housing, securing the right to vote, eliminating literacy tests and poll taxes, and school desegregation compliance by 1963. The Mississippi Democratic Party then refused to support Kennedy by successfully running a slate of "unpledged" electors against both him and the Republican candidate Richard Nixon. When the Electoral College met, the eight unpledged Mississippi electors cast their votes for Virginia's segregationist Senator Harry Byrd, the architect of the "Massive Resistance" strategy against school Integration.]

The Democratic Party of Mississippi stands today where it has always stood with feet firmly planted on the solid foundation of the Constitution of the United States, pure Americanism and the traditional Southern American Way of Life.

We are opposed to strong centralized government, national or state.

We believe in States' Rights and local self-government, and are unalterably opposed to any encroachment upon the rights of the states by the federal government, or any department or agency thereof, and upon county and municipal government by the state, or any department or agency thereof.

... We expressly condemn the decision of the Supreme Court of the United States in the Brown school case rendered May 17, 1954, and subsequent decisions of that court, and inferior federal courts, striking down state constitutions and laws providing for the conduct and operation of public schools. ... within the states.

We are opposed to any legislation, federal or state, setting up what is known as a Fair Employment Practice Commission. ...

We believe that every person shall have the right to work and no person shall be denied that right because he or she is not a member of a union or other labor organization. ...

We favor the poll tax and are opposed to any attempt to abolish it. ...

We believe in the time-honored and cherished traditions of the South and oppose any legislation, movement or policy which would do violence to or destroy them. ... We oppose the ratification by the United States of the Genocide Convention and of the United Nations, the proposed Human Rights Convention and the Civil Rights Convention. ...

We believe in the segregation of the races and are unalterably opposed to the repeal or modification of the segregation laws of this State, and we condemn integration and the practice of non- segregation. We unalterably oppose any and all efforts to repeal the miscegenation laws.

We believe in the doctrine of interposition as defined in the appropriate resolution adopted by the Mississippi Legislature, 1956.

["Interposition" and "nullification" are discredited legal theories that claim state governments have power to disregard or disobey federal Constitutional provisions, laws, or court rulings they don't like.]

We believe in the separation of the races in the universities and colleges, in the public schools, in public transportation, in public parks. in public playgrounds, and in all spheres of activity where experience has shown that it is for the best interests of both races that such separation be observed. ...

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY OF MISSISSIPPI. ... that we, acknowledging with humility the divine power of Almighty God, and standing fearless in our belief in constitutional government, the rights of the states, segregation of the races and preservation of your traditional Southern American Way of Life, do hereby affirm and declare: that we reject and oppose the platforms of both national parties and their candidates.

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