The Box 13 scandal was a political scandal
which occurred in Jim Wells County, Texas
during the Senate election of 1948
. Lyndon B. Johnson
appeared to have lost the Democratic run-off primary to Coke Stevenson
, but six days after polls had closed, 202 additional ballots were found in Precinct 13 - all of which were in Johnson's favor. Stevenson remained ahead of Johnson during the run-off and by midday, but after the discovery of the additional ballots, the 202 additional votes were given to Johnson's vote count, leading to his nomination victory.
He later went on to beat Jack Porter
of the Republican Party by a margin of 33.28% and 353,320 votes in the Senate election.
Following this Harry Lee Adams
started a private, non-official investigation. During this investigation Adams noticed many signs of voter fraud
. Adams started an official investigation, while Johnson had Abe Fortas
help with his legal strategy during this investigation. The investigation centered around whether or not Johnson had George Parr
, a member of the Democratic party
in Texas, help him falsify ballots.
The investigation eventually reached the Supreme Court
. The Supreme Court Justice, Hugo Black
, ruled that the federal government was not allowed to get involved with a state election. This ruling won Johnson the election, despite allegations of Johnson speaking with George Parr, in South Texas
that day, resulting in box 13 having 200 missing ballots.
There would be no charges, due to the fact that nothing could be proven. Pulitzer Prize winning author Robert A. Caro
covered the Box 13 scandal in his 500-page book, ''The Years of Lyndon Johnson
: Means of Ascent''. About a quarter of this book is devoted to the 1948 Texas Senatorial election.
A stage play, "Box Thirteen", by Jack Westin, had its premier presentation at the College of the Mainland
Community Theatre during the 1998-1999 season.
Category:Lyndon B. Johnson
Category:Political scandals in Texas