1913 United States Senate special election in Maryland

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1913 United States Senate special election in Maryland

November 4, 1913 (1913-11-04)
  Blair lee I.jpg Thomas Parran Sr. (Maryland Congressman).jpg
Candidate Blair Lee I Thomas Parran, Sr.
Party Democrat Republican
 vote 112,485 73,300
Percentage 56.75 36.98

A Special Election to the United States Senate was held in Maryland on November 4, 1913 to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Sen. Isidor Rayner (a Democrat). The election was historic in that it was the first Senate election held under the Seventeenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, which required direct election of senators.

Blair Lee I, a Democrat and former state senator, became the first U.S. Senator directly elected by the people of a state under the Constitution's provisions (although other states had previously elected senators indirectly through party primaries and popular elections, which were then ratified by the state legislature).[1] The election led to a controversy when the incumbent who had been appointed to fill Rayner's seat, Republican William P. Jackson, refused to give up his seat to Lee. Jackson claimed that "since he had been appointed under the original constitutional provision, he was entitled to hold his seat until the regularly scheduled adjournment date of the Maryland state assembly." [2] The Senate considered Jackson's challenge but eventually rejected it and seated Lee.


1913 Maryland U.S. Senate special election[3]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Blair Lee 112,485 56.75% n/a
Republican Thomas Parran, Sr. 73,300 36.98% n/a
Progressive Party George Wellington 7,033 3.55% n/a
Socialist Party Robert Fields 2,982 1.5% n/a
Prohibition Party Finley Hendrickson 2,405 1.21% n/a
Turnout 198,205