When Republicans won their thumping victory in Michigan last November they pushed out every single Democrat except Highway Commissioner G. Donald Kennedy, whose office was not at stake until the 1944 election. Democrats nursed their wounds and thought hard: if the Highway Commissioner were a good politicker, maybe—with the fat patronage in that office—he could help Democrats beat their way back to power. Only stumbling block: Commissioner Kennedy was no vote getter.

Obligingly, Democrat Kennedy resigned just before year's end, forcing the election of a successor in next month's off-year election....

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