NEW JERSEY: The Magic Box

Politicians, hangers-on and reporters crowded into the smoke-filled city clerk's office in Jersey City. They were all assembled for a little democratic ritual. Twenty-five cops, loyal subjects of Boss Frank Hague, hovered around the old grey City Hall. Inside, Deputy City Clerk Ben Rosengard grasped the octagonal walnut box, spun it several times, then carefully pulled out a card. His announcement was just what the boys had expected: the magic box gave Boss Hague's foolproof Democratic machine the top place on the city-election ballot, as it had every time but once for...

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