Ohio Voters Go to Primaries Fired by Talks of Fr. Coughlin


The primary elections in the spring and summer of 1936 were the first real test of the NUSJ's ability to influence national politics. Encouraged by the success of the National Union for Social Justice (NUSJ)-endorsed candidates in Pennsylvania, the Union had high hopes for the Ohio primary. Father Coughlin decided to campaign personally in the state, with impressive results. This issue of Social Justice discusses Coughlin's influence on the voters and claims victory for NUSJ-endorsed candidates in at least thirteen congressional districts. Note as well the editorial, which describes involvement in politics not only as compatible with Christianity, but also as a Christian duty.



As you read the document, reflect on the following questions:

  • According to the article, what does Coughlin mean by the "Road of Apathy" vs. the "Road of Action"? Which party represents which "road"?
  • Does this article suggest anything about the way the rest of the country might vote in November? Why/why not?
  • How would you desribe Coughlin's views on the clergy's involvement in politics?