The 1946 United States Senate election in Massachusetts was held on November 5, 1946. Incumbent Democratic Senator David I. Walsh ran for re-election to a fifth term[a] in office, but was defeated by Republican former Senator Henry Cabot Lodge Jr., who returned from service in World War II.
Lodge: 40–50% 50–60% 60–70%
It was the last time a Republican was elected to the Class 1 Senate seat in Massachusetts until 2010, and the last time as of 2022 that a Republican was elected to serve a full term in that seat.
Henry Cabot Lodge Jr. was elected to two terms in the U.S. Senate in 1936 and 1942, but resigned during his second term to serve in World War II. With the completion of the war in Europe, Lodge returned to Massachusetts and to politics.
David I. Walsh had served four terms in office since his election as an ally of Woodrow Wilson in 1916 but had alienated New Deal supporters by opposing the labor and social reform measures of the Second New Deal. He was also embroiled in a personal scandal after the owner of a Brooklyn homosexual brothel allegedly frequented by German spies had sworn under oath that Walsh was his client. Though J. Edgar Hoover cleared Walsh of any wrongdoing, the scandal hung over his head.
Senator Walsh was unopposed for the Democratic nomination.
|Democratic||David I. Walsh (incumbent)||194,323||99.99%|
- Henry Cabot Lodge Jr., former Senator (1937–44)
Lodge was unopposed for the Republican nomination.
|Republican||Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr.||186,376||100.00%|
- Henning A. Blomen, perennial candidate (Socialist Labor)
- Henry Cabot Lodge Jr., former Senator (1937–44) (Republican)
- Mark R. Shaw, temperance activist and pastor from Beverly (Prohibition)
- David I. Walsh, incumbent Senator since 1926[b]
Lodge, who considered Walsh a family friend, avoided mentioning his opponent's alleged homosexuality or impropriety. He centered his campaign on criticism of postwar economic conditions, arguing that inflation, labor strife, and consumer goods shortages were leading the country toward "another depression."
|Republican||Henry Cabot Lodge Jr.||989,736||59.55%||17.17|
|Democratic||David I. Walsh (incumbent)||660,200||39.72%||15.92|
|Socialist Labor||Henning A. Blomen||9,221||0.56%||0.35|
|Prohibition||Mark R. Shaw||2,898||0.17%||0.32|
Lodge carried carried every county and the city of Boston.
- Walsh had served three consecutive terms since 1929 in addition to a fourth nonconsecutive term from 1917–23.
- Walsh had previously served in the Senate from 1917–23.
- Whalen, Thomas J. (2000). Kennedy versus Lodge: The 1952 Massachusetts Senate Race. Northeastern University Press. p. 51.
- Whalen 2000, p. 51.
- Election Statistics, 1946.
- Election Statistics, 1946.
- Whalen 2000, p. 52.
- "Our Campaigns - MA US Senate Race - Nov 05, 1946".
- Massachusetts, Secretary of the Commonwealth. "Election statistics". Internet Archive. UMass Amherst Libraries. Retrieved 24 March 2022.