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1966 Maryland gubernatorial election

The Maryland gubernatorial election of 1966 was held on November 8, 1966. Incumbent Democratic Governor J. Millard Tawes was unable to seek a third term in office. In the election to succeed him, George P. Mahoney, a controversial segregationist, emerged from the Democratic primary due to splintered support for the two major candidates. Baltimore County Executive Spiro Agnew, was nominated by the Republican Party as their gubernatorial candidate. Mahoney and Agnew squared off, along with independent candidate Hyman A. Pressman. Ultimately, Agnew was victorious over Mahoney, with Pressman a distant third. This year would be the last time that the state of Maryland elected a Republican governor until 2002. Agnew would go on to be nominated for Vice-President by Richard Nixon in 1968, an election he and Nixon would end up winning.

Maryland gubernatorial election, 1966

← 1962 November 8, 1966 1969 (Special) →
  Spiro Agnew.jpg No image.svg No image.svg
Nominee Spiro Agnew George P. Mahoney Hyman A. Pressman
Party Republican Democratic Independent
Popular vote 455,318 373,543 90,899
Percentage 49.50% 40.61% 9.88%

Maryland gubernatorial election 1966.svg
County Results

Agnew:      40-50%      50-60%      70-80%
Mahoney:      40-50%      50-60%


Governor before election

J. Millard Tawes

Elected Governor

Spiro Agnew

Democratic primaryEdit



Democratic Primary results[1]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic George P. Mahoney 148,446 30.21
Democratic Carlton R. Sickles 146,607 29.84
Democratic Thomas B. Finan 134,216 27.31
Democratic Clarence W. Miles 42,304 8.61
Democratic Charles J. Ludhardt, Sr. 7,336 1.49
Democratic Morgan L. Amaimo 6,048 1.23
Democratic Ross Zimmerman Pierpont 4,311 0.88
Democratic Andrew J. Easter 2,098 0.43
Total votes 491,366 100.00

Republican primaryEdit



Republican primary results[2]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Spiro Agnew 98,531 83.16
Republican Andrew John Groszer, Jr. 9,987 8.43
Republican John J. Harbaugh 4,322 3.65
Republican Henry J. Laque, Jr. 3,365 2.84
Republican Louis R. Milio 2,277 1.92
Total votes 118,482 100.00

General electionEdit


Baltimore paving contractor and perennial candidate George P. Mahoney won the Democratic primary on a segregationist platform, which was possible due to the presence of several strong candidates. Mahoney's slogan, "Your home is your castle--protect it",[3] as well as his stance on many civil rights issues,[4] prompted Baltimore City Comptroller Hyman A. Pressman to enter the race as an independent candidate. Mahoney's controversial stances caused many in the Maryland Democratic Party to split their support between Agnew, which was possible due to his socially progressive views, and Pressman, which enabled Agnew to win the election with a plurality, taking 70% of the black vote.[5]


Maryland gubernatorial election, 1966[6]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Spiro Agnew 455,318 49.50% +5.15%
Democratic George P. Mahoney 373,543 40.61% -15.03%
Independent Hyman A. Pressman 90,899 9.88%
Write-ins 1 0.00%
Majority 81,775 8.89% -2.39%
Turnout 919,761
Republican gain from Democratic Swing


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  4. ^ Hardesty, Richard. [A] Veil of Voodoo. Graduate School of the University of Maryland Baltimore County, 05 May 2008. Web.
  5. ^ Rule and Ruin: The Downfall of Moderation and the Destruction of the Republican Party, from Eisenhower to the Tea Party*, p. 191
  6. ^