Wikipedia:Today's featured article/August 25, 2007

Goebel William

William Goebel was a controversial American politician who served as Governor of Kentucky for a few days in 1900 before being assassinated. Goebel remains the only state governor in the United States to be assassinated while in office. A skilled politician, Goebel was well able to broker deals with fellow lawmakers, and equally able and willing to break them if a better deal came along. His tendency to use the state's political machinery to advance his personal agenda earned him the nicknames "Boss Bill", "the Kenton King", "Kenton Czar", "King William I", and "William the Conqueror". Goebel's abrasive personality made him many political enemies, but his championing of populist causes, like railroad regulation, won him many friends. This conflict of opinions came to a head in the Kentucky gubernatorial election of 1900. Goebel, a Democrat, divided his party with self-serving political tactics at a time when Kentucky Republicans were finally gaining strength, having elected the party's first governor four years previously. These dynamics led to a close contest between Goebel and William S. Taylor. In the politically chaotic climate that resulted, Goebel was assassinated. (more...)

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