Joined: Oct 2007
Feb 11, 2008 16:06 modified on Feb 11, 2011 03:59
Some interesting facts about Gov./V. P. Gerry. He came from a large family, was one of 12 children. In addition to being a signer of the Declaration of Independence he was a signer of the Articles of Confederation. The Gerry irony is his refusal to sign the Constitution. At the time his arguments were it lacked a Bill of Rights. Plus, he opposed making the V. P. presiding officer of the Senate; because, in his view, it would assign an excessive amount of influence to the executive branch of government. While V. P., 1813 -1814, he worked tirelessly to influence the Senate through his Vice Presidential role.
He was first elected to the legislature in 1772 on an Anti-British platform. Later he went on to serve in Congress. In all he ran for Governor seven times, was elected twice and defeated once for re-election --- he certainly was a persistent individual.
Its unfortunate his name came to negatively symbolize a political practice that pre-dates his first application of same. Amazingly the practice has continued, in various manifestations, to present times. The 1962 Supreme Court decision, Baker Vs Carr, establishing the doctrine of One Man - One Vote has seriously reduced the implementation of this practice when confronted in court challenges.
He had a grandson, also named Elbridge Gerry (1813-1886) who was elected to Congress from the state of Maine. His great grandson, Peter G. Gerry, likewise served in Congress and the U. S. Senate from R. I.