Interview with Tom Turnipseed

What about the class appeal? You were telling me about how he would make that class appeal.


He was very strong with the class appeal, particularly in Alabama. He was, uh, he was opposed by the, the, the, the big corporate elements in Alabama because he was very progressive on social issues, issues like workmen's comp, unemployment compensation, et cetera. And I remember talking, when he was talking to the textile workers, you know, speaking on the flatbed truck, he would talk about, uh, Mountainbrook. This is what he would say. And Mountainbrook happened to be, and still is, I think, an exclusive suburb of Birmingham, Alabama, where the wealthier people live, and, and Governor Wallace would say, you know, "It's easy for these people up in Mountainbrook to be for this and that and the other thing because they leave their air-conditioned offices down at the Tennessee Coal and Iron Company where the workingman works there in the steel mill, and they drive up in their limousines back up to the Mountainbrook Country Club, and they sit up at the Mountainbrook Country Club sipping their martinis with their little fingers in the air like this. And they say, 'Oh, we gotta have integration, for the poor workingman down in the valley.' And they take your children and they bus your children from here to there to kingdom come, and guess where the rich man's children go to? Where they go to school? They go to the all White private school." And uh, he would point out that class hypocrisy, it was racism with a class twist to it.