1918 Arizona Gubernatorial Election
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1918 Arizona Gubernatorial Election
1918 Arizona gubernatorial election

← 1916 November 4, 1918 1920 →
  Thomas E Campbell 2.jpg Fred T. Colter.jpg
Nominee Thomas E. Campbell Fred T. Colter
Party Republican Democratic
Popular vote 25,927 25,588
Percentage 49.90% 49.25%

Governor before election

George W. P. Hunt

Elected Governor

Thomas E. Campbell

The 1918 Arizona gubernatorial election took place on November 5, 1918, for the post of the Governor of Arizona. Thomas Campbell, who served a partial term in 1917 and had his election overturned by the Supreme Court of Arizona, returned to contest the Governors office. Incumbent Governor Hunt declined to run again after the stress of the close elections and the year-long court battle. Despite falling to its lowest percentage in years, the sole third party challenger held the difference between the two candidates. The Democratic challenger was state senator Fred T. Colter, a pro-Hunt Democrat.[1]

Thomas Campbell was sworn in for his first full term on January 6, 1919.

Democratic primary


  • Fred Tuttle Colter, State Senator, member of the 1910 Arizona Constitutional Convention.
  • Fred Sutter, State Senator. Only primary candidate that earned the hostility of Governor George Hunt.[2]
  • Sidney Preston Osborn, incumbent Secretary of State, future Governor.


In early 1918, Sutter, who was one of two sitting State Senators from Cochise County, was approached by leaders of the Democratic party to consider running in the Democratic primary for the governorship.[3] In February, the other sitting senator from Cochise, C. M. Roberts, announced his intention to run for the Democratic nod for Governor.[4] Sid Osborne also announced his attention to seek the Democratic nomination in February, as did Fred Colter, the state senator from Apache County.[5] Benjamin Baker Moeur announced his intention to run for the Democratic nomination in mid-February.[6] On July 20, 1918, the last day to do so, Colter officially entered the gubernatorial race when he filed his petition with the Arizona Secretary of State.[7] On the final day, Lamar Cobb added his name to the list of Democratic primary candidates, bringing the total to five.[8] In mid-August, in an effort to consolidate the conservative arm of the Democratic party in an attempt to thwart Colter's candidacy, Moeur withdrew from the race, asking his supporters to throw their support behind Osborn.[9] Shortly thereafter, also in August, Cobb also withdrew from the race.[10]

This left only three candidates to run in the Democratic primary: Osborn, Sutter and Colter. On September 10, early returns showed Sutter with a slight lead over Colter. With only 29 of 82 statewide precincts counted, Sutter had 772 votes to Colter's 755, with Osborn a distant third with 71.[11] However. by the time 79 precincts had tallied their votes, Colter had pulled into a commanding lead, with the three final precincts to be counted being small.[12] Colter won the Democratic primary in September 1918, garnering 44% of the total votes, 14,539 to Sutter's 10,108 and Osborn's 8,390.[13] In doing so, he won 12 of Arizona's then 14 counties.[14] It was felt that Osborn and Sutter split the anti-Hunt vote, which allowed Colter to win the nomination.[15]


Democratic primary results [2]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Fred T. Colter 14,539 44.00
Democratic Fred Sutter 10,108 30.60
Democratic Sidney P. Osborn 8,390 25.40
Total votes 33,037 100.00

General election


Arizona gubernatorial election, 1918 [2] [16]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Thomas E. Campbell 25,927 49.90% +1.96%
Democratic Fred T. Colter 25,588 49.25% +1.24%
Socialist George D. Smith 444 0.85% -2.53%
Majority 339 0.65%
Turnout 51,959
Republican gain from Democratic Swing


  1. ^ Goff 1973, p. 121.
  2. ^ a b c Goff 1973, p. 122.
  3. ^ "Printer's Ink Puts Pressure on Fred Sutter". The Arizona Republican. February 1, 1918. p. 4. Retrieved 2017 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  4. ^ "Senator Roberts Out For Governor". Tombstone Weekly Epitaph. February 3, 1918. p. 8. Retrieved 2017 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  5. ^ "Campbell To Run If Hunt Dictates the Nomination in the Democratic Primary". Weekly Journal-Miner. February 6, 1918. p. 3. Retrieved 2017 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  6. ^ "A Swimming Match". The Arizona Republic. February 17, 1918. p. 4. Retrieved 2017 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  7. ^ "More Nominations Filed At Capitol". The Arizona Republican. July 20, 1918. p. 10. Retrieved 2017 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  8. ^ "Twenty-Two Filed For Race For State Primary". The Arizona Republican. July 21, 1918. p. 10. Retrieved 2017 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  9. ^ "One Arizona Candidate Is Out of Race; Two More Might Follow". El Paso Herald (El Paso, Herald). August 16, 1918. p. 6. Retrieved 2017 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  10. ^ "Lamar Cobb Withdraws From Arizona Race, Report". El Paso Herald (El Paso, Texas). August 23, 1918. p. 8. Retrieved 2017 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  11. ^ "Early State Returns". Bisbee Daily Review (Bisbee, Arizona). September 11, 1918. p. 1. Retrieved 2017 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  12. ^ "Governor's Race in Arizona Won By Fred Colter". Albuquerque Journal. September 12, 1918. p. 1. Retrieved 2017 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  13. ^ Goff 1973, p. 121-122.
  14. ^ "Can Senator Fred Colter Serve People of Arizona As Governor If He is Elected in November?". Albuquerque Journal. September 23, 1918. p. 4. Retrieved 2017 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  15. ^ "Arizona's Crazy Politics". The Coconino Sun. September 27, 1918. p. 4. Retrieved 2017 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  16. ^ http://www.ourcampaigns.com/RaceDetail.html?RaceID=123353


  • Goff, John S. (1973). "Creation of the State of Arizona". George W. P. Hunt and his Arizona. Phoenix: Socio-Technical Publications. pp. 121-122.

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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