Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Finch was born in Pope, Mississippi. At the age of 18, he enlisted to fight in World War II; he participated in the Italian Campaign as part of the 88th Infantry Division. After the war, Finch worked in construction on Guam. He then attended the University of Mississippi and graduated from its law school in 1958.
Finch entered politics and was elected to the Mississippi House of Representatives in 1960. He was elected district attorney for the Seventeenth judicial district in 1964 and re-elected in 1968. He was an unsuccessful candidate for lieutenant governor in 1971.
In 1975, Finch composed a coalition of African American and working class White voters in a populist campaign. Late in the campaign, as a way to show his concern for the hardships of working people, he sacked groceries, drove bulldozers and performed other jobs that are connected to ordinary people. This campaign tactic proved to be popular as Finch was elected over Republican candidate Gil Carmichael and independent candidate Henry Kirksey .
While still Governor, Finch ran for the United States Senate in 1978 but he was defeated in the Democratic party Primary by Maurice Dantin .
After leaving office, Finch ran for President in 1980. He received 48,032 votes (0.3% of the Democratic primary vote total) in nine primaries. After his campaign for President ended, he returned to his law practice until his death.
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