Frank Leslie Smith Edit Profile
He was elected by the people of Illinois to the United States Senate in 1926, but the Senate never allowed him to take his seat. He first ran for the Republican nomination for the U.S. Senate in 1920. In that first year of suffrage, women's votes were counted separately from men's.
In 1921, Smith became the chairman of the Illinois Commerce Commission, which oversaw utilities in the state. He prepared to run again for the Senate in 1926. At the time, Illinois had no campaign finance laws.
Smith collected donations from several wealthy executives who ran public utilities, including $125,000 from Samuel Insull. He used this money to defeat McKinley in the Republican primary held in the summer of 1926. McKinley, whose lame duck term would normally extend until March 1927, died in December 1926.
The governor appointed Smith to fulfill the rest of McKinley's term. When Smith went to present his credentials as the appointed Senator, the U.S. Senate voted to not allow him to qualify as a senator, based upon fraud and corruption in his campaign. He tried to again qualify as the elected Senator in March 1927, but was again denied.
He finally resigned his seat on February 9, 1928.
Member 66th Congress, 17th Illinois District. Member Republican National Committee for Illinois, 1932-1936. Club: Union League (Chicago.
Married Ermine Ahern, February 8, 1893.