SENATOR HUNT, THE FORMER GOVERNOR OF WYOMING, FACED WITH SENATOR JOSEPH MCCARTHY’S POLITICAL BLACKMAIL, COMMITTED SUICIDE IN HIS SENATE OFFICE
Lester Callaway Hunt, Sr. (1892 – 1954) Signed Card, "Lester G. Hunt, Gov. Wyo. 1943-49, U.S.S. 1949", was a Democratic politician and dentist from the state of Wyoming. Hunt was the first to be elected to two consecutive terms as Wyoming's governor, serving as its 19th Governor from January 4, 1943, to January 3, 1949. In 1948, he was elected by an overwhelming margin to the U.S. Senate, and began his term on January 3, 1949. He was an outspoken opponent of Senator Joseph McCarthy's anti-Communist campaign. In June 1953, Hunt's son was arrested in Washington, D.C., on charges of soliciting sex from an undercover male police officer (homosexual acts were prohibited by law at the time). Several Republican senators, including McCarthy, threatened Hunt with prosecution of his son and wide publication of the event unless he abandoned plans to run for re-election and resigned immediately, which Hunt refused to do. He changed his mind, however, after McCarthy renewed the threat to use his son's arrest against him. On June 19, 1954, Hunt committed suicide in his Senate office; the suicide dealt a serious blow to McCarthy's image and was one of the factors that led to his censure by the Senate later in 1954. In fine condition.