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George Wallace and Shirley Chisholm never ran on the same ticket, but a tragic event brought them together and forged an unlikely alliance.
Wallace was, at the time of the 1972 Democratic primary, a staunch supporter of segregation, though he would later recant this stance. Chisholm was also a candidate in the primary, though she had little hope that she would win. When Wallace was shot and paralyzed, cutting his campaign short, Chisholm visited him in the hospital. Chisholm later said that Wallace was surprised to see her. He was so touched by the political risk she took in visiting a vocal segregationist that he cried.
To characterize their connection as a friendship might be a stretch, but Chisholm’s gesture of compassion made an impression on Wallace. He later helped Chisholm bring Southern congressmen around on the issue of extending minimum wage protections to domestic workers.
Associated Press (2005, January 4). Shirley Chisholm, Pioneer in Congress, Dies at 80. NBC News. Retrieved from http://www.nbcnews.com/id/6779424/ns/politics/t/shirley-chisholm-pioneer...