Earl Dodge, 74, the six-time Prohibition Party candidate for president, died Wednesday after collapsing at Denver International Airport. He was on his way to Pennsylvania on business, said his daughter, Faith Nelson. The cause of death was not available.
Founded in 1869, the Prohibition Party's greatest achievement came in 1919 when the 18th Amendment was added to the U.S. Constitution. It banned the production, sale, transportation, import and export of alcohol. Ironically, the passage of the 18th Amendment took away the party's overriding issue, and it faded in national stature. Prohibition was repealed in 1933.
Dodge mounted campaigns across nearly every level of government beginning with a 1969 run for City Council in Kalamazoo, Mich. He ran for governor of Colorado five times, senator from Kansas once, and was vice presidential candidate twice for the Prohibition Party.
He never won a race.
His best showing as a presidential candidate came in 1988 when he won 8,002 votes. After decades in the party, Dodge was the subject of a split among national prohibitionists in 2004. A faction of the party spurned Dodge and nominated the Rev. Gene Amondson.
Howard Lydick, Dodge's running mate in 2004, said he and Dodge were working on strategies to get on state ballots in 2008. In 2004 they managed to make only the Colorado ballot. They received 140 votes.
Born in Malden, Mass., in 1932, Dodge began volunteering with the Prohibition Party at age 19, two years before he could vote, his wife, Barbara, said.