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Buying Gingerbread Means Buying Ballots

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In parts of Appalachia, if you’re buying gingerbread, you may not literally be buying a baked good. In Our Appalachia (Bookshop|Amazon), an oral history of the region, editors Laurel Shackelford and Bill Weinberg describe an old political practice of buying gingerbread cakes from elderly women and distributing them in hopes of gaining a few additional votes. Buying gingerbread became a more generalized term for “buying votes.” This is part of a complete episode.

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