Populist platform of Georgia includes plank denouncing the current lynching laws
From the inception of the Populist party, going back to antecedent parties such as the Readjusters and Greenbackers, as well as the previous attempts in the 1880s to fuse the Farmers' Alliances and the Colored Farmers National Alliance, an attempt was made to attract the Negro to the fold using an approach devoid of what C. Vann Woodward calls sentimental liberalism' and romantic paternalism.' Instead, Populists appealed to Negros from the perspective of shared poverty and hardship. Populist leaders such as Georgia's Tom Watson declared that his People's party' would offer a platform beneficial to both races and injurious to neither.' In what historian C. Vann Woodward calls a heroic gesture,' Watson carried this vision out by successfully pressing for an anti-lynch law plank in the party's platform in 1896, a year in which Georgia led the nation in lynchings.