JFK ACCEPTED NOMINATION FOR PRESIDENT 53 YEARS AGO TODAY
Los Angeles (JFK+50) Senator John F. Kennedy of Massachusetts accepted the nomination of the Democratic Party for President of the United States 53 years ago this evening, July 15, 1960, here in Los Angeles.
JFK Accepts Nomination
July 15, 1960
JFK Library Photo
Senator Kennedy, who gave his acceptance speech at the Los Angeles Coliseum, became the 1st Catholic candidate for President since Al Smith in 1928.
JFK was introduced by Adlai Stevenson of Illinois who had been the Democratic nominee in 1952 and 1956.
John F. Kennedy began by saying he was grateful for the strong Democratic platform he was given to run on and that he would do so with "enthusiasm and conviction."
While admitting the task of defeating Richard M. Nixon "would not be easy," JFK said that the Vice-President was certainly no Dwight D. Eisenhower.
The Massachusetts senator assailed the Republican Party's failure to support farm families, unemployed mine and textile workers, and senior citizens who were without medical care.
JFK said that while Nixon was a young man, his party represented the past rather than the future.
In reference to the religious issue JFK said:
"I hope that no American...will...throw away his vote by voting either for me or against me because of my religious affiliation. It is not relevant.
My decisions on any public policy will be my own, as an American, as a Democrat, and as a free man."
JFK also talked about his proposed "New Frontier" program. He said...
"The problems are not all solved and the battles are not all won and we stand today on the edge of a New Frontier...the frontier of the 1960s, the frontier of unfilled hopes and unfilled threats."
Senator Kennedy continued...
"The New Frontier of which I speak is not a set of promises. It is a set of challenges. It sums up not what I intend to offer the American people, but what I intend to ask of them."
JFK concluded his remarks by saying...
"We stand at a turning point of history. The world watches...and waits...to see what we shall do. Can we endure? Have we the will (to make the) choice between national greatness and national decline?
Give me your help and your hand and your voice."
Speaking before 80,000 people on a late Friday night after a long primary campaign, Arthur Schlesinger tells us that JFK was very tired.
"His delivery was uncertain and at times almost strident; but his conviction carried him along, and the crowd stirred in response to the words. JFK's long journey had begun."
"A Thousand Days: JFK in the White House" by Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston, 1965.
Washington, D.C. (JFK+50) President John F. Kennedy began two days of talks 50 years ago today, July 15, 1963, with President Julius Nyerere* of Tanganyika.
The two Presidents discussed political developments in Africa and relations between Tanganyika and the United States.
*Julius Nyerere (1922-1999) was the 1st President of Tanzania and served from 1961 to 1985. His father was Chief of the Zanaki and Nyerere was a graduate of Makerere University and the University of Edinburg. He died in London.
Julius Nyerere of Tanganyika
Photo by Mario S. Trikosko
JIMMY CARTER PROCLAIMED "CRISIS OF CONFIDENCE" 34 YEARS AGO
Washington, D.C. (JFK+50) In the midst of a national energy crisis and economic recession, President Jimmy Carter spoke to the American people 34 years ago tonight, July 15, 1979, on national television from the White House.
President Carter said there is a lack of "moral and spiritual confidence" in the nation and that the reason for it was America's inability to recover from the current economic crisis.
The President said this "crisis of confidence" had led to domestic turmoil as well as "the loss of unity and purpose for our nation."
President James Earl Carter
Official White House Portrait