Major Speeches and Debates of Senator Joe McCarthy Delivered in the United States Senate, 1950-1951

By Joseph McCarthy | Go to book overview

AUGUST 9, 1951
Explanation of Why Names Were Made Public; Statement on Suspended State Department Officials Under Investigation Being Allowed Access to Secret Files

Mr. McCARTHY. Mr. President, last year I gave the Senate the names of 81 individuals whom I considered dangerous to this country if allowed to remain in positions of power. At the time that was done there were constant demands upon the floor of the Senate, many of them made by the then majority leader, former Senator Lucas, who is no longer a Member of the Senate, that I make the names public on the Senate floor. As I have stated, the majority leader was Joined in this demand by a number of other Senators. At that time I refused to comply with the request, and explained why. I told the Senate I felt that of the 81 cases given the Senate, some were marginal cases, in which the parties might well prove themselves to be neither bad security risks nor disloyal, and that for that reason I felt that the names should be given to the committee which was to be appointed, and should be given to it in private, and that then, after the committee had completed its investigation, it should decide which names were to be made public.

In that connection, Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent to have printed in the body of the RECORD, at this point, statements by the Senator from Iowa [Mr. HICKENLOOPER] and myself, explaining how it happened that certain names were made public.

There being no objection, the statements were ordered to be printed in the RECORD, as follows:

EXCERPTS FROM THE CONGRESSIONAL RECORD EXPLAINING WHY NAMES WERE MADE PUBLIC

1. Remarks of Senator HICKENLOOPER, CONGRESSIONAL RECORD, April 5, 1950, pages 4957, 4958.

"As a member of the subcommittee of the Committee on Foreign Relations now engaged in the inquiry into the charges of the Senator from Wisconsin. I should like to say that on the day on which the Senator from Wisconsin made his speech at some length on the floor of the Senate, in which he referred to certain cases by number, and so forth--I think it was the 20th of February--at that time the Senator from Wisconsin repeatedly stated and restated on the floor of the Senate that he did not want to make names public, that he would not tell the names to the Senate in public; and, time after time, the Senator from Illinois, the majority leader, rose to demand that he give the names in public, so the whole country would know who the people were that were suspected.

"The Senator from Wisconsin repeatedly said, 'No; I will not make them public.' The Senator from Kentucky, Mr. WITHERS, rose and said he wanted to see the list of names. The Senator from Wisconsin said, 'Come to my office in the morning and I will show you the names.' The Senator from Kentucky said, 'Can I make them public? I intend to make them public if I see them.' The Senator from Wisconsin said, 'No; if you are going to make them public, I shall not give you the names.'

"The CONGRESSIONAL RECORD is replete with such statements on the question of the publicity of the names.

"Its is a matter of fact also that the junior Senator from Massachusetts and I, both at the first executive meeting of the subcommittee, suggested and proposed the procedure, that the subcommittee meet in executive session, call the Senator from Wisconsin before it, and ask him to disclose the names in private, together with whatever information he had in connection with the names; but the majority of the subcommittee said 'No, this must be brought out in public.' So they held their first hearing, requiring the Senator from Wisconsin to come, in public, to name the names. I tell the Senator that, if he is not familiar with it, merely to keep the factual history of the publicity of these names accurate.

"I should like to say also that so far as I am concerned, while we did not have the machinery to set up a court of inquiry such as the Canadian spy-ring case called for, we did propose and urge that an inquiry in secrecy without naming names be made with the facts collected. But we were overruled, and the Senator from Wisconsin was required, or requested, to come before the committee in public hearing, with kleig lights, television, and all the rest of the fanfare of such an emotional occasion, there to bring out his cases, name names, and produce facts."

Remarks of Senator McCARTHY. CONGRESSIONAL RECORD, March 30, 1950, pages 4434, 4435.

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