Eisenhower as President

Excerpt

The delegates to the 1952 Republican National Convention were forgathered hopefully to nominate the next American President. Presented with a choice between statesman Robert A. Taft of Ohio and army officer Dwight D. Eisenhower of the Normandy beachhead, the majority of them voted on the first ballot, not for the Senator whose public utterances were deemed by many to be the dogma of Republicanism, but for the General whose statements to that date had enunciated little more than patriotism and benevolence. The argument for expediency was conclusive; Eisenhower could win, Taft could not.

"We like Ike," the delegates chanted, and the candidate stepped forward in response to their approval. "I know something of the solemn responsibility of leading a crusade," he told them. "I have led one . . . Mindful of its burdens and of its decisive importance, I accept your summons. I will lead this crusade."

The aims of the crusade were set forth in gravity suitable to the occasion. Corruption was to be swept from the halls of government. The country was to receive a program of progressive policies drawn from the finest Republican traditions. Freedom was to be strengthened. A sound prosperity was to be built. A just and lasting peace throughout the world was to be sought.

No President of the United States ever entered office amidst more enthusiastic acclaim than did Eisenhower. No President has been more capable than he of evoking the warm respect and adulation of the American masses; nor was there the slightest evidence after he retired to Gettysburg or substantial diminution of his personal popularity. Nevertheless, within two years of his departure from Washington, there was ample evidence that informed reaction to Eisenhower's administrations was unfavorable. Ike still loomed an object of civic devotion while the conflicting . . .

Additional information

Contributors:
Includes content by:
  • Samuel Lubell
  • Eric F. Goldman
  • Charles J. V. Murphy
  • Richard H. Rovere
  • Michael Straight
Publisher: Place of publication:
  • New York
Publication year:
  • 1963

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