Ike and the Nationalists
A T MIDMORNING ON the tenth of June, the President's Lockheed Constellation lifted out of Washington toward the upper Midwest and the start of a five-day speaking tour. Four hours and twenty-four minutes later, the luxurious transport reached the Wold-Chamberlin Airport at Minneapolis. Ahead lay worshiping crowds, not only those certain to be brought out by efficient local Republican organizations but throngs of ordinary citizens eager for a glimpse of the popular President. As though to substantiate the obvious, the Gallup Poll was reporting that three- fourths of the public liked having him in the White House. The 67 percent that had approved in March had actually climbed seven points by April and was still at that level as he began his journey. Even more emphatic was the Gallup finding released on June 3 showing only one in six critical of his record.1 And the cheering at the airport provided additional evidence that, although the Korean war was still very much alive and some of the most vigorous fighting was going on, Americans had confidence that their General in the White House would restore peace and tranquillity.
Some were already noting that the golf-playing President, with a staff system that was preventing the White House from becoming his prison, seemed eager to get away from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, not only to the links at Burning Tree in Washington, but during less than five months he had vacationed twice at the Augusta National Golf Club, played at Norfolk and Annapolis after speech-making trips to both areas and had gone fishing in Pennsylvania as the weekend guest of Dr. Milton Eisenhower at State College. Staff members ultimately cited the effi-