Adlai E. Stevenson II ( 1900-1965) served as Governor of Illinois, Democratic presidential candidate in 1952 and 1956, and United States Ambassador to the United Nations.
When I nominated him to be the Democratic presidential candidate in 1960, the United States economy was in a recession. There was great tension between the United States and Russia and also between the United States and Cuba. A civil war had just broken out in the Congo. Following is the nomination speech, which was given on July 13, 1960, in Los Angeles, California.
Mr. Chairman, Democratic delegates at this great convention: We now approach the hour of all-important decision. You are the chosen people out of one hundred and seventy-two million Americans, the chosen of the Democratic party, come here to Los Angeles not only to choose a man to lead this Democratic party in the campaign of this fall and this November but to choose a man who we hope will lead this country and all of our friends and all of those peoples who look to us for help, who look to us for understanding, who look to us for leadership.
We are here participating in the great test of democratic society. As you know, our way of life is being challenged today. There are those, the enemies of democracy, who say that free men and free women cannot exercise that measure of intellectual responsibility, cannot demonstrate that measure of moral responsibility, which is called for to make the kind of decisions that we free people are