AUGUST 11, 1948
HYDE PARK, Tuesday—It is interesting and sometimes amusing to read the Republican newspapers today. They play up the fact that Senator Irving M. Ives, of New York, says that the important question in the coming election campaign will be President Truman's record and Candidate Dewey's policies.
Not one word is said about what seems to many far more important, namely, the record of the Congress, which has been in complete control of the Republican party for the past two years. They pass that off lightly. But the people will remember that no Republican candidate flouts the desires of the Republican leaders, and the Republican leaders have made the decisions for all the actions taken by the Republican Congress.
Now they would like us to believe that it is simply the record of two men—Governor Dewey in Albany and the policies he proposes, and President Truman in Washington and the policies he proposes—that really should be considered in this campaign.
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When one reads the record carefully one can find that President Truman's record is one of advocating very excellent things, at least from the liberals' point of view. And it is fairly evident that both parties consider that the liberal point of view is the deciding factor in political campaigns today.
Where President Truman has not been completely successful is in getting adopted the measures that he has advocated. Sometimes even his own party has joined with the Republican majority to augment a Republican victory. Be it noted, however, that even had the President been able to control every Democratic vote—in the House at least—he would not have had a majority.
Therefore, I think it is fair to say that the record of the past Congress should be studied carefully. The Republicans do not want the people to realize that they have done nothing, for instance, about controlling inflation. The measures that were passed in the special session are only halfway measures and will accomplish very little.
Only yesterday I was sitting in my car waiting while some of the younger members of the family and a few guests were visiting the Mills House, which is now part of a New York State park. One of the park attendants on traffic duty stood by my car and we talked for a few minutes. I have no idea what his name is or whether he is a Democrat or a Republican, but I surmised he is a Republican.
He remarked that they didn't have too many visitors at the park this summer and I said something about the present high cost of living. I suggested that perhaps when people got through paying their food bills they had to decide between having meat on the table now and then and taking a holiday, and that the majority evidently decided on meat. He laughed and said, "Prices are certainly high and they seem to be going higher all the time."
That's what worries not only the women but the men to whom I have talked. It seems to me that when the Congressmen get home they will find that their record is part of the coming campaign. To do nothing about something that affects the daily lives of the people may mean more to the people than all the promises that the Republican Presidential candidate can make for the future.