APRIL 18, 1956
NEW YORK—It is a curious thing that a Republican President should have been treated so kindly by the Democrats and that only now, after three years in office and his veto of the farm bill, the Democrats come out and attack not only the party but the President himself and make him responsible for his policies.
In the past, a Democratic President has been held responsible for whatever his party did, but somehow President Eisenhower kept himself in the position of reaping all the glory when his party policies were popular but managing to keep himself aloof when these policies were unpopular.
This is a wonderful situation for a President to be in, and I am sure many of the Democrats who in the past have suffered with their party would have loved to have been treated as kindly by the opposition and the press, in general.
But at some point we usually have to suffer for our virtues and our sins, and the President evidently is going to suffer at the hands of the Democratic members of Congress.
When the President vetoed the natural gas bill, there was quite a strong division in the Democratic party because only the conservative Democratic leaders joined with the Republicans in backing that bill. And while those leaders, feeling sure they could count on Presidential support, probably were anything but happy over the veto, the rank and file of the Democratic party did not feel as strongly as it does over the President's action on the farm bill.
Some of the Republicans from the farm areas evidently are feeling unhappy, too, because they feel that, as a result, they probably will be unseated by Democrats in the next election—something they do not look upon with pleasure.
As a matter of fact, the only people who really suffer from this veto are the farmers. Now nothing will be done.
I don't know enough about the bill to know whether it is a bad one or not. But I do know that something should be done to help the small farmer, for there are many rural areas that need a study of their problems and substantial help at the present time. Apparently they will get no help, and this will not make the farmers, no matter how strongly Republican they usually are, any happier.
I have just received a little book called "Voting Guide for 1956," which contains a foreword by Elmer Davis. The issues are set forth here and I think there is a good deal in this little book that can be both useful and challenging to the average voter.
Americans for Democratic Action naturally express the liberal point of view, but there is a good deal of practical political information on the pages of this little paperbound voting guide that all will find useful.