Newspaper Articles

Brooke News
October 16, 1959

Use Of Tart-Hartley law Rapped By Democratic Senator Kennedy

John F. Kennedy (D-Mass.), front-running candidate in national polls for the Democratic nomination for President, denounced here Saturday the Wisnehower [sic] administration's decision to invoke the Taft-Hartley law in the national steel strike.

The dynamic, 42-year-old senator addressed a rally of 415 district Democrats in the Elks Country Club under sponsorship of the Brooke County Democratic Executive Committee.

He devoted much of his 20-minute address to his record as chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on Labor, emphasizing the battle within the joint Senate-House committee over the House-sponsored Landrum-Griffith labor bill. He said his Senate group succeeded in making approximately 15 "basic changes" in the original Landrum-Griffin [sic] bill. Had that bill passed in its original form, he contended, labor's progress "in organizing the unorganized" would have been greatly hampered.

"the presidential action in the steel strike," he said, "is the most one-sided, unfortunate, unfair action in the administration's history.

"Administration interventions since the strike began have encouraged the companies to refuse to bargain. Their knowledge that, when the strike began to pinch, the administration would break the strike through the means of the national injunction directly contributed to the failure of the companies to bargain constructively.["}

At the conclusion of Sen. Kennedy's speech, he was given an ovation. A group of Brooke and Hancock county men staged a convention-type placard and bell-ringing demonstration up and down the crowded aisles, proclaiming Kennedy for President.

Richard W. Barnes, Wellsburg attorney and dinner arrangements chairman, presented Sen. Kennedy with a replica of the White House and told him that would be his next residence.

Sen. Kennedy was introduced by Sen. Randolph, who in turn was presented by the chairman, Mr. Ralph Pryor, Brooke County Prosecuting Attorney.

The address of welcome was given by Hulett Smith of Beckley, chairman of the West Virginia Democratic Committee.

Also introduced were John G. Chernenko of Wellsburg, county chairman; State Sen. Herbert Traubert, Follansbee; State Sen. Arch Riley, Wheeling; State Sen. Ralph J. Bean of Moorefield, president of the State Senate, and Alfred Chapman of Wheeling who has attended the last five Democratic national conventions as a delegate or alternate.

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