Newspaper Articles


Charleston Daily Mail
September 28, 1960

Nixon Rips Dem Role In Jolting W. Va. Aid

GOP’s Rally Draws Record Crowd Here

By Bob Mellace, Daily Mail Political Editor

It is the fault of the Democrats, not the Republicans, that there is no federal aid program to help distressed areas in West Virginia, Vice President Richard M. Nixon said here last night.

Addressing what must have been the largest indoor political rally in the history of West Virginia, Nixon told a Civic Center audience that the Democratic leadership in Congress was more interested in making a political issue for campaign purposes than in helping West Virginia’s unemployed.

Nixon selected this theme deliberately.

He did because, on the same platform last week, Sen. John F. Kennedy and other Democrats repeatedly blamed President Eisenhower for vetoing two distressed areas bills.

And it is apparent Nixon wants West Virginia Democratic votes. He asked all voters to forget party labels and do what they think is best for their country. He demanded a public apology from Kennedy, to the American people, for saying 17 million people go to bed hungry in this country every night.

It just is not true, Nixon said, and Kennedy distorted a 1955 Department of Agriculture report on nutrition, a report which said one American in 10 does not have a balanced diet.

President Eisenhower’s distressed areas bill would have cost the national treasury less than the Democratic bills, but it would have given West Virginia far more money, Nixon declared.

“The responsibility for not getting action (on the Republican bill) rests squarely on the Democratic presidential candidate, and he should not again be given a chance to not act again in the next session of congress as he failed to act in the last one,” the vice president declared.

According to Nixon’s figures, the Democratic bill would have meant $5.7 million to this state, the Republican measure $8 million.

While he emphasized economic conditions in this area sensitive to such conditions, Nixon said the greatest issue is peace. Prosperity will mean nothing if Americans don’t live to enjoy it, he said, and added:

“The most important issue before the world today, before American today is this: Which of the candidates can provide the leadership that will keep the peace without surrender for American and the world?”

On the basis of the record, the vice president said he and Henry Cabot Lodge are better equipped to do this.

But, Nixon continued, it is a mistake for this country to think only in terms of military strength and prosperity, “because, you see, that is all they (Communists) have to offer.”

The world, especially that section under Communist domination, looks to the U. S., not because it is strong and rich, but because “we stand for ideals, for faith in God, for belief in the dignity of man . . . for the rights of every man, woman and child to have an equal opportunity,” Nixon said.

From the main arena of the Civic Center, Nixon and Mrs. Nixon went through the back corridors to the Little Theater where a crowd of more than one thousand had waited more than an hour.

There, Nixon said, the campaign should not be decided upon which candidate promises to spend the most, because “one candidate can just say ‘I raise you.’”

Audience Roars

And he brought a roar from that audience when he said “this isn’t Jack’s money, it’s your money they’re talking about.”

For himself, Nixon continued, “I stand on a program that does not buy people’s votes with their own money.”

Nixon’s party flew here in three chartered airliners from West Memphis, Ark., and went from here to New York where he campaigned all day today.

At the airport, the Nixons were mobbed by thousands.

He climbed an airplane loading ramp to say he was glad to be back in West Virginia and to see so many happy people, especially after Democratic reports of unhappiness here.

Nixon put in a plug for Gov. Underwood’s campaign for the U. S. Senate, for Harold Neely for governor and the Charleston High School band.

Then he said he and Mrs. Nixon would shake hands where the airport fence was low enough to reach across. They did, and many in the crowd yelled “you did a good job last night, Dick,” in the television debate with Kennedy, and “go after him, Dick.”

But this was not enough.

Handshakes Wanted

Those behind the high fence wanted to shake hands, too. So the vice president, despite an injured knee, stumbled through refuse cans, climbed aboard a steel platform used by airplane mechanics, and reached across and down to the crowd of admirers there.

Many held children on their shoulders so the vice president could touch them. He go to as many as he could, until officials pulled him down for the motorcade trip to the Civic Center.

Accompanying Nixon here were two members of President Eisenhower’s cabinet, Interior Secretary Fred A. Seaton and Arthur Flemming, secretary of health, education and welfare. Nixon’s campaign manager, Leonard Hall, former Republican national chairman, also was in the Nixon party.

First to greet the Nixon’s were the Underwoods with two of their children: Craig and Cecilia, who gave Mrs. Nixon a bouquet.

“We know whose girl you are,” the vice president told Cecilia, and to little Craig Underwood he said “let me see your teeth.”

Then, seeing the crowd, Nixon said “this is wonderful,” and he hailed GOP National Committeeman Walter S. Hallanan.

Going down the receiving line, the Nixons shook hands with Congressman Arch A. Moore, Mayor Shanklin who gave Nixon a gold key to the city, with D. Boone Dawson, chairman of rally arrangements, former U. S. Senator Chapman Revercomb, Neely and others.

Kennedy drew about 6,500 to the same Civic Center. Last night, Chief of Police Dallas Bias said there were 7,200 in the main arena, 1,000 standing, and 2,500 outside, or a total of 10,700.

Civic Center Manager William Bolden said there were 7,000 in the main arena, 1,000 in the Little Theater, but gave no estimate of those outside.

Whatever the crowd, it was bigger than Kennedy’s, and there was no argument about that by anyone.


Turnout, Zeal Enthuse State Party Leaders

Republican leaders were jubilant today over the rousing demonstration Vice President Nixon received Tuesday night in Charleston.

Gov. Underwood said the meeting was “a magnificent demonstration of the high regard West Virginians have for Mr. Nixon.” He predicted Nixon will carry West Virginia by a substantial majority.

GOP State Chairman Daniel Louchery commented:

“The rousing reception given Mr. Nixon was the greatest I have ever seen accorded any candidate for the presidency in this state. To me it means that the people of West Virginia, Democrats as well as Republicans, have turned to Nixon because of his experience, his proven ability, and his deep concern for the nation’s welfare.

“This meeting convinces me that the Nixon-Lodge ticket will carry West Virginia by an overwhelming majority – and I am confident also that the entire Republican ticket will win.”

Mature Leadership

John D. Hoblitzell, Jr., former U. S. Senator and Nixon’s campaign manager in West Virginia, said “The tremendous reception Mr. Nixon received is convincing proof that the people of this state hold him in high regard, and are looking to him for the kind of mature leadership this country requires.

“I was highly pleased with the meeting, and I am certain the tens of thousands of persons who heard and saw the Vice President on radio and television were as deeply impressed as were those in the audience with his clear analysis of the problems that confront this country.”

Harold E. Neely, Republican gubernatorial nominee, termed the Nixon rally “a great demonstration of Republican enthusiasm, which I think will grow and grow between now and Nov. 8. This meeting is what the Republican Party needed to reach that high degree of enthusiasm which will produce victory for the entire ticket.”

Former U. S. Senator Chapman Revercomb termed the rally “A great meeting – one of the finest political meetings I have ever attended.”

Rep. Arch A. Moore, Jr. GOP congressman from West Virginia’s 1st District, said the Nixon rally was “a great demonstration for Mr. Nixon; a great speech by our Mr. Nixon; a great speech by our [sic] candidate for the presidency; and a display of Republican enthusiasm.”

“Tremendous” was the word used by National Committeeman Walter S. Hallanan.

D. Boone Dawson, chairman of the arrangements committee, said:

“Every person who participated in arranging for this meeting should feel proud of “West Virginia’s Salute to Nixon.”


Plenty of Enthusiasm

Nixons Spent Busy 2 ½ Hours In City

By Howard Lewis
Of The Daily Mail Staff

Vice President Nixon and his wife Pat, flew in and out of Charleston yesterday evening. They were here little more than two hours.

It was dark when the Mainliner Fresno touched down at Kanawha Airport, taxied up to gate nine and stopped at 7:02 p.m. And it was dark when the Nixons and party left at 9:30 p. m.

But in two hours Mr. Nixon:

- Received cheers from a crowd close to 3,500 at Kanawha Airport. (Nixon spoke a few minutes there. He asked for “a hand for the Charleston High School band.” And he got it. Later the Republican presidential nominee signed the band’s bass drum).

- Was cheered by scattered-to-concentrated groups along a route from the airport to Greenbrier Street, down Washington Street and then to the Civic Center.

- Received a tremendous welcome from a crowd outside the Center that numbered around 1,000.

- Rested a few minutes.

- Was cheered again and again by a big, partisan crowd in the main auditorium that touched 8,000.

- Spoke over a statewide TV network that was carried to seven Mountain State cities and to an audience that could have numbered close to one million.

- Made an unscheduled talk to about 1,000 persons who were jammed into the Civic Center’s Little Theater. His principal address could not be heard in this area.

- Praised the GOP’s national state and county candidates.

At the airport, things began rolling at 6 p. m., when an unscheduled motorcade of 10 cars full of members of the Young Republicans Club at Morris Harvey College arrived.

Cars forming the official motorcade began arriving shortly thereafter. Notable was one marked “Edward Greene, Chairman, Democrats for Nixon and Lodge.”

Shortly after 6 p. m., Gov. Underwood and his party arrived in his private plane from Hot Springs, Ark. The state’s chief executive had been attending the Southern Governors’ Conference.

Gov. Underwood, state GOP executives and candidates formed the official greeting party as Nixon de-planed at 7:05.

The airport dinnertime crowd wore, carried and waved buttons, banners and signs. Slogans said everything from “Charleston Welcomes Pat and Dick” to “For the Love of Nixon, Underwood and Neely, Vote Republican.”

The most colorful part of the evening, however, was at the Civic Center.

In the main auditorium, a 125-foot red, white and blue electric sign greeted the crowd with: “We Need Nixon and Lodge.”

There were nine “Nixon Girls” who formed part of the Civic Center reception group.

There was a 500-member choir billed as “Voices for Nixon.”

Choir Present

The massed choir, drawn from nearly 50 Kanawha County churches and other organizations, sang “The Battle Hymn of the Republic” and started the song “America” as the crowd joined in.

The 500 voices were led by Ralph Hunter, director of the Collegiate Chorale of New York City.

The huge crowd heard the invocation by Bishop W. C. Campbell of the Episcopal Diocese of West Virginia. Then Republican State Chairman Daniel P. Louchery of Clarksburg took over the microphone and introduced local, county and state GOP candidates and other guests.

The last person Louchery introduced was Gov. Underwood who introduced the vice president. At what seemed to be a cue during Underwood’s introduction of Nixon, the “Nixon Girls” and the “Voices for Nixon” broke into song.

To the tune of “I’ve Got Sixpence,” they sang:

“We Want Nixon”
“Our Man Nixon”
“We Want Nixon”
“To Be Our President”

At this point the presidential nominee and his wife came onto the state. When the cheers died down, the Vice President began his speech.

Gov. Underwood smiled widely when Nixon explained how the Democratic Congress defeated depressed area legislation that would have helped West Virginia. The crowd liked it too as voices in the background shouted: “Pour it on, Dick!”

But the biggest ovation came when the Vice President challenged his opponent, Sen. John Kennedy to explain to the American people and clear the record of a statement alleging that 17 million Americans go to bed hungry every night.

The crowd liked this too.

When he finished, the vice president and his wife went to the Little Theater where he spoke briefly to part of the overflow crowd. Then the national GOP campaigning group left through the rear door of the Civic Center.

It was 8:55 p.m. and the Nixons were off schedule. They were supposed to leave Kanawha Airport in 15 minutes.

A crowd of about 300 was waiting outside near his car to catch a glimpse of Nixon before he departed. The Nixons went over to the crowd and the vice president asked: “You folks get in tonight?”

Several persons offered “No” in reply.

One well-wisher, as he shook hands with Nixon said: “Remember me? I met you at the J. C. Convention in Miami in 1948.”

Obviously unable to trace back 12 years in a split second, the vice president smiled, shook the man’s hand and his part remarks were “You folks keep up the good work.”

The official motorcade, including two buses for the national press, left the Civic Center at 9 p.m.

The Nixon campaign group is on New York’s Long Island today. The group moves into Vermont and New Hampshire tonight. Maine and Upper New York State are on tomorrow’s schedule. Later this week Nixon will be in Ohio and Indiana.


Feminine Sidelights of Nixons’ Visit

Pat Nixon Receives Warm, Enthusiastic Welcome; Urges Women To Work In Election

By Wilma Higginbotham, Daily Mail Women’s Editor
And Earl Benton And Chester Hawes
Daily Mail Photographers

Pat Nixon has an assignment for American Women: get out and work for the party of your choice.

This was Mrs. Nixon’s message expressed quickly Tuesday night at the Civic Center while her husband posed for a picture. “I think the women of America should get out and work for the party of their choice and have a real voice in this election. They should work and vote so that the voice of America may speak.”

No storybook princess could have created more magic than Pat Nixon last night when she stepped through the doorway and hesitated a moment before walking down the steps of a plane at Kanawha Airport. A look of surprise and delight warmed her face as spectators cheered. Lights from cameras gave a golden glow to her light brown hair and accentuated the sparkle in her eyes.

She was dressed becomingly in a beige suit of wool fashioned with a full pleated skirt and short boxy jacket with three-quarter length sleeves and tailored neckline. Her blouse was a slightly lighter toned brocade and her feather hat of brown and beige was set off by a saucy veil. Her corsage was a single white orchid.

Vice President Nixon stepped from the plane and placed his arm around her. Spectators cheered and waved banners and the band played. The Nixons came down the steps together.

Little Miss Cecilia Underwood waited at the foot of the steps in a red polished cotton and matching hair ribbon. She presented to Mrs. Nixon a bouquet of red roses. Her small brother - Craig, presented to Vice President Nixon a boutonniere.

Governor Underwood greeted the Vice President. Mrs. Underwood, dressed becomingly in a soft blue frock of wool, greeted Mrs. Nixon.

Protocol Abandoned

Protocol was abandoned as Republican dignitaries and newspaper people vied for a spot near the Nixons. Unruffled by the hitch in plans for orderly greetings, the Nixons moved down the line meeting and shaking hands with members of the reception committee.

At the end of the line, Vice President Nixon placed his arm protectively around Pat and they pushed through the crowd to a raised platform where he extended brief greetings to the assembled crowd.

Waiting for the arrival of the Nixons was a little like waiting to open gifts on Christmas morning. The excitement kept building up among women members of the reception committee until it touched everyone around us.

Since most of those on the reception committee had already met Mrs. Nixon, the topic of conversation was – of course – Mrs. Nixon.

Mrs. Perle Harmon of Bluefield, national Republican committeewoman, said, “I think Pat Nixon is perfectly delightful. She is utterly charming and would certainly grace the White House.”

Mrs. E. K. Stevens, associate state GOP chairman, exclaimed, “I think she’s a doll. She’s warm, gracious and has a real interest in people.”

Mrs. Regis Heinzer, president of the W. Va. Federation of Republican Women, could scarcely contain her enthusiasm. She kept repeating, “I’m so excited, I can hardly stand it!” She called Mrs. Nixon “very charming . . . She just radiates. I heard her first political speech the other week at Atlantic City. She did a wonderful job.

“Lovelier In Person”

Mrs. Arch Moore, who has been a guest in the Nixon home on several occasions when the Vice President’s wife has entertained for wives of congressmen, remarked upon Pat’s “continuing graciousness, especially about letting the wives go through every part of her home. She is even more lovely personally than she looks in photographs, Just wait and you’ll see what I mean.”

Mrs. Harold Neely said, “It’s a little like a dream waiting for the Vice President to arrive. I haven’t been so thrilled in a long time.” After greeting Vice President and Mrs. Nixon, she admitted she was even more excited than ever and laughingly added, “I don’t think I’ll wash this hand for a week.”

There was also a lucky chance while waiting at the airport to chat with Mrs. W. H. Damour of New York City, who was waiting for a plane home. She was interested in the Nixon visit because Mrs. Nixon was due for breakfast early Wednesday morning in the West Ballroom of the Commodore Hotel. The breakfast, being given by Mrs. Preston Dave, was to give Mrs. Nixon a chance to meet business and professional women. Mrs. Damour is chairman of New York’s Get Out the Vote campaign.

Furs And Pedal Pushers

Women in furs and women in pedal pushers turned out to greet the Nixons along the way. As the motorcade moved along from the airport to the Civic Center we spotted mothers with small children, women with silver hair, waitresses, career girls and students ranging all the way from grade school to college age. There was a profusion of Nixon Hats and Nixon badges and banners proclaiming wishes for a Nixon victory in the forthcoming presidential election. The men were there, too, carrying banners and wearing badges proclaiming “Pat for First Lady!”

The Nixons rested briefly in manager Bill Bolden’s office prior to his appearance before the audience at the Civic Center.

Then he shared the introduction and the ovations with Pat. They walked to the rostrum together, Pat smiling and carrying Cecilia’s roses. Vice President Nixon placed his arm around his wife and the rafters rocked with cheers. After a few moments, he escorted her back to a seat between Governor Underwood and nation al GOP committeeman Walter S. Hallanan on a stage well stocked with Republican notables.

Study In Pride

A peek through the curtains at Pat Nixon’s face while her husband spoke was a study in pride. She would nod vigorously when he made a good point. When the audience cheered, she also cheered vigorously and with a happy smile.

Equally interesting was a survey of the faces of women in the audience while Vice President Nixon spoke. Every age was represented. They listened intently and cheered with vigor. Two very junior lady boosters were taking turns with a pair of opera glasses in order to get a real close look at the Vice President.

When the Vice President finished speaking, he again led his wife to the rostrum where they stood together. Pat caught sight of the hundreds of balloons release from the rafters of the auditorium and pointed them out to the Vice President with an enthusiastic “Oh, Look.” And they stood together watching the colorful salute while the audience cheered with equal pleasure and waved banners in the air.


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