Monday, June 04, 2018

The LuLac Edition #3797, June 4th, 2018


One of the most significant political contests of the 1968 Democratic Presidential race was the California primary. The primary had done in Nelson Rockefeller in 1964 and elevated Barry Goldwater-to the top spot on the GOP side. This year, in a winner take all match up, Senator Robert Kennedy, smarting from the first defeat ever of the Kennedy clan in Oregon, was pitted against Senator Gene McCarthy who had been in the race since November 30th of 1967. McCarthy's strong showing in New Hampshire made Kennedy "reassess his position" and he entered the race in March. After President Johnson's withdrawal, Hubert Humphrey entered the race on April 30th past the filing deadline for any primary.
It was thought this contest would determine who would be the leader of the anti war, or pro peace followers, McCarthy or Kennedy. There are many who feel that if Kennedy had won and not be killed he might have won the nomination. I think the long arm of the Democratic establishment might have prevented that but you just never know.
A little background on the day and the players:
The California primary was seen as crucial to both Kennedy and McCarthy. McCarthy stumped the state's many colleges and universities, where he was treated as a hero for being the first presidential candidate to oppose the war. Kennedy campaigned in the ghettos and barrios of the state's larger cities, where he was mobbed by enthusiastic supporters. Kennedy and McCarthy engaged in a television debate a few days before the election; it was generally considered a draw. Here is that debate:

On June 4, Kennedy defeated McCarthy in California, 46% to 42%, and also won the South Dakota primary held the same day. McCarthy refused to withdraw from the presidential race and made it clear that he would contest Kennedy in the upcoming New York primary, where McCarthy had much support from antiwar activists in New York City.
Many of the players who were involved in the California primary were from the Entertainment industry. On May 21, 1968, the Kennedy campaign in California unveiled its “Hollywood for Kennedy” committee. According to Joseph Palermo’s book, In His Own Right, this committee was chaired by singer Andy Williams, and included, among others: Lauren Bacall, Otto Preminger, Mahalia Jackson, Sidney Portier, Janet Leigh, Shelley Winters, Marlene Dietrich, Rita Hayworth, Kim Novak, Trini Lopez, Milton Berle, Henry Mancini, Elizabeth Montgomery, and Marlo Thomas.  Kennedy, like his brother before,  could count on well-known actors and entertainers who shared his views on the war and on race relations. The only major defector was Frank Sinatra who threw his support to Hubert Humphrey.
Andy Williams, Robert Kennedy, Perry Como, Ted Kennedy, Eddie Fisher at a 1968 fundraising telethon, Lisner Auditorium, G.W. University, Wash., D.C. (Photo, GW University)
Kennedy’s enlistment of the Hollywood elite built on his family ties before, tells the cultural  tale of a  unique tactical alliance developed between California’s exorbitantly wealthy celebrity class, and some of the poorest, most dispossessed people of the state. Kennedy’s enlistment of the Hollywood elite built on his family ties to the entertainment industry dating back to the 1920s, and helped craft the image that he might restore to the White House some of the glamour of Camelot.” Michael Harrington, author of The Other America, also campaigned for Kennedy in California, as did John Fell Stevenson, the son of Adlai Stevenson. The Kennedy campaign also organized two star-studded “Kennedy for President” galas, one at the Los Angeles Sports Arena on May 24, the other at the San Francisco Civic Auditorium on June 1st. These were nationally-televised events that gave Kennedy added exposure.
On June 4, the day of the California primary, after a grueling campaign of some 85 days to that point, Kennedy rested with his wife Ethel and six of their children at the Malibu, California home of movie director and friend, John Frankenheimer. Late in the day, Frankenheimer brought Kennedy to the campaign’s election night headquarters at the Ambassador Hotel. In a suite there, Kennedy awaited the results in the company of friends and supporters, among them, Andy Williams, Shirley MacLaine, Rafer Johnson, and Milton Berle.
Kennedy had defeated McCarthy in California, 46 percent to 42 percent. Kennedy’s team believed that by winning California, he would knock McCarthy out of the race and set up a one-on-one contest against Hubert Humphrey at the national convention that August. Kennedy had also planned to woo Humphrey delegates before the convention. Still, Kennedy was in second place overall after the California primary, with 393 delegates compared to Humphrey’s 561. McCarthy then held 258 delegates. McCarthy was aiming for the New York primary, where he had support from antiwar activists in New York City. On the morning of June 5th, Kennedy gave this interview to ABC.

Historians and journalists have disagreed about Kennedy’s chances for the nomination had he not been assassinated. Michael Beschloss believes it unlikely that Kennedy could have secured the nomination since most of the delegates were then uncommitted and yet to be chosen at the Democratic convention. Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr. and author Jules Witcover have argued that Kennedy’s broad appeal and charisma would have given him the nomination at the convention. And still others add that Kennedy’s experience in his brother’s presidential campaign, plus a potential alliance with Chicago mayor Richard Daley at the Democratic Convention, might have helped him secure the nomination.   Less than an hour after this interview, it would all be a moo point.
(LuLac, Wikipedia, Pop Culture Dig)


At 1:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jay Sekulow, one of the lawyers for The Orange One, now has admitted that he lied to the public about whether his client wrote the lying cover-up statement for Donnie Jr. about the June meeting in Trump Tower.

Birds of a feather, apparently.


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