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Political Career Of Richard Nixon Essay

3928 words - 16 pages

The Political Career of Richard Nixon1. Nixon's Beginning in Politics2. Emergence in National PoliticsA. The Hiss CaseB. Nixon's Political ObituaryC. Resurgence as a presidential candidate3. The 37th PresidentA. Nixon's Appointment'sB. Foreign Policy1. Nixon's plans for Europe2. VietnamC. Domestic Policy4. Nixon's Second AdministrationA. ReelectionB. WatergateA few weeks after the United States entered World War II a young man named Richard Nixon went to Washington, D.C. In January 1942 he took a job with the Office of Price Administration. Two months later he applied for a Navy commission, and in September 1942 he was commissioned a lieutenant, junior grade. During much of the war he served ...view middle of the document...

The Nixons' daughter Patricia (called Tricia) was born during the campaign, on February 21, 1946. Their second daughter, Julie, was born July 5, 1948.As a freshman congressman, Nixon was assigned to the Un-American Activities Committee. It was in this capacity that in August 1948 he heard the testimony of Whittaker Chambers, a self-confessed former Communist espionage agent. Chambers named Alger Hiss, a foreign policy advisor during the Roosevelt years, as an accomplice while in government service. Hiss, a former State Department aide, asked for and obtained a hearing before the committee. He made a favorable impression, and the case would then have been dropped had not Nixon urged investigation into Hiss's testimony on his relationship with Chambers. The committee let Nixon pursue the case behind closed doors. He brought Chambers and Hiss face to face. Chambers produced evidence proving that Hiss had passed State Department secrets to him. Among the exhibits were rolls of microfilm which Chambers had hidden in a pumpkin on his farm near Westminster, Md., as a precaution against theft. On December 15, 1948, a New York federal grand jury indicted Hiss for perjury. After two trials he was convicted, on Jan. 21, 1950, and sentenced to five years in prison. The Hiss case made Nixon nationally famous. While the case was still in the courts, Nixon decided to run for the Senate. In his senatorial campaign he attacked the Harry S. Truman Administration and his opponent, Helen Gahagan Douglas, for being 'soft' toward the Communists.Nixon won the election, held on Nov. 7, 1950, by 680,000 votes, and at 38 he became the youngest member of the Senate. His Senate career was uneventful, and he was able to concentrate all his efforts on the upcoming 1952 presidential election. The 'Secret Fund' Nixon did his work well. He hammered hard at three main issues--the war in Korea, Communism in government, and the high cost of the Democratic party's programs. At their 1952 national convention the Republicans chose him as Eisenhower's running mate, to balance the ticket with a West coast conservative.Only a few days after the young senator's triumph his political career seemed doomed. The New York Post printed a story headed 'Secret Rich Men's Trust Fund Keeps Nixon in Style Far Beyond His Salary.' The public was shocked. The Republicans were panic-stricken. Prominent members of the party urged Eisenhower to dump Nixon before it was too late.There was really nothing secret about the fund. Nixon was a man of limited means, and when he won his Senate seat a group of businessmen had publicly solicited funds to enable him to keep in touch with the voters in his home state while he served in the Senate. Nixon took his case directly to the people in a nationwide television hookup. He invited investigation of his finances and explained that no donor had asked for or received any favors. The best-remembered part of his speech was his admission that an admirer had once sent...

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