Monday, November 7, 2011

Rearview Mirror: Will New York City point the way to Republican revival in the north? (June 21, 1965)

This article is essentially Joseph Alsop’s handicapping of Democratic vs. Republican prospects in various races across the nation.  He concludes that, “1966 can just possibly…turn out to be the year of Republican revival.”  Yet, this would only be true (in Alsop’s estimation) if the Republicans decisively turned their back on conservatism and put “moderate” candidates on the ticket. 

He took note of potential problems facing California Governor Pat Brown in the 1966 race.  According to Alsop even the “ultra-right wing” Ronald Reagan had a chance of beating Brown.  Alsop reported that pressure was being put on “moderate” senator Tom Kuchel to enter the governor’s race, assessing the CA Republican as, “as near to a sure thing to beat Brown as is possible in American politics.”

Though admitting Kuchel’s challenge would be to beat Reagan in the primary, Alsop speculated—on the basis of the “much less popular” Nixon’s primary victory over Joseph Shell—that the senator could win such a battle.  Alsop concludes by pontificating that, despite the deep interior desires he attributed to Kuchel, the senator must enter the 1966 primary if only to spare, “his party and his state being taken over by Reagan and his hot-eyed backers.”

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