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May 24, 1963 - Image 22

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1963-05-24

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'63 Martyr and '64 Politics ' U' Sc ience ulings R


-AP Wirephoto
PINNED DOWN-The racial conflict which led to the dispatching
of federal troops and the visit of President John F. Kennedy to
Alabama recently is vividly demonstrated as a police officer sits
astride a Negro demonstrator in Birmingham.'
utn ds To Control
Con 'ress Commitees

Associated Press Newsfeatures Writer
WASHINGTON- - Congression-
ally speaking, the South has risen
again-and is in firm control.
President John F. Kennedy has
said that he must have a Demo-
cratic 'ongress if his programs are
to thrive. What he isn't saying is
that he has a Democratic Congress
right now, and that he finds it a
little less than wonderful.
For one thing, many conserva-
tive Democrats line up with Re-
publcans to defeat him on key
votes. For another, some commit-
tee chairmen who could be respon-
sible for nudging Kennedy's pro-
gram along are doing their best to
block it,
It is here that the South shines.
List Committees
Let's pick the top eight Senate
committees (the choice has to be
arbitrary) and see who are their
Agriculture-Sen. Allen J. Ellen-
dei (D-La).
Appropriations--Sen. Carl Hay-
den (D-Ark).
Armed Services-Sen. Richard
B Russell (D-Ga).
Banking-Sen. A. Willis Robert-
son (D-Va).
Finance-Sen. Harry F. Byrd
(D-Va). .
Foreign Relations-Sen. J. W,
Fulbright (D-Ark).
Judiciary-Sen, James 0. East-
land (D-Miss).
Labor--Sen. Lister Hill (D-Ala).
The South's score: seven chair-
men out of eight committees.
House Chairmen
Numerically. at ' st, House com-
mittee chairmen don't have such a
pronounced southern accent.
Here are eight of the most pow-
Agriculture - Rep. Harold D.
Cooley (D-NC).
Appropriations-Rep. Clarence
Cannon (D-Mo).
Armed Services-Rep. Carl Vin-
son (D-Ga).
Banking - Rep. Brent Spence

Education and Labor - Rep.
Adam C. Powell (D-NY).
Judiciary-Rep. Emanuel Celler
Rules-Rep. Howard W. Smith
Ways and Means-Rep. Wilbur
Mills (D-Ark).,
Two of these spots are partic-
ularly vital, and both are held by
Ways and Means, presided over
by that unspectacular but knowl-
edgeable Arkansas lawyer, Wilbur
Mills, is the most )otent commit-
tee of all. It originates money bills,
and money is what makes a gov-
ernment go 'round.
Rules, conducted by that court-
ly, canny Virginia gentleman,
Howard Smith, plays a major role
in deciding what bills are to reach
the floor and und--r what condi-
Like so many other aspects of
Congress, a chairman's power is
chiefly negative. He may not be
a driving force himself, but by
skillful heel-dragging he may
block other forces from driving.
Seniority System
The South gets its great advan-
tage because Congress - much
more determinedly than a labor
union-clings to the seniority sys-
tem. The longer a senator or con-
gressman hangs around, the more
certain he is of heading an im-
portant committee.
Since the South s predominant-
ly one party, the southerner is
often home free if he can win his
Democratic primary. And back he
comes to Washington, to pile up
more seniority.
Now, a word of caution: many
a southern chairman supports
John F. Kennedy on most issues.
Others may support him one day
-and desert him the next.
As a former congressman, Ken-
nedy knows it doesn't matter
whether he likes this or not. Sen-
iority is here to stay, and Congress
doesn't fret too much over what a
president wants.

Associated Press News Analyst
WASHINGTON-President John
F. Kennedy was described recently
as knowing that in Gov. George
Wallace of Alabama he is dealing
with a man who hopes to take the
South away from him in 1964.
A close associate said the Presi-
dent is aware that Wallace hopes
to portray himself as a martyr to
Southern segregationists by a dra-
matic stand against integration at
the University of Alabama June
This could come either at the
Huntsville branch or on the Tus-
caloosa campus. In either setting,
those who know him well say they
expect the governor to carry out
his repeated pledge personally to
block the doorway against admis-
sion of a Negro student.
Fit Purpose
It apparently would fit the gov-
ernor's political purpose if he
were arrested by United States
marshals. But the assumption is
that news pictures showing United
States officials jostling him aside
would do about as well.
According to one of those pres-
ent, Kennedy got the governor's
personal pledge in a brief helicop-
ter confrontation last Saturday
that local and state and civilian
authorities would maintain law
and order in Birmingham.
Saying that nothing could please
him more, the President replied
that he would not use federal
troops dispatched to military res-
ervations in Alabama unless there
were fresh and uncontrolled racial
Use Force
But the President made it plain
he would use federal force if neces-
sary to maintain the rights to
Negroes to peaceable assembly and
petition. He specifically pointed to
the University of Alabama at Wed-
nesday's news conference.
But national Democratic offi-
cials are convinced this action will
be the forerunner of an effort
by the governor to keep Kennedy's
name off the 1964 party ballot
in Alabama-and as many other
Southern states as will go along
with the idea.
In Alabama the Democratic
State Committee, which the gov-
ernnor controls, could designate a
slate of electors pledged to Wal-
lace, as officially uninstructed, to
carry the party emblem on the
November ballot. Kennedy electors
presumably could be put on the
ballot too, without the party resig-
Southern Plans
In conferences he has held with
some southern senators, Wallace
has outlined plans to run for
president. He has expressed the
belief that he could sweep the
South and throw a close election
into the House of Representatives.
Sen. Strom Thurmond (D-SC)
then South Carolina governor,
tried this on a state's rights ticket
in 1948. But he got only 39 elec-
toral votes when Harry S Truman
was elected by 303 to Thomas E.
Dewey's 189.
Most politicians think that the
majority of Southern Democratic
members of the House would sup-
port Kennedy in any House show-
down with a Republican.
Southern Electors
But the possibility was not dis-
missed that if a substantial num-
ber of uninstructed Southern elec-
tors were assembled they might
throw their support to a Republi-
can presidential candidate who
ran within hailing distance of
Kennedy-if they could change
the outcome.
However, Kennedy advisors, en-
couraged by the reception the
President received during last
weekend's Southern swing, see the
South relatively safe in Kennedy's
camp. The favorable reaction
seems to indicate little bitter re-
action to Kennedy's integration
The welcome wasn't exactly

frenzied at Nashville, Muscle
Shoals and Huntsville, Ala. But
it was friendly and bounteous.
"Fine Candidate"
Tennessee Gov. Frank G. Cle-
ment sized things up: "I think
Kennedy will make a fine candi-
date in 1964, and I have every
reason to believe Tennessee will
support him."~
Nashville alone turned out a
crowd the police chief estimated at
around 180,000.
And in Alabama Kennedy put
in an appearance in a state to
which he sent federal troops on
a standby basis less than a week
before because of rioting and vio-
lence in Birmingham.
Again, the President was wel-
comed warmly by the people.
Crowds cheered and applauded
abundantly when Kennedy spoke
of the Tennessee Valley Authority
at Muscle Shoals and of the space
program at Huntsville, the site of
a great missile-space center.
Perhaps the subjects had some-
thing to do with the reaction since
TVA is an important part of the
life of northern Alabama and
Huntsville is wrapped up in the
space program.

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