Michael T. Bucci – Learning from the History of Presidential Elections: Barry Goldwater versus Donald Trump

Those old enough to have lived through the Bay of Pigs and Cuban Missile Crisis; attended the movies Dr. Strangelove, On The Beach and Seven Days In May; and experienced November 22-25, 1963 “as it happened”, might remember Senator Barry Goldwater’s nomination for the presidency on the GOP ticket in 1964. They might also remember the most famous ad in political history that doomed Goldwater, “Daisy”.

In election year 1964, on the heels of the Bay of Pigs, Cuban Missile Crisis and the assassination of President Kennedy, Republican nominee Goldwater vied against Democratic incumbent Lyndon Baines Johnson.

In his acceptance speech for the nomination in what Smithsonian magazine dubbed “the ugliest of Republican conventions since 1912” where “entrenched moderates faced off against conservative insurgents,” Goldwater proclaimed, “Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice. And let me remind you also that moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue.”

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