History Final Exam

History 467
Dr.   John Stevens
May 21, 2010
Characterize John F. Kennedy’s presidency.   Was he a success or a failure?   If a success, how
was he a success? If a failure, how was he a failure?
John F. Kennedy officially declared to run for president of the United States on January 2, 1960.   Kennedy main opponent at the Los Angeles Convention was a senator from the state of Texas, Lyndon B. Johnson.   Kennedy was nominated on July 13, 1960, as the Democratic nominee candidate for president.   Kennedy knew Lyndon B. Johnson had strong ties to the South and needed someone with Johnson strength to win the South.   He asked Johnson to be his running mate for Vice President and Johnson agreed.   Kennedy was a great speaker, who was also handsome and charming.   He famously told the Greater Houston Ministerial Association, “I am not the catholic candidate for president.   I am the Democratic Party candidate for president who also happens to be catholic.   I do not speak for my church on public matters and the church does not speak for me.”  
One of the first televised presidential elections debates in history was in 1960, between Kennedy and Republican candidate and Vice President, Richard Nixon.   Nixon came ready to debate with all of his statistics, but he was nursing an injured leg and sporting “five o’clock shadow.”   His demeanor was tense and uncomfortable, while Kennedy appeared to be more relaxed and more confident.   They had a huge television audience and they declared Kennedy the winner of the debate.   The election between Kennedy and Nixon was one of the closest elections of the twentieth century.

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John F. Kennedy was sworn in on January, 20, 1961 as the 35th president of the United States.   In his inaugural address he spoke of the need for all Americans to be active citizens, one of his most famous quotes, “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your Country.”
Kennedy did...