Truman and Eisenhower Make Final Statements on “master Race” Issue
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Truman and Eisenhower Make Final Statements on “master Race” Issue

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President Truman and Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower, Republican Presidential candidate, came out last night with what seemed to be their final statements on the “master race” controversy raised by Mr. Truman in a message last Friday to the Jewish Welfare Board charging Gen. Eisenhower with condoning the “anti-Semitic and anti-Catholic” policies of the McCarran Act-General Eisenhower, in speeches on that day, called for a revision of the McCarran Immigration Act.

Replying directly to President Truman’s charge that he was allied with anti-Semitic forces, Gen. Eisenhower told a gathering at Providence, Rhode Island, last night that the Democrats had “overstepped themselves” by making that allegation. “I leave the answers to those to my good friends Cardinal Spellman, Rabbi Abba Hillel Silver and Bernard Baruch,” he said. “Already, they have established those stories for the falsehood that they are.”

President Truman in a statement issued last night at the White House, said that the Republicans were “deliberately distorting” his remarks about Gen. Eisenhower in order to create the impression that he had accused the general of being anti-Jewish and anti-Catholic. “I said no such thing and indeed, meant no such thing,” said the President, “and any fair person who reads what in fact I did say must be as shocked as I am at the absurdities in the press of the last few days.”


The President emphasized that he knew that Gen. Eisenhower was neither anti-Jewish nor anti-Catholic, but asked why he had given his endorsement to Republican Senators who voted for the McCarran immigration bill and who later voted to override his veto of the bill. The full text of his statement follows:

“Certain Republican leaders have been deliberately distorting my statement of Oct. 17 concerning the position of the Republican party and the position of most of its representatives in Congress on our immigration laws. Perhaps what is needed now is a calm clarification of the situation. Now, what does the record show what precisely did I say last Friday? I repeat the exact words I used:

” ‘Among those who voted for the McCarran bill and to override my veto, was the Republican candidate for Vice-President. Among the other Republicans were Sens-Jenner and McCarthy, together with ex-Sen. Revercomb, the champion of the anti-Catholic, anti-Jewish provisions of the original DP bill. These men have been embraced by the candidate for President.

” ‘The Republican candidate for the Presidency cannot escape responsibility for his endorsements. He has had an attack of moral blindness, for today he is willing to accept the very practices that identified the so-called “master race” although he took a leading part in liberating Europe from their domination.’

“I do not withdraw a word of that statement. But the Republicans and a few others whom they were able to persuade to help them, chose to distort the simple meaning of my words as a charge that the Republican Presidential candidate is anti-Catholic and anti-Jewish. I said no such thing, and indeed, meant no such thing, and any fair person who reads what in fact I did say, must be as shocked as I am by the absurdities in the press of the last few days.

“Certainly, people remember that I have made clear that Sen. McCarran, the principal sponsor of discriminatory immigration legislation, ‘is not my kind of Democrat.’ Contrast that with the Republican candidate’s willing and hearty endorsement of Sens. Jenner, McCarthy and Revercomb. The first two, along with Sen. Nixon and most Republicans voted to override my veto of the McCarran bill, which is recognized everywhere as discriminatory.

“Sen. Revercomb, it will not be forgotten, championed the notorious anti-Catholic and anti-Jewish provisions of the original displaced persons bill. This is what I said, and these are the facts which nobody has yet denied. What all of this furor adds up to is that the Republicans in their eagerness to get votes are trying to find in my statement of fact something that is not there. I cannot tolerate this.

“If the Republican candidate sees fit to indorse such well-known supporters of discriminatory legislation, if he is willing to campaign on a platform that is utterly silent on the subject of amending that legislation, and if he wants people to take seriously his belated acknowledgment, just the other day, that the McCarran Act needs radical amendments, he must then explain to the public whether he accepts the practices of the men he supports or whether, by some political disclaimer, he disassociates himself from their practices.

“The practices of those Senators–the practices of the big lie and of character assassination–are identified with the so-called ‘master race’ theory and no amount of distortion can change that fact. I know that the Republican candidate for President is neither anti-Jewish nor anti-Catholic, but why does he give his endorsement to such men? That is what I condemned last Friday and this is what I condemn today.”


Earlier in the day, Senator Wayne Morse, Republican of Gregon who announced his support of the Democratic national ticket on Saturday, sent a telegram to Mr. Baruch, expressing disappointment at his “pro-Eisenhower” statement. “I do not see how you can ignore the fact that anti-Semitic forces as well as other intolerant groups who stand for discrimination against minorities are entrenched in the reactionary wing of the Republican party and are giving their vigorous support to Eisenhower,” the Senator said.

Meanwhile, Senator Pat McCarran denounced as “a shameful display of demagoguery” the recent attacks on the immigration and nationality act bearing his name. Mr. McCarran said both General Eisenhower and Governor Stevenson had been “misled” about immigration quotas under the immigration law. He said it used the same### origins quota system that had been the basic policy of this country since 1924.

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