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Ferraro, a Major Contender for the Democratic Party’s Vice Presidential Candidacy, Says Democrats Ne

April 24, 1984
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

U.S. Congresswoman Geraldine Ferraro, chairwoman of the Democratic Party’s platform committee and a major contender for the party’s Vice Presidential candidacy, said that the Democrats will need the support of its traditional coalition, which includes Blacks and Jews — as well as all others who care about social issues — in order to defeat President Reagan in November.

Addressing a B’nai B’rith International public affairs forum, Ferraro commented on the disagreement between Jews and Blacks, saying that candidate Jesse Jackson is well aware of the Democrats’ long-standing support of Israel and their opposition to the creation of a Palestinian state and that Jackson will not push his opposing views on the party during the August convention.

Ferraro said that Jackson has had a positive effect on the Presidential campaign by drawing widespread attention to both social issues and the primary elections and by getting thousands of Blacks to register to vote. “I think his fight with the party will be over the double primary system in the south,” she said.

The Queens, N.Y. legislator indicated that she doubted that Jackson would be the Democratic candidate and hoped that he would focus his efforts after the convention on getting out the Black vote in November. “If they don’t (vote), then I think he will be finished politically in the Democratic Party,” she stated.

She added that the same can be said for women. “If women don’t get out and vote, they (the Democratic and Republican Parties) will stop wooing us and we will have had it,” she declared.


Ferraro told the B’nai B’rith audience that she believes the great issues of the campaign are foreign policy, arms control, and the huge budget deficit. “President Reagan is so bad on these issues that it’s good for the Democrats,” she said. But, she added, a big problem for the Democrats is that while the President does not seem to understand the issues, neither does the general public — “and it doesn’t seem to bother the public.”

Ferraro explained that both Reagan and the public seem to have very short memories when it comes to what the President does and says. She gave as an example the terrorist attack on American Marines in Lebanon. Reagan at first took full responsibility but a few months later placed the blame on Congress. “I don’t know how we will get around it,” she said.

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