John F. Kennedy

If Donald Trump Announces For President Soon, The Presidential Campaign Of 2024 Has Begun!

Presidential campaigns used to begin about a year before the election.

For instance, John F. Kennedy formally announced for President at the beginning of January 1960.

But with the development of primaries and some caucuses over time, it has become customary that once the midterm elections take place, that early in the third year of the Presidential term, we see candidates announcing for President.

But it is now indicated that Donald Trump may announce as early as this month, July 2022, four months before the Midterm Elections of 2022.

Supposedly, he is trying to divert attention from the January 6 House Committee, and the testimony of Cassidy Hutchinson, which makes clear that Trump was engaged in treason and sedition on January 6, 2021, when the US Capitol was attacked.

The potential exists for up to 25 Republicans becoming candidates for the White House.

And if Joe Biden chooses not to run, or even if he does, there is also the potential for an equal 25 Democrats to engage in the Presidential campaign, although the number proabably would be lower than the number of Republicans.

The Assassination Of Robert F. Kennedy 54 Years Ago Transformed The Future Negatively

On this day, June 5, 54 years ago, in the Presidential Election year of 1968, the nation and the world were transformed in a way that still reverberates.

New York Senator Robert F. Kennedy, the brother of the slain President John F. Kennedy, was assassinated in Los Angeles at the Ambassador Hotel shortly after winning the California Democratic Presidential primary.

RFK was at a point where it seemed likely, although not definitively, that he might win the Democratic Presidential nomination to run against Richard Nixon.

The events of the past half century, from Richard Nixon to Ronald Reagan to George H. W. Bush to Donald Trump, have been very divisive and degrading in so many ways, but they might have turned out differently if RFK had lived.

One realizes that no one can be certain about the effects of a potential RFK Presidency, but for millions of Americans then and since, the shocking events of 1968 leave a sense of lost opportunity that has affected the past half century in a negative fashion!

My book, “Assassinations, Threats, and the American Presidency: From Andrew Jackson to Barack Obama”, Rowman Littlefield Publishers, 2015, Paperback Edition 2017, covers the tragedy of the RFK Assassination in Chapter 10!

Joe Biden Arguably Has Faced The Worst Set Of Crises Other Than Lincoln And FDR!

Abraham Lincoln faced the breakup of the Union and the Civil War in his Presidency from 1861-1865.

Franklin D. Roosevelt faced the Great Depression, the growing threat of Fascism and Nazism, and World War II, from 1933-1945.

Other than Lincoln and FDR, the question arises which other Presidents faced crises on a level as dangerous and challenging as those two Presidents.

One could say George Washington facing the challenge of making the Constitution work, and the nation able to survive as a republic from 1789-1797.

One could say Harry Truman, facing the challenge of sudden elevation to the Presidency in a time when World War II was not yet resolved, and having to deal with the threat of the Soviet Union during the Cold War years from 1945-1953.

One could say John F. Kennedy, facing the threat of the Soviet Union, including the Berlin Crisis and the Cuban Missile Crisis, which dominated his time in the Presidency, from 1961-1963.

One could say George W. Bush, facing the challenge of the terrorist attack on September 11, 2001, and the dual wars fought during his Presidency in Afghanistan and Iraq, and the Great Recession which developed in his last year in office, from 2001-2009.

One could also say Barack Obama, facing the challenge of the Great Recession, the worst economic downturn since the 1930s, and the constant domestic resistance from the right wing Tea Party Movement, and the growing extremism of the Republican Party, from 2009-2017.

But one could also argue that Joe Biden, facing the COVID 19 Pandemic; the growing epidemic of mass murders by firearms by domestic terrorists and mentally disturbed people; and the threat of nuclear war in the midst of the greatest foreign policy crisis (The Russia-Ukraine War) since the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962, is the greatest challenge and crisis other than Lincoln and FDR!

Possibility Arises That Neither Joe Biden Nor Donald Trump May Run In 2024

With the complex issues faced by Joe Biden in the Presidency, and with the issue of cognitive alertness becoming more discussed regarding both him and Donald Trump, the possibility has arisen that neither Joe Biden nor Donald Trump may run for President in 2024.

So the possibility of a massive number of Democrats and Republicans announcing for the Presidency, once the midterm elections are done this November, is starting to be discussed.

There could be more than 20 members of both parties deciding to take a stab at the White House, and there is no way to project who might have an advantage on either side.

Ordinarily, one would think Vice President Kamala Harris and former Vice President Mike Pence would be in the forefront, but to believe either of them would have an edge is to go out on a limb, as it would seem others would have an advantage.

Of course, if Kamala Harris was to succeed to the Presidency during the term, she would have the edge for 2024 as Lyndon B. Johnson had in 1964 after succeeding John F. Kennedy suddenly in November 1963.

But unless that unfortunate situation were to occur, all bets are off for 2024 if neither Biden nor Trump run!

Joe Biden Speech In Poland One Of Great Presidential Speeches

President Joe Biden gave one of the great Presidential speeches of modern times yesterday in Warsaw, Poland, as he met with refugees from the Russia-Ukraine War.

He was passionate in defense of democracy, freedom, and in support of NATO as it deals with the Ukraine invasion.

His speech will be remembered much like John F. Kennedy’s Cuban Missile speech in October 1962, and Ronald Reagan’s Berlin Wall speech in June 1987, both challenging the Soviet Union, as now, Biden challenged its successor, the Russian Federation.

Joe Biden has demonstrated on this European trip a high level of energy and focus which belies his right wing critics who say he has dementia, a total fabrication.

Everyone should be proud of Joe Biden, who is proving just how Presidential he is, a stark contrast to his predecessor in the Oval Office!

Joe Biden Showing Vladimir Putin How Tough He Is, Not Easily Intimidated By Russian Threats!

The Ukraine Crisis is the most dangerous single moment in international affairs, since the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962!

Vladimir Putin seems poised to have Russian troops invade and occupy Ukraine, changing the map of Europe in a way that could lead to continental war and even nuclear war, if the situation gets out of hand.

Joe Biden is showing Putin and the Russian Federation how tough he is, and made clear he will not be easily, or at all, intimidated by Russian threats.

A Russian move westward would also endanger NATO allies, particularly Poland, Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia, and cannot be tolerated.

It does seem as if Putin is backing off at this writing, but still there are 130,000 troops at the Russian-Ukranian border, while Putin complains about 3,000 US soldiers being deployed to eastern Europe, specifically to Germany and Poland.

Putin is a bully, and the only way to deal with a bully is NOT to back down, so we are in a tenuous, scary period, but if it works out that Russia backs off on its threat to Ukraine, it will make Joe Biden look as good as John F. Kennedy standing off with Nikita Khrushchev sixty years ago!

First Year In Oval Office Under Most Presidencies Problematical, And Joe Biden Better Than Many!

One could argue that Joe Biden has accomplished a great deal in the first year, while often having disappointments and shortcomings.

Two major pieces of legislation were accomplished (The American Rescue Plan, and the Physical Infrastructure legislation), and the only reason why the Build Back Better bill and voting rights have failed to be accomplished is the opposition of two Democrats–Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema–and the reality of an equally divided Senate for only the third time in American history!

While inflation has become a major problem, the stock market dramatically rose, more jobs were created in the first year of a Presidency than any other administration, and the unemployment rate has dropped to a very low rate.

There are still the issues of the COVID 19 Pandemic, and the disaster of Afghanistan withdrawal, but the first issue was unpredictable as the worst health crisis in a century, and the second would have been the same result had Donald Trump stayed on as President, since he had made a deal with the Taliban without Afghanistan government involvement, to leave in May 2021, NOT as occurred in August 2021!

So some disappointing developments in the first year of a Presidency are not unique to the 46th President!

When one looks back at other Presidencies, it is actually quite common that the first year of a Presidency is a learning curve, and does not reflect on whether such Presidents will be, in the long run, successful, and also have the possibility of successful reelection.

The following Presidents had very successful first years—Theodore Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Lyndon B. Johnson, George H. W. Bush!

Three Presidents had what could be described as mixed records in the first year in office–Dwight D. Eisenhower, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama.

The following Presidencies in the 20th and 21st century were far from successes in their first year:

Harry Truman 1945
John F. Kennedy 1961
Richard Nixon 1969
Gerald Ford 1974-1975
Jimmy Carter 1977
Ronald Reagan 1981
Bill Clinton 1993
Donald Trump 2017

Among these eight Presidents, four—Truman, Nixon, Reagan, Clinton–won reelection.

So it is not time to say that Joe Biden will fail to succeed, as he already has in many respects, and it is not time to say he cannot win reelection fo a second term!

Effect Of John F. Kennedy Assassination Still Reverberates On America 58 Years Later!

This author and blogger was a sophomore in 1963, when John F. Kennedy was assassinated on November 22, 1963.

It was the most stunning event of my life until the September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.

The Kennedy assassination transformed American politics dramatically, both in good ways and bad ways.

It brought about the possibility of the greatest period of reform since Franklin D. Roosevelt and the New Deal, with Lyndon B. Johnson and the Great Society.

But it also brought on a devastating long term war in Vietnam, and the beginning of disillusionment with government at all levels.

Had Robert F. Kennedy survived and won the Presidential Election of 1968, instead of being assassinated after winning the California primary in June 1968, the potential for more great reform and change, and to avoid the Presidency of Richard Nixon, would have existed.

WIth RFK’s death, after the earlier tragedy of JFK, America was put into a permanent decline in hope and optimism for the next forty years, as even the election of Jimmy Carter in 1976 and Bill Clinton in 1992 did not revive the hopes of the Kennedy legacy.

Instead, we had Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush cause great regression in so many ways, as Richard Nixon had done earlier.

Barack Obama was a bright light, but faced great opposition, and the horrors of Donald Trump as his succession!

Joe Biden, who has a bust of RFK behind him on the left in all photos when he is sitting at his desk, is trying to revive the Kennedy legacy of hope and promise, and has made a good start.

But it is clear the two Kennedy assassinations in the early and late 1960s have left a permanent scar on the nation!

Tragic First Year Foreign Policy Nothing New In American Presidency!

The tragic events in Afghanistan continue a tradition that in most Presidencies, first year, there are events which affect the historic role of Presidents in American history.

We have the Bay of Pigs Fiasco (Cuba) in 1961 under President John F. Kennedy.

We have the conquest of South Vietnam by North Vietnam, and the sudden tragic exit from the embassy in Saigon in 1975 under President Gerald Ford.

We have the attack on the World Trade Center, and the tragic exit from terrorism in Somalia in 1993 under President Bill Clinton.

We have the September 11, 2001 Al Qaeda attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon under President George W. Bush.

And now we have the horrifying situation in Kabul, Afghanistan going on under President Joe Biden, similar in many ways to the exit from Vietnam in 1975.

Barack Obama Turns 60, And Is Rated In Top Ten Of Presidents By C SPAN Historians’ Survey!

Today is the 60th birthday of President Barack Obama, and this highly honored and successful President in many ways is able to celebrate his historical reputation.

Obama is the 5th youngest President at inauguration at age 47, with only Theodore Roosevelt (42), John F. Kennedy (43), Bill Clinton (46), and Ulysses S. Grant (46) younger than Obama was at the time of inauguration.

The C Span Historians’ Survey of 2021 rates Obama overall as Number 10, after having been Number 12 in the C Span Historians’ Survey of 2017!