Strom Thurmond Of South Carolina

75th Anniversary Of Truman’s Executive Orders 9980 And 9981, Desegregating The Federal Work Force And The US Military!

One of the most courageous and principled actions of any President occurred 75 years ago today, when President Harry Truman issued Executive Orders 9980 and 9981, ordering desegregation of all US government employment and the US Military Forces.

Harry Truman came from a Confederate heritage background, and had a record of using nasty terms about African Americans in his earlier years, but as President, he took the courageous action to move forward on the important issue of human rights.

It alienated many Southerners, and the Dixiecrats (States Rights) Party challenged Truman in the Presidential Election Of 1948, with South Carolina Governor Strom Thurmond as their Presidential candidate, winning four states and 39 electoral votes.

This was the second best third party total up to that point in American history, behind Theodore Roosevelt and the Progressive (Bull Moose) party of 1912, which won six states and 88 electoral votes.

Later, George Wallace won five states and 46 electoral votes as the American Independent party nominee in 1968.

Truman’s decision to take action promoted the beginning of the Civil Rights Movement, aided within six years by the Warren Court decision in Brown V Board of Education (1954), and then by courageous actions by Dwight D. Eisenhower, John F. Kennedy, and Lyndon B. Johnson over the next 15 years!

In June And September, We Are About To Have 90 Year Old Senators For Only 5th And 6th Time In American History!

In the next four months, we are about to have 90 year old Senators in office for only the 5th and 6th time in American history!

Attention is being brought to this reality because California Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein, who will be 90 on June 22, has returned to Washington DC after three months away, recuperating from Shingles. But even before this recent bout with illness, it was clear to many observers that Feinstein was in mental decline since 2019, a year after she ran for another six year term at age 85.

Iowa Republican Senator Chuck Grassley, who will be 90 on September 17, just was elected to another six year term in 2022 at the age of 89. It must be said that Grassley seems in fine physical and mental shape despite his age, but the concept that if he finishes the term in early January 2029 that he will be past 95 years of age, is mind boggling! If he finishes his term, he will be the second oldest Senator in American History!

Only four US Senators have been in office in their 90s, including

Republican Senator Strom Thurmond of South Carolina who reached 100 years of age in office, retired, and died a half year later.

Democratic Senator Theodore F. Green of Rhode Island reached 93 years of age in office, retired, and lived to age 98.

Democratic Senator Robert Byrd of West Virginia reached 92 and a half years of age, dying in office.

Democratic Senator Carl Hayden of Arizona left office past the age of 91 and died three years later at age 94.

The Upcoming California Senate Race 2024

In 2024, California will have a US Senate race as Dianne Feinstein will be retiring, even though she refuses to address the issue until the Spring.

There is no possible way that Feinstein, who will be 90 in June, will run again, as there are many signs that she is in early stages dementia, and should not have run in 2018 at age 85. She seems often to be unaware of events around her and to have major memory problems regarding what she has been told by her staff or others. It is simply pride and stubbornness that has prevented her from resigning in dignity.

The refusal of older members of Congress to retire when in their 80s is a sign of ego winning out over reality, as for instance, Iowa Republican Senator Chuck Grassley winning reelection at age 89 in November 2022. Yes, Grassley is still able to do pushups and other exercises, and for now, seems fit mentally, but the idea of a Senator being in office until past age 95 is ludicrous, and if he survives until the end of 2028, he will be the oldest ever Senator except for South Carolina Republican Senator Strom Thurmond, who was clearly in dementia, but remained in his Senate seat, being guided in every way by his staff, until past age 100!

California Governor Gavin Newsom has indicated that if a vacancy was to occur by Feinstein’s leaving earlier, that he would appoint an African American woman as her replacement, with the likely choice being California Congresswoman Barbara Lee, who has been in the House of Representatives since 1998, and will be 77 this summer.

That is fine for the short term, but the idea that Lee plans to run for the open seat in 2024 when she would be past 78, and be serving until past 84, is NOT a good idea. She has said she would only serve one term, but who can say that would be fulfilled, as ego could come in the way, and she could decide to run again for a second term until age 90!

Barbara Lee has had an admirable record in the House of Representatives, but she should NOT run for a full term, and instead continue her service in the lower house, unless she is appointed, and then agrees NOT to run for the full term!

Instead, California has a choice of three Congressional members who have served well–Adam Schiff, Katie Porter, and Ro Khanna, all decades younger, and capable of gaining seniority and serving, in theory, for an extended period of years!