Monday, February 18, 2013

How Harold Ickes Spent February 18, 1936

Harold Ickes, diarist-general of the Roosevelt administration, learns about Father Coughlin:
Tuesday: February 18, 1936:  I had a session with the President on Monday. He asked whether I had heard Father Coughlin talk on the radio Sunday afternoon and I told him that I had never heard of him.  He said he was worth listening to.  On Sunday afternoon Coughlin made a violent attack on Congressman O'Connor, chairman of the Rules Committee directly, and on President Roosevelt also, indirectly.  He charged that O'Connor was Roosevelt's man and that Roosevelt could either cause him to resign or have him removed as chairman of the Rules Committee.  He demanded such action unless O'Connor should report out a rule which would bring up the Frazier-Lemcke Farm Mortgage Bill. From what the President quoted to me,Father Coughlin must have made a very violent attack.  It sounded outrageous to me--arrogant and blustering and altogether presuming.  In the Monday morning papers Congressman O'Connor invited Coughlin to come to Washington and give him the pleasure of kicking him all the way from the Capitol to the White House.
"Father Coughlin" would be Charles Coughlin of Royal Oak, MI, scamp of a radio host, a Rush Limbaugh wannabee whom Roosevelt came to see as a serious challenge to his presidency.   "O'Connor" would be Rep. John J. O'Connor of the New York 16th, one of the Democrats Roosevelt tried (unsuccessfully) to unseat in 1938,  "Frazier Lemcke" would be the farm relief act invalidated by the Supreme Court in Louisville Joint Stock Co. v. Radford, 295 U.S. 555, then validatebd in only slightly cosmeticized form in Wright v. Vinton Branch, 300 U.S. 440 (1937).

So they tell me, anyway,.  I was busy at the Elliot Hospital in Manchester, NH.  Being born.  Or so they tell me.

1 comment:

mike shupp said...

Happy birthday!

May you hit 920!