Manual The Arkansas Rockefeller (Southern Biography Series)

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Rockefeller was overwhelmed. Unable to either give donations without investigating the worthiness of the cause or simply ignore the thousands of letters flooding his office, he felt trapped by his own commitment to do good. He needed a vision for his giving. The idea was not new.

Rockefeller, John D.

Rockefeller couldn't agree more with his fellow millionaire. Senior looked for an advisor to help him through his dilemma. He found one in Frederick Gates, a young Baptist minister with a sharp mind and a colorful personality. Gates was quick to understand Senior's predicament: "Your fortune is rolling up, rolling up like an avalanche! You must distribute it faster than it grows! If you do not, it will crush you and your children and your children's children.

An avid reader of books of medicine, economics, history, and sociology, Gates believed that the wealthy could do a lot more than have a library wing named after them or mitigate poverty and other social ills. The pro-segregation bills passed and foreshadowed the conflict over school desegregation in the state that culminated in the Little Rock school crisis in September As far as industrial progress was concerned, the school crisis was an unmitigated disaster. Rockefeller had sought to reason with Faubus not to call out the National Guard, without success.

When, in , Rockefeller met the residency requirements to run for office, he announced that he was thinking of running for governor as either a Republican or as an independent. Eventually, bowing to popular opinion, he begrudgingly did so. But the political threat of Rockefeller only grew. In fact, a lot of them were worried. Paul Van Dalsem of Perry County was chief among the worriers. The oldest member of the House and a close Faubus ally, in for the first time the Republicans had the temerity to run an opponent against him in the general election.

Nelson Aldrich Rockefeller, 41st Vice President (1974-1977)

Rockefeller think he is that he can get you opposition and take credit for everything? Imagine a Republican holding office in Arkansas! Rockefeller, come right on over. Maybe the Arkansas Democrats will succeed, and Mr. Rockefeller will be out of a job. He might then be open to an offer from West Virginia. Many in Arkansas were also sympathetic.

Rockefeller should delight every intelligent citizen of our state. Once again, Faubus and his allies in the Arkansas General Assembly were forced to back down.

Quick Facts

But the writing was on the wall: Faubus continued to put pressure on Rockefeller to resign. General state revenues have increased by better than 50 percent. In the year over the increase was at a rate of 8 percent and led the nation. In excess of new plants have moved to the State, and on all sides existing industry is expanding. Rockefeller ran as a Republican against Faubus in the November gubernatorial election but lost against a firmly entrenched Democratic machine. Two years later, after Faubus bowed out, Rockefeller ran against and beat Democratic candidate Jim Johnson.

Rockefeller became the first Arkansas Republican governor in 92 years. In Johnson tried to convince Rockefeller to run for president. The governor responded that he had promised his wife not to run again, but Johnson insisted, "Let me talk to Happy," and took her off in the White House to apply some of his famed personal persuasion. When Humphrey became the Democratic nominee, he invited Rockefeller to run as his vice president. It was too late. Despite an inability to hide his personal disdain for Richard Nixon, Rockefeller campaigned for Nixon in both and He admired Nixon's tough stands in Vietnam and Cambodia—shaped by National Security Adviser Henry Kissinger, who originally had served as Rockefeller's foreign policy adviser.

Meanwhile, Rockefeller's own politics were shifting toward the right, partly to make peace with conservative Republicans who had vilified him, and partly in response to the so-called "conservative backlash" of the late s. Rockefeller's tough "law and order" stand during the Attica prison riots in further diminished his liberal image. The governor refused demands of rioting prisoners at the state penitentiary that he negotiate with them in person and instead sent in state troops, resulting in the deaths of many inmates and their captives.

At the Republican convention in , Rockefeller nominated Nixon. After the election, as Nixon sank into the Watergate scandal, Rockefeller steadfastly resisted attacking him while he was down. When Vice President Spiro Agnew resigned in October , Rockefeller let it be known that he would not turn down a vice-presidential nomination, as he had done in and But Nixon, believing that choosing Rockefeller would offend Republican conservatives, instead selected the more centrist Gerald Ford. Happy Rockefeller said she never expected Nixon to pick her husband because "weakness never turns to strength.

Rockefeller then devoted his attention to the newly created Commission on Critical Choices for America, which many expected he would use as a vehicle to run for the presidency in Rockefeller was firmly convinced that Nixon would never resign, but events proved him wrong. In August , when Gerald Ford assumed the presidency and prepared to appoint his own vice president, Rockefeller and George Bush headed his list of candidates. Bush, a former Texas congressman and chairman of the Republican National Committee, was the safer, more comfortable choice.

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Weighing the assets and deficits, Ford acknowledged that Rockefeller was still anathema to many conservatives. Still, the new president believed that the New Yorker was well qualified to be president, would add executive expertise to the administration, and would broaden the ticket's electoral appeal if they ran in Also, by selecting as strong a man as Rockefeller, Ford would demonstrate his own self-confidence as president. Robert Hartmann, one of Ford's closest aides, asked Rockefeller why he had accepted the vice-presidency now after turning it down before.

Although fully aware of the limitations of his office, and recognizing that he was "just not built for standby equipment," Rockefeller had accepted because Ford promised to make him a "partner" in his presidency. The media applauded the selection. After berating Nixon for picking Ford, reporters praised Ford's appointment of "a man of national stature.

Ford basked in his accomplishment.

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In November, when reporters asked him what he considered the top achievements of his first hundred days as president, Ford replied: "Number one, nominating Nelson Rockefeller. Yet nomination was only half the process, for the Twenty-fifth Amendment to the Constitution required confirmation by both houses of Congress.

Democrats and some conservative Republicans relished the prospect of opening the books on the private finances of one of the nation's wealthiest families. Even President Ford expressed fascination with the details as they emerged. But the confirmation hearings revealed that Rockefeller had been making personal contributions to government officials, including Henry Kissinger and the administrators of New York's supposedly independent commissions.

Since state law had prohibited making large financial gifts to state appointees, Rockefeller had given the money as "loans" that he never expected to be repaid. Rockefeller's confirmation hearings dragged on for months, and House and Senate leaders talked of delaying his confirmation until the new Congress convened in January. It's in the national interest that you confirm Rockefeller, and I'm asking you to move as soon as possible.

That evening, Rockefeller took the oath in the Senate chamber. The secretary of the Senate found it amusing to give Rockefeller the standard orientation, signing him up for health insurance and other benefits he did not need. Ironically, Rockefeller was also the first vice president eligible to occupy the new vice-presidential mansion—formerly the residence of the chief of Naval Operations—on Massachusetts Avenue.

He already had a home in Washington that he purchased during the Second World War, a colonial-era farmhouse situated on twenty-seven acres of land, one of the most expensive properties in the District of Columbia. Press criticism later resulted in the bed being loaned to a museum. Years after, when Happy Rockefeller visited George and Barbara Bush at the vice-presidential mansion, she offered to return the bed to the mansion.

Barbara Bush insisted that Mrs. Rockefeller was always welcome to spend the night and did not need to bring her own bed. Gerald Ford told the nation that he wanted his vice president to be "a full partner," especially in domestic policy. One Rockefeller aide lamented that the "first four month shakedown was critical and he wasn't involved.

That was when the relationship evolved and we were on Capitol Hill fighting for confirmation. Rockefeller envisioned taking charge of domestic policies the same way that Henry Kissinger ran foreign policy in the Ford administration. Gerald Ford seemed to acquiesce, but chief of staff Donald Rumsfeld objected to the vice president preempting the president. When Rockefeller tried to implement Ford's promise that domestic policymakers would report to the president via the vice president, Rumsfeld intervened with various objections.

Rockefeller shifted gears and had one of his trusted assistants, James Cannon, appointed chief of the Domestic Council. Rumsfeld responded by cutting the Council's budget to the bone. Rockefeller then moved to develop his own policies independent of the Domestic Council. Although Ford endorsed the energy plan, the president's economic and environmental advisers lined up solidly against it.

Usually, Ford and Rockefeller met once a week. Ford noted that Rockefeller "would sit down, stir his coffee with the stem of his horn-rimmed glasses and fidget in his chair as he leaped from one subject to another. Beyond the substantive issues, the two men also spent much time talking over national politics.

Yet Ford and his staff shut Rockefeller out of key policy debates. In October , when Ford proposed large cuts in federal taxes and spending, the vice president complained, "This is the most important move the president has made, and I wasn't even consulted. I go to earthquakes.

The Arkansas Rockefeller - John L. Ward - Google книги

He had a new seal designed with the eagle's wings outspread and multiple arrows in its clutch. As one of his aides recalled, "One day after a particularly long series of defeats, I walked into the Governor's office [Rockefeller's staff always referred to him as "Governor"] with yet another piece of bad news.

That's the most important thing I've done all year.