Harry S. Truman Presidential Library & Museum

Sherman, William T. (William Tecumseh), 1820-1891
Political campaigns; Presidential campaign, 1948; Political parties

Longhand Note of President Harry S. Truman, January 30, 1952. President's Secretary's Files - Longhand Notes.

Revision of 4/16/50 Jan. 30, 1952

When January comes (1953) I will have been in elective public office for thirty years less two from Jan. 1, 1925 to Jan. 1, 1927. But I served two years in a combat division from Apr. 22, 1917 to May 6, 1919. So it is thirty years of public anyway you look at it.

In all my political experience I have tried to give everything I am capable of to the job in hand. The peculiar circumstance: funny part of the whole experience is that I've never had an an office I wanted except in the first two years 1923 & 1924 and the last four from Jan. 20, 1949 to Jan. 20, 1953!

In every instance there have been hard battles which required everything I could put into the campaigns to win. But I always won except in 1924 when the Democrats split up in the county and inadvertently kicked me upstairs in 1926. Same thing happened in 1934 when I was elected to the Senate. I wanted to be a member of the House of Representatives. In 1940 I had a most bitter campaign in the primary-something like 1948. You know the result in both instances.

I've given the country and the world everything I am capable of giving. I've never had any outside or personal interests. My whole career from Precinct to President has been spent in the public interest.

We've whipped the communists at every turn. We've saved the free world. We succeeded in maintaining a balanced economy at home. The business man, the farmer, the laboring man have all had a fair deal. We have started a world program that will give a fair deal to the people of every country on earth.

It must be carried on to succeed. Our free government is a continuing institution. It does not depend on one man or one group of men. It depends on the honor the stamina and will of a whole people a hundred and fifty five million of them for success.

The Democratic Party is the best agent that the people have to carry things to a successful conclusion. By the campaign of 1948 the Democratic Party became the greatest national party that the United States has ever had. Now the Democratic Party must continue to be the Party of all the people.

I shall do all in my power to help you to elect a Democratic President and a Democratic Senate and House. I am not lying down on the Party. The Party has done for me all it can do for one man. I shall spend the rest of my life trying to show my gratitude. I'm not one of those "You aint done nothing for me lately" fellows.

Now fellow Democrats get together, nominate an administrator, a believer in Party principles who'll carry out the platform and we and the world will be on the way to the greatest age in history.

(I am not a candidate for reelection in 1952. I'll say to you what old Sherman said, "If nominated I won't run, if elected I won't serve.)


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