Presidential Election: 1960

Who do you vote for as President in 1960?

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  • Total voters
    18

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
13,824
SoCal
#11
My challenge here would be to go review a large chunk of the tape transcripts from the Nixon White House during foreign policy crises, and tell me honestly that you think the guy was consistently cautious and rational. Even leaving that aside, I simply do not believe that a Nixon elected in 1960 would be as accommodating towards the Soviets as the Nixon that was elected in 1968; the political theatre had changed by then. A Nixon in Kennedy's shoes in October 1962 listens to the bulk of the advice he's getting and attacks Cuba.
Were JFK's advisers the ones who told JFK to put US missiles in Turkey?

As for your other points here, did Vietnam significantly change the political atmosphere in the US in regards to foreign policy crises?
 

Viperlord

Ad Honorem
Aug 2010
8,071
VA
#12
A Nixon elected in 1960 has to be seen standing up publicly against perceived Soviet sponsored aggression in the third world and in Germany, and would get roundly denounced by both parties for perceived weakness. In the wake of Vietnam, most of the electorate was willing to buy into "peace with honor" regardless of a lot of the specifics; chest-thumping in regard to foreign affairs was not the best selling point in that time.



Were JFK's advisers the ones who told JFK to put US missiles in Turkey?
Not a clue, but I've never seen anything indicating it was remotely controversial internally at the time, and JFK took foreign policy advice from, among others, Nixon.
 

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
13,824
SoCal
#13
A Nixon elected in 1960 has to be seen standing up publicly against perceived Soviet sponsored aggression in the third world and in Germany, and would get roundly denounced by both parties for perceived weakness. In the wake of Vietnam, most of the electorate was willing to buy into "peace with honor" regardless of a lot of the specifics; chest-thumping in regard to foreign affairs was not the best selling point in that time.
Makes sense.

Indeed, I seem to recall JFK talking about the missile gap in 1960.

Not a clue, but I've never seen anything indicating it was remotely controversial internally at the time, and JFK took foreign policy advice from, among others, Nixon.
OK.

Thus, I'd like to switch my vote here to JFK.
 
Nov 2011
4,653
Ohio, USA
#14
Kennedy. No lesser on substance than Nixon, contrary to various myths, and he was Nixon's superior as a dynamic leader, IMO. Especially in 1960, he seemed to also have had a more imaginative approach to tackling Communism.
 
Last edited:
Sep 2013
793
Chattanooga, TN
#15
Hindsight makes this a pretty easy vote for Kennedy for me; I shudder to think of the Cuban Missile Crisis with Nixon at the helm. (And no, I'm not going to buy into the premise that even American air support under a President Nixon would have made the Bay of Pigs succeed, given the numbers involved)
Why do you shudder to think of the Cuban Missile Crisis with Nixon at the helm? What do you think would have likely happened if the Cuban Missile Crisis happened with Nixon at the helm?
 
Likes: Rodger

Rodger

Ad Honorem
Jun 2014
5,297
US
#16
Why do you shudder to think of the Cuban Missile Crisis with Nixon at the helm? What do you think would have likely happened if the Cuban Missile Crisis happened with Nixon at the helm?
I agree. Nixon was actually more polished in international diplomacy and actually a rather cautious man. At no time during his nearly two terms did he act or react rashly to the Soviet Union, Cuba or communism in general - other than carrying on the fight in SE Asia, which he inherited.
 
Jun 2017
2,552
Connecticut
#18
I'm going to be honest the policy differences are not very profound here in a modern context. Main reason to vote against Nixon is Southern strategy and at this point that hadn't happened, if anything Nixon winning might change that. It's also worth nothing JFK's defeat would almost certainly save the life of both him and his brother.

I really wouldn't care if I was in a voting booth tbh. Civil Rights push is happening at some point in the 60's no matter what. Almost nothing at stake here(wow how much has changed in sixty years). Depending on my local options I might just have stayed home.

Tbh all the stuff that would have happened different if Nixon won would be really really tough to predict because of how dynamic a decade for US politics the 1960s was. From today's perspective this might be the most subjective(and close) edition of this poll ever released on this forum.
 
Likes: Futurist

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
13,824
SoCal
#19
I'm going to be honest the policy differences are not very profound here in a modern context. Main reason to vote against Nixon is Southern strategy and at this point that hadn't happened, if anything Nixon winning might change that. It's also worth nothing JFK's defeat would almost certainly save the life of both him and his brother.

I really wouldn't care if I was in a voting booth tbh. Civil Rights push is happening at some point in the 60's no matter what. Almost nothing at stake here. Depending on my local options I might just have stayed home.
TBH, Nixon's Southern strategy appears to have been largely rhetorical. I mean, desegregation was primarily in the hands of the courts and Nixon's SCOTUS Justices, with the exception of Rehnquist, weren't exactly social conservatives either. Also, welfare cutting only gained steam later--not under Nixon.
 
Jun 2017
2,552
Connecticut
#20
Would Nixon have actually placed U.S. missiles in Turkey in the first place, though? After all, that was what provoked the Soviet Union into placing its own missiles in Cuba.
That's a question that's seems almost impossible to answer. Does anyone know if JFK made that decision based on someone else's advice? I'd be inclined to say no if Nixon doesn't do Bay of Pigs but then again Nixon at least at this point seemed the more aggressive of the two.
 
Likes: Futurist

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