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1944 Democratic Party Platform

July 19, 1944

The Democratic Party stands on its record in peace and in war.

To speed victory, establish and maintain peace, guarantee full employment and provide prosperity —this is its platform.

We do not here detail scores of planks. We cite action.

Beginning March, 1933, the Democratic Administration took a series of actions which saved our system of free enterprise.

It brought that system out of collapse and thereafter eliminated abuses which had imperiled it.

It used the powers of government to provide employment in industry and to save agriculture.

It wrote a new Magna Carta for labor.

It provided social security, including old age pensions, unemployment insurance, security for crippled and dependent children and the blind. It established employment offices. It provided federal bank deposit insurance, flood prevention, soil conservation, and prevented abuses in the security markets. It saved farms and homes from foreclosure, and secured profitable prices for farm products.

It adopted an effective program of reclamation, hydro-electric power, and mineral development.

It found the road to prosperity through production and employment.

We pledge the continuance and improvement of these programs.

Before war came, the Democratic Administration awakened the Nation, in time, to the dangers that threatened its very existence.

It succeeded in building, in time, the best-trained and equipped army in the world, the most powerful navy in the world, the greatest air force in the world, and the largest merchant marine in the world.

It gained for our country, and it saved for our country, powerful allies.

When war came, it succeeded in working out with those allies an effective grand strategy against the enemy.

It set that strategy in motion, and the tide of battle was turned.

It held the line against wartime inflation.

It ensured a fair share-and-share-alike distribution of food and other essentials.

It is leading our country to certain victory.

The primary and imperative duty of the United States is to wage the war with every resource available to final triumph over our enemies, and we pledge that we will continue to fight side by side with the United Nations until this supreme objective shall have been attained and thereafter to secure a just and lasting peace.

That the world may not again be drenched in blood by international outlaws and criminals, we pledge:

To join with the other United Nations in the establishment of an international organization based on the principle of the sovereign equality of all peace-loving states, open to membership by all such states, large and small, for the prevention of aggression and the maintenance of international peace and security.

To make all necessary and effective agreements and arrangements through which the nations would maintain adequate forces to meet the needs of preventing war and of making impossible the preparation for war and which would have such forces available for joint action when necessary.

Such organization must be endowed with power to employ armed forces when necessary to prevent aggression and preserve peace.

We favor the maintenance of an international court of justice of which the United States shall be a member and the employment of diplomacy, conciliation, arbitration and other like methods where appropriate in the settlement of international disputes.

World peace is of transcendent importance. Our gallant sons are dying on land, on sea, and in the air. They do not die as Republicans. They do not die as Democrats. They die as Americans. We pledge that their blood shall not have been shed in vain. America has the opportunity to lead the world in this great service to mankind. The United States must meet the challenge. Under Divine Providence, she must move forward to her high destiny.

We pledge our support to the Atlantic Charter and the Four Freedoms and the application of the principles enunciated therein to the United Nations and other peace-loving nations, large and small.

We shall uphold the good-neighbor policy, and extend the trade policies initiated by the present administration.

We favor the opening of Palestine to unrestricted Jewish immigration and colonization, and such a policy as to result in the establishment there of a free and democratic Jewish commonwealth.

We favor legislation assuring equal pay for equal work, regardless of sex.

We recommend to Congress the submission of a Constitutional amendment on equal rights for women.

We favor Federal aid to education administered by the states without interference by the Federal Government.

We favor Federal legislation to assure stability of products, employment, distribution and prices in the bituminous coal industry, to create a proper balance between consumer, producer and mine worker.

We endorse the President's statement recognizing the importance of the use of water in arid land states for domestic and irrigation purposes.

We favor non-discriminatory transportation charges and declare for the early correction of inequalities in such charges.

We favor enactment of legislation granting the fullest measure of self-government for Alaska, Hawaii and Puerto Rico, and eventual statehood for Alaska and Hawaii.

We favor the extension of the right of suffrage to the people of the District of Columbia. We offer these postwar programs:

A continuation of our policy of full benefits for ex-servicemen and women with special consideration for the disabled. We make it our first duty to assure employment and economic security to all who have served in the defense of our country.

Price guarantees and crop insurance to farmers with all practical steps:

To keep agriculture on a parity with industry and labor.

To foster the success of the small independent farmer.

To aid the home ownership of family-sized farms.

To extend rural electrification and develop broader domestic and foreign markets for agricultural products.

Adequate compensation for workers during demobilization.

The enactment of such additional humanitarian, labor, social and farm legislation as time and experience may require, including the amendment or repeal of any law enacted in recent years which has failed to accomplish its purpose.

Promotion of the success of small business. Earliest possible release of wartime controls.

Adaptation of tax laws to an expanding peacetime economy, with simplified structure and war- time taxes reduced or repealed as soon as possible.

Encouragement of risk capital, new enterprise, development of natural resources in the West and other parts of the country, and the immediate reopening of the gold and silver mines of the West as soon as manpower is available.

We reassert our faith in competitive private enterprise, free from control by monopolies, cartels, or any arbitrary private or public authority.

We assert that mankind believes in the Four Freedoms.

We believe that the country which has the greatest measure of social justice is capable of the greatest achievements.

We believe that racial and religious minorities have the right to live, develop and vote equally with all citizens and share the rights that are guaranteed by our Constitution. Congress should exert its full constitutional powers to protect those rights.

We believe that without loss of sovereignty, world development and lasting peace are within humanity's grasp. They will come with the greater enjoyment of those freedoms by the peoples of the world, and with the freer flow among them of ideas and goods.

We believe in the world right of all men to write, send and publish news at uniform communication rates and without interference by governmental or private monopoly and that right should be protected by treaty.

To these beliefs the Democratic Party subscribes.

These principles the Democratic Party pledges itself in solemn sincerity to maintain.

Finally, this Convention sends its affectionate greetings to our beloved and matchless leader and President, Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

He stands before the nation and the world, the champion of human liberty and dignity. He has rescued our people from the ravages of economic disaster. His rare foresight and magnificent courage have saved our nation from the assault of international brigands and dictators. Fulfilling the ardent hope of his life, he has already laid the foundation of enduring peace for a troubled world and the well being of our nation. All mankind is his debtor. His life and services have been a great blessing to humanity.

That God may keep him strong in body and in spirit to carry on his yet unfinished work is our hope and our prayer.

APP Note: The American Presidency Project used the first day of the national nominating convention as the "date" of this platform since the original document is undated.

Democratic Party Platforms, 1944 Democratic Party Platform Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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