Remarks on Arrival at Miami, Florida
Mayor Kennedy, Mrs. Kennedy, all o! the distinguished guests who have come here to welcome us:
I was under some illusion that the convention was downtown. I thank you so much for bringing the convention here to this airport. This brings back some memories to me because 4 years ago I arrived in Miami to attend another convention-and we won in November.
[Crowd chanting: "Four More Years"]
Well, I don't know anybody who has a better idea.
I do want you to know that as we stand here, while I have not attended the convention because that is, of course, the custom, that candidates do not attend the convention until they are nominated, and I really should not be here now--but I think I am going to be nominated tonight, I think so; and so is Vice President Agnew, he is going to be nominated, too--but we do not attend until then. I want you to know that I have had the opportunity to see much of the convention on television.
I want to thank you first for the tribute you paid to my wife Pat. I know that out here are so many young people who probably are thinking that one day they are going to be standing in the place that I am standing. I will just give you a little free advice: The first thing you have got to do is marry above yourself. Then you will do pretty well in politics.
I wrote a book after the 1960 campaign. It was about some of the problems I had had during my political career. I had to dedicate it to somebody, and I dedicated it "To Pat. She Also Ran." And I know that the tribute you paid to her she appreciated--Tricia and Julie and Ed and David, all of us. But I appreciated it very much because she is a great campaigner and she is representative of the role that women have played in this Administration. Let me say in that connection, I am very proud of the fact that we have more women in places of responsibility never before held by women, than in any administration in history.1
[Crowd chanting: "We Want Pat"]
You can't have her. I've got to keep her.
Now, could I add one other word? I know that you are going to have to be exposed to my speech tomorrow night, and I do not want to impose it on you now, but I do want you to know that I see that there are a great number of young people here. I hope to address some of you when you are in the hall tomorrow night. But I would like to say a word to you just now: Based on what I have seen on television at this convention, based on the reception that I see and feel here today, those who have predicted that the other side is going to win the young voters are simply wrong. We are going to win them.
If I could put that in the proper context, I want you to know that as young people, as new voters, for the first time in history you are going to play a role in electing the next President of the United States. You, as young voters, I know, find this exciting.
I know, too, that when the election is over, particularly when we win the election, as we hope we will win it, you will feel very, very cheered up by that and you will want to go on in political life. But I want you to know what your participation in this campaign, what your enthusiasm, what your hard work means to me. I will tell you what it means:
Of course we want your votes. We want them very much because your votes could make the difference. And we are going to work for them; we are going to talk to you; we are going to work with you. But we also want something else. We want an Administration after the election, in the next 4 years, in which we can be worthy of the enthusiasm and the trust and the hopes and the ideals of young Americans.
As I look at your faces, I know what you want. I know that you are filled with the desire to find America at peace in the world, not just a temporary but a lasting peace. And you want this country to be one of great opportunity for yourselves, for your children, for all Americans. All of these things you want, and you want to work for that. You want to participate. You don't want to be put off and shunted off on the sideline. In a campaign you just don't want to just blow up the balloons and carry the banners. You want to participate, and you are going to.
So I will simply say to all of you, young and old, who are here today: The welcome you have given us is one that we will always remember, and I also assure you that we will try to be worthy of your hopes, your ideals, the very best that is in you in those next 4 years that you are going to make possible.
1 On August 26, 1972, the White House released a fact sheet on employment of women in the Federal Government.
Note: The President spoke at 4:10 p.m. at Miami International Airport. He spoke without referring to notes.
David T. Kennedy was mayor of Miami.
Richard Nixon, Remarks on Arrival at Miami, Florida Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/254733