Richard Nixon photo

Remarks at Morristown, New Jersey

October 29, 1969

I want to express my appreciation to all of you for giving me such a warm welcome on a return to Morris County, and, also, as I speak to you here this evening briefly--because, as you know, we are going on to Hackensack, and I also understand we are going to even talk to the area of Monmouth County by telephone tonight, so we will make three meetings before I get back to Washington--I want you to know that it is a great privilege to be here on this platform with the whole New Jersey delegation, Republican delegation from Washington, D.C.

I could mention them all--Cliff Case, the Senator from New Jersey, who has spoken so eloquently for the candidacy of our candidate, Bill Cahill.

I could speak, too, of all the Congressmen, but this is after all, Peter Frelinghuysen's district, and I am so glad to be here in this district again.

I want to say, too, that he has given me all the background about the district. He told me we would get a good welcome. We certainly did. I thought the rally was at the airport. All the way along there were huge crowds.

And I mention to you something that I did learn from him on the way up. This is the first time in history that a President of the United States has ever spoken in Morris County. I am glad to be the first President to do that. Because even during the time that Woodrow Wilson was President--as you know, he went to the Presidency from the Governorship of this State--he never spoke here while he was the President. So I would like to be first in that respect.

And I have something to say to you today. I can say it very briefly. I can say it very much from the heart. I want to tell you why.

In 1960, when I was a candidate for President the first time, I had a very busy year. There were very few times that I could go out and make speeches for others. I was too busy speaking for myself. But in that year, I remember that a young Congressman came to me from Camden, New Jersey. He had been in only one term. He had had a close race.

And he said, "Will you come over to Camden for a fund-raising dinner?" Some way or other, he appealed to me, the way he talked, the cut of his jib, that good Irish smile. And I said, "Yeah, I will do it."

Well, I went over to Camden. And I remember it was such an exciting, really joyful meeting. There was a spirit there that I sense here tonight, and that I sensed in those crowds--people like Bill Cahill, because he is a fine man and that is one of the reasons he is going to be elected Governor of the State of New Jersey.

It is hard to realize now that I am speaking in behalf of an 11-year veteran of the House of Representatives, one of the most respected men in the whole Congress, a man that is respected by the Republicans, of course, his own party, but respected by the Democrats as well; a man that is respected because he has integrity, he is an honest man, a fine man, and a hardworking man; a man who is respected because of that wonderful family--and that tells you something about the man, too-but a man also who is respected because of his record in the Congress of the United States.

Now, naturally, you would expect me to say nice things about him tonight. And I am not going to disappoint you in that expectation.

But I want you to know, my friends, that when I look at that record, when I see 11 years on the Judiciary Committee of the House of Representatives where he has the first-hand experience in the field of law enforcement and crime, when I see that he preceded that with experience in the FBI, when I know that one of the issues in this State, perhaps not in this county, but in this State, is the issue of law enforcement, is the issue of control of crime, just as it is the issue across the Nation, I say there isn't a better man in the Congress or in this country better qualified to deal with crime than Bill Cahill. And I look forward to working with him.

But there are other great problems and I speak of them only briefly--the problem of education to which he referred. We know the proud tradition of this State in the field of education, higher education, the great universities that it has and the great colleges.

We know also that this State, in recent years, has had problems with regard to maintaining educational quality, particularly at the secondary and primary level.

Here is a man who understands that problem. Here is a man who has a program for the future for it. Here is a man who doesn't have to defend what didn't happen in the last 16 years and tell you what is going to happen for the next 8 years. And that is the kind of a man you want in the field.

So it is with the other subjects that I could mention, transportation. He has gotten out there. He has been in the traffic. He knows what it is. He knows what the problems are. He knows the needs of this State, and he will meet those needs.

He also is a man who knows of the new issues. The young people will know now what I am talking about: the whole area of the environment, the problem of pollution, the problem of the quality of life, the problem of our consumers, all of these, those that people are talking about, those that people want new action about. He knows about that and I am for him for those reasons.

But I want to add one other word: I believe Bill Cahill is the man for the times, the man for the job, because, you see, whether you ever mention any of these problems--the problems of education, the problems of the environment, the problems of transportation, all of the rest-what we conclude is that the old ways won't do; what we conclude is that the old leadership won't do. It has failed.

We need reform--reform of State government, reform of Federal Government. And I am proud of the fact that in this administration we have sent to the Congress the most significant series of reform requests ever submitted by a Chief Executive over the past 25 years.

I am proud of the fact that after 40 years of leaders talking about revenue sharing with the States, we have submitted a program for revenue sharing with the States so that it will reduce your tax burden, which is one of the highest in the whole Nation.

After 40 years of everybody talking about turning from the Federal Government, turning some of the functions now being handled at that level back to the States, we have come forth with the program in job training where a $1 billion program is going to be turned back to the States.

I am proud of the fact that in the field of pollution, in the field of transportation, in the field of highways, that a new relationship is being developed by our administration. It will be developed with the help of the Congress, with its cooperation, in which the States and the people get control of their government once again, in which Governors do not have to go to Washington hat-in-hand and pace the floors of Congress or the corridors, as the case might be, or come to the White House, but where they will have the opportunity to develop the strong leadership here in these programs.

Now let me conclude with this thought: You see, if revenues are going to be shared by the Federal Government with the States, if the Federal Government is going to turn back to the States, as it should, the functions that the States can handle better, if we are going to have progress in all these fields, we need a new, strong State leadership. We need a man who is a man of the seventies, a man who shares the convictions that I have just now expressed and that he has expressed before me, a man who will look at the problems of education and the problems of environment and the problems of transportation and the problems of law enforcement and who will brush aside all the failures of the past and say, "Here is a new way. Here is a better way." That is Bill Cahill.

And, my friends, I want to say one other thing. I know this is Morris County. I know that in this county being a Republican is a great asset. I know that I carried the county by 33,000 votes, and that helped us carry the State by 60,000 votes.

I know, too, as I speak in Morris County, when all you would really have to do is say, "He is a Republican; vote for him for he is a Republican." I want to say that isn't enough of a reason, and it isn't the only reason that I think he deserves your support.

Whether you are a Republican, or a Democrat, or an Independent, he is the man for the job. That is the way the people of New Jersey are thinking, that is the way they vote, and that is why he is going to win.

I look back over the history of this State, and you know I think you would be interested to know that in my office I had a choice of the desk I could have of the former Presidents. I chose Woodrow Wilson's. I chose his desk not because he was a Democrat, as he was, but because he was one of my favorite Presidents. And I have that desk now.

Before I came up here, as I was sitting there making some notes, I thought of the great Governors of the State of New Jersey. He was one of the greatest Governors of this State. He was a reform Governor when New Jersey needed reform.

At that period in its history, New Jersey needed a Democratic Governor because the Republicans had not provided the leadership they should.

And then time went by, and in another 40 years another Governor came on. This time it was a Republican. It was Al Driscoll.1 He gave the State reform. My friends, now 16 years have passed since those years. Now this State needs reform again. And in the tradition of Woodrow Wilson, in the tradition of At Driscoll, you have got the man, Bill Cahill.

What I say to you is that Bill Cahill is ready to lead New Jersey and the people of New Jersey are ready for Bill Cahill.

1 Alfred Driscoll, Governor of New Jersey 1947-1953.

Note: The President spoke at 8:10 p.m. at the Gouverneur Morris Inn in Morristown, N.J.

Richard Nixon, Remarks at Morristown, New Jersey Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

Filed Under




New Jersey

Simple Search of Our Archives