Richard Nixon photo

Remarks of the Vice President, Rear Train Platform, Deschler, OH

October 26, 1960

Thank you very much. As Del Latta just pointed out, we have had a little difficulty down the line, but it wasn't all the train. Part of it was the fact the crowds have just been so big we couldn't get here any sooner, but I'm sure you will appreciate that.

And I certainly want you to know that the very fact that you would be here and wait so long for us and still be so full of pep and vim and vigor means that we're going to really carry Ohio with your help.

I appreciate the sign back there from Defiance. My good friend, Kermit McCann, of course, is the president of Defiance, and I am one of those fortunate people who got a degree from Defiance without having to study for it.

And certainly I welcome the opportunity to speak as one who did graduate from a small college in paying tribute to the small colleges of Arnerica for the tremendous contributions they make to our educational system. We need the big universities, but, believe me, we need the small ones, too, and I am delighted to have the people from Defiance here today.

Now, on these stops where we have only a few minutes, there are, of course, any number of subjects that I realize you folks would like to hear discussed. I selected two today that I think will be of interest. One, it seems to me from the standpoint of the folks here since is one of the richest farming areas in all of the United States, that you obviously are interested in what kind of a farm program we're going to have, and I want to say, my friends, that there isn't any one issue in which there is a greater gulf and a greater difference between the two candidates for the Presidency than on the farm issue, and I want to say that I welcome the opportunity to discuss it today or any time during the course of this campaign.

Now, many of you here are not interested, I am sure, in this issue, but you all ought to be, and I want to tell you this: If my opponent's farm program were enacted into law, first, it wouldn't help the farmer. It wouldn't help him. It would hurt him. It would hurt him because it would have the effect of putting the farmer directly under the control of owing to the Federal Government in Washington and the bureaucrats in Washington the responsibility for them to determine how much he could plant, what he could sell it for, and so on down the line.

As a matter of fact, let me tell you what his program would entail. Let's suppose a farmer had a son who also wanted to be a farmer. He couldn't even go into farming unless he inherited a certificate from his father or unless he was able to buy the right to farm from somebody else. Nobody could go out and start farming without getting permission from the Government. That is one thing the opponent's program would do. Let me tell you something else it would do. What would it do to the prices? The prices, of course, as far as farm prices in the stores are concerned, would go up. As far as farm income is concerned, the real help would not come to the farmers, because of the cuts in acreage that would be required by this program. As a matter of fact, this program is so radical and has so many controls in it that even Henry Wallace - and he's certainly no conservative, as you know - even Henry Wallace sajd that this program was rejected by Mr. Roosevelt back in 1935 as being too radical and as it was a program that would require more regimentation of farmers in America than they have in many Communits countries today.

I say the farmers of America don't want that kind of program. They want a program in which we can move farm income up, but not through managed scarcity, but through increased abundance for all the American people and all the world, and that's what my program will do.

What we have to do is to make far greater use of our surpluses in our programs abroad. We have to increase our markets at home, and at the same time we have to do a job with regard to compensating the farmer, in effect, for what he has done through the years, for putting into production farmlands that wuld not have been put in unless Government policies had, in effect, encouraged him to do so - and certainly the Government owes a responsibility to the farmer, just as it does to a business, once a war is over to indemnify him for that particular reliance upon Government action.

This is not the time to go into it in detail, but I can only say this: With my program, it is one that will result in keeping the farmer's income up and in moving it up, but the way we do it is to take the surpluses off the farmer's back, because as you get the surpluses off the farmer's back and off the market, farm prices can then go up and the consumers then can have an economy of abundance rather than scarcity and they will not have a number of Government officials in Washington telling the farmers what to do.

This is what you don't want, and here I know the farmers of Ohio, as well as the rest of the country, will say we're going to do it the American way and not the way our opponent would foist upon the American people and the American farmer.

Now, the second point that I want to make is one that relates to everybody here, because we can have the best farm program, the best jobs, and the best schools, and colleges and everything we can imagine, and it isn't going to make any difference if we are not around to enjoy them, and that is why I say to this audience, as I do to everyone to whom I speak, where I have an opportunity around this country, that my major concern, if I have the opportunity to serve this country, will be to develop the programs that will keep the peace, keep it without surrender and that will not just hold the line for freedom, but will extend freedom throughout the word and extend it without war.

Let me explain what I mean by this: We have done certainly over these past 7½ years a remarkable job in that respect. Oh, I know we've been criticized. I know that they say that everything is wrong with what the President has been doing. He should have apologized to Khrushchev and he should not have held Quemoy and Matsu. I know, all these things have been wrong, but just let me say this: Under President Eisenhower's leadership we got the Nation out of one war, we've kept it out of others; we have peace today, and we want to continue that kind of leadership in the years ahead.

And, my friends, now the crisis, the critical period comes. This will be the most critical period in the Nation's history. Decisions will be made by the next President that will determine whether we have war or peace, and now is the time to have men on the job who know what it's all about and not to put an inexperienced man in the job, because we cannot afford to let him practice with his mistakes on us, on the people of the United States, and on the people of the world. And I would only point out that in instance after instance in this campaign, he has indicated that when the chips were down - on Cuba, for example, he would have made a terrible mistake; on the apology, for example, he would have made a mistake on Quemoy and Matsu. Let me say this: It isn't a question of good intentions. The question is: Do the men who seek your support have the experience, the background, the judgment to handle these great problems? And I just want to say in that connection that I don't say that it's easy, because I know Mr. Khrushchev, and I know that Communist leaders around the world. It's going to be difficult, but it can be done. It can be done if America keeps her strength militarily, economically, and above all, morally and spiritually. It can be done if America also keeps her nerve, because, remember they're going to be testing us all over the world, probing here, there and every place else. We're going to have to have the maturity to take the rough seas with the calm. We're going to have to have the good sense not to blame ourselves for what the Communists do abroad to embarrass us. If we do all these things and if we have the united support of an American people who don't think we're a second-rate country - and, believe me, we aren't, and I resent anybody who says it in any respect - if we have that kind of support, we then will provide the leadership that you want and that America needs.

And so with that, again my friends, for waiting so long, for being so patient, we will remember you. We will remember that you came out and welcomed us so generously on this visit to Deschler, and we only hope in the years to come we can be worthy of such devotion as you have shown tonight.

And remember this, too, we need Del Latta down there with the biggest majority he's ever had. How about it?

Thank you very much.

Richard Nixon, Remarks of the Vice President, Rear Train Platform, Deschler, OH Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project