Presidential Possibilities, 1956

November 30, 1955

Report Outline
Rivalry for the Presidential Nominations
Potential Candidates Among Republicans
Candidates for Democratic Nomination
Special Focus

Rivalry for the Presidential Nominations

President eisenhower'S resumption at Gettysburg of a progressively increasing share of the duties of his office has given Republican party leaders renewed hope of prevailing upon him to run again in 1956. However, current indications that Eisenhower soon will be able to take full charge at the White House, and fill out his present term in active command, do not necessarily foreshadow willingness to carry the heavy burdens of the presidency for four additional years.

The President's heart attack on Sept, 24 completely altered the picture of next year's presidential election contest as it then existed. Only two weeks earlier, at a Denver breakfast meeting of Republican state chairmen, Eisenhower had warned that “humans are frail” and had cautioned against pinning on one man all hopes for party success in the 1956 campaign. But until the Chief Executive became ill, G.O.P. leaders confidently expected him to head the Republican ticket again. And despite Democratic assertions to the contrary, it was widely assumed that the voters would give Ike another term.

Competition in Both Parties for 1956 Honors

Although the President has been making gratifying progress toward full recovery, many observers still consider that he is unlikely to be a candidate next year. If that proves to be the case, the Democrats probably will have as good a chance as the Republicans to capture the White House. The Democratic party's 1956 nomination thus has begun to look like a prize instead of a duty, and competition has been building up for the party honors that formerly only Adlai Stevenson seemed prepared to accept. Republican aspirants have been hesitant to disclose their ambitions, in the absence of definite word that Eisenhower will not run, but there has been no lack of speculation and discussion about presidential possibilities in the G.O.P.

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