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Encyclopedia > Everett Dirksen
Everett McKinley Dirksen
Everett McKinley Dirksen

Everett McKinley Dirksen (January 4, 1896September 7, 1969) was a Republican U.S. Congressman and Senator from Illinois. As Republican Senate leader he played a highly visible role in the politics of the 1960s. He helped write the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and played the decisive role in its passage. He later offered his support for the Open Housing Act of 1968, another landmark piece of Civil Rights legislation. He was one of the Senate's strongest supporters of the Vietnam War. Download high resolution version (610x828, 332 KB)Everett McKinley Dirksen by Richard Hood Harryman Oil on canvas, 1984 Sight measurement Height: 39. ... Download high resolution version (610x828, 332 KB)Everett McKinley Dirksen by Richard Hood Harryman Oil on canvas, 1984 Sight measurement Height: 39. ... January 4 is the 4th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1896 (MDCCCXCVI) was a leap year starting on Wednesday (see link for calendar). ... September 7 is the 250th day of the year (251st in leap years). ... 1969 (MCMLXIX) was a common year starting on Wednesday (the link is to a full 1969 calendar). ... The Republican Party, often called the GOP (for Grand Old Party, although one early citation described it as the Gallant Old Party [1]), is one of the two major political parties in the United States. ... Seal of the House of Representatives The United States House of Representatives (or simply the House) is one of the two chambers of the United States Congress, the other being the Senate. ... Seal of the U.S. Senate The United States Senate is one of the two chambers of the United States Congress, the other being the House of Representatives. ... Official language(s) English Capital Springfield Largest city Chicago Area  Ranked 25th  - Total 57,918 sq mi (149,998 km²)  - Width 210 miles (340 km)  - Length 390 miles (629 km)  - % water 4. ... President Johnson signs the Civil Rights Act of 1964. ... Combatants Republic of Vietnam United States Republic of Korea Thailand Australia New Zealand The Philippines National Front for the Liberation of South Vietnam Democratic Republic of Vietnam People’s Republic of China Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea Strength US 1,000,000 South Korea 300,000 Australia 48,000...


Dirksen was born to German immigrant parents in Pekin, Illinois—near Peoria, Illinois and about 120 miles southwest of Chicago—where he grew up on a small farm. He dropped out of the University of Minnesota to serve in the Army during World War I. His political career began in 1927, when he was elected to the Pekin city council. Pekin is a city in Tazewell County, Illinois. ...


After an unsuccessful first run for the House of Representatives in 1929, he was elected to that body in 1932. His support for many New Deal programs marked him as a liberal Republican. During World War II, he lobbied successfully for an expansion of congressional staff resources to eliminate the practice under which House and Senate committees borrowed executive branch personnel to accomplish legislative work. He served until 1946 when he left due to a series of medical problems. Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to: New Deal For other uses of New Deal and The New Deal, see New Deal (disambiguation). ... Combatants Major Allied powers: United Kingdom Soviet Union United States Republic of China and others Major Axis powers: Nazi Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Winston Churchill Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Harry Truman Chiang Kai-Shek Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tojo Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead... 1946 (MCMXLVI) was a common year starting on Tuesday. ...


After recovering, he was elected to the Senate in 1950 when he unseated Senate Majority Leader Scott Lucas in a bitter contest. In the 1950 campaign, Dirksen heavily relied upon the support of Wisconsin Senator Joe McCarthy to gain a narrow victory. Dirksen became a staunch ally of McCarthy, but tried and failed to get him to apologize to stave off censure in 1954. Dirksen voted not to censure him, but privately conceded that McCarthy "had lost his senses". Dirksen's canny political skill, rumpled appearance, and convincing, if sometimes flowery, overblown oratory (he was hence dubbed by his critics "the Wizard of Ooze") made his national reputation. Seal of the U.S. Senate The United States Senate is one of the two chambers of the United States Congress, the other being the House of Representatives. ... 1950 (MCML) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... The Senate Majority Leader is a member of the United States Senate who is elected by his or her party conference to serve as the chief Senate spokesman for his or her party and to manage and schedule the legislative and executive business of the Senate. ... Scott Wike Lucas (1892 - 1968) was a 2-term United States senator from Illinois and Senate Majority Leader from 1948-1950. ... This article does not cite its references or sources. ... Joseph Raymond McCarthy (November 14, 1908 – May 2, 1957) was a Republican U.S. Senator from the state of Wisconsin between 1947 and 1957. ...


In 1959 he was elected to Minority Leader of the Senate, defeating Kentucky's more liberal Senator, John Sherman Cooper, by a vote of 20–14. Dirksen successfully united the various factions of the Republican party by granting younger Republicans more representation in the Senate leadership and better committee appointments. He held the position of Senate Minority Leader until his death following cancer surgery on September 7, 1969 at Walter Reed Hospital, Washington, DC. Along with Charles Halleck and later Gerald Ford (the Republican Minority Leaders of the House), Dirksen was the official voice of the Republican party during most of the 1960s, and was often featured on television news. His voting record was consistently conservative on economic issues. He developed a good rapport with the Senate's majority leaders Lyndon B. Johnson and Mike Mansfield. On foreign policy, he reversed his early isolationism to support the internationalism of Republican President Dwight D. Eisenhower and Democratic President John F. Kennedy. He was a leading "hawk" on Vietnam – a position he held well before Democratic President Lyndon B. Johnson decided to escalate the war. Dirsken said in February 1964: [Dietz p 59] The Senate Minority Leader is a member of the United States Senate who is elected by his or her party conference to serve as the chief Senate spokesmen for his or her party and to manage and schedule the legislative and executive business of the Senate. ... Official language(s) English[1] Capital Frankfort Largest city Louisville Area  Ranked 37th  - Total 40,444 sq mi (104,749 km²)  - Width 140 miles (225 km)  - Length 379 miles (610 km)  - % water 1. ... John Sherman Cooper (August 23, 1901 - February 21, 1991) was a Republican United States senator from Kentucky who served a total of 20 years (1946-1949, 1952-1955, 1956-1973). ... September 7 is the 250th day of the year (251st in leap years). ... Walter Reed Army Medical Center is a hospital run by the United States Army. ... Aerial photo (looking NW) of the Washington Monument and the White House in Washington, DC. Washington, D.C., officially the District of Columbia (also known as D.C.; Washington; the Nations Capital; the District; and, historically, the Federal City) is the capital city and administrative district of the United... Charles A. Halleck (August 22, 1900 – March 3, 1986) was a Republican member of the United States House of Representatives from the second district of Indiana. ... Gerald Rudolph Ford, Jr. ... Lyndon Baines Johnson (August 27, 1908 – January 22, 1973), often referred to as LBJ, was the 36th President of the United States (1963–1969). ... Mike Mansfield Mike Mansfield signature (1952) This article describes the American politician. ... Dwight David Eisenhower (also known as Ike) (born David Dwight Eisenhower on October 14, 1890 – March 28, 1969) was an American soldier and politician. ... John Fitzgerald Kennedy (May 29, 1917–November 22, 1963), also referred to as John F. Kennedy, JFK, John Kennedy, or Jack Kennedy, was the 35th President of the United States. ... Lyndon Baines Johnson (August 27, 1908 – January 22, 1973), often referred to as LBJ, was the 36th President of the United States (1963–1969). ...

First I agree that obviously we cannot retreat from our position in Vietnam. I have been out there three times, once as something of an emissary for then President Eisenhower. I took a good look at it. It is a difficult situation, to say the least. But we are in to the tune of some $350 million. I think the last figure I have seen indicates that we have over 15,500 military out there, ostensibly as advisors and that sort of thing. We are not supposed to have combatant troops, even though we were not signatories to the treaty that was signed at Geneva when finally they got that whole business out of the fire. But we are going to have to muddle through for awhile and see what we do. Even though it costs us $1.5 million a day.

As Johnson followed Dirksen's recommendations and escalated the war, Dirksen gave him strong public support, as well as strong support inside the Republican caucus, even as some Republicans advised him that it would be to the party advantage to oppose Johnson. Ford commented, "I strongly felt that although I agreed with the goals of the Johnson administration in Vietnam, I vigorously criticized their prosecution of the war. Now, Dirksen never took that same hard-line position that I took." [Dietz 149]

Sen. Everett M. Dirksen
Sen. Everett M. Dirksen

On March 22, 1966, Dirksen introduced a Constitutional amendment that would permit public school administrators to provide for organized prayer by students. This amendment was seen by many to violate the principle of separation of church and state, and was defeated in the Senate with only 49 affirmative votes, falling short of the 67 votes required for a Constitutional amendment. http://bioguide. ... March 22 is the 81st day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (82nd in leap years). ... 1966 (MCMLXVI) was a common year starting on Saturday (the link is to a full 1966 calendar). ... The term public school has different (and in some cases contradictory) meanings due to regional differences. ... Mary Magdalene in prayer. ... The separation of church and state is a political doctrine which states that the institutions of the state or national government should be kept separate from those of religious institutions. ...


He is most often remembered for the quip: "A billion here, a billion there, pretty soon, you're talking real money". He made similar remarks but probably not that exact one. (See wikiquotes of Everett Dirksen.)


Dirksen was also legendary for his fondness for the marigold. When political discussions became tense, Dirksen would lighten the atmosphere by taking up his perennial campaign to have the marigold named the national flower. Although unsuccessful at that, in 1972 his home town of Pekin started holding an annual Marigold Festival in his memory, and now considers itself the Marigold Capital of the World. Species About 20, see text : also numerous garden hybrids and cultivars The marigolds, genus Calendula L., are a genus of about 20 species of annual or perennial herbaceous plants in the daisy family Asteraceae, native to the Mediterranean region and Macaronesia. ...


He recorded four albums in his resonant bass speaking voice, one of which, Gallant Men, unexpectedly made it to #29 on the U.S. Billboard charts and won a Grammy Award for Best Documentary Recording in 1968. Dirksen made TV guest appearances such as What's My Line, The Hollywood Palace and The Red Skelton Show. Billboard can refer to: Billboard magazine Billboard (advertising) Billboard antenna In 3D computer graphics, to billboard is to rotate an object so that it faces the viewer. ... The 10th Grammy Awards were held in 1968. ... Whats My Line? was a weekly panel game show produced by Mark Goodson and Bill Todman for CBS television. ... The Hollywood Palace was an hour-long television variety show produced by Nick Vanoff. ... The Red Skelton Show was a staple of American television for almost two decades, from the early 1950s through the early 1970s. ...


In 1972, one of the Senate's buildings was renamed the Dirksen Senate Office Building in his honor. This Washington, DC congressional office building is named for former Senate Minority Leader Everett Dirksen (R-IL). ...


Dirksen's daughter, Joy, was the first wife of Senator Howard Baker of Tennessee. Sen. ...


At the vote for cloture on the filibuster against the Civil Rights Act, Dirksen had this to say

"Victor Hugo wrote in his diary substantially this sentiment, 'Stronger than all the armies is an idea whose time has come.' The time has come for equality of opportunity in sharing of government, in education, and in employment. It must not be stayed or denied."

Contents

Further reading

Primary sources

  • Dirksen, Everett McKinley. The Education of a Senator. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1998.
  • Dirksen, Louella Carver, with Norma Lee Browning. The Honorable Mr. Marigold: My Life With Everett Dirksen. Garden City, NY: Doubleday and Company, 1972.

Secondary sources

  • Dietz, Terry; Republicans and Vietnam, 1961-1968 Greenwood: 1986.
  • Hulsey, Byron C. Everett Dirksen and His Presidents: How a Senate Giant Shaped American Politics. University Press of Kansas, 2000.
  • MacNeil, Neil. Dirksen: Portrait of a Public Man. New York: World Publishing Company, 1970.
  • Rodriguez; Daniel B. and Barry R. Weingast. "The Positive Political Theory of Legislative History: New Perspectives on the 1964 Civil Rights Act and Its Interpretation" University of Pennsylvania Law Review. Volume: 151. Issue: 4. 2003. pp 1417+.
  • Schapsmeier Edward L., and Frederick H. Schapsmeier. Dirksen of Illinois. University of Illinois Press, 1985, the standard biography

External links

Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to:
Preceded by:
William R. Hull
U.S. Representative Illinois 16th District
1933–1949
Succeeded by:
Leo E. Allen
Preceded by:
Scott W. Lucas
U.S. Senator (Class 3) from Illinois
1951 – 1969
Served alongside: Paul Douglas, Charles H. Percy
Succeeded by:
Ralph Tyler Smith
Preceded by:
William F. Knowland
Senate Minority Leader
1959–1969
Succeeded by:
Hugh Scott

  Results from FactBites:
 
Everett Dirksen - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1244 words)
Everett McKinley Dirksen (January 4, 1896 – September 7, 1969) was a Republican U.S. Congressman and Senator from Illinois.
Dirksen was born to German immigrant parents in Pekin, Illinois—near Peoria, Illinois and about 120 miles southwest of Chicago—where he grew up on a small farm.
Dirksen was also legendary for his fondness for the marigold.
Everett Dirksen and His Presidents (458 words)
Everett McKinley Dirksen was one of the most colorful American politicians of the twentieth century and was considered by some the most powerful man in Congress.
Dirksen learned "suprapartisan politics" from Eisenhower and became Ike's most trusted confidant on Capitol Hill; then as Senate Minority Leader he played a key role in furthering the ambitious goals of the Johnson administration.
Hulsey analyzes the reasons for Dirksen's dramatic policy reversals, telling how the senator who in 1950 warned of the dangers of a leviathan executive came to embrace the power of the presidential office to provide for the social welfare, contain the spread of communism, and guarantee civil rights.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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