Interview with J. William Fulbright, January 21, 1980

Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries
Transcript
Toggle Index/Transcript View Switch.
Index
Search this Index
X
00:00:00 - Impressions of John Sherman Cooper

Play segment

Partial Transcript: The following is an unrehearsed interview with former U.S. Senator J. William Fulbright.

Segment Synopsis: Senator J. William Fulbright talks about meeting John Sherman Cooper and his early impressions of him.

Keywords: 1946; Character; Elections; First meeting; Impressions; Legislators; Personalities; Personality; Re-election; Senators

Subjects: Cooper, John Sherman, 1901-1991; Politicians; Politics and government; United States. Congress. Senate.

00:02:11 - John Sherman Cooper as an independent

Play segment

Partial Transcript: In ninet--early 1947 when he made his maiden speech in the Senate, it happened to be against a, uh, proposal that his own party was backing.

Segment Synopsis: Fulbright talks about Cooper's voting record in terms of party lines.

Keywords: 1947; Attention; Independence; Investigations; John Sherman Cooper; Party lines; Political parties; Proposals; Senators; Speaking; Speeches; WWII; World War II

Subjects: Cooper, John Sherman, 1901-1991; Democratic Party (U.S.); Politicians; Politics and government; Republican Party (U.S. : 1854- ); United States. Congress. Senate.; Voting; World War, 1939-1945

00:04:39 - John Sherman Cooper as a representative of the United Nations

Play segment

Partial Transcript: After he was defeated in 1948, uh, President Truman nominated him to be one of our five delegates to the United Nations General Assembly.

Segment Synopsis: Fulbright talks about Cooper's appointment as a U.S. representative to the United Nations in 1949. He speculates on possible political reasons for his appointment.

Keywords: 1948; 1949; Competition; Defeat; Elections; Governor Earle Clements; President Harry Truman; Representatives; Senator Alben Barkley; Senators; United Nations (U.N.)

Subjects: Cooper, John Sherman, 1901-1991; Foreign relations.; International relations.; Politicians; Politics and government; United Nations.; United States. Congress. Senate.

00:06:39 - John Sherman Cooper as the United Sates' ambassador to India

Play segment

Partial Transcript: In 1955, President Eisenhower appointed Cooper to be U.S. ambassador to India.

Segment Synopsis: Fulbright discusses Cooper's appointment as the U.S. ambassador to India in 1955 and the difficulties associated with that position at that time.

Keywords: 1955; Appointments; Character; Diplomats; Jawaharlal Nehru; Neutralists; Opposition; Qualities; Reactions

Subjects: Ambassadors.; Cooper, John Sherman, 1901-1991; Diplomatic and consular service, American--India; Foreign relations.; India; International relations.; Nehru, Jawaharlal, 1889-1964; Politicians; Politics and government

00:09:28 - John Sherman Cooper's 1956 re-election to the Senate

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Now in 1956, Cooper came back from India to run for the Senate.

Segment Synopsis: Fulbright talks briefly about Cooper's re-election to the Senate in 1956, his being voted 'Ablest Republican in the Congress' in 1960, and his relationship with John F. Kennedy.

Keywords: 1956; 1960; Foreign Relations Committee; John F. Kennedy; President Dwight Eisenhower; Reactions; Relationships; Senators

Subjects: Cooper, John Sherman, 1901-1991; Eisenhower, Dwight D. (Dwight David), 1890-1969; Elections; Kennedy, John F. (John Fitzgerald), 1917-1963; Kennedy, John Fitzgerald, 1917-1963; Politicians; Politics and government; Republican Party (U.S. : 1854- ); United States. Congress. Senate.

00:10:58 - John Sherman Cooper's decisions on issues in the Senate

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Now you, you were, uh, of course consulted, uh, by the administration during the Cuban Missile Crisis in '62.

Segment Synopsis: Fulbright discusses several important issues that came through Congress and relates Cooper's position, as well as his own, on each of these issues. Fulbright remembers that the Senate Armed Forces Committee was not consulted about the Cuban Missile Crisis, they were simply informed of the administration's decision. Also, many Senators regard voting for the Tonkin Gulf Resolution as the greatest mistake of their careers.

Keywords: 1965; Chairman; Committees; Consultation; Decisions; Dominican Republic; Gulf of Tonkin; Informed; Intervention; Misleading; Mistakes; Permission; President Lyndon Johnson; Presidents; Roles; Senators; Tonkin Gulf Resolution; Voting

Subjects: Cooper, John Sherman, 1901-1991; Cuban Missile Crisis, 1962.; Foreign relations.; International relations.; Politicians; Politics and government; Tonkin, Gulf of; United States. Congress. Senate.

00:15:33 - John Sherman Cooper's relationship with President Lyndon Johnson

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Do you know, uh, if there was any--uh, much of a relationship between President Johnson and Cooper?

Segment Synopsis: Fulbright discusses his own, as well as Cooper's, relationship with President Lyndon Johnson over the years.

Keywords: Betrayals; Consultations; Opposition; President Lyndon Johnson; Relationships; Resentment; Respect; Senators

Subjects: Cooper, John Sherman, 1901-1991; Johnson, Lyndon B. (Lyndon Baines), 1908-1973.; Politicians; Politics and government; United States. Congress. Senate.

00:17:04 - John Sherman Cooper on the Foreign Relations Committee

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Now in 1967 Senator Cooper took a seat on the Foreign Relations Committee.

Segment Synopsis: Fulbright talks about Cooper's appointment to the Foreign Relations Committee in the Senate. He talks about his personal reaction to Cooper's appointment. He talks about their positions on a national commitments resolution in regard to foreign affairs.

Keywords: 1967; Assignments; Changes; Circumstances; Democrats; Foreign Relations Committee; Legislation; Members; National commitments resolution; Objections; Replacements; Republicans; Senator Gale McGee; Senators

Subjects: Cooper, John Sherman, 1901-1991; Foreign relations.; International relations.; Politicians; Politics and government; United States. Congress. Senate.

00:20:44 - John Sherman Cooper's role in opposition of the Vietnam War

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Shortly after he went on the Foreign Relations Committee, uh, Senator Cooper hired William Miller...

Segment Synopsis: Fulbright discusses Cooper's opposition to ABM and his opposition to the Vietnam War. He talks about Cooper's effectiveness in the Senate on these issues, and discusses Cooper's position on the McGovern–Hatfield Amendment regarding the withdrawal of troops in Vietnam.

Keywords: Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM); Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty (ABMT); Armed Services Committee; Attitudes; Deadlines; Debates; Decisions; Effectiveness; End of the war; Foreign Relations Committee; Hearings; Influences; Issues; McGovern–Hatfield Amendment; Opposition; Roles; Senators; Staff members; Support; Votes; William Miller; Withdrawal

Subjects: Cooper, John Sherman, 1901-1991; Foreign relations.; International relations.; Politicians; Politics and government; Politics and war.; United States. Congress. Senate.; Vietnam War, 1961-1975; Vietnam War, 1961-1975--Protest movements; Vietnam War, 1961-1975--Public opinion; Voting

00:29:24 - John Sherman Cooper's effectiveness as a speaker

Play segment

Partial Transcript: How, uh, how effective was, was Cooper actually debating an issue on the floor of the Senate?

Segment Synopsis: Fulbright talks about Cooper's speaking ability and his effectiveness as a debater.

Keywords: Committee sessions; Debates; Dedication; Earnestness; Effectiveness; Oration; Orators; Personalities; Personality; Punctuality; Senate floor; Senators; Speakers; Speaking; Speeches

Subjects: Cooper, John Sherman, 1901-1991; Politicians; Politics and government; United States. Congress. Senate.

00:30:51 - More on John Sherman Cooper as an independent

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Robert Riggs, who was a long-time reporter for the Louisville Courier-Journal, once described Cooper as...

Segment Synopsis: Fulbright talks about his stance on political labels. He talks about the similarities between his and Cooper's constituencies and their popularity with those constituencies despite positions they took on various issues.

Keywords: Categories; Constituencies; Descriptions; Elections; Foreign affairs; Foreign relations.; International relations.; Issues; Labels; New Dealers; Political parties; Popularity; Positions; Republicans; Robert Riggs; Senators; Similarities

Subjects: Cooper, John Sherman, 1901-1991; Democratic Party (U.S.); Politicians; Politics and government; Republican Party (U.S. : 1854- ); United States. Congress. Senate.; Voting

00:32:56 - John Sherman Cooper's contributions in the Senate

Play segment

Partial Transcript: What do you think will be remembered as Cooper's most important contributions in the Senate?

Segment Synopsis: Fulbright discusses what he believes were Cooper's contributions while in the Senate and what Cooper will be remembered for. The interview is concluded.

Keywords: Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM); Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty (ABMT); Contributions; Impact; Personalities; Personality; Positions; Public interest; Public servants; Senators; Vietnam War

Subjects: Cooper, John Sherman, 1901-1991; Politicians; Politics and government; United States. Congress. Senate.