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tv   George Wallace Segregation and Politics  CSPAN  August 13, 2016 1:06am-2:36am EDT

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carter, that sounds more like george wallace. it is an attempt to take a little bit of the edge of the harshness of the speech itself. it is an interesting part of that speech. it becomes a constant motif, and that is the reference to communism. we do not think about that so much today in terms of anything except the cold war, spies. but for white southerners and many americans around the country. -- and many americans around the country, the civil rights movement was an act of congress. it is hard to remember how frightened americans were and how much they believed the communist infiltration had taken place. civil rights seem to be a place they would operate. it's was a useful weapon against the movement to emphasize that. what george wallace's running mate in 1968 was air force general, curtis lemay.
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our next call comes from oakland, maryland. good evening. >> how are you doing? >> good. >> i remember in 1972 as a college student at allegheny college in cumberland, md., he came to the campus one day. the following day he was shot at the world mall. what i can remember of that is i read about something that does not seem to be talked about much. he went through a major transition after this. i think i read that he did talk openly about it and had some sort of religious conversion so predict conversion somewhat. also, i can remember seeing him received an award from alabama's
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naacp. that was in his last term as governor, i think. am i wrong on that or not? i can remember actually watching that and i was amazed to see the transformation from segregationist to basically receiving that type of recognition. >> thank you very much. we are going to be discussing all of that throughout the evening on the contenders. give us a snapshot of what harry was speaking about. >> if you want to know what happens with white's attitudes towards race, just followed george wallace's career. he was a hard segregationists, using the race issue in the 1960's, but by the 1970's and after he was assessed -- nearly assassinated, and as the whole political structure changed and blacks came to pay a larger -- larger role in the democratic party -- i think he was a
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different person. >> very quickly, the 1972 campaign -- how was he doing prior to getting shot? >> george wallace in 1972 was out polling everyone up through may in the primaries. george mcgovern had emerged in the eyes of the national media as the candidate. he sort of brushed aside the other candidates. but in terms of votes, up until the day he was shot, governor wallace had considerably more votes than george mcgovern did. >> the next call for our guest, dan carter, the offer of this book "the politics of rage," comes from montana. charles, you are on the contenders. >> was he influenced by huey long at all? did he ever think about running
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for federal office -- senate or the house? most likely senate? >> no. he claims he was not employed by long at all. i think that is probably unlikely. the was certainly familiar with the career of long. he really was not interested in running for the united states senate. i think he could easily have been elected. at one time the talked about it and thought about it, but he was much more comfortable in alabama. he said why would i want to go to washington and the want of 100 senators when i could be governor of alabama? >> [unintelligible] >> yes. that would have been pretty common. lyndon johnson used the n- word. it was common among leaders in southern politics privately. there were a couple of times when he slipped up and used it
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publicly as well, but that was not typical at all. i think much more important than whether you -- whether you used the n-word -- lyndon johnson did, but often i get a different kind of context -- the real problem was the extent to which this man had been a racial moderate and had been on the trustees of tuskegee university in the early 1950's. he told someone blacks are going to vote in this day and i want to be on the ground floor. of course, currents of change. that was by the late 1950's. i think the tragedy is that someone who had these empathetic feet -- feelings for both black and whites let himself be caught up politically and emotionally in the racial currents of the 1960's. yes, there was a time it was pretty nasty business, i think.
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>> right here in alabama, florence, alabama, tina. you are on the contenders. >> hello. i enjoyed mr. carter's book. i wanted to ask a question about mr. george wallace. is his shooter still in prison? did they gas him or was he shot? >> arthur bremer was the very mentally disturbed young man who shot governor wallace. they actually wanted to shoot president nixon, but he could not get close enough to president nixon. he essentially was released. he is now, after many years -- i cannot remember the exact date, -- >> 2007. >> i remember i was approached
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in 1999 about eight statement for his parole hearing. he was turned down at that time. is only in the last four years after all those years that he has been released. >> let's go back to 1965. george wallace is governor. he is living here at this governor's mansion in montgomery, alabama. governor martin lived -- rev. martin luther king had been pastor of a church at one block from the alabama state capital. there are marches from selma to montgomery. very quickly, dr. carter, why are these marches happening and what were their defects? >> the broader context was a voter registration effort on the part of african-americans. there were a whole series of these violent incidents. there was an assault on some demonstrators in marion, alabama in which one young man
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was killed by a state trooper. that was really the triggering episode they began to talk about some way to demonstrate how angry and frustrated they were. there was the first attempt to march from selma to montgomery. that was the -- that turned out to be a disaster, in some ways, at least nationally or governor wallace because there were television cameras there. violence does not happen unless it is on television, at least in terms of the great impact it had. john lewis and others attempted to walk from brown's chapel in selma across the bridge towards montgomery. they were met by the alabama state troopers. >> under the orders of governor wallace? >> under the orders of governor wallace. it was never clear what those orders were, but they stopped them.
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they thought it meant stop them by any means. you had a bunch of deputies who were anxious to do a little head-cracking. that is what happened. >> in just a second, we are going to show you some news reels from 1965 and show you some of the news about those marches from selma, which is 100 or so miles from where we sit now in montgomery. then we are going to introduce you to george wallace's daughter, peggy lawless kennedy. she is inside the mansion. here is the 1965 new israel. >> selma sprang overnight from an obscure southern town to the front pages of newspapers. this church was headquarters for the negro drive. the right to vote. this is where martin luther king came to lend his support -- support to the campaign. only a few more than 300 negroes have been registered at the polls. one group set out to march to
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the capital at montgomery. the procession was broken up violently by state troopers and deputies. dr. king led another contingent through the town. this time, there is no violence. the 1000 negroes and 400 white ministers and a civil-rights workers reached the end of the bridge where the state troopers stood. there were ordered to turn back. dr. king confers with the police as the marchers hold their ground the past that they be allowed to pray. there are a few minutes of -- a few minutes of mounting tension.
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the request kouprey is granted and they kneeled in the street. -- the request to pray is granted and they kneeled in the street. the march finally gets under way as dr. martin became addresses the crowd at the starting point. twice before the marchers had been turned back by state troopers, now they march under a federal court order and with protection of national guard units and federal troops -- 3000 men. there are 2300 marchers in line. highway 80 is closed to traffic. the "martyrs have been ordered to reduce their numbers to 300, a measure designed for their safety. there are a few isolated flare ups between whites and negroes,
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but otherwise the demonstration is peaceful. the first day the marchers go a little over 7 miles. they wanted to present a petition to governor george wallace. >> you are now looking at a picture of the conclusion of the third selma to montgomery march. it finished up on dexter avenue right in front of the state capital. the dexter avenue baptist church where dr. martin luther king pastored in the '50s is located a block from the state capital. recently, c-span took some video of the same site. this picture was taken about a month or so ago. it is about two miles north of where we are now. we are, right now, at the governor's mentioned in montgomery, alabama. we are inside the foyer. we are joined by george wallace's daughter, peggy wallace kennedy.
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we played as israel's 1965. what are your memories? you live in the south at the time. >> yes, i was here. i was the 15-years old. i can remember what went on and everything. of course, at that time i did not really have an opinion, but i did go to selma in 2009 and marched across edmund pettus bridge. even back in 1965, i knew that their cause was just and i was able to walk across that bridge with my husband and children. >> what was life like here in the governor's mansion? >> it is a great house. when we moved in, my mother made it a home. >> lurleen. >> yes. she made it a home. we had a lot of happy times here. we take from a small town and
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moved to the big city to this wonderful house that my mother made a home. it was wonderful. it really was a wonderful place to live. >> how where were you of your father's reputation outside of alabama, some of the controversial things people said about him? >> i was not aware of that. i was just trying to live a normal life. if you can imagine. my mother was the kind of person that tried to keep us as normal as we could be, a normal life. school and that kind of thing. i really was not aware. >> do you as a child of the governor have a state trooper followed you around all the times or were you free to come and go as you wanted? >> we were free to come and go as we wanted.
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>> how often was your father around? he was running alabama, he was running our president throughout your childhood. >> he was in and out, but i grew up in a political family. it was normal for me to not see him often. when you do not know anything any different, it is ok. my mother was gone a lot, too. peggy wallace kennedy here in the foyer of the gov's mansion in montgomery, alabama. these steps pretty meaningful. a couple of different incidences' on these steps. let's begin with santa. >> i believe this was 1970 or 1971. it was 1971. my father dressed up like santa claus and i sat on his knee.
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that is a picture i will always cherish. >> what was he like behind closed doors? what was he like as a dad? >> he was busy. he was always really busy. he ate fast. he walked fast. but he was a wonderful dad when you could get with him, you know. the time you had with him, you had to get the quality time and that was fine, too. >> something else important happened on the steps. what was that? >> we got married. also, when we first lived -- moved in here, my brother and i slid down the banister into a tour group. my mother was very angry about that. i got married and had my wedding
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reception here. >> we would be remiss if you did not talk a little bit more about your mother, lurleen wallace, or governor wallace. how did she get elected governor? >> i think the people just loved her. >> was voting for your dad? >> well, i think that probably he thought so. when she was elected, she certainly let him know who with the governor, i can assure you. >> what happened to her? >> she had cancer and died in may of 1968. she spent 15 months in office. >> after that, between 1968 and 1971 when your father was reelected, or 1970 when he was reelected -- moved back in at in 71 -- what did your father do? >> he remarried in 1971. we moved back in.
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there is a little apartment in the back of the governor's mansion. i married in 1973, so i was only here for two years. >> between 1968-1970, where did you move too? >> we had a home that my mother had bought. >> where it -- was he practicing law or running for president? >> he was running. that is what h . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . us about your husband. >> we have been married for 38 years. he has spent 22 years in public service. the retired from the alabama supreme court in 1999. he is now a state chairman of the democratic party. my youngest son is a history
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major at the university of alabama. our oldest son is serving in afghanistan right now. >> peggy wallace kennedy, as anyone played up the irony of a wallace marrying a kennedy? >> yes, they have. when we got engaged, senator ted kennedy wrote my father a letter saying he was really glad that the kennedys and the wallace's could finally get together. i have that letter. >> peggy will be joining us a little later in the program. thank you for spending a few minutes with us. we will work our way back out to the set. we will be joined by joe lee -- joe reed, the chairman of the alabama democratic conference, along with our other guests. wallace by robert, dan carter. the next call is from houston. joe, you are on the air.
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go ahead, joe from houston. >> i have a question. had george wallace not been shot in 1970 to -- 1972, would he have run as a third-party candidate? i have another candidate -- another question. in 1976 if he had defeated jimmy carter in farda, how far would he have gone in the democratic nomination process? >> the third party in 1972 and what could have happened in 1976. >> in 1972, of course, he was shot and severely wounded. he did go to the democratic conviction -- convention, but it is pretty clear his health suffered from being shot. he was not a serious factor in 1972. in 1976, americans have a pretty short life span toward
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politicians. everybody kept talking about the relationship between governor wallace's campaign and president roosevelt, who, of course, campaigned from a wheelchair and was president in a wheelchair. the difference was that in the 1930's there was an agreement on the part of the media that he would never be photographed in a wheelchair. most americans simply did not realize how severely crippled a he had been by polio -- crippled he had been by polio. in 1976, every single moment the cameras were on. there were a couple of incidences', one in which he was dropped. it really emphasized the fact that he was in a wheelchair. even apart from that, one of the things that make governor wallace so effective was his feisty kind of bravado that he
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had. he did not walk across the stage, he started across the .tage, ofte in a wheelchair, it was not possible to do that. >> now we want to introduce you to dr. joe reed who is chairman of the alabama democratic conference. he also works for the alabama education association. dr. reid, what is your first memory of george wallace? >> the first memory i have a george wallace was back in the 19 -- was back in 1958. i had just come from korea and george wallace was running for governor. it was 1958 when i first heard of him. >> do you remember what the
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memory is? >> he was very vocal. at that time, he did not have any -- anything that any other southern politician had at that time. all were running against the supreme court decision in 1954. they all said they were going to maintain segregation. they all claimed that they could do what the law insisted that they could not do. they all insisted they could get around the law. >> what was your life like in alabama in 1958 -- in 1958? >> like most other black folks in the south. for example, segregation, and
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even though the supreme court had ruled in brown vs. the board of education, that -- we were all mindful of the strom berman's decision in 1910 -- strom thurmond's decision in 1948. blacks had achieved a great victory there. things were looking up. >> were you able to vote in 1958? >> 1958 -- i was able to vote in 1958. i was from a small county between montgomery and mobile. veterans did not have a problem
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getting registered to vote in 1958 in conecuh county. there was a share of the day -- share today -- there was a sheriff there who took on the establishment. the went out and help blacks get registered to vote. this was before 1958. he died in 1956. blacks did not constitute a threat. at that particular time, being a veteran, that was not a major problem. >> dr. reid, what did you do at the alabama education association? >> i am the associate secretary at the alabama education association. i have been privileged to serve
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that organization since 1964. i came over from the black association in 1964. the alabama state teachers association -- there were 11 southern states that had associations in the south from virginia to texas. i came i can on as the a's active secretary at that time. >> dane -- dan carter refer to this a couple of times. the schoolhouse stand. let's see this video of george wallace followed by president kennedy. >> unwanted intrusion on the campus of the university of alabama, the day might of the central government offers a example of the oppression of this state, offices of the federal government. >> this afternoon, following a
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series of threats and defiant statements, the president of alabama national guardsmen will be fired on the university of alabama to carry out the unequivocal order of the united states district court of the northern district of alabama. in that order calls for the ignition of two qualified alabama residents who happened to have been born negro. >> what do you remember about that incident in 1963? >> we were glad to see president kennedy, on. he was very simple. we always thought he was going to lose. he had lost races before that time, particularly in 1959 and 1960, when he had the confrontation with jerry frank johnson. a lot of folks forget the civil
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rights deal in 1967, that particular civil-rights deal, which came under president eisenhower, allows the president to report -- to appoint a commission to come in and investigate -- and investigate discrimina a commission to come into investigate voter discrimination. >> this commission came in and did his investigation and the course of that, george wallace refused to turn in some records to them. johnson jr. was the presiding jury and he ordered the record through to be turned over to the commission. that being the case, we found that of the earlier attack, george wallace also misled the
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voters again in alabama. carrie in west virginia, you are live. >> caller: i would like to know wallace relationship, how would wallace monitored and did he have an opinion? thank you. >> about his relationship with edgar hoover and whether or not george wallace is monitored. >> no, not really. not in the sense. they kept a complete file on governor wallace. and it is interesting because although governor wallace constantly praised mr. hoover and relied on him on information
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on so-called links and activists. hoover, in part, i don't think he could control him. hoover always told his men to keep his hands off and as a result there is a distance relationship between the two of them. anne carter is the author of this book about gorge wallace. >> that's from the inaugural address from 1963. >> two miles from where we are now. randall in stockton california, good evening. >> caller: how are you doing? the question i need to ask you, i want to know what is allowed to come across.
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why governor wallace let them cross the bridge. the bottom line is i want to know was governor wallace and the -- both congress, con pyre to not coming across. i want to know the answer to that. >> joe reid, i did not get his full question. >> dan carter, did you get his question? >> yes. >> go ahead. the real reason is if the marchers had crossed the bridge regardless of television cameras set up there, it would have been a face saving loss for governor wallace and he had made it clear that he was not going to allow
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it. he told al lingo and mayor mcleod who was in charge of the troopers at the time. they were not under any circumstances to be allowed to march. they took him very seriously. at that point, they were ready to go with pure gas and dog dogs -- not dogs, horses. they didn't. >> i think that governor wallace is more concerned at that time about showing his fellow travelers his supporter, his friends that he was going to make his black folks behave. i am going to stop him. if he allows the march to continue, a lot of things would not have happened included and passage of the 1965 of voting rights act. i think that when nbc news, i
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remember that one and i am sure others news stations carried it, too, showed that hours late later, -- also a couple of other things happening during that same time when those two white menaces were killed, when the white clergy, you see the white clergy also got involved in this and they started demanded something happening and they started coming into alabama. when the white clergy got upset, the white house got even more upset and so those things in my opinion one of the major factors, also, in term are respondent to wallace resistance from the march. if he left it alone, it probably
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would turn out different. >> joe reid, what was your level of activity in the civil rights movement of the '60s. >> i was not at the bridge. this was a 1965, the alabama state teacher association, we supported the movement, we were actively involved and led by reverend reese was the leader in montgomery march. he and andrew dirgan. they came to the state association and we went to washington to solicit help from the national education association to get involved and protected and ensuring our members got the right to vote. we were involved in that. >> we just showed you the clips from 1963 of the schoolhouse
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incident. here is george wallace in 1967 talking about that incident and a little bit on the new work riots that were occurring. >> as i have said, we are further obligated to oppose in, a little over three years ago, we stood at the university of alabama. we went back for the purpose of freedom and to use that stunt as a national forum to warn this nation and washington and wake the law of our constitution and other revolutionary, will feel that they too can break the law. we warn them of the law that would treat our nation and affect in all citizens. >> the worse riots in the section of los angeles rocked new jersey's largest city north for five con secosecutive days
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night. some 1400 were arrested and killed. despite patrolling, millions of dollars and property damages done. looters racked and cleaned out. the mob makes any officials a target. >> snipers make the states a battlefield. governor hughes, opening rebellion, just like wartime. snipers fired from opened windows and killed two policemen and a fire captain shot in the back and several by stastanders. officia
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used guns stolen from a local rifle factory and even machine guns were used. because of widespread looting, emergency center ws were set up. >> looters are dealt with swiftly. at 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. curfew is one-third of the north. policemen is beaten to death and violence is reported. back live here, dan carter, the time period, what effect do they have for the governor and the national conversation? listening to that clip, i think you can get some idea what
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effect it had. much of it -- we know a lot of the claims that were made during the riots they were serious, all the talk about snipers and so on has been disproved. there were a lot of shooting and violence but that even the music and everything about it gives the impression that the nation is under sieged. although there were absolutely no connection between the race riots which had to do with poverty which i think had to do with poverty had to do with the conditions and the inner cities. in the minds of many americans, the civil rights and the riots of the 1960s were all blended together. both of them are rebellions against authorities. the distinction of one which is the civil rights movement is non violent and rely up on non violent and the others, of the
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outburst of violent is quite different. they are both black and the connection is there. >> joe reid, what do you remember of april 4th, 1968? >> i remember i was visiting doctor lee, president of the alabama state university. >> you are in montgomery. >> that's what i remember when doctor king was shot >> you asked me earlier about some other things about the civil rights movement. i was involved in the city movement as another effort on the part of this whole resistance on black folks, and the unwillingness to continue to accept segregation. you had to sit in movement and freedom ride and all of these things where blacks were demanding it now and of course,
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with the rise that's taken place and certain place which doctor king always condemns that were those who solves this as a threat to white well being. >> did you ever meet george wallace. >> oh yeah, i met him many times. i met him -- i don't remember the first time i met governor wallace. i really don't but i do remember him speaking to alabama education association, i think that may have been the first time that i shook his hands because he signed the bill. i was always very critical of governor wallace and noin fact,e said to me one time, so you know and you have been critical to me but you were never nasty to me. we had a bill, we were trying to get him to sign and that bill had to do for him to sign and
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registrars to get people to vote any time. the boys in the state of alabama were against it. we went to him and asked him to sign the bill. joe, you criticized me and never nasty so he went on and sign the bill. yes, many, many times and we talked even more of his last four years. ? we'll get into that later. son chase, thanks for holding, you are on c-span. >> caller: thank you, the republican candidates on issues like gay marriage and illegal immigration. it may not be the surrogate issues for people whose racial
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attitudes have not changed but it is no longer in fashion to speak publicly about that. >> dan carter. >> wow, that's a tough one to draw the direct connection. we certainly don't have the same kind of language about race that we once had. we can scoff all we want to about political correctness the fact that it is politically incorrect and who engage in any kind of racist language. we do have this long tradition in the united states in this democracy at times of selecting state governors and particularly groups that seem to represent a violation of what the cultural norms are that are so profoundly felt and whether it is the issue of prayers and schools or the issue of gay marriage and economic hard times whether it
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is esissues immigrants and job challenges that's threatening the jobs of americans. there is a connection in the sense that we want the enemy, maybe it is african-americans at some point. it maybe other groups. it is one of the darker side of american history >> george wallace ran for president in 1964, in 1968 he captured five states and 46 electoral votes and he ran in '72 and '76. next call, tampa bay, florida. >> hi mike. please go ahead. >> caller: yes, as a young american watching these old clips being played, it gives me hope to see how the cultures have come together in the clips and gives me great sense of hope
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to see how our political differences maybe able to be bridged today. >> joe reid of politics change in alabama. >> politics in alabama have changed. one thing we have to keep in mind, racism, martin luther king calling it goodwill in this country realized yet, depth are ra racism. i think all of these things are still apart of the die in the war and racism still exists until these days and not only in alabama but other states in the country. that's the question that the gentleman raised there about -- >> he was talking about how politics have changed and that leads me to ask you what is the
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alabama democratic conference? >> it was filed for the purpose to help john f. kennedy. blacks were shut out. so we were still struggling and had not got the right to vote until the mid '60s. black were struggling and other leaders and really would try to get a voice in the democratic party. so, alabama democratic conference was set up for that purpose. as time moved on. the conference, i had to do two things fundamental ly, that was to get white political leaders' tension and also unify the black votes making politicians to
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behave. >> 1968 was george wallace best run for governor, here is part of his announcement. >> one of the issues con fronting people is the break down of law and order and both nationalities apologizing today and saying as it comes about as a results of well payments and job opportunities and education and etcetera, the average man on the street in this country knows it comes about because of abo activists and militants and revolutionary and economists. i would give my strong moral support to the police departments and law enforcement. you enforce the law and i can tell few i were the president of the united states, you can walk on the streets of any section of washington dc.
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at any time and i will make that possible. i will bring 30,000 troops in washington and put one in 30 feet at the end of the rifle, we are going to make it safe and all the citizens of washington dc. it is a sad commentary that in the nation's capitol you are fearful of walking out of this hotel. this is not race, i am talking about. every time i mention this, this has racial over tones. when is it an over tone in this country to stand for law and order. >> news men have indicated so long that the people of our states -- believe in separation. that's racial separation, we have had more -- i would say of a large industrial state -- when
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you talk about segregation, we have supported in the past of a separate school system. as far as working and mingling and living close together, we have done more of that than the people of any other region of the country. one reason that we have had more peace in our region has been people of all races are needed and wanted in alabama. and, so i still stand for the riot of the people of alabama who their elected representatives to determine the policies of their school systems. >> joe reid, we want to get your reaction to governor wallace. >> he's talking about desegregation public education is not old to his effort. of course, we had making the decision which kind of a 100
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school system, we desegregated public education, it cannot be contributed to anything that governor wallace did. it was contributed to other organizations and black leaders went out in folsull march and everything else. can carter, when you wear the words "law and order," "military," and "warfare" are those code words? >> absolutely. >> the fact is once television plays such a critical role in the political process, you are aware of the fact that every word you are saying is captured on film or whatever. you have to be careful. as a sense of whatever you want to call it, political
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correctne correctness. you have to be careful of saying it so you learn a different language. you talk about race. and, nobody was better at it an governor wallace. when he wanted to complain about the federal government enforcing housing non discrimination. he talked about the blue eye china men that they are going to keep them from or make them coming into your neighborhood and everybody and of course every knew what he was talking about. >> 1968, richard nixon, 301 electoral votes and humphrey of 191 electoral votes. hubert humphrey one 13 states and plus dc. >> wallace won nearly 10 million votes and 46 electoral votes. >> dan carter, who won in 1968?
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>> it was hubert humphrey. >> i was humphrey's national committee. i was coach chair of educators to support humphrey. that was the first time in 1968 that black went to the national convention i was privileged and lucky enough to go because chairman bob arranged that. >> it was a convention, was it? >> yes, i was a pro-humphrey. yes, we achieved what we wanted to achieve. we did not achieve what we want elected. we are out in front of the governor's election where george wallace lived 20% of his life. 16 years he lived here. two miles south of montgomery. this is the contenders, we have two more weeks after this. our next call comes from
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jackson, mississippi, jordan, you are on c-span. >> caller: i have a comment and a question. i began my interests in politics when i was 10-year-old working in pennsylvania as a volunteer. even though it did not have a great deal of support in pennsylvania, he certainly had a strong base support in the philadelphia area. my question for doctor carter is what was his relationship as far as richard nixon. did he -- i know the alabama republicans backed him during the civil rights crisis and congressman bill dickerson was a strong wallace supporter. i was just wondering, you know what did wallace think of nixon
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and did he ever endorse richard nixon for president? >> dan carter. >> no, he did not think much of nixon. and particularly after 1968 because 1970 when governor wallace was running, his wife would die and hoover was going to run against former governor wallace. richard nixon put $400,000 in secret cash into the cam pane a campaign and it did not stay a secret all that long. governor wallace always suspected that richard nixon was trying to destroy it. nixon saw wallace as his greatest threat in 1972. so he made every effort that he could and certainly governor wallace was aware of that. >> dan carter in your book of
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"the politics of rage." george wallace started strong before he was shot? >> yes, he got more votes , by the end of the day he was shot, he had more votes than anybody at the time. i don't think he would have gotten the nomination. it was a tremendous problem for the democratic party. >> after he was shot in 1972, richard nixon went to see yhim, correct? >> correct. >> who else went to see him? >> just about everybody, george wallace and everybody and montgomery and they were all, it was as sense of compassion after what had happened and other cases the politics of it. they realize they would like to have his support. nixon did more to go see him, he also really manipulated the shooting of governor wallace by trying to blame the and trying
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to link the man who shot him to george. >> joe reid, do you remember when george was shot? >> yes, i remember it and i learned it in my office. you don't want anybody shot or hurt. my think went out to the wallace family as well as everybody e e else. it was one thing you did not want to happen. i remember it very well and of course, went to the democratic convention in 1972, george wallace e he was trying to make his way but as it has been said earlier, when he was shot and paralyzed, that pretty much ended his political career as the presidential candidate, on the other hand, he continues to
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run for office as governor. after that shooting and after he was paralyzed for so long. you will want to get to that later on. i think that's when he really got his political, i call it the conversion, i will hold it later. >> we'll get into that. governor wallace served in alabama. 1971 to 1979 and finally from 1983 to 1987. dan carter, george wallace, went ahead and ran for the 1976 campaign, how long did it last? >> he made it through several years of his primaries. there was another problem and that was jaime carter. carter did not have some of the baggage that governor wallace had. he was running in the after math
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of water gate. this is when religion really gets in campaigning. he ran as this highly moral person, i wi person, in so many different ways with his own progressive record as governor of georgia, he proved a better candidate to governor wallace and the big example was of the big primary in florida where governor wallace lost to jimmy carter and that pretty much finished i am. >> you are on the contender of the topic of this week. >> caller: i remember as as 10-year-old boy when george wallace got shot, it was a devastated day for me as a younster. my question is when governor wallace ran in the '70s. who was his endorsements and how
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presidential people have their money backer and how did he raise money to run for officer. i know has a son and political office with him, does he have any endeavors running for off and all? >> there were some big money but by and large, george wallace, you can like him or dislike him. he was an extraordinary successful fundraiser of small contributions. he got millions of dollars from people's small 10 or $15. >> i will let doctor reid talk about george wallace jr. there >> who was george wallace the 4th and jr. ? >> he's a son.
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he ran for state treasury twice and got elected. of course, later -- overall, he was a nice fella. he's currently a republican, correct? >> yes. >> and peggy wallace kennedy is honorary chairperson of the democratic party, is that correct? >> i think that's what she told u us earlier. >> yes, she was chair of the democratic party of the state of alabama and he's done a good job and he's got a uphill fight like all of us. but, the bottom line is george wallace jr. did run for the states treasure and the day we endorse him, george wallace sr. came to the convention and of
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course, the rest is history. >> well, we want to show you one more ad from our one more piece of video from 1968. this is an ad that george wallace was running. >> why are more and more millions of americans turn to governor wallace. as president, i shall within the law turn back to about absolutely control of the public school systems to the people of the respective states >> why are more and more americans turn to governor wallace, open small business and see what happens. >> as president, i will stand up for your local police and firemen in protecting your safety and property >> why are more and more americans turning to governor wallace? watch your hard dollars sail
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aw away. as president, i will halt the giveaway to those nations that aid our enemy. >> wallace has the courage to stand up to america. give him your support. >> and our next call comes from tony in pleasantville new york. >> caller: thank you, happy thanksgiving everybody. i was 21-year-old and looking back i am 65-year-old right now. over the years, i supported wallace and ross perot. i learned and i went to a rally, 1968 at madison square garden, george wallace and his vice president, curtis lamay. during the presentation there was some heclers about six or
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seven of them. when the event was over, the local news, we only had three channels those days and the only thing reported was the hecklers. what i learned at this rally and over the years how unfairly the media treats the third party candidate. c-span was not around in the 1968. but, if it was around in 1968, george wallace would have done better. in '72 if he was not shot, he would have a good shot at winning. >> tony, lets leave it there. >> that's the american party george wallace is running on. the role of the media. >> congratulations, you are the first person that i talked to over television who was hat that
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rally. it was a pretty remarkable valley. there is a lot of film footage from it which we were able to use in a documentary we did on governor wallace. i think you are right. most of the time the media tends to dismiss third party candidates. part of it is, they like confrontation. there were about 20 demonstrators shouting and giving the hitler salute. well, that's colorful news and that's often what news media like where as the speech themselves they were going to give a 21 minute ovation which you are exactly right. he received a 20-minute ovation >> doctor reid, would you like to add something. >> no. >> we'll move onto our next call, john, in north carolina.
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>> caller: i had a question about george wallace's prelegislative activity, before he got involved, was he a lawyer for some of the people who were involved inside the assassination of attorney again patterson and things of that nature? >> no. >> it does not ring any bells at all. >> if george wallace were live today, would he be a republican or a democrat? >> i would think he's a democrat. he was just -- i don't think he likes the republicans. out of his running, he was a democratic in alabama. so i think he would have stayed a democratic, i don't think he would have changed. >> i don't know. >> i think it is clear that it
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is harden in some ways of the politics o f the democratic party. on the other hand, he was pretty hostile towards the national government and his activities and it is possible that may have led him certainly if he's running for office in alabama, lived a long time, he would be running for republicans because that's the way he's going to get elected. joe reid, in 1974, to the gubernatorial office here in alabama. he ran for president i in '72 and '76. in '82, he said, "i have been wrong about the race issue". >> yes, i think after he was shot, his entire career of tl
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la the last few years was sanctioned and got it by race. period. i don't think he lost the race to john patterson because he s was -- the "n" word was used too much. >> john patterson is shot for trying to clean up phoenix city. i think governor wallace was not going to be either way. john patterson was a prosecutor and he knew how to go off of things >> back to 1982. >> back to 1982, your question was whether or not -- and i think he meant that. i think he meant it because he had been punished. i think he felt that, you have
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been in a wheelchair for a quarter of a century, if you are a christian and he said he was. you have to look back and say why am i here or why am i going through this. i really believe he went through this conversion. george wallace is one of the few politicians who would run on segregation flat for form -- platform and reputeuated and said i was wrong. >> i voted for the straight democratic ticket. >> george wallace was on that ticket? >> they did not endorse george wallace. we supported george mac miller. >> blacks running for county
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commissions and legislatures and everything. we told people straight democratic ticket because we did not have -- that was no republican out there and i can tell you right now someone raised a question, i will try to be brief about this. somebody raised a question that both of them are racist. one is a rising sun and one is asseting s as setting sun. >> we are out where george wallace live. don, in virginia, good evening. you are in c-span. >> caller: good evening, 1970s, i left pennsylvania and got down to the south and i was amazed how the southerners were treating, you know, everybody
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and i saw the movie "help" which i thought it was a picture shot of what the south was like and the way that the blacks were b subjugated. it was phenomenon. >> the teacher union are giving the idea of what's happening. i teach out here in california and i try to bring up what the democrats were in control of the south and caused all this. the deaths of mississippi and the complete destruction of society and i look at detroit and looked all over. and joe reed. i would to ask how much after 47 years as a teacher and you look at what the teachers have done to our country and how they
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don't do one thing -- >> don, you are getting off topic, we appreciate your call and we'll get an answer for you, quickly >> speak about the education association and respond to his comment but very quickly. >> alabama association as it exists now is a combination of the black and white coming together in the 1969. for two years, we have been merged, we have successes and some of those being bringing in to our organization, protecting tenures. we are still fighting for the rise of teachers and alabama considered as one o f the effective association of the country. >> well, i can tell you one thing. if george wallace was still act ti active in politics, he would not be attacking the teachers union.
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he saw them as important. i think it is a reflection of how there are many similarities fwe between the kind of conservativism that george helps to create. teachers who are not paid that much who really don't get vast pensions suddenly become another scape of society. >> that mentions the movie "help"? what was your impression of it? >> i read the book. >> you are from the south. >> it was a recreation of what it was like in this world in which black and white particularly and middle class and upper middle class and white southerners often had connections to blacks. it was always in this position as "the help."
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i think the film has been criticized by some but i think it does as good job of explaining the unfairness of that relationship. >> the city of montgomery, alabama is full of history. >> rosa park began her b bus boycott as well. one block from the state capitol where george wallace announced on 1963, segregation now, segregation tomorrow and segregation forever. it is laid out. you can see a lot of the different exhibits here in the city as well. next call for our two guests, dan carter and joe reed. new york, nick, you are on the contenders. okay, we are going to move on. we'll move south to kennesaw, georgia, you are on the
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contenders, please go ahead. >> caller: many question is for mr. carter getting back to the the the '72 election and his choice of curtis lemay, i am curious of their relationship, thank you very much. >> that was in '68, right? >> well, he thought that general lemay would bring in a lot of veteran voters. in the 1960s there were still a huge number of votes from world war ii and korea and even vietnam. he thought putting a respectable general like lemay would help him draw these veoters. governor wallace was sometimes
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bevolant. >> he did not get close to picking the vice candidate. >> also, governor of kentucky, channelling some of his folks. welcoming and at least bringing jackie robinson into a baseball because chandler was the commissioner of baseball. when jackie robinson was brought in, chandler was with it. >> some spojoe reed, do you rem your last conversation with george wallace? >> you think about that. >> as we go back, we want to introduce george wallace's daughter, peggy wallace who's joining us from inside the mansion. mrs. kennedy, you have been
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listening to our conversation the last hour and a half. what have you heard? >> well, i heard a lot about my father. >> i am sorry, i am unable to hear peggy wallace at this moment. >> we'll in just a moment. mrs. kennedy, okay, go ahead, now we can hear you. >> well, i heard a lot about my father and i have enjoyed and reminiscing a little bit. my father, to me, in my heart, he was not a racist. he was a politician. and he is the man that i want to remember and that i want my children to remember is that this is a man that in his later years, he reached out for forgiveness and he received that forgiveness. >> do you think that he did have
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some racist tendencies in th the '60s? >> um -- in my heart, i don't think that, i think he was just a politician. that does not make it right of what he did. so, like i said, the man i want to remember is one that reached out for forgiveness and received that forgiveness. >> mrs. kennedy, can you tell us about day where your father was shot, where were you and etcetera? >> yes, i was in college in detroit yuuniversity. i was sitting in the classroom and i remember looking up at the clock waiting for the class to start and just remembering at that particular time and then when the class was over, one of my friends came to me and she felt like maybe i already heard
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that my father had been shot and he was okay. well, your father is okay, he's been shot, he must have been okay. well, i didn't know that. i was brought here to the mansion and then flown straight to meraryland. >> we want to be clear because we were talking about you earlier here. you were the honorary chair of the alabama democratic party. >> no, my husband is the chair of the alabama democratic party. i sort of standby him and help him when i can. i do make some speeches at the democratic party functions. >> and your brother is now a republican, correct? >> yes, he is. >> but i still love him very much. [ laughs ] >> the same question that we ask doctor reed and doctor carter, if your father is alive today, would he be a republican or
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democrat? >> i think he would be a democrat. >> who would he voted for? >> i think he could possibly voted for president obama. i know that he would have been proud that i endorsed president obama and i think he would have been very proud that i marched across the edmund's bridge with john lewis. >> peggy wallace kennedy wrote a piece for cnn the day after the election, november 3rd, 2008. if you are interested, you can go to cnn and read it. it is about her visiting albany, georgia, tim, you are on the contenders, george wallace is the topic. >> caller: hello? >> hi, tim. albany, georgia, go ahead. >> caller: just a couple things. i know my time is limited.
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number one, selma is only about 40, 50 miles from montgomery. i grew up in selma at the time of the march. my question is for mr. carter. at the time of the march, rumors were running rampant. a woman by the name of iola luoza was giving marchers a ride back in her car when she was ambushed. it was rumored for many, many years that one of the marchers she was giving a ride was an undercover fbi agent. i wondered, have you ever heard of this rumor? thank you very much. >> it wasn't her passenger. it was one of the individuals in the car that did the shooting, was an undercover agent. it was his testimony that made it possible for the immediate arrest of the people that did the shooting, even though, as usual, nothing much came of it. that was the situation. the person she was taking back. i'm embarrassed to say i've forgotten his name, faked being shot.
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he fell under her when she was shot and the car wrecked. she fell on top of him. he was covered in blood. they stopped and realized she was dead and thought he was too. >> now, dr. carter, in your book, "the politics of rage." the 1972 shooting, arthur bremer, there is quite a discussion about potential conspiracy with the nixon campaign to have shot governor wallace. jack nelson, former bureau chief of the "l.a. times," pulitzer prize winner, came down, investigated it. what's your conclusion? >> i don't think so. i just do not believe that richard nixon and his entourage tried to exploit the shooting. arthur bremer, we have an awful lot of information, including his diaries, all of the diaries he wrote during this period. it is clear that this was a very
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mentally disturbed young man. >> peggy wallace kennedy, after your father was shot, what was his life like as governor and his personal life? >> well, of course, he slowed down quite a bit. i think that even though that was such a tragedy for him, i do think that it helped him in a lot of ways, to stop, and look around and appreciate his family more and appreciate what he had more. unfortunately, it had to happen in that way. >> your father was married twice after your mother died, correct, to cornelia and also to a lisa taylor? >> right. >> and divorced from both? >> right. one thing i do want to point out is that here at the governor's mansion, here in montgomery, alabama, in the back is a pool.
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i guess it was put in as a gift to governor wallace after he was paralyzed, because swimming would be good for him and it is in the shape of the state of alabama. dr. reed, did you remember your last conversation with george wallace? >> no. i was trying to. i just do remember one of the final statements we had with him. that was, he was saying that -- he said to me segregation, we were all taught that way, he said, but i was wrong and, therefore, he came to folks for forgiveness. so i accepted his decision and accepted his statement that he was wrong, because he was one of the few southern politicians every to repudiate that.
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i was invited to come to his funeral. i did go to the church where his funeral was. i think as a christian, he should have been forgiven and was forgiven. >> peggy wallace kennedy, where are your parents buried? they are buried at leak memory cemetery and they are together. >> is that here in montgomery? >> it is here in montgomery, yes. >> finally, dr. dan carter, how did george wallace change the national conversation? well, he certainly identified this mood that was in its very early stages of conservatism. it was made possible not only by his great skills but over circumstances which he had great control, which he was able to exploit. to me, the great tragedy is here was a person of enormous ability but was caught in the time warp that he was. "the politics of rage" is the name of dan carter's book. he has been our guest for the
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last two hours, as has joe reed, chairman of the alabama democratic conference as well as the executive secretary. >> associate executive secretary. >> associate executive secretary of the alabama educational and we are very happy to have joined us peggy wallace kennedy, the daughter of george wallace. we thank you all very much. we also want to thank governor robert bentley for opening up his temporary home here for us to broadcast from out front. it is a beautiful night in montgomery. it has been wonderful. thank you, governor bentley, the current governor of alabama. we also want to thank from the governor's mansion staff, james camp and heather hanna and thanks to everybody at the alabama state capitol building for all their help in setting up this contenders and we are going to leave you with governor wallace in 1976, his last the address to the alabama legislature.
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>> i feel i must say i have climbed my last political mountain. there are still some personal hills that i must climb. but for now, i must pass the rope and the pick to another climber and say climb on. climb on to high heights. climb on to reach the very peak. then, look back and wave at me. i too will still be climbing. my fellow alabamans, i bid you a fond and affectionate farewell.
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