Public Papers of Harry S. Truman, 1948

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Author: Harry S Truman  | Date: September 27, 1948

211
Remarks Recorded for Broadcast on Democratic Women’s Day.
September 27, 1948

I WANT to ask you women of America to stop for a minute on this, your Democratic Women’s Day, to look back on a truly gallant fight that we now take for granted: the battle for women’s right to vote. Remember that it was a great Democrat, a great liberal, and a great President, Woodrow Wilson, whose leadership brought victory in that battle 29 years ago.

Today, women are in the highest councils of government. Some of the very people who had led the uphill battle for suffrage assumed posts of leadership in the Democratic Party, where they and their successors have carried on the battle for human progress.

Democratic Women’s Day, which you are meeting to celebrate in thousands of communities throughout the country, was set aside a decade ago at the suggestion of Mrs. Franklin D. Roosevelt, to commemorate the admission of women to the Executive Committee of the Democratic National Committee. This was a year before the passage of the Suffrage Amendment.

Ever since that time, the Democratic Party has relied heavily on the guidance and support of women. For American women always have understood that human rights come first; that progress today is the best guarantee of our children’s security tomorrow.

I say the Democratic Party has relied on you women. And I must turn this sentence around, and say that you women have relied on the Democratic Party. As mothers and homemakers, you must be concerned with the prices you pay in the stores and with the proper schooling of your children. And you have learned through bitter experience that the Republican Party cannot be relied upon to bring your children a better tomorrow. For proof of that, you have only to look at the record of the Republican 80th Congress.

You are the housewives of our country. What is the campaign issue foremost in your minds? We all know the answer. Day after day, when you do your marketing, you must face the soaring prices the 80th Congress has forced upon you.

You know what the big business lobbies, through the Republican leadership in Congress, did to price controls in 1946. I vetoed one of their fake price control bills, but they passed a second and then immediately adjourned, so it was that or nothing. I warned when I signed it that inflation would come, with all its hardships. I called a special session of Congress this year and urged it to rectify this mistake, and do something to keep down the cost of living.

The Republican Both Congress turned me down, and it turned you down. I do not see how you can expect these same Republicans ever to solve the cost of living problem.

I have said that you are the housewives of our Nation. You are the mothers, too. I am a parent, and I can understand your feeling that your children must have the best education available. Education will bring them the skills and the knowledge which will enable them to lead useful and happy lives. The Democratic Party advocates Federal aid for education administered by the States. We insist upon the right of every child to obtain a good education, no matter what his color, no matter where he lives, or what the economic status of his parents may be. We fought for the appropriation of $300 million as a beginning of Federal aid to education. The Republican Both Congress ignored my request.

Women hold the balance of power in this election. You women of America have a million and a half more potential votes than men. I am confident that you will use this power to bring about a secure and good future for yourselves and your families. Only through the Democratic Party can you reach this goal. I know that you will put faith in our party, and return it to full power on the first Tuesday in November.

NOTE: The recording was made on the Presidential train on September 23 as the train approached Los Angeles. The President was introduced by Mrs. India Edwards, Executive Director of the Women’s Division of the Democratic National Committee.

The remarks were broadcast at 3:30 p.m. over the American Broadcasting Company network.

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Chicago: Harry S Truman, "211 Remarks Recorded for Broadcast on Democratic Women’s Day.," Public Papers of Harry S. Truman, 1948 in Federal Register Division. National Archives and Records Service, Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States, Harry S Truman, 1948 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1956-), Pp.968-971 Original Sources, accessed February 7, 2023, http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=855NHAJTLLDVH65.

MLA: Truman, Harry S. "211 Remarks Recorded for Broadcast on Democratic Women’s Day." Public Papers of Harry S. Truman, 1948, in Federal Register Division. National Archives and Records Service, Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States, Harry S Truman, 1948 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1956-), Pp.968-971, Original Sources. 7 Feb. 2023. http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=855NHAJTLLDVH65.

Harvard: Truman, HS, '211 Remarks Recorded for Broadcast on Democratic Women’s Day.' in Public Papers of Harry S. Truman, 1948. cited in , Federal Register Division. National Archives and Records Service, Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States, Harry S Truman, 1948 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1956-), Pp.968-971. Original Sources, retrieved 7 February 2023, from http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=855NHAJTLLDVH65.