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Goldwater to Choose Rep. William E. Miller as Running Mate

July 7, 1964 - Senator Barry Goldwater has indicated to associates that Representative William E. Miller (right) of upstate New York is his first choice for a running mate.

A Goldwater campaign official said today that Miller was “99% sure” of getting the Republican Vice-Presidential nomination if Goldwater was nominated for President, as is now expected.

The party will choose the candidates at its 28th national convention, which opens at the Cow Palace in San Francisco next Monday.

Miller, the Republican National Chairman, is serving his sixth term in the House from the Buffalo-Niagara Falls district. He made it clear today that he would readily accept second spot on a Goldwater Presidential ticket.

Meanwhile, several ranking Republican party figures reportedly are urging Goldwater to keep an “open mind” on the Vice-Presidency.

They insist Governor William Scranton of Pennsylvania would be the most logical running mate despite Goldwater’s dislike for the tone of Scranton’s late-starting campaign for the nomination.

Those who propose that Goldwater consider Scranton note that the Pennsylvanian is a proven vote-getter in one of the largest Eastern states. They contend he would bring a proper “moderate” balance to a ticket headed by the Arizona conservative.

Among others Goldwater is also being asked to consider as running mates are Senator Thruston Morton of Kentucky and Representative Gerald Ford of Michigan.

Meanwhile, Goldwater reportedly has told friends that Miller would be an excellent Vice-Presidential nominee for several reasons.

For one thing, he is quoted as saying, he and Miller are “politically compatible” and have somewhat similar Congressional voting records, except on civil rights. Goldwater voted against the civil rights bill, and Miller voted for it.

Also, Miller is a Roman Catholic, and it is believed he might appeal to some of the Catholic vote the party feels it lost in 1960 to President Kennedy.

The fact that Miller is from New York would give the ticket geographical balance, and as Republican National Chairman, Miller has been rallying Republicans throughout the country for three years.

In addition, Miller is an articulate politician and is said to be an especially hard-hitting “needler” of the Johnson Administration and Democrats in general.

Miller, who was 50 in March, is a native of Lockport, N.Y., and a graduate of the University of Notre Dame and Albany Law School.

During World War II, he served in military intelligence and after the war was an assistant prosecutor in the Nazi war crimes trials at Nuremberg.

Miller entered New York Republican politics in 1948 when Governor Thomas Dewey appointed him to fill a vacancy as district attorney for Niagara County. He was later elected to the post and in 1950 was elected to Congress.


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