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Goldwater Visits Home State of Arizona

July 4, 1964 - Taking a holiday weekend off from delegate-counting, Senator Barry Goldwater came to Prescott, Ariz., today to ride in the annual rodeo parade and join in civic festivities. The festivities honored both this mining center’s centenary and the Senator’s forebears, who were among its pioneer citizens.

The leading Republican Presidential aspirant attended a pancake breakfast at the Congregational Church and shook hands on a street corner for an hour. Then he was cheered by 20,000 persons on a mile-long ride through Prescott’s streets astride a local 22-year-old Palomino gelding named Sunny, which he had ridden often in the past.

His sole political comment during the festivities was a remark to reporters that he was about to designate the persons who would make seconding speeches for his nomination at the Republican National Convention the week of July 13.

He mentioned former Senator William Knowland, his California campaign chairman, and Senator John Tower of Texas as “certain” choices. For a third speaker, he said, he would like to have a woman, but he has not yet chosen one.

Along with being the76th annual Frontier Days celebration in Prescott, this was Morris Goldwater Day in the one-time capital of Arizona Territory.

Morris, the candidate’s uncle, was an early day Mayor of Prescott. He was also the second-generation operator of a department store that gave rise to a chain of half a dozen Goldwater stores in Arizona.

Meanwhile, in San Francisco, Republicans began gathering today for what may well be the critical test of their 1964 National Convention — the drafting of the party platform.

The platform debate could provide a direct confrontation between the conservative supporters of Senator Goldwater and the GOP moderates, marching under the banner of Governor William Scranton of Pennsylvania. The last hope of the moderates is to provoke a platform battle that will make some delegates reconsider their supporter for Goldwater.

Civil rights is the likely subject for the test. Goldwater, breaking with the large majority of Republicans in both houses of Congress voted against the civil rights bill on the ground that it was “unconstitutional” and would lead to a “police state.”

Moderate leaders are saying they will press for the strongest possible civil rights plank. They favor that position on the merits and, in this instance, will have the additional goal of trying to goad the Goldwater faction into a fight that would, they hope, cause some defections from his camp.

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