Oct. 12, 1962 - President Kennedy, from one of Pittsburgh’s highest hilltops, called on Pennsylvania voters tonight to commit themselves to economic progress. The alternative, he declared, is a Republican “drift from recession to recession.” Partisans rocked the rafters of Fitzgerald Field House, a University of Pittsburgh facility. Mr. Kennedy said the Republicans “are dedicated to this country, are just as patriotic as we are, but have a different idea of its responsibilities and the responsibilities of the national government.” While pleading for bolstering of his Democratic majorities in both houses of Congress, the President said, “History is against us.” He noted that since 1938 the party controlling the White House has lost an average of 9 seats in Congress in off-year elections. He asserted that if history repeats itself next month, “we will be in the control of a dominant Republican-conservative Democratic coalition.” It was one of the rare occasions that Mr. Kennedy has openly assailed the conservative Southern wing of his party. But his Pennsylvania audience loved it and applauded him lustily.
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