In keeping with our Presidential visits to Rochester series, on October 18th, 1932, New York State Governor and Democratic presidential candidate Franklin Roosevelt spoke at the Convention Hall.On September 23rd, 1920, Vice Presidential candidate, Franklin Roosevelt spoke at the Convention Center. That November, he and running mate James Cox lost in a landslide to Harding and Coolidge.
On October 18th, 1932 Roosevelt — now Governor of New York — returned to the Hall a few weeks away from his own landslide victory over President Herbert Hoover.
In Roosevelt’s remarks at the Convention Hall, he mentioned other visits to Rochester. His first was in 1910 as an alternate delegate at the State Democratic Convention. That November, Roosevelt would win the Senate seat representing Duchess County.
And in 1928, at the Convention Hall again, Roosevelt was nominated to success as the Democratic gubernatorial candidate.
In Punishing the Past: Presidential Elections in Times of Crisis (1932, 1968, 2008), University of Pennsylvania Professor Bruce Kuklick makes the provocative claim that rather than being about the future of the nation, elections must be about the past. In 1932, Kuklick argues that voters were not so much endorsing Roosevelt’s still shifting plans for reversing the Great Depression, but instead were voicing a full scale repudiation of Hoover and his administration. By the same measure, 2008 was similar to 1932 in that voters were not so much buying Obama’s vision of hope and change, but reacting to the Bush administration’s Iraq War and the Great Recession just emerging.
Using Kuklik’s thesis, a Trump victory in November would mark a negative referendum on Obama’s two terms in which Hillary Clinton served as Secretary of State.
When comparing 1932 and 2016, some pundits — offering an extreme interpretation I don’t share — see a Trump victory as akin to the gains made by the National Socialist German Workers Party in the 1932 Weimar Republic national elections.
Roosevelt would visit Rochester again as President on October 17th, 1936. And almost to the day, 18 years later Eleanor Roosevelt with have lunch with the the University of Rochester’s President C.W. de Kiewiet.
“Governor Roosevelt also visited Our Mother of Sorrows church in Greece in June 1930 to commemorate their 100th anniversary.”
In When President John Quincy Adams visited Rochester on July 27th and 28th, 1843 and toured Mt. Hope Cemetery, the grave of Nathaniel Rochester.
In On Abraham Lincoln in Rochester from Michael Nighan, a plaque and a train station.
In Memorial Day, 1892, when President Benjamin Harrison dedicated the Soldier’s and Sailor’s Monument in Washington Square Park with Frederick Douglass. And Occupy Rochester, Benjamin Harrison, Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass in the same park Occupy would occupy.
In FDR’s first visit to Rochester as a national candidate, September 23rd, 1920. And the League of Nations., Rachel in Washington Square Park.
In FDR in Rochester en route to a New Deal landslide, October 17th, 1936, an unfinished portrait.
In LBJ and RFK in Rochester, October 15th,1964, a plaque in Highland Park.
In 45 years ago when President Nixon visited Rochester. And 3 days later when East High School erupted in racial violence a media briefing at the Landmark Hotel in Pittsford.
In When Carter stumped Rochester in ’76. And Howard the Duck. it was Howard for Prez.
In 27 years ago today when President George H. W. Bush visited Wilson Magnet High School, a signed chalkboard.
In A seat at the President’s table three years later, soup and a grilled cheese sandwich at Magnolia’s.