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In early '44 Willkie was trying to decide whether or not to run in Wisconsin and
Albert spent a lot of time with John Haynes and in talking with Stassen and
maneuvering, trying to help Willkie in '44. Willkie, I don't think ran in any
primaries; I think it was decided not to. Dewey got hold of the imagination of the
people somehow by entering primary fights, and Willkie was just maneuvered out of the
nomination in '44, which ordinarily one might have thought he'd have as he should
have been in control of the party machinery.
I remember dining with Albert and the Willkies the night of Dewey's nomination in '44
and how sad and how still vaguely hopeful he was that maybe his name would come up
and sweet the convention. It was sad, pathetic almost. Willkie never liked Dewey and
he was deeply depressed over his nomination and didn't know how he could support him.
It's very difficult for the former nominee for President of any party not to support
his successor, but there were moments when I think he really considered coming out
for Roosevelt, which, of course, would have been very damaging to Dewey. It turned
out that he didn't need to damage Dewey any more than Dewey damaged himself. But
Willkie was in a great state of emotional frustration and very split about what he
should do and how he should conduct himself because he felt that he couldn't campaign
Was it because of Dewey's conservative point of view?
Yes, and he just didn't like Dewey as a person either.
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