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What a marvelous opportunity this offered you to advance your
interest and ideas.
Yes, but this is why I suggested this to them to begin
with. It was my idea that the President should send a health
message, initially, and I had to get the concurrence of Anna
Rosenberg and of Rosenman, and they got the concurrence of Roosevelt.
And then nothing happened, and then Rosenman got the
concurrence of Truman.
I think I'll go on about what happened about the
health message. Well, in any case, the war ended in August of
'45. A great deal had happened: Truman had to make many trips;
many people were very busy; and there was no more talk about
the health message. It was just one of those things that didn't
seem to be of high priority.
I got an appointment with President Truman through Robert
Hannagan--Anna Rosenberg had arranged it for me--for the 8th of
September, 1945, and I went to see President Truman--it was the
first time I had ever met him--to ask if he wouldn't go ahead with
the idea of the health message to Congress. I told him that he
would be the first President in the history of the country who
would have taken an interest in the health of the people. This
appealed to him very much and he said he would. And he was
interested in health. He was sympathetic to the idea of health
programs without knowing anything about the field. He was
interested in the general idea of health insurance because he had
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