Search transcripts:    Advanced Search
Notable New     Yorkers
Select     Notable New Yorker

Frances PerkinsFrances Perkins
Photo Gallery

Part:         Session:         Page of 731


By the New York election of 1926 we were all old hands, so to speak, at electing Al Smith and campaigning for him. He had built up a large following and it was not difficult the way it had been in the early elections. He'd built a large following, he'd done well, everybody had a good word for him, hardly anybody had a bad word for him, and everybody who wasn't a strict party Republican was very likely to vote for him. The fringe vote went for him.

I don't remember any special crises in the campaign. There was the usual business of meeting in the Biltmore Hotel. Bernard Shientag was what later became called a “brain trust.” He had the rhythm by this time and he was very cynical. He was in 1926 performing the functions that the brain trust did later - that is, studying the situation not as a politician studies it, but as a person who has to make a speech and appeal to the broad elements of human nature, develop a policy, say enough, but not too much, and think out the content of the speech, deciding whether you

© 2006 Columbia University Libraries | Oral History Research Office | Rights and Permissions | Help