Tuesday, June 2, 2009
Richard Milhous Nixon began making a name for himself between 1948 and 1949 in the U.S. House of Representatives as a member of the Committee on Un-American Activities during its investigation of what became known as “The Hiss Case”. The case was a debate regarding Alger Hiss, a former State Department official, and whether or not he had assisted in the transportation of confidential government documents to the Soviet Union. When Hiss was found guilty, Nixon gained national respect and acknowledgement. In 1950, he was able to use anti-communism as a method of winning a position in the United States Senate by spreading aspersions regarding his opponent. Though his tactics were widely criticized, he was ultimately given the position. Two years later, at the 1952 Republican National Convention, Richard Nixon was chosen to be the Vice Presidential running mate to Dwight D. Eisenhower. Information was then released stating Nixon had accepted $18,000 fund for “political expenses” from California businessmen, and he was nearly dropped from the Republican ticket. However, he saved his political career by defending himself in what is popularly known as the “Checkers Speech” by making a sentimental reference to a family puppy bought for his daughters. The rest of his career maintained his powerful reputation as he developed foreign affairs credentials in several countries, consistently rallied for the Republican Party, and eventually served as President of the United States.