The Pittsburgh Press (September 21, 1944)
One of the current mysteries is how such busy men as Prime Minister Churchill and Marshal Stalin find time to mix in American politics for the reelection of President Roosevelt. Even harder to understand is how such intelligent men can fail to see that these efforts are self-defeating, that they boomerang in favor of Governor Dewey.
Nothing causes deeper resentment in Americans than attempts by foreign governments to influence elections here. That always has been so, and it is even truer today because of greater emotional tension.
Though Mr. Churchill had been warned by earlier hostile American reaction to such blunders by the British press and officials, he could not resist the temptation in his Québec statement last week to put in a few personal plugs for the fourth term candidate – without specifically mentioning the election.
Marshal Stalin is less subtle. He simply takes one of his Moscow party-line magazines, and a stooge writer, and cuts loose against Mr. Dewey and the Republicans. He has the GOP candidate and party smeared with all the lies and insults which pass for clever propaganda in a dictatorship, but which informed readers in a democracy find revolting.
According to War and the Working Class, the Republican Party “always has been a citadel of isolationism.” But the article slips in its list of alleged isolationists by including prominent Democrats and by admitting that Mr. Dewey “has attempted to shake off diehard isolationists like Hamilton Fish and… Gerald Smith.”
Extreme reactionaries, Fascist elements, and even Hitlerite agents are trying to use the Republican Party, it charges, which is supported by the National Association of Manufacturers, DuPont, Ford, General Motors. These firms are said to be trying to preserve their interests in Germany, Italy and Japan.
Of course, this poison pen stuff is not much different from that of Marshal Stalin’s Communist organization in this country, which is working so hard to reelect Mr. Roosevelt.
We do not suggest that Candidate Roosevelt approves of such blundering tactics by his Stalinite supporters in Russia and in this country. As a smart politician, he knows that the loving Red buss bestowed upon him is apt to be politically a kiss of death. And the Republicans know that many voters will judge Mr. Dewey by his enemies.