Radio script for Millard F. Caldwell's 1944 campaign for election as Florida Governor; speech given in Miami, May 22 (10...


Material Information

Radio script for Millard F. Caldwell's 1944 campaign for election as Florida Governor; speech given in Miami, May 22 (10 pages)
Series Title:
Press Releases
Physical Description:
Mixed Material
Caldwell, Millard Fillmore, 1897-
Caldwel, Millard F. ( donor )
Publication Date:
Physical Location:
Box: 3
Folder: Press Releases


Subjects / Keywords:
Florida. Governor (1925-1949 : Caldwell)
Spatial Coverage:
North America -- United States of America -- Florida -- Dade -- Miami

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
System ID:

Full Text

Final Radio
Miami, Florida,
May 22nd, 1944


Millard Caldwell, candidate for Governor of Florida, led

a field of six men in the first primary with a vote of more than

116,000. The high spot given him by the people of Florida in the first

primary has justified his belief that a campaign for Governor in Florida

need not be based on a flimsy foundation of political promises, trades,

commitments, and so called covenants binding the Governor's hands before

his election and strangling him in dealing with the grave problems facing

our state d ring the next four years. Caldwell has made no trades with

the manipulating politicians. His only promise has been made directly

to all the people of Florida that he will deal with each problem as it

arises in a businesslike way and dispose of them for the best interest of

the state and all the people in the state. His appeal and the sound plat-

form adopted by him made such great headway with the people of Florida

that they voted him high man in the first primary.

He has carried his campaign directly to the people. He has

spoken hundreds of times, asserting that good American citizen


ship comes before membership in any group or residence in any section.

He pleads and plans for a united Florida; harmony between all sections,

all working for the best interest of Florida* Be has not arraigned

class against class, nor section against section. He has, by his

calm, logical, common sense appeal to the people, renewed in them

a vital interest In good government in our State.

Hard hitting and straight shooting; a clean, tall, lean, fit

fighter for the rights of all the people, his appeal has been so

effective that the voters tomorrow will go to the polls and make him

the next Governor of Florida.

The next voice you hear will be that of Millard Caldwell,

Florida's next Governor: Mr. Caldwell.

CALDWELL: For the great confidence expressed in me by the people

of Florida in the first primary by a splendid vote of more than

one hundred and sixteen thousand, which came from every part of

our State, I am grateful and humble* For the overwhelming majority

which I am confident the people of all Florida will roll up for me

in the ballot boxes to-morrow, I will feel a deep sense of respon-

sibility and humility. This campaign has been before the people


for seven long and arduous months during a time when our nation is

engaged in the most important war in its history. Nearly three

hundred thousands of the young men and women of our state are scat-

tered to the far corners of the earth fighting our battles for us.

They have left for you and for me, as good Americans, great tasks

to perform, and serious responsibilities to discharge faithfully.

Many of them left us as boys and girls; they will return to

us men and women, ready and eager to find their places as useful

citizens of our state.

Whatever we do tomorrow will have a profound effect upon the

lives and the future security of many of them. Tomorrow, we will

be faced with our own consciences in the quiet of the ballot box

with this one grave question:

Shall we, for the next four years, demand that the government

of Florida be run for the benefit of the state, and all of the people

in the State, or shall we allow it to be run for the personal benefit

of the promising, trading, and manipulating politicians?

With the supreme confidence I have in the sound judgment of

the people of Florida, there is and cannot be but one answer to that


question. That answer is, that government in Florida shall be

for the benefit of the state and all its people; not for the

politicians; that our government shall be simplified aid kept

close to our people; that the interest of the people in the govern-

ment shall be kept aflame and burning for the eternal preservation

of those high ideals of liberty, and justice and opportunity

which made this country the great nation it is today, and for

which our boys are fighting and dying on foreign battlefields

half way round the world.

There has been no time in Florida history when the issue

to be decided tomorrow was so clear. In peacetime we have thought-

lessly enjoyed the luzury of political shows; we have perhaps been

amused at the frantic antics of those who have tried to be elected

to high public office by political merry-go-rounds of shrewd deals,

trades, and bargains in a false carnival played before the people.

We cannot afford that now. We are engated in a deadly serious busi-

ness in this war, and the problems following the war will be a deadly

serious business.

There is too much at stake and too much to risk to place the

government of Florida in the hands of politicians who will clutch


at the coat tails of the governor from sunrise through the wee small

hours of the night exacting the special privileges and concessions

which he has traded in desperate last minute attempts to secure

election. Florida's high place of responsibility in this great.

nation cannot for the next four years be so lightly treated. We must

work together. Class cannot be arraigned against class, group against

group, nor section against section. A house divided against itself

cannot stand.

If there was ever a time in our history when we need to work

together for the common good, that time is now and for the next four

years. There has never been any vindictiveness in my public or private

life. My policy will be one of unity and harmony. My administration

will be dedicated to the purpose that all sections and groups in

Florida should and must work together for the common good.

My public and private life has been devoted to that principle.

When I was in the legislature of Florida in the sessions of 1929 and

1931, during the depths of a terrible depression, I was guided by

and fought for what I conceived to be the common good. I was floor

leader in the fight for state aid to the schools of Florida, which

is substantiated by the official records which have in last minute

desperate political adds printed by the opposition been either

falsified, misquoted, or quoted only in part.

I joined with the school teachers of Florida in 1929 in kill-

ing a defective pension bill which did not have the approval of the

Florida Educational Association, because it contained a clause which

made the school teachers take a pauper's oath before it would benefit

them, and which actually would have benefitted only a few of the

negro teachers of the state. I fought for the first state aid for

schools on the instruction unit basis, which should now be raised to

$1000, The Okechobee Flor Control Bill of 1929 was opposed by me

because it was unconstitutional, as was later held by the Supreme

Court, and saddled a Six Million dollar debt on the people of the

district without giving them an opportunity to vote on the measure.

Representative A. 0. Kanner, who was Senator from the district in

which Okeechobee County is located, for five consecutive terms also

opposed the bill for the sane reason. I have always fought against

the principle of saddlITg any ooammnity with a bonded debt without

a vote of the people affected.

It is my conviction that the old people of Florida should be

dealt, with justlygenerously, and fairly, and that the state


should match the Federal Grants to the old people so that they

will receive a pension of Forty Dollars a month.

Promises pledging the state revenue for particular roads in

exchange for the word of self styled political bosses that votes

will be given in exchange therefore is not, in my judgment, a course

of dealing which is consistent with the best interest of the people

of Florida* I have been offered many such trades, particularly

since the beginning of the second primary. I have steadfastly stuck

to the first statement I made to the people when this campaign

begun: That I would'make n political trades or commitments, except

that I, as governor, will do my best for the people of the state,

and every part of the state. No part of the welfare of the people

of the state of Florida will be traded off by me in an attempt to

get elected, I want all the votes I can get, but I want them on the

same basis that I received the first one hundred and sixteen thousand,

that is, ability and fitness for the office.

The first primary was a clean hard fight. I had hoped that

this second primary campaign would be the same. Unfortunately, how-

ever, the opposition, staring defeat in the face, has tried a last

desperate gamble of rumors and scandal sheets. That has been tried


before in Florida, qnd failed, just as it has failed this time.

The people have always sent down to defeat at the polls, every can-

didate for Governor who has sought that high office by a mud slinging

whispering, rumor spreading campaign. Nearly three months ago, I

suggested that all the candidates meet fact to face on the speaking

platforms throughout Florida, to be seen and heard by all of the

people of Florida, and given an opportunity to answer any charges

made against them. The opponent left in the race against me, was the

only one who refused to meet to work out plans for that. I have been

in this race seven months| my opponent for twenty years- our records

were well known months ago. I mention this only to put the people

of this state on guard against the falsified record of my votes on

public matters, which have been given wide circulation throughout

Florida, in a last desperate attempt on the part of the opposition

to stave off defeat*

The platform on which I have stood is by now familiar to the

people of Florida. The issue is clear, In the conduct of my campaign

I have frankly and fairly stated my attitude on government, and my

belief in what a government should do for its people and what the

people should do for the Government. I have had the happy privilege

of speaking to many thousands of the people of Florida. I have been

in every part of the state. I have learned a great deal of its

problems. With the many fine friends that I have made throughout

Florida, I am confident that I can, as your Governor, make the neces-

sary plans to steer us safely through the trying days that are ahead.

With the advice and counsel of those who are most familiar with the

great fishing, citrus fruit, forest, mining, farming, and manufacturing

activities of Florida, we can march forward with every confidence that,

working all together, we can build tlis into a greater and a better

state in which to live. When I go into the Governor's office it will

be with the single purpose of doing what is best for Florida and all

the people of Florida.

Those who have problems to bring before me will not have to

come through the vice governor of any county. There will be none.

Nor will they, in coming to my office, have to shove their way through

a capitol full of broken down political hacks, wrangling among them-

selves as to which shall be first to pounce upon me to get me to


carry out some trade or concession, because I have made no trades and

no concessions of special privilege. If I had done so, I could not do

the job that must be done for Florida and all of the people of Plorida.

We must do all within our power to win this.war, making every

sacrifice and undergoing every inconvenience necessary to support our

Commander-in-chief, and our armed forces for the earliest possible,

victorious end of the war.

When you, the people, in whom is vested all power, nominate

your Governor tomorrow on the basis of fitness and ability for the

office and for the best interest of all Florida, you will have done

great service as good American citizens. With the faith I have in your

judgment I am confident that your decision will be just and right.

My confidence in the good judgment of the people of Florida

is so strong that I feel justified in predicting that the vote tomorrow

will make me your governor by the greatest majority by which a Governor

has ever been elected in Florida. With that confidence I am onnne-the-

less humbled by the responsibilities of that great office. I shall

during my term of office remain your faithful servant.