Senate Majority Project

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

In Your Gut, You Know He's Nuts

In 1964, Barry Goldwater rode the slogan “In your heart, you know he’s right” to a whopping 38 percent of the popular vote – the worst showing by a major party candidate since 1824.

The vast majority of Americans may have rejected Goldwater, but in his heart, Sam Alito knew Goldwater was right. In 1985 letter, Supreme Court Nominee Sam Alito cited the 1964 campaign of Barry Goldwater as one of the “greatest influences on his views.” Here are a few examples of views embraced by Goldwater during the 1964 campaign that shaped Alito’s views:
  • Goldwater supported making Social Security voluntary

  • Goldwater opposed the 1964 Civil Rights Act. He said it was an unconstitutional effort to “legislate morality”

  • Goldwater promised to overturn a Supreme Court case that said the principle of “one person one vote” required representatives to be apportioned by population,

  • Goldwater promised to strengthen “States Rights”

  • Goldwater advocated the use of nuclear weapons in Vietnam
Bush has picked a nominee who eagerly embraced the Goldwater Agenda when it helped him get a promotion in 1985, so it’s a fair question how many of its outrageous parts he still wants to impose on the country. Goldwater would have axed the Civil Rights Act and rolled back bedrock democratic principles. And where Goldwater supported rights of women to make medical decisions … Alito seems to be multiple choice.

Democrats in 1964 printed bumper stickers ridiculing the Goldwater campaign slogan, but maybe the LBJ campaigns other slogan for Goldwater applies more to Alito … “In your heart, you know he might”

Then again, Goldwater did offer this gem in 1981: "I think every good Christian ought to kick Jerry Falwell in the ass"