Congress went through the motions of considering the President's special-session message—but the motions were perfunctory. Seven hours after Harry Truman had left Capitol Hill, congressional Republicans flatly announced—with the approval of Candidate Tom Dewey—that "our efforts will be devoted to completing the session as soon as possible."

One way of completing it quickly and painlessly was to take refuge in the expected Southern filibuster on civil rights. While the House made ready for a three-day weekend, Acting Senate Majority

Leader Ken Wherry called up the anti-poll tax bill. From his seat under the Senate's big gilt clock, Mississippi's quiet John Stennis...

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