THE PRESIDENCY: Careful, There

The President, a sentimental man, enjoyed the holidays. He ate turkey, went out on the front porch of the "little White House" at Independence, Mo. to greet the carolers, bought his 93-year-old mother "the usual sort of thing a fellow buys." He granted full pardons to all the several thousand ex-convicts who served honorably in World War II's Army and Navy. Once he had the rare luxury of sleeping late—for him: until 8:30 a.m.

But there were still a few citizens wondering whether his journey had been sentimental or just plain foolhardy.

When the presidential Sacred Cow took off from Washington...

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