National Affairs: Weakened Defense

"Mr. Chairman," cried Georgia's plain-spoken Carl ("Swamp Fox") Vinson, "this is the first time in my 44 years as a member of Congress, 25 years as chairman of committees presenting defense legislation, that I have seen a matter involving our national security become a subject of partisan politics."

Crafty Carl Vinson was stretching things a bit—and he was enjoying every minute of the partisanship. As chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, Democrat Vinson had given the White House such a rough time during hearings on President Eisenhower's defense reorganization bill that the bill voted out of his committee seemed a magnanimous,...

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