The Presidency: Challenge & Swift Response

"There's something about the man that reacts to a Kennedy," an aide remarked last week of Lyndon Johnson. To be sure, there is something about the President that reacts to any meaningful challenge to his authority, but the response is reflex and relentless when the defial comes from a Kennedy. True to form, scarcely 48 hours after Robert F. Kennedy became an open rival for the presidency, Johnson launched a massive counterattack. During a week whose pace and tempo seemed more attuned to the windup of a bitter election than to its...

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