The Nation: Libel?

A thoroughly political man, Richard Nixon last week seized upon Senator Edmund Muskie's amazingly candid remark (TIME, Sept. 20) that he would not favor a black as his running mate in 1972. Muskie reasoned it might keep him from winning and thus from fighting for racial justice as only a President can.

The President, after telling reporters he would not discuss politics, proceeded to say that it was "a libel on the American people" to presume that they would not accept a black vice-presidential nominee. The President's reproachful tone suggested the improbable—that he would be happy to have a black for a...

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