Nation: The Successor

Speaker Rayburn's incurable illness gave inevitable rise to the question of his successor. The odds-on choice: Massachusetts' Representative John McCormack, 69, a craggy Bostonian who has been Democratic floor leader for 17 years, longer than any other man, and who served as Speaker pro tern during Rayburn's absence in the closing weeks of the past session.

McCormack's floor leadership gives him a big leg up on the Speaker's job. With only one exception in the last half a century, Speakers have been succeeded by floor leaders. *McCormack commands the respect of other Democratic...

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