Ronald Reagan - "A Time for Choosing Speech" - October 27, 1964 - in coordination with the Landslide: LBJ and Ronald Reagan at the Dawn of a New America discussion

Group: The History Book Club

2 likes ·   218 views
Ronald Reagan delivers his A Time for Choosing speech, his official endorsement of Goldwater for President.

Comments Showing 1-5 of 5

dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Bentley (last edited Dec 03, 2014 09:02PM)

Bentley Mod
Source: Wikipedia - Excerpt

In September, a poll conducted by the Goldwater campaign revealed that Johnson had a comfortable lead over him.

Indeed, Goldwater's campaign was an uphill battle against an incumbent administration during a prosperous economy. In the wake of the death of John Kennedy, who had been leading in polls for reelection in 1964,there lingered the possibility that Johnson had the sympathy of the media and voters.

On October 27, actor Ronald Reagan, who had not yet entered politics, gave his official endorsement to Goldwater in what would come to be known as the "A Time for Choosing" speech. In his speech, Reagan emphasized issues such as the spread of Communism, taxes and the national debt and advocated limited government, aggressive tactics against the Soviet Union and laissez-faire capitalism. The speech was Reagan's "unofficial entrance to politics" and played a crucial role in his election as Governor of California in 1966.

Throughout October, the media emphasized the lead Johnson had over Goldwater, stating that Goldwater had little chance of winning the election. This negative coverage of the campaign caused many independent voters, who were not strong supporters of either candidate, not to vote, for they believed the result of the election had been already determined.

On Election Day, Goldwater lost the election to Johnson by what was then the largest margin in history.

Goldwater accumulated 52 Electoral votes to Johnson's 486 and 38.5% of the popular vote (27,178,188) to Johnson's 61.1% (43,129,566). Goldwater carried six states: Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, South Carolina and his home state of Arizona. Goldwater's strong showing in the south is largely due to his support of the white southern view on civil rights: that states should be able to control their own laws without federal intervention.

Goldwater lost the popular vote in both the male and female electorate with 40% and 38%, respectively. Goldwater's most narrow regional lost was in the South, with 48% of the popular vote, but lost by greater margins in the East, Midwest and West with 32%, 39%, 40% of the popular vote, respectively. Johnson was heavily favored over Goldwater among Catholics (76% to 24%), and by a smaller margin among Protestants (55% to 45%). Goldwater lost the Independent vote to Johnson (56% to 44%). Johnson won the white vote over Goldwater (59% to 41%) and was heavily favored by the nonwhite electorate (94% to 6%). Goldwater lost the college-educated, high school-educated and grade school-educated population to Johnson (52% to 48%, 62% to 38% and 66% to 34%, respectively).


Bentley Mod
Please let us know what your thoughts are on the speech by posting on the Landslide - Week One thread.

Here is the link:

If you liked the video - please select the like button and let us know your thoughts.

Bentley Mod
Thanks Justin - have to say Reagan gave a good speech on behalf of Goldwater and glad you liked the video.

Justin Poe Of course I've always loved this speech. I'll comment more in the Week One thread on my thoughts on the video.

Bentley Mod
I look forward to reading them Justin.

back to top