This is a transcription of this speech made for the convenience of readers and researchers. A single text of the speech exists in the Senate Speech file of the John F. Kennedy Pre-Presidential Papers here at the John F. Kennedy Library. The location is consistently identified in the files as the "Sharon Inn," but no such establishment exists. The speech was actually given at the Shenango Inn in Mercer County, Pennsylvania.
SENATOR KENNEDY: Governor, Senator Clark, Governor Edmondson, ladies and gentlemen: One of the things about running for the Presidency is that you have to be prepared to make speeches before breakfast and on any other occasion. (Laughter) I am delighted to be here this morning. We arrived at 2:30 last night and we are going to campaign with the Governor all through the State of Pennsylvania. I have said on many occasions that Pennsylvania is key to the success of this election and also I believe Pennsylvania, a great industrial complex, has seen the effects of eight years of Republican indifference to the needs of this state and the needs of this country. I believe that the people of Pennsylvania and the people of the United States, recognizing that this is a difficult time and an important election, are going to put their confidence in progress, which is our most important product. (Applause)
I saw yesterday that Mr. Nixon said he was a practical progressive. I read a letter the other day that he wrote in May of 1960 saying he had been throughout his entire career not a "Liberal" but an economic conservative. If he would make up his mind what he is, we could make a better judgment whether the people of this country want an economic conservative, a practical conservative, or a Democrat. I think they want a Democrat. (Applause).
I think they want a candidate who does not have to issue statements every day saying what he is and what he is not, depending on what faction of the country he is in, and which audience he is talking to. I am a Democrat, east, west, north, south, a Democrat who stands in the tradition of Franklin Roosevelt, in Pennsylvania, in California, in Georgia, in Massachusetts. Mr. Nixon is we do not know what, but whatever it is, I think Mr. Nixon and the Republican Party will be rejected on November 8, 1960. (Applause)