George McGovern, fully George Stanley McGovern

McGovern, fully George Stanley McGovern

American Historian, Author, Politician and Presidential Candidate

Author Quotes

The whole campaign was a tragic case of mistaken identity.

To those who charge that liberalism has been tried and found wanting, I answer that the failure is not in the idea, but in the course of recent history. The New Deal was ended by World War II. The New Frontier was closed by Berlin and Cuba almost before it was opened. And the Great Society lost its greatness in the jungles of Indochina.

We are at a crossroads over how the federal government in Washington and state legislatures and city councils across the land allocate their financial resources. Which fork we take will say a lot about Americans and our values.

We are the party that believes we can't let the strong kick aside the weak. Our party believes that poor children should be as well educated as those from wealthy families. We believe that everyone should pay their fair share of taxes and that everyone should have access to health care.

We reject the view of those who say, 'America, love it or leave it.' We reply, 'Let us change it so we can love it more.'

Ever since I was a young man, I wanted to run for the presidency in the worst possible way — and I did.

When people ask if the United States can afford to place on trial the president, if the system can stand impeachment, my answer is, "Can we stand anything else?"

I always thought of myself as a good old South Dakota boy who grew up here on the prairie. My dad was a Methodist minister. I went off to war. I have been married to the same woman forever. I'm what a normal, healthy, ideal American should be like.

You know, sometimes, when they say you're ahead of your time, it's just a polite way of saying you have a real bad sense of timing.

I am fed up with a system which busts the pot smoker and lets the big dope racketeer go free.

You never fully get over [losing a presidential campaign]. But I've had a good life. I've enjoyed myself 90 percent of the time.

I didn't know a damned thing about mental illness and neither did anyone around me.

I don't think the American people had a clear picture of either Nixon or me. I think they thought that Nixon was a strong, decisive, tough-minded guy and that I was an idealist and antiwar guy who might not attach enough significance to the security of the country. The truth is, I was the guy with the war record, and my opposition to Vietnam was because I was interested in the nation's well-being.

It is simply untrue that all our institutions are evil,... that all politicians are mere opportunists, that all aspects of university life are corrupt. Having discovered an illness, it's not terribly useful to prescribe death as a cure.

It was an issue-oriented campaign, and we should have paid more attention to image.

So, I think that's the centerpiece of morality: Don't lie. But to do that, you have to go a step further and find out what the truth is.

The longer the title, the less important the job.

The trouble was, all people saw on television were a few of my outspoken supporters out front and they came away thinking that was me.

The trouble was, all people saw on television were a few of my outspoken supporters out front; and they came away thinking that was me.

I'm fed up to the ears with old men dreaming up wars for young men to die in.

The highest patriotism is not a blind acceptance of official policy, but a love of one's country deep enough to call her to a higher plain.

Politics is an act of faith; you have to show some kind of confidence in the intellectual and moral capacity of the public.

No man should advocate a course in private that he's ashamed to admit in public.

The free market should not include the right to pollute our environment.

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McGovern, fully George Stanley McGovern
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American Historian, Author, Politician and Presidential Candidate