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Wayne Morse (Dewey Defeats Truman)

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Wayne Morse
Wayne Morse
36th President of the United States
Assumed office:
January 20, 1965
Left office:
January 20, 1969
Vice President: John Kennedy
Preceded by: Earl Warren
Succeeded by: Nelson Rockefeller
United States Senator from Oregon
In office:
January 3, 1945 – January 3, 1965
Preceded by: Rufus C. Holman
Succeeded by: Bob Packwood
Biography
Born: October 20, 1900

Madison, Wisconsin

Died: July 22, 1974 (aged 73)

Portland, Oregon

Birth name: Wayne Lyman Morse
Political party: Republican (1945-1952)

Independent (1952-1955)
Democratic (1955-1969)

Spouse(s): Mildred Morse
Alma mater: University of Wisconsin-Madison (B.A., M.A.)
University of Minnesota Law School

(LL.B.)
Columbia Law School (LL.M., J.D.)

Religion: Baptist

Wayne Lyman Morse (October 20, 1900 – July 22, 1974) was an American politician, peace activist, and attorney who was the 36th President of the United States and a Senator from Oregon.

Morse, who began his career as a Republican before joining the Democratic Party, was notable for his unorthodox and independent views, in particular, his opposition to many of Thomas E. Dewey and Earl Warren's anticommunist proxy wars throughout the 1950s and early 1960s. It was this opposition, primarily, that spurred his party switch and subsequent presidential run in 1964, when a split Republican electorate led to his election.

Morse's presidency, despite its roots in foreign policy, is defined most by its civil rights triumphs. Vice President John Kennedy was a staunch supporter of civil rights, and he was able to help Morse pass the Civil Rights Act of 1966, which single handedly helped undo a century of racial bias.

A mixture of white backlash against the Civil Rights Act, and a general discomfort with the increased complacency of the Morse administration, led to Nelson Rockefeller's election in 1968, after which Morse left elected office entirely.

Throughout the early 1970s, Morse became an increasing opponent of Muskie's Vietnam War, and was a mentor to liberal Republicans like Lowell Weicker and young Democrats like Al Gore, Jr. in equal measure, before he passed away in 1974.

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