Politics of Conscience: A Biography of Margaret Chase Smith

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Greenwood Publishing Group, 1995 - Biography & Autobiography - 245 pages
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This biography of Margaret Chase Smith is the first historical treatment of Smith to use her voluminous private papers as well as extensive interviews with Smith and her colleagues in Congress. As Maine's daughter, Smith was frugal, hard-working, reticent, and caustic. At age thirty-two she married, in scandal, state-politician Clyde Smith with whom she had been involved since she was sixteen and who was twenty-one years her senior. Smith came to Washington when Clyde was elected to Congress and, against his wishes, she became his secretary. When Clyde died in office in 1940, Smith played the widow's game and successfully ran for his seat. In the House during World War II, Smith sat on the powerful Naval Affairs Committee and, tutored by committee counsel Bill Lewis, developed a national constituency, the military, which in turn allowed her to better serve Maine's interests. Lewis directed Smith's first Senate campaign in 1948 when she won an upset victory by an astonishing margin. Overnight she became the darling of the Republican party, the heroine of women everywhere, and the only woman in the United States Senate. Immediately, she became embroiled with Joseph McCarthy and courageously confronted him with her Declaration of Conscience speech four years before a Senate majority censored him. Associating herself with politics of conscience, Smith was elected to three more terms and sat on the powerful Armed services, Appropriations, Space, Government Operations, and Intelligence committees. America's heroine was a political icon by the time she was defeated in 1972 at the age of seventy-four.

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POLITICS OF CONSCIENCE: A Biography of Margaret Chase Smith

User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

A meticulous biography of one of this century's more influential female politicians. Margaret Chase Smith (18971995) was the first woman to be elected to both houses of the US Congress and the first ... Read full review

Politics of conscience: a biography of Margaret Chase Smith

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

With her "Declaration of Conscience" before the U.S. Senate in 1950, Senator Margaret Chase Smith became one of the first to reject publicly the extremism of Senator Joseph McCarthy and thereby ... Read full review


Showcasing a Legend
Maines Daughter
In Training
The Widows Game
Americas Heroine
Declaration of Conscience
The First Female Cold Warrior
The Wilted Rose

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Page 2 - We found no courtesy in them, and when we had nothing more to exchange and left them, the men made all the signs of scorn and shame that any brute creature would make.

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About the author (1995)

PATRICIA WARD WALLACE is a Professor of United States History at Baylor University. Politics of Conscience is her seventh book. Her other works include The Threat of Peace: James F. Byrnes and the Council of Foreign Ministers.

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