Despite these signs or tokens of change, Tower has been rated by a conservative group, the Americans for Constitutional Action, with a cumulative score of 99% for his votes in the past five years, making him the most conservative man in the Senate by their standards. Listed below by topics is a summary of Tower’s public declarations and the decisions he returned when they called for the. yeas and nays. The World Outside Senator Tower’s view of the world outside can be described as military intervention and diplomatic isolation. The United Nations and foreign aid have been objects of his wrath from the beginning, although he has not pushed the idea of getting out of the world organization. In 1962, when the Congo was in turmoil and the U.N. in deep financial trouble, Tower said the United States should give the organization a loan instead of buying its bonds.’ The next year, he attacked President Kennedy’s support of U.N. intervention in Katanga \(“a major shortcoming of the Administration’s foreign policy, to U.N.: “The United Nations military campaign against Katanga to overpower the only independent pro-Western and anticommunist government in central Africa, with approval and support of the State Department, is . . . convincing the American people more and more each day of the futility of the United Nations as an effective instrument for peace. I venture to predict in future days it will be more and more difficult to convince members of Congress, who are responsible to the American people and who are responsive to the manifestations of opinion of the American people, that the United Nations merits the financial, moral, and policy support of the United States.” 2 Last August, Tower was calling for a firm stand on the question of Russia’s U.N. debt: “There are indications that we American taxpayers may soon be asked to voluntarily contribute even more money to the U.N. . . . The Russians could let us pay for everything the U.N. does and their veto power tell us where and when we can spend our money.” 3 Tower often talks as an economist when describing the nation’s relations with the rest of the world. Last July, Sen. Strom Thurmond of South Carolina proudly pointed out himself, Tower, and others as advisors to Young Americans for Freedom, when Sen. J. W. Fulbright called it a “vigilante group” responsible for a “nuisance boycott campaign” against Firestone Tire and Rubber Co. \(The firth had announced, then withdrawn, plans to construct a syn1964, Tower had said in a broadcast to the people, “I opposed the recent trade agreement with the Soviet Union, in which our government approved the sale of huge quantities of wheat to communist-bloc nations. In addition, I vigorously opposed the granting of American credit to the communists for those sales. I supported amend ments to the farm bill, which would have denied credit to the communist nations for their purchases in this country . . . I did not agree then, ,and I do not agree now, that an absence of internal problems in Soviet Russia is good tidings for the western world . . . The well-fed communist countries are more able to cause trouble than lean, under-fed countries. They are able to wage war; they are better able to wage not only war, but economic competition with the free world.” 5 The Cuban question spurs Tower to exceptionally bold talk. In 1963, he spoke on “Cuba and our foreign policy” on a radio-television broadcast presented by the Miss. After advocating a blockade and invasion of Cuba, Tower was asked if such action would touch off a general war. “I don’t think so . . . I don’t think that they would initiate the thermonuclear war that they know they cannot win over Cuba .. . Of course it would be highly destructive to us, but ultimately we could rebuild; but we would be the victors, and communism, would have disappeared from this world. Of course, we don’t want a thermonuclear war; don’t ever let me convey the impression that we do, but I think that the real danger comes not in going to the brink of war, but in shrinking from the brink of war.” 6 Two months later, Tower accused the Soviets of making a profit on Cuban sugar, calling this laissez-faire communism. “It reminds us of the British mercantilism of the 18th century. Now we see the Russians adopting trappings of the capitalistic system and coming up with ‘Soviet mercantilism.’ “7 The rioting in 1963 and 1964 in Panama \(“a country that would not even exist were to decry the world situation in general. “No recitation of detail is needed here. You are all familiar with the situations in Cuba, Panama, Zanzibar, Vietnam, Laos, Berlin, the Congo, Cyprus, and almost any other place you can place your finger on the globe. The overall picture is certainly not one in which we can take great comfort . . . I believe our government should embark once again on a diplomatic and economic crusade to bolster the cause of freedom around the world.” 8 In a 1963 speech to the Daughters of the American Revolution, Tower said the Alliance for Progress was being used to force Latin American countries to develop “socialistic schemes. We are insisting that Latin American countries develop socialistic plans, that they expropriate property, that they confiscate property, that they compete with private enterprise.” Foreign aid, he said, is a primary cause for the gold drain. 9 What does Tower propose? He gave the answer in April, 1964, in a broadcast over a Milwaukee television station: “I think foreign aid is having the opposite effect of what it should have. The main problem in Latin America is that private capital is flowing out of Latin America. What we need to do is to help them to stabilize their currency to help them to create or encourage them to create a favorable political climate in which private capital will be attracted. They need to have private capital . . . we need to insist on encouragement of private investment in under-developed countries.”” Tower voted against the 1965 foreign aid bill, although he refrained from speaking against in on final passage. In 1964 he achieved a victory with his amendment forbidding foreign aid to Indonesia. 0 Last year he said Nasser had adopted a “go to hell” attitude about the United States similar to Sukarno’s. Tower suggested cutting off aid to the United Arab Republic, but his amendment has not been adopted.’ 2 In 1963 Tower spoke to a Chicago rally honoring ex-King Peter II of Yugoslavia and commemorating a battle in 1389 in which the Turks overwhelmed the Serbs. He said on that occasion, “We cannot coexist with a great power that is bent on our destruction. We shall prosecute the battle against communism until we are victorious.” 13 War and the Military Last January Tower was named to the Senate armed forces committee, a plum which caused jubilation among party professionals in Texas. “We have more than a quarter million defense personnel both civilian and military in Texas. This committee authorizes expenditures for one half of the national budget … Much of the basic industry in our state is vitally concerned in the military equipment field, and military wages in Texas annually amount to three quarters of a billion dollars. I believe the new post will afford a position of great service to my state and for that reason I am very pleased,” Tower exulted. 14 Last May he asked the committee to press for work on a backlog of repair work at the Corpus Christi Naval Air Station with an initial $250,000. He listed more than $1 million in repairs he said were needed at the base, ranging from work on runways to fixing up the steel sashes in Building 8.15 A little later, he reported the committee’s favorable view of producing the F-1I1 Worth as manned bomber to stall a “bomber gap” in the 1970’s. 16 \(This speech was a far cry from the one Barry Goldwater made in Fort Worth in the 1964 campaign, hinting at dark misdeeds behind procurement of the contract for the big firm which last September, Tower announced a 10,000man expansion of Army training facilities at Fort Bliss, Fort Sam Houston, and Fort Wolters. 17 January 21, 1966
You May Also Like
The Texas Rangers are tasked with investigating corruption and crimes by public officials. Those officials are rarely held accountable.