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The life and times of joseph raymond mccarthy

The family was part of the Irish Settlement, a small group surrounded by farmers mainly of German and Dutch descent.

  • In that capacity, he so angered Democrats that they resigned from the committee in protest;
  • Have you no sense of decency?
  • At the age of fourteen, after finishing grade school, he took up chicken farming, at which he was briefly successful;
  • At age 30, McCarthy became the youngest circuit judge ever elected in Wisconsin.

His parents were devoted Catholics, literate but uneducated. The fifth of nine children, Joseph seems to have grown up shy and awkward, often rejected by his peers but favored by a protective mother. At the age of fourteen, after finishing grade school, he took up chicken farming, at which he was briefly successful. McCarthy moved to the nearby town of Manawa and managed a grocery store. When he was almost twenty he enrolled in high school, graduating in only a single year. After two years as an engineering student at Marquette University, he went to law school and was president of his class.

Soon afterward, McCarthy was admitted to the bar, an association for practicing lawyers. In 1935 McCarthy tried practicing law in several Wisconsin towns, earning a reputation as a fierce gambler along the way. He also began playing the game of politics. After an unsuccessful bid as Democratic candidate for district attorney, he shifted his focus and became the Republican candidate for circuit court judge. He won, and at the age of twenty-nine he became the state's youngest circuit court judge.

This victory also hinted at his later methods: He had lied in his campaign literature about his opponent's age adding seven years to it and about his own moving his birth date back. By now, his basic personality was well shaped—clever and ambitious but lacking moral judgment, or the ability to distinguish between right and wrong.

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Marines as a ground officer in the Pacific. He took part in many battles and won several medals for "courageous devotion" while on duty. In 1944, while still in the Marines, his friends in Wisconsin put him on the ballot for the U. He lost the election but placed second and earned more than a hundred thousand votes.

Soon afterward McCarthy left the Marines. Reproduced by permission of Archive Photos, Inc. In 1945, after returning to Wisconsin, he was reelected as circuit court judge.

Joseph McCarthy: Biography

A year later he ran for senator against Robert M. La Follette 1895—1953 and won. McCarthy had been a poor judge, being involved in at least one suspicious case.

  • In 1929, McCarthy was transferred to Manawa to manage a new grocery store;
  • After an unsuccessful bid as Democratic candidate for district attorney, he shifted his focus and became the Republican candidate for circuit court judge;
  • He was often called a fascist, or one who seeks complete control, by liberals and the left;
  • The fifth of nine children, Joseph seems to have grown up shy and awkward, often rejected by his peers but favored by a protective mother.

He had altered his war record to make it look more heroic, and he again cut moral corners in his campaigning. But he was a fitting candidate for the particular mood and cultural mix of Wisconsin at the time. McCarthy finds an enemy McCarthy's first years in the Senate were thoroughly average and at least slightly dishonorable.

As a number of his past adventures, including some questionable tax returns, began catching up with him, he needed an issue that would distract attention from his affairs.

On January 7, 1950, he asked three dinner companions to suggest an issue he could base his campaign on. They suggested communism, a political system in which property and goods are owned by the government and distributed among the people. The timing was perfect, as many in the changing nation feared the presence of communists living among them. Communism would give McCarthy a target.

Now he needed to rally support. In later speeches and interviews he kept changing the figures, depending on his audience and his mood. On February 20 he held the Senate floor for six hours in a stormy session in which other senators tried to get solid facts from him.

In the 1950 elections McCarthy secured the defeat of several Democratic senators who had dared question and oppose him.

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He spread terror even among his peers. His fellow Republicans were torn between fear of his skill and willingness to use his attacks on President Harry Truman 1884—1972Secretary of State Dean Acheson 1893—1971and former Secretary of State George Marshall 1880—1959. Takes on the army In 1952 McCarthy was reelected. He then used his investigative subcommittee as his point of support. He also used the press and television as his playing field. He even tried to develop a counterintelligence unit of his own inside the administration's agencies.

McCarthy finally turned his aim on the army in the Fort Monmouth hearings.

Joseph McCarthy

Evidence proved that they had sought special favors for G. David Schine 1927—1996a subcommittee staff member, as an army inductee a person who signs up for training or service in the military.

It is hard to guess why McCarthy attacked the army, when he must have known that his anti-Communist views could not stand a chance against the distinguished army officers. The intense response of the army's legal representative, Joseph Welch 1890—1960to McCarthy's attack on a member of Welch's firm marked the end.

In December the Senate passed a vote of censure, or an official disapproval, on McCarthy.

Joseph Mc Carthy Biography

He died three years later, on May 2, 1957, a broken man whose end had really come at the army hearing, when the nation recoiled from him and his power to inspire terror was halted. McCarthy and society Scholars have debated whether McCarthy's views expressed a basic appeal to the majority of Americans.

Joseph Raymond McCarthy Facts

He was often called a fascist, or one who seeks complete control, by liberals and the left. His support came mainly from a desperate group on the right conservatives who saw their world threatened by a mysterious conspiracy and were willing to see extreme methods used against it. McCarthyism came into the nation's history at a moment when Americans were uncertain about their future in a changing world.

McCarthy gave this fear the name of communism. He turned communism into a simple target for their hostility. He also came at a time when the cold war and the nuclear arms race had brought on a need for secrecy that led to a paranoid feeling of being surrounded by enemies within.

Joseph McCarthy and the Cold War. Comment about this article, ask questions, or add new information about this topic: