Interview transcripts, 1940-1969

Think of this page as a table of contents to 57 interview transcripts featuring Everett Dirksen from 1940 through 1969, largely the period of his service in the U.S. Senate. We have reproduced all the interviews contained in his Remarks and Releases files housed at The Dirksen Congressional Center in Pekin, IL. Although Dirksen served in the House of Representatives from 1933 until 1949, only a single interview survives from that period.

These records do not include press conference transcripts. It is likely that Dirksen participated in many other interviews for which The Center lacks documentation. In 1964, for example, despite Dirksen’s prominence in such legislative battles as the civil rights bill, only a single interview transcript exists in The Center’s holdings.

Date Program Title Subject


American Forum of the Air, "Seven Years of New Deal"

Government spending, unemployment, monetary policy

June 1951

Chicago Defender

Senate office procedures, work load, District of Columbia home rule, cloture, future of Republican Party, the economy, foreign policy, minority rights


NBC, "Meet the Press"

Candidacies of Robert Taft and Dwight Eisenhower for president, Dirksen’s availability for place on the national ticket, the Republican program, the nature of "isolationism" and foreign policy, Universal Military training; campaign issues


CBS Radio, "People’s Platform"

National budget, government spending, congressional oversight of spending


American Forum of the Air, "The Issues of 1952"

Peace, internal security, preparedness, human freedom, economic freedom


CBS Radio, "Capital Cloak Room"

Impeachment of truman, truman’s seizure of steel mills, price and wage controls, Dirksen’s candidacy for president, Robert Taft, foreign aid


Mutual Broadcasting System’s "Reporters’ Roundup"

Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee activities, 1952 convention, government spending


Bill Henry’s "Window on Washington"

Dirksen’s trip to the Pacific, Korea, the war in French Indochina, Formosa


NBC, "Meet the Press"

Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee’s performance, McCarthy issue and censure


CBS Radio, " Face the Nation"

Eisenhower’s State of the Union message, Republican Party unity, foreign and domestic policies, McCarthy


Mutual Broadcasting System, "Reporters’ Roundup"

Republican political situation in 1956, Formosa, Illinois politics, McCarthy, Bricker Amendment


Westinghouse Broadcasting System, "Youth Wants to Know"

Suez incident, relations with Great Britain, duties of Republican Party Whip, Rule 22, Republican Party fortunes, McClellan labor racketeering committee, Red China


NBC, "Meet the Press"

Federal budget battle, Republican Party unity, civil rights bill, foreign aid and foreign policy, Dirksen describes his brand of Republicanism, his possible candidacy in 1960


Mutual Broadcasting System, "Reporters’ Roundup"

Unemployment, federal pay raises, Eisenhower’s program, aid to education, congressional junkets, Little Rock racial situation, Taft-Hartley Act


Westinghouse Broadcasting System, "Youth Wants to Know"

U.S. space launch, space program and link to federal aid to education, the economy, presidential disability, Middle East, labor legislation, national defense, Dirksen’s political plans


CBS, "Face the Nation"

Republican Party’s future in 1960, campaign issues, inflation, Senate rejection of Lewis Strauss for Secretary of Commerce, summit meetings


Westinghouse Broadcasting System, "Youth Wants to Know"

Lewis Strauss nomination, 1960 election prospects and issues, the economy, Berlin crisis, summit conferences, NATO, Eisenhower’s program

7.26.59 "Ruth Hagy's College News Conference" Eisenhower's legislative program, 1960 election, Republican Party, Nixon's visit to Soviet Union, congressional influence in regulatory agencies, labor-management legislation, Eisenhower's veto of housing bill, civil rights bill


American Forum of the Air, "The State of the Union Message"

Democratic and Republican responses to Eisenhower’s message


NBC Program for Radio, "Senator Dirksen's Radio and TV Message"

Third party possibility, method of selecting candidates, nature of politics and politicians, voting behavior, partonage, chaleenges of the next 50 years


Substituting for Thomas Kuchel

Disarmament, Cold War, space program, water resources


CBS, "Face the Nation"

Dirksen as a vice presidential candidate, Japanese treaty, possible Republican nominees, U-2 incident and the summit conference, campaign issues, pending legislation


ABC, "Open Hearing"

Minimum wage legislation, legislative accomplishments, pending matters, Eisenhower’s message to Congress, civil rights proposals, Forand bill, Nixon’s campaign, Dirksen’s relationship with Lyndon Johnson


NBC, "Meet the Press"

Rule 22, John Kennedy’s appointments, the question of a coalition between Republicans and southern Democrats, congressional action on Kennedy’s legislative program, leadership of Republicans


AFL-CIO, "Washington Reports to the People"

Republican strategy, legislative agenda


Interview with Congressman Jack Westland

Legislative agenda, Republican-Democratic coalition, Republican strategy


ABC, "Issues and Answers"

Relations with the Soviet Union, question of secrecy in the Kennedy administration, Republican leadership, evaluation of Nixon’s campaign, Republican congressional strategy, legislative agenda


CBS, "Washington Conversation"

Why Dirksen left the House of Representatives, his oratorical style, biographical information, how he received his middle name, pre-congressional years, Dirksen’s flexibility, government’s role in society, Dirksen’s leadership methods, evaluation of Kennedy, Republican Party leadership


ABC, "Issues and Answers"

Record of the 87th Congress


NBC, "The Nation’s Future"

The Kennedy administration record


WTTG, "Youth Wants to Know"

Republican Party, Soviet Union, politics, the Kennedy administration


NBC, "Meet the Press"

"Ev and Charlie Show," challenges to Halleck’s leadership, Cuba, aid to education, role of the opposition party, legislative priorities, government spending


WGBR, Interview with James MacGregor Burns

Political party cohesion and alignments, Republican Party fortunes in 1964, Kennedy’s quality of leadership


CBS, "Washington Report"

Middle East


ABC, "Issues and Answers"

Republican candidates and election chances in 1964, evaluation of Kennedy’s program, Republican-southern Democratic coalition; tax bill; unemployment, civil rights, other issues


Interview by Jack Bell

Tax bill, spending limitations, impact of tax legislation


NBC, "LBJ Report No. 1"

Impact of the Kennedy assassination on legislation, Lyndon Johnson as president


NBC, "Meet the Press"

1964 election, Bobby Baker cawse, Halleck as possible chairman of the Republican convention; Vietnam, civil rights bill


NBC, "Meet the Press"

Role of the Republican Party in Congress, federal aid to education, Republican Policy Coordinating Committee, chemical warfare, presidential disability, Vietnam, Republican Party unity, United Nations


WMAL, "Close Up"

Dirksen’s eye problem, comparison of House and Senate careers, "consistency" on issues, marigolds, theatrical career, Dirksen’s style of leadership, hazards of public life, evaluations of the presidents he served with, what would Dirksen do differently if he had to do it again?


CBS, "Face the Nation"

Implication of India-Pakistan war, bipartisan foreign policy, Southeast Asia, possible campaign issues, Johnson’s domestic program, repeal of 14(b), reapportionment, Dirksen’s relationships with Democrats; Republican Party spokesmen, lessons of 1964


ABC, "Issues and Answers"

Dirksen on Johnson’s Vietnam policy, relations with European allies, domestic programs, federal budget, civil rights


NBC, "Today Show"

Vietnam war, role of Republican Party in the war issue


U.S. News and World Reportinterview

Republican Party prospects, Great Society programs, government intrusion, Vietnam, arms shortages, "guns and butter," 14(b) and reapportionment, pending issues


ABC, "Issues and Answers"

Bombing in Vietnam, Douglas-Percy Senate race in Illinois, Dirksen Republicanism, reflection on career, reapportionment, 14(b), prayer in schools, Dirksen’s future goals, evaluation of Johnson


NBC, "Meet the Press"

Machinists’ strike, public prayer amendment, pending civil rights legislation, gun control bill, Great Society programs, Johnson’s conduct of the Vietnam war, Dirksen’s influence in the Johnson administration, election finances


NBC, "Today Show"

Why did the 1966 civil rights bill fail, demonstrations by blacks, political demise of Joe Martin


WTTG, "Opinion in the Capitol," Part 1

Personal and political philosophy, reflections on career, views of current events and future, plans for future


WTTG, "Opinion in the Capitol," Part 2

Personal and political philosophy, reflections on career, views of current events and future, plans for future


ABC, "Issues and Answers"

Budget and taxes, national defense, Vietnam war, East-West trade bill, consular treaty, Rule 22, civil rights legislation, Bobby Baker investigation, Senate ethics


CBS, "Face the Nation"

Riots and urban problems, Vietnam, gun control bill, Democratic Party’s liabilities, issues, government spending


ABC News with Howard K. Smith, "Everett Dirksen’s Washington"

Dirksen in recording studio, tour of the Capitol, reflections of career, survey of Pekin, discussion with Ben and Tom Dirksen


ABC, "Issues and Answers"

Vietnam, Pueblo capture, Republican candidates


CBS radio, "Capitol Cloakroom"

Congress’s role in relation to the White House, workload in Congress, pending issues, Vietnam


ABC, "Issues and Answers"

Work of the Republican platform committee, Republican candidates, nomination of Abe Fortas


ABC, "Issues and Answers"

Nixon’s Vietnam policy, ABM Safeguard Missile System, ethics in government, charges about Dirksen and his law firm, tax legislation, Senator Ted Kennedy’s criticism of Vietnam policy