President of the Day

Handy Presidents 2e
ISBN: 9781578593170

Which president taught high-school public speaking?

  • His vice president was a former pharmacist.
  • His wife won both the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the Congressional Medal of Honor after his death.
  • He was the first chairman of the Aeronautics and Space Committee.
  • He initiated the "Great Society."

Lyndon B. Johnson

What did he do after graduating college?

Johnson taught public speaking at a high school in Pearsall, Texas, and then taught public speaking at Sam Houston High School in Houston, Texas.

Who was his vice president?

Hubert Humphrey of Minnesota served as Johnson's vice president from 1965 to 1969. A former pharmacist, Humphrey served in the U.S. Senate from 1949 until becoming Johnson's vice president. He later became the Democratic presidential nominee in 1968, but lost to Republican candidate Richard M. Nixon.

Did he marry?

He married Claudia "Lady Bird" Taylor on November 17, 1934, in San Antonio, Texas. Her childhood nurse said that she was as pretty as a "ladybird," which is how she acquired her nickname. She outlived her husband by more than thirty years, passing away in her nineties in 2007. In 1977, President Gerald Ford awarded her the Presidential Medal of Freedom and in 1988 President Ronald Reagan presented her with the Congressional Medal of Honor. She was actively involved in the implementation of the Head Start Program, vocal in her support of civil rights, and passionate about the conservation and beautification of America.

When did he serve in the U.S. Senate?

Johnson first ran for a seat in the Senate in 1941, but lost to Texas governor and popular radio personality Wilbert Lee "Pappy" Daniel. However, he won a controversial election in 1948 over Governor Coke Stevenson. He won by such a scant margin that he was dubbed "Landslide Lyndon." Allegations have been made through the years that Johnson and his team used unsavory means to win the election.

Whatever the circumstances of his narrow victory, Johnson became a fixture in the U.S. Senate, serving from 1949 until 1961. He was the first chairman of the Senate's Aeronautics and Space Science Committee. He also worked as the chair of the Armed Services Defense Preparedness Subcommittee. He initially voted against civil rights legislative, but in 1957 switched course and became a supporter of such legislation.

What was "The Great Society"?

"The Great Society" was Lyndon Johnson's term--similar to Franklin D. Roosevelt's "New Deal"--for a fairer, inclusive society free of racism and poverty. Johnson told a crowd in 1964: "In your time we have the opportunity to move not only toward the rich society and the powerful society, but upward to the Great Society. The Great Society rests on an abundance and liberty for all. It demands an end to poverty, and racial injustice, to which we are totally committed in our time."

From The Handy Presidents Answer Book, Second Edition by David L. Hudson, Jr., JD., (c) Visible Ink Press(R) More than 1,600 things you never knew about our nation's leaders

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