Senator John F. Kennedy - revamping Taft-Hartley.

Senator John F. Kennedy Talks About Taft-Hartley – June 14, 1953 – Past Daily Weekend Reference Room

Click on the link here for Audio Player – American Forum Of The Air – June 14, 1953 – Gordon Skene Sound Collection

This day 61 years ago they were discussing what to do about Taft-Hartley. The controversial and contentious Law, referred by many as a “Slave Labor Law” was in the process of being amended, but it was unclear what direction those amendments would take. So this program, The American Forum of the Air hosted a discussion/debate over the law and the proposed amendments. Taking part in the debate were Senator John F. Kennedy (D-Mass.), who was a member of the Senate Labor and Welfare Committee and Senator William A. Purtell (R-Conn) also a member of the Senate Labor and Welfare Committee.

The debate, like the law itself was contentious with Senator Purtell saying the law needed to protect employers, not just employees only, but that Purtell felt the law was sound. Senator Kennedy characterized Taft-Hartley as a Slave Labor Law, saying the law made it more difficult for Unions to organize, particularly weak unions most notably in the South.

For the next half-hour the debate went on, along with questions from the audience over provisions in the law and what amended provisions were being considered.

Healthy debate on a controversial subject in 1953.


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