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Incident At Fort Wayne – May 29, 1980

Vernon Jordan - shot in the back.

Vernon Jordan – shot in the back.

. . . or click on the link here for Audio Player – CBS World News Roundup + The World Tonight – May 29, 1980 – Gordon Skene Sound Collection.

News of assassination attempts, this May 29th in 1980. Civil Rights leader and Executive Director of The National Urban League Vernon Jordan, was gunned down outside a local Motel in Fort Wayne Indiana, after speaking to a local gathering of Urban League members. Shot in the back, Jordan was rushed to a nearby hospital where he was listed in critical but stable condition. The assassins bullets missed his spine and lodged in his abdomen. As of the Morning news, there was no motive for the attack and Fort Wayne Police were actively searching for suspects.

And politics made headlines again as the 1980 Presidential campaign season got into full swing. President Carter staged his first all-out campaign swing through Ohio and the first set of appearances since his announcement of seeking re-election the previous December. When informed of the Jordan shooting, Carter expressed his shock and offered his prayers for a successful recovery.

And while President Carter was scheduled to speak at a rally in Columbus Ohio, Republican Presidential Candidate Ronald Reagan was also scheduled to speak at a rally some 6 blocks away from where Carter was speaking. And Democratic Presidential hopeful Ted Kennedy was scheduled to speak at a similar rally in Columbus some six hours earlier. In Kennedy’s address, he once again challenged Carter to debate him, saying if Carter agreed, Kennedy would release his delegates to vote for Carter if they wanted.

And the Budget was up for discussion on Capitol Hill this day as members of the House took up debate on a compromise proposed Budget for the next fiscal year. Both House and Senate negotiators agreed on a total of $613.3 Billion – exactly where that money would be spent become a matter of dispute between Capitol Hill and The White House. President Carter favored cuts in Military spending, focusing instead on Social programs – and members of the House, or Gang Of Five, refused to sign the Conference report, saying the House had given away too much to certain Senators who insisted on major Defense expansion. The ride on Capitol Hill for this day was expected to be bumpy.

And The Federal Reserve Board, as of this day in May, reduced its discount rate for the first time since 1976 – from 13% to 12%. Financial experts said the lowering of the discount rate appeared to be a move to ease the impact of the Recession on the part of the Fed. By cutting the discount rate, the Federal Reserve made it cheaper for banks around the nation to borrow from it – that in turn, meant those banks w hich had been cutting their prime rate sharply in the past few days now would be in a position to drop interest rates even more on the loans which they make to businesses and individuals. If it was easier and cheaper for businesses and individuals to borrow, the economy would be expected to pick up steam and move ahead. Though it might take time for signs of that to show up. Earlier in the year, interest rates were pushed up to 13%, and it was one of the major factors in fighting inflation by slowing down the economy. The Financial experts felt that, the same pattern should work in reverse and act as a stimulant to the economy.

All that, and a lot more, including progress reports on the condition of Vernon Jordan throughout the day, this May 29th in 1980 as reported on The CBS World News Roundup, Hourly News and The World Tonight.

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