As a reminder of some historic Convention acceptance speeches, ones which have resonated throughout history, and which have come back to shed light over how some things have changed – here is the acceptance speech of General Dwight D. Eisenhower, for his nomination as President in 1952. In 1952 we were in the middle of the Red Scare – we were in the middle of Korea – many felt it was time for a change of leadership. Eisenhower was extremely popular, as Supreme Commander of Allied Forces in Europe during World War 2 he was widely hailed as a war hero, and it was that instant connection with so many people that made his nomination inevitable and his election almost assured.
Dwight D. Eisenhower: “We are now at a moment in history when, under God, this nation of ours has become the mightiest temporal power and the mightiest spiritual force on earth. The destiny of mankind—the making of a world that will be fit for our children to live in—hangs in the balance on what we say and what we accomplish in these months ahead.
We must use our power wisely for the good of all our people. If we do this, we will open a road into the future on which today’s Americans, young and old, and the generations that come after them, can go forward—go forward to a life in which there will be far greater abundance of material, cultural, and spiritual rewards than our forefathers or we ever dreamed of.
We will so undergird our freedom that today’s aggressors and those who tomorrow may rise up to threaten us, will not merely be deterred but stopped in their tracks. Then we will at last be on the road to real peace.
The American people look to us to direct our nation’s might to these purposes.
As we launch this crusade we call to go forward with us the youth of America. This cause needs their enthusiasm, their devotion, and the lift their vision of the future will provide. We call to go forward with us the women of America; our workers, farmers, businessmen. As we go to the country, Americans in every walk of life can have confidence that our single-minded purpose is to serve their interest, guard and extend their rights and strengthen the America that we so love.
The noble service to which we Republicans summon all Americans is not only for one campaign or for one election. Our summons is to a lifetime enrollment. And our party shall always remain committed to a more secure, a brighter and an even better future for all our people.
We go out from here with unbounded trust in the American people. We go out from here to merit their unbounded trust in us.
Wherever I am, I will end each day of this coming campaign thinking of millions of American homes, large and small; of fathers and mothers’ working and sacrificing to make sure that their children are well cared for, free from fear; full of good hope for the future, proud citizens of a country that will stand among the nations as the leader of a peaceful and prosperous world.
Ladies and gentlemen, my dear friends that have heaped upon me such honors, it is more than a nomination I accept today. It is a dedication —a dedication to the shining promise of tomorrow. As together we face that tomorrow, I beseech the prayers of all our people and the blessing and guidance of Almighty God.”