August 21 1988 – It was election season and eyes were on GOP Presidential Candidate George Bush’s choice for a running mate; Indiana Senator Dan Quayle. Quayle was 41 at the time and was the object of considerable speculation whether or not Bush made the right choice. To many, even within the Party, Quayle seemed more of a liability than an asset; he was easily rattled, lacked a certain crucial amount of experience and had a hard time answering key questions, particularly over his military record.
And so, on this day it was disclosed that Dan Quayle was taking some time off to get some much needed “briefing and grooming” over how to present himself during the remainder of the campaign. An outspoken Bush told the press that he was not hesitant about his selection of Quayle, and that he did serve in the National Guard with pride and with honor, during a particularly thorny period during the Vietnam War.
For their part, Democratic candidates Michael Dukakis and Lloyd Bentsen had no scheduled campaign appearances.
In other news – Day Two of the ceasefire in the Iran-Iraq War appeared to be holding and there were even signs of normalcy present. When the ceasefire was announced, reports of Iranian soldiers along the front lines leaving their positions to hand Iraqi troops flowers – Iraqi troops returning the gesture by giving water. Fingers were crossed that maybe an end to the years-long war was in sight.
And a Pentagon scandal was brewing. An internal Navy report alleged the Marine Corps had carelessly exposed tens of thousands of military documents to possible compromise by failing to safeguard classified information. A Marine spokesman admitted some documents should have been locked up, but added “nothing big ever got out”. The Marines were at a loss to account for some 60,000 missing documents.
And that’s a little of what happened, this August 21, 1988 as reported by CBS Radio News On The Hour.