Mr. Chairman: The Life and Times of Ray C. Bliss

Mr. Chairman: The Life and Times of Ray C. Bliss

by William L. Hershey, John C. Green


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781629220413
Publisher: University of Akron Press, The
Publication date: 11/09/2017
Series: Series on ohio politics
Pages: 224
Product dimensions: 6.20(w) x 9.20(h) x 1.30(d)

About the Author

William L. Hershey spent more than forty years reporting on Ohio government and politics at the local, state, and national levels before retiring in 2012. He covered nine national political conventions and eight Ohio presidential campaigns, and continues to write on a freelance basis. Hershey was Washington correspondent for the Akron Beacon Journal and Columbus Bureau Chief for the Akron Beacon Journal and the Dayton Daily News as well as a major contributor to the 1987 Pulitzer Prize won by the Akron Beacon Journal staff for coverage of Sir James Goldsmith’s attempted takeover of the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. He served two years as a Peace Corps volunteer in Ethiopia and earned his BA degree in history from Albion College as well as his MS degree from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. A native of Flint, Michigan, he lives in Columbus, Ohio, with his wife Marcia.

John C. Green is the director of the Ray C. Bliss Institute of Applied Politics at the University of Akron, a post he has held since 1988. He is also a Distinguished Professor of Political Science at the University of Akron. Dr. Green received his PhD in Political Science from Cornell University in 1983 and his BA in Economics from the University of Colorado in 1975, and is a member of Phi Beta Kappa. Green has done extensive research on American religion and politics, political parties, and Ohio politics. He is author of The Faith Factor, coauthor of Buckeye Battleground: Ohio, Campaigns, and Elections in the Twenty-First Century, and editor of The State of the Parties, now in its seventh edition. Dr. Green is a respected analyst of American and Ohio politics, and is widely quoted in the news media.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments xi

Prologue xiii

1 Akron, Ohio 1

2 Family Matters 5

3 The University of Akron 9

4 The May Queen Fiasco 13

5 Ray C. Bliss Meets James A. Corey 18

6 First Campaign Lessons 22

7 Climbing the Political Ladder 25

8 The Test Tube City 29

9 The 1937 Akron Mayoral Campaign 32

10 A Quest for Party Unity 37

11 Ray Bliss Becomes County Chairman 40

12 Strengthening the Local Party 43

13 Growing Recognition 49

14 Ray Bliss Gets a Day Job 53

15 The Great Defeat of '48 56

16 Ray Bliss Becomes State Chairman 58

17 Strengthening the State Party 61

18 Taft and TV 65

19 Mr. Republican Loses White House Bid 69

20 Ohio Likes Ike 72

21 The Organizational Man in Action 75

22 George Bender and a Judas Goat 79

23 Success and Sorrow 85

24 A Republican Governor-At Last 87

25 A Rocky Start and a Showdown 91

26 Business Defies Bliss 95

27 The Right-to-Work Disaster 100

28 Ray Bliss Rebuilds-Again 103

29 Wedding Bells 108

30 Politics Writer in

31 Presidential Politicking 115

32 Ray Bliss's Masterpiece 118

33 A Big City Assignment 125

34 Ray C. Bliss and James A. Rhodes 129

35 Recruitment Matters 134

36 Trouble in San Francisco 138

37 The Goldwater Debacle 145

38 Plotting for Bliss 149

39 Ray Bliss Becomes National Chairman 155

40 Good-Bye Columbus 159

41 Mr. Bliss Goes to Washington 162

42 Fixing the Finances 167

43 Bliss Survives a Scandal 171

44 A Single Voice 176

45 Denouncing Extremism 181

46 A Hometown Win 185

47 New York, New York, a Republican Town 189

48 The Elements of Victory 193

49 A Tiger in the Tank 199

50 Bliss Says "No" to Nixon 204

51 Tightrope Walking 209

52 A Medium and a Message 216

53 The Politics of Turmoil 221

54 Ray Bliss's Convention 225

55 Ray Bliss Keeps His Job 230

56 Nixon Wins a Squeaker 234

57 Rumors Spread: "Bliss Is Out!" 239

58 A Meeting at the Pierre Hotel 247

59 Chairman for an Inaugural 256

60 Bliss "Retires" as National Chairman 260

61 Farewell to Washington 269

62 Setting the Record Straight 274

63 Politics as an Avocation 279

64 Bliss, Nixon, and Watergate 284

65 Ray C. Bliss and Gerald R. Ford 290

66 Citizen Bliss 297

67 University Trustee 301

68 Mentor and Teacher 306

69 A Pathfinder Reaches the End of the Trail 314

70 Ray C, Bliss Institute of Applied Politics 319

71 Political Legacy 324

Notes 331

Bibliography 371

Index 387

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