January 20, 1959
Dear Senator Kennedy:
In reply to your letter of the 10th, my informants were just casual people in casual conversation. It would be impossible to get their names because for the most part I don't even know them.
Maybe, like in the case of my family, you suffer from the mere fact that many people know your father and also know that there is money in your family. We have always found somewhat similar things occur, and except for a few names I could not name the people in the case of my family.
I am quite willing to state what you decide but it does not seem to me as strong as your categorical denial. I have never said that my opposition to you1 was based on these rumors or that I believed them, but I could not deny what I knew nothing about. From now on I will say, when asked, that I have your assurance that the rumors are not true.
If you want another column, I will write it - just tell me.
Very sincerely yours,
Index to this Document: Civil liberties: JFK and; Civil Rights Act of 1957; Kennedy, John F.: civil liberties and; denial of rumors by; McCarthy, record on; ER criticized by; ER's opposition to; Kennedy, Joseph P.: wealth of; Loyalty oaths; McCarthy, Joseph R.: JFK's opinion of; Mundt-Nixon bill; Roosevelt family; Roosevelt, Eleanor: correspondence of; family of; JFK, criticism of; JFK, opposition to; political advice of; Rumors: political; Sources: anonymous; U.S. Government: House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC)
Recommended citation: Eleanor Roosevelt, John Kennedy, and the Election of 1960: A Project of The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers, ed. by Allida Black, June Hopkins, John Sears, Christopher Alhambra, Mary Jo Binker, Christopher Brick, John S. Emrich, Eugenia Gusev, Kristen E. Gwinn, and Bryan D. Peery (Columbia, S.C.: Model Editions Partnership, 2003). Electronic version based on unpublished letters. .
For more information, visit The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers home page at https://erpapers.columbian.gwu.edu/.
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