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The Presidency of John F. Kennedy


Throughout the 2008 campaign, comparisons to another young senator turned president followed Barack Obama wherever he went. The fall of 2008 saw Obama face off against Arizona Senator John McCain, paralleling that of John F. Kennedy's campaign against the more "experienced" Vice President Richard M. Nixon. Upon Obama's victory, nary a news broadcast went by that didn't mention the return of a "young family" to the White House - the first since Kennedy.

In a series of Starting Points, the Mary Ferrell Foundation explores the Kennedy Presidency - the fear and paranoia of the Cold War, the hotspots of Cuba and Vietnam, Kennedy's domestic policy, as well as the first televised debates between Kennedy and Nixon, where Kennedy capitalized on the technological revolution of the period, in much the same way the Obama campaign utilized the Web 2.0 revolution of the modern era.

Obama's presidential initiation is not dissimilar - wars on two fronts, an economic crisis not seen since the Great Depression, and a country ideologically divided. Will Kennedy's ideal of a "New Frontier" find a new lease on life under the young administration?


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