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Wednesday, September 13, 2006

September 13, 1960: Religion Issue Dogs Kennedy in California, Seen as Decisive for November; Castro to Lead UN Delegation

Vice President Richard Nixon on this day in 1960 endorsed Sen. John F. Kennedy's pledge not to let his Catholic religion interfere with his policies as president, should he be elected. The country should accept the senator's assurance "without any further questioning," the Republican nominee said. The issue dogged Kennedy today on his whistle-stop tour through California's Central Valley. A report on today's campaigning by the Washington Post, for tomorrow's edition, will say that the religion issue could decide the outcome of the November election and is critical in as many as 15 states in the south and midwest.

Fidel Castro will lead the delegation from Cuba to the United Nation Nations General Assembly meeting that begins next week in New York, it was announced today. Cuba said it would support the Soviet position at the session. Meanwhile, the Soviet Union protested the travel restrictions that the State Department said it will impose on Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev during his visit. The Soviets called the ban illegal. The State Department said the restriction would not limit Khrushchev's activities.

In the Congo the United Nations reopened the airpots and Premier Patrice Lumumba received 'special powers' from the Congolese legislature. He was seen as gaining the upper hand in his struggle to retain his position. In New York, Soviet officials said United Nations Secretary General Dag Hammarskjold was "personally" standing in the way of a solution to the Congo fighting.

In Washington the United States filed charges against 27 individuals and a bank in Tennessee, alleging they used economic pressure to prevent Negroes from voting.