John F. Kennedy
Televised Presidential Debate Between JFK & Nixon

On September 26, 1960, John F. Kennedy–a young senator from Massachusetts at the time–and
Vice President Richard Nixon squared off in a hour-long debate–the first-ever televised presidential debate. While Kennedy looked confident, healthy and dapper; Nixon seemed sickly and underweight from a recent hospitalization. Approximately 74 million viewers noticed the difference. The debate rocketed Kennedy into the electoral spotlight and solidified the important role of television in politics. When Kennedy won the presidential election in November of 1960, he was reported to have said, “It was the TV more than anything else that turned the tide.”

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Submitted by: Virginia Choi
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