Kennedy After Dark: A Dinner Party About Politics and Power

In this exclusive transcript from the JFK library, hear what he had to say just days after announcing his candidacy for the presidency

"It's possible my natural level is in the Senate," John F. Kennedy said—but then he won the 1960 election. As president, he and his wife hosted Ben and Tony Bradlee (left and third from left) at the White House. (John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum)
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(Continued from page 13)

JFK: No. At the time. I mean, that day it did.

Cannon: What do you do, what did you say to yourself, when it happened?

JFK: I was disappointed that day, and I was damn tired, and we came awfully close, and then we lost. By twenty-eight votes or something. And I was disappointed.


Cannon: What did you do, go back to the hotel and go to sleep? Or have a drink?

 JFK: No, I think we went to have dinner with Eunice, didn’t we, Jackie? And then we went back afterwards.

Jacqueline Kennedy: You know for five days in Chicago, Jack really hadn’t gone to bed. Nobody had. Except for two hours sleep a night. It just was this incredible . . . brutal thing. You don’t see how any men are that strong to stay up for five days and talk and talk . . .

Bradlee: Do you remember wanting to go into politics?

Cannon: Not really, no.

JFK: And here you are, around these history makers, in Washington. Do you ever think you’d rather be a politician than reporting?


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