To continue with my thoughts while driving past the mentioned park and statue.
Barry Goldwater won a seat on the Phoenix City Council in 1948. While regarding this as a stepping stone, he had several accomplishments. In 1964, many people, mostly Republicans, criticized him for voting against the Civil Rights Act. Yet as Council member, Goldwater supported and helped clear through legislation for equal employment opportunities and for the integration of housing, hotels, restaurants, and the Arizona National Guard. This was milestone in Arizona history considering the states’ relationship to the Old South. On a national level, Goldwater did not feel the federal government had the authority to tell other states to do likewise .
In 1950, Barry Goldwater was the manager for Howard Pyle’s successful campaign to become Governor. This gave Goldwater, already well know, some additional experience across Arizona. In 1952, Goldwater got the nomination for United States Senator. At the Chicago convention, he disappointed many Westerners by endorsing Dwight Eisenhower over Senator Robert A Taft of Ohio. Eisenhower was from the Eastern Establishment and, generally speaking, more liberal than Taft.
Endorsing the General showed Goldwater was putting practical politics before his conservative philosophy. He knew Eisenhower, as a war hero, was far more electable than Taft. Taft was a Senate Giant, a wonderful man, and did have certain streaks of liberalism. Taft also had a record that many opponents could use against him. The the incumbent Democratic Senator was Earnest McFarland. For two years, McFarland was the Senate Majority Leader.
It was an interesting campaign and Barry Goldwater benefited from having Dwight Eisenhower heading the ticket. Two additional milestones occurred in 1952. Arizona elected a Republican for both the President and the Senator. Goldwater was about to begin his Senate career.