Revealed for the first time, this is the full story of how President Dwight Eisenhower masterminded the downfall of the anti-Communist demagogue Senator Joseph McCarthy.
Behind the scenes, Eisenhower loathed McCarthy, the powerful Republican senator notorious for his anti-Communist witch hunt. In spite of a public perception that Eisenhower was unwilling to challenge McCarthy, Ike believed that directly confronting the senator would diminish the presidency. Therefore, the president operated with a "hidden hand," refusing even to mention the Senator's name.
In Ike and McCarthy, David A Nichols shows how the tension between the two men escalated. In a direct challenge to Eisenhower, McCarthy alleged that the US Army was harboring communists and launched an investigation. But the senator had unwittingly signed his own political death warrant. The White House employed surrogates to conduct a clandestine campaign against McCarthy and was not above using information about the private lives of McCarthy's aides as ammunition.
In January 1954 McCarthy was arguably the most powerful member of the Senate. By the end of that year, he had been censured by his colleagues for unbecoming conduct. Eisenhower's covert operation had discredited the senator months earlier, exploiting the controversy that resulted from the televised Army-McCarthy hearings. McCarthy would never recover his lost prestige. Nichols uses documents previously unavailable or overlooked to authenticate the extraordinary story of Eisenhower's anti-McCarthy campaign. Ike and McCarthy is an eye-opening, newsworthy, and fascinating read.