by Barbara Blum
Franklin Delano Roosevelt visited UC on Oct. 16, 1936, less than three weeks before he would be up for re-election to his second term as president. Ultimately, he would defeat Alf Landon by a landslide, with more than 60 percent of the popular vote.
What follows are the remarks FDR made from an open car inside the UC football stadium. FDR was on the campaign trail, but, clearly, times have changed political rhetoric. His speech also invites comparison to modern times -- with today's government bailouts and high unemployment.
To clarify points in the speech, we offer these facts: UC's Nippert Stadium had just undergone a renovation in 1936 -- lowering the playing field 12 feet to allow spectator seating to increase to 24,000. The Social Security Act had been passed the year before in August 1935. Many public works projects had put people back to work. The U.S. unemployment rate in 1932 was 23.6 percent; in 1936 it was 16.9 percent.