Kennedy's use of notes during debate draws Nixon's fire

Vice President Nixon Declares Rules Prohibited Reference Data

By United Press International

LOS ANGELES, Oct. 14 (UPI) -- If Senator John F. Kennedy expects to debate any more on television with Vice President Richard M. Nixon, he'd better keep his reference material out of sight or tell Nixon in advance that he plans to come so armed.

Nixon was hopping mad last night when he watched his opponent 3,000 miles away in New York shuffling a batch of papers just a few seconds before they went on the air for the third "great debate."


The vice president had been under the impression he and the Democratic candidate were operating under an agreement, negotiated by their staffs, that neither principal was to use any notes or written aids in the series of four debates a few seconds before air time.

Nixon, standing in an American Broadcasting Company studio which was chilled down to 58 degrees because he perspires easily, looked at his big monitor screen. There was Kennedy in New York busily arranging some papers on his lectern.

The vice president's heavy eyebrows beetled as he stood before the cameras in his dark blue suit, pastel shirt and dotted tie. And in a second or two, both men were on split-screen camera, their duplicate backgrounds in New York and Hollywood merging to give the impression they were only a few feet apart.


Nixon More Confident During the Telecast

Nixon patted his made-up face frequently to blot up tiny traces of perspiration, but otherwise he seemed to be a considerably more confident, at-ease debater than he was in his first two encounters when the principals were on the same stage only a few feet apart.

When he left the stage at the end of the show, the vice president was in a brisk mood.

He thought the debate was "about like the second one good, fast moving; a good clash but with too many loose ends" due, in his opinion, to insufficient time for dealing with some of the weighty issues.

Nixon had spoken from a bare lectern with only a folded handkerchief and his wrist watch before him.

A reporter wanted to know how he felt about Kennedy using papers during the debate.

"I could not have been more shocked when I saw he was using notes' Nixon said. "I think the moderator should have done something about it," he said in reference to Bill Shadel of A.B.C., the host network.

Shadel later said nothing had been said to him about notes, and Kennedy in New York maintained there was no agreement banning use of the documents to which he referred during the program.


Nixon insisted, however, "there was a rule that no notes or no texts were to be used and he violated the rules."

Charles Daly, A.B. C. Vice President for News and Public Affairs, thought the candidates had agreed to speak completely ad lib with no reference to texts or notes, but he did not know whether this agreement covered verbatim texts of public documents.

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