The U.S. Senate censures Wisconsin Sen. Joseph McCarthy (1954)

Transcript of Senate Resolution 301: Censure of Senator Joseph McCarthy (1954)


The early years of the Cold War saw the United States facing a hostile Soviet Union, the "loss" of China to communism, and war in Korea. In this politically charged atmosphere, fears of Communist influence over American institutions spread easily. Wisconsin Joseph McCarthy, a Republican, took advantage of the Cold War atmosphere of fear and suspicion and with strong support in the opinion polls, his attacks on liberals and interventions in senatorial elections brought defeat to some of his party's Democratic opponents. Throughout the early 1950's he accused Government agencies of being "soft" on communism, but when his 1954 investigation of the U.S. Army was televised, McCarthy's bullying of witnesses turned public opinion against the Senator. On December 2, 1954, the Senate voted to censure him, describing his behavior as "contrary to senatorial traditions." This is the transcript of that Senate disciplinary action against him.


Related Topics: World Wars and Conflicts
McCarthyism, Korea and the Cold War
Creator: U.S. Senate.
Pub Data: Senate Resolution 301, December 2, 1954; SEN 83A-B4, Records of the United States Senate; Record Group 46; National Archives.
Citation: "Transcript of Senate Resolution 301: Censure of Senator Joseph McCarthy (1954)." Senate Resolution 301, December 2, 1954; SEN 83A-B4, Records of the United States Senate; Record Group 46; National Archives. Online facsimile at:  http://www.ourdocuments.gov/doc.php?doc=86#; Visited on: 8/1/2014
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