Sputnik Escalates the Cold War
Teaser Image

Connally, Thomas Terry (1877–1963)

U.S. Democratic congressman, senator, and chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee (1941–1947, 1949–1953). Born near Hewitt, McLennan County, Texas, on 19 August 1877, Thomas Connally graduated from Baylor University in 1896 and earned his law degree from the University of Texas in 1898. During the Spanish-American War he served in the Texas Volunteer Infantry, and during World War I he was a captain in the U.S. Army. He served in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1917 to 1929 before representing Texas for four terms in the U.S. Senate.

Connally was President Franklin Roosevelt's point man during the struggle to modify the Neutrality Acts beginning in 1940 and played a vital role in securing passage of the 1941 Lend-Lease Act. Connally chaired the powerful Senate Foreign Relations Committee during the later years of Roosevelt's administration and for all but two of President Harry S. Truman's years in office. Connally was vice chairman of the U.S. delegation to the United Nations (UN) Conference in San Francisco in 1945, where he helped draft the UN Charter.

Senator Connally supported a bipartisan Cold War foreign policy and a unified front against the perceived communist threat at home and abroad. To that end, he helped secure passage of the National Security Act (1947), funding for Greece and Turkey that resulted in the Truman Doctrine (1947), and the 1949 ratification of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). His last years in the Senate were spent championing foreign aid and an internationalist foreign policy, often against harsh conservative opposition. After retiring from the Senate in 1953, Connolly practiced law in Washington, D.C., where he died on 28 October 1963.

Richard Filipink


Further Reading
Green, George N. The Establishment in Texas Politics. Westport, CT: Greenwood, 1979.
 

©2011 ABC-CLIO. All rights reserved.

  About the Author/Editor
  Introduction
  Essays
  A
  B
  C
  D
  E
  F
  G
  H
  I
  J
  K
  L
  M
  N
  O
  P
  Q
  R
  S
  T
  U
  V
  W
  Y
  Z
  Z
  Documents
  Images
ABC-cLIO Footer