On this edition of Political Rewind, we talk with Curtis Wilkie, co-author of “The Road to Camelot, Inside JFK’s Five-Year Campaign,” which tells the story of his remarkable rise to the presidency.
It’s been 54 years since the assassination of Kennedy, on November 22, 1963. As we mark the anniversary of his death, Wilkie tells the story of the young John Kennedy – the vibrant World War II navy veteran who was nudged into a political career by his famous Democratic power broker father Joseph Kennedy. The younger Kennedy embraced the role with enthusiasm and dedication to his cause: to become president of the United States. As you’ll hear, the South played an outsized role in Kennedy’s strategy for winning the 1960 presidential race.
Wilkie was a longtime national and foreign correspondent for the Boston Globe. He and the book’s co-author Thomas Oliphant, were part of the Globe’s celebrated team covering presidential races. Wilkie covered eight presidential campaigns, starting in 1972. He retired from the newspaper business in 2004, and returned to his home state of Mississippi, where he teaches journalism at the University of Mississippi.