Robert Alphonso Taft (September 8, 1889 – July 31, 1953), of the Taft political family of Cincinnati and the son of President and Chief Justice William Howard Taft, was a Republican Senator and a prominent conservative statesman and presidential hopeful. As the leading opponent of the New Deal in the Senate from 1939 to 1953, he led the successful effort by the conservative coalition to curb the power of labor unions, and was a major proponent of the foreign policy of non-interventionism. However, he failed in his quest to win the presidential nomination of the Republican Party in 1940, 1948 and 1952. From 1940 to 1952 he battled New York Governor Thomas E. Dewey, the leader of the GOP's moderate "Eastern Establishment" for control of the Republican Party. In 1957, a Senate committee named Taft as one of the five greatest senators in American history, along with Henry Clay, Daniel Webster, John C. Calhoun, and Robert La Follette.
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“When the history of this period is written, [William Jennings] Bryan will stand out as one of the most remarkable men of his generation and one of the biggest political men of our country.”
—William Howard Taft (18571930)