My father had, over the years, had a very close relationship with President Roosevelt. And he, I think, felt that he wanted to protect that relationship and not push it too far. At times he felt that he was pushing the boundaries of the President's tolerance for things that he wanted to see get done. And at times he also felt that he was used as a whipping boy. And the President could turn on him and use him in that way.|
He felt that if he had gone as far as he could on an issue, he would sometimes back off and let it rest and then perhaps try from another direction and one of the directions he used was to get my mother to go to Mrs. Roosevelt who would then go to the President with the same issue.
My father was very aware that if he were to be effective he felt that he needed to put himself forward as an American with American interests, and not as a Jewish-American. and he felt very strongly about that. And I had heard him say that a number of times. Not that he was trying to run away from being Jewish but that he felt that he was American first. And that was the most important thing.
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