28 JUNE 1940, Page 1

The Republicans' Choice

To attempt a synthesis of American opinion at the present moment is as absorbingly interesting as it is bafflingly difficult. With the Presidential campaign now well under weigh there are three streams of opinion to be considered, the Democratic (or Administration), the Republican and the national, the last of the three being the most indeterminate. The Republican Convention at Philadelphia is still in progress as we write, and the candidate has not yet been chosen, but the " platform " and the speeches of the chairman (Governor Stassen of Minnesota) and ex-President Hoover make it clear that the Republicans stand for no pure isolationism. If, as seems not improbable, the nomination should go to Mr. Wendell Willkie, the pro-Ally dark horse who has come so rapidly to the fore, President Roosevelt's chances of re-election will be sensibly reduced, for the one thing that would make him completely safe would be the selection of an isolationist opponent. On the other hand, the choice of Mr. Willkie, which would be due almost wholly to his attitude on the European situation, would from now on justify the President in increasing open support of Great Britain by any means possible, in the knowledge that his rival at the polls would never make that a basis of criticism or opposition. If on the other hand Senator Taft or Mr. Dewey should be chosen by the Republicans, Mr. Roosevelt will have to walk more warily, for neither of them would admit for a moment the President's title to a free hand in regard to Europe.