Aimé J. Forand

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Aimé Joseph Forand
Aime J. Forand (Rhode Island Congressman).jpg
Former U.S. Representative from Rhode Island's 1st Congressional District
From: January 3, 1941 – January 3, 1961
Predecessor Charles F. Risk
Successor Fernand "Ferdie" St. Germain
Former U.S. Representative from Rhode Island's 1st Congressional District
From: January 3, 1937 – January 3, 1939
Predecessor Charles F. Risk
Successor Charles F. Risk
Former State Representative from Massachusetts
From: 1923–1926
Predecessor ???
Successor ???
Information
Party Democrat
Spouse(s) Gertrude B. Bedard
Religion Roman Catholic[1]
Military Service
Allegiance United States
Service/branch United States Army
Service Years 1918–1919
Rank Sergeant
Battles/wars World War I

Aimé Joseph Forand (May 23, 1895 – January 18, 1972) was a Rhode Island Democrat who represented the state's 1st congressional district from 1937 to 1939 as well as a two-decade period spanning the 1940s, 50s, and 60s. He was a member of the House Ways and Means Committee for some time.

Forand was a state representative in Massachusetts during the 1920s, in addition to being a member of the Knights of Columbus.

Background

Born in Fall River, Massachusetts, Forand was one of nine children. He attended public schools as well as parochial schools and proceeded to enter Columbia University. During World War I, Forand served in the army as a sergeant. Following an honorable discharge from the military, he relocated to Central Falls, Rhode Island.

From 1924 to 1930, Forand was a newspaper report for the cities of Pawtucket and Woonsocket, located in northern Rhode Island.

Political career

In 1922, Forand joined a local city commission. He was also the president of the Rhode Island Young Men's Democrat League from 1923 to 1926. From the mid-1920s to the early 1930, Forand also served as a secretary for congressmen Jeremiah O'Connell and Francis B. Condon.

U.S. House of Representatives

Forand was first elected to the United States House of Representatives during the 1936 elections in an ousting of one-term Republican congressman Charles F. Risk,[2] though very narrowly lost to Risk in the following 1938 midterms[3] following the disdain American voters held towards the court packing scheme of 1937 proposed by President Franklin D. Roosevelt and backed by stalwart congressional New Deal liberals.

Nevertheless, Forand was once again elected to the House in the 1940 elections, defeating Risk by fifteen percentage points.[4] He continued being re-elected before retiring in the 1960 elections.[5]

Forand supported John F. Kennedy in the 1960 presidential election and headed the Senior Citizens for Kennedy Committee.[6]

Cox Committee

In early April 1952, Forand voted against the enactment resolution which created the Select Committee to Investigate Tax-Exempt Foundations and Comparable Organizations.[7] It was known during the congressional session as the Cox Committee, named after its chair Eugene Cox.

Forand was a member of the select committee which investigated major foundations for subversion. along with fellow Democrats Donald L. O'Toole and Brooks Hays, in addition to Republicans B. Carroll Reece, Richard M. Simpson, and Angier Goodwin.[8]

The final report of the committee was released following Cox's untimely death in December 1952.[9] The report declared that the examined foundations did not commit subversion in a whitewash of the factual reality. Rep. Reece, determined to redo the investigation, successfully urged the House to pass a resolution re-enacting the committee, which Forand joined the other remaining Cox Committee members in voting against.[10]

Federal aid

Throughout his congressional tenure, Forand was an advocate of federal government initiatives to assist the unemployed, elderly, and disabled.[11] When part of the Ways and Means Committee,[11] he actively fought for guaranteed medical insurance towards the needy and increasing Social Security benefits for them by ten percent. Although Forand's proposal did not pass in 1957, his "Ten-Point Bill of Rights for Older Citizens" speech bolstered the ultimate passage the following year.[11]

Due to Forand's 1957 proposal (later known as Medicare) being cut from a ten-percent increase to a seven-percent increase, he pushed continuously for the original proposal to be passed by Congress.[11] Later in 1965, the House passed the Older Americans Act,[12] which was signed into law by President Lyndon B. Johnson.[6]

According to The New York Times in March 1960:[13]

The Forand bill is known from coast to coast. But its author, Representative Aime Joseph Forand, Democrat of Rhode Island, remains almost anonymous in comparison with the political issue he has raised.
Aime Forand bioguide.jpg

Retirement from Congress

In the aftermath of the 1960 elections where Forand's soon-to-be successor was elected, president-elect John F. Kennedy gave a speech at Providence where he stated:[14]

John Notte, the next Governor of the State of Rhode Island, Mayor Reynolds, Senator Green [applause], Claiborne Pell, who will be the next Senator from Rhode Island [applause], Congressman Fogarty [applause], my distinguished friend and colleague from the Senate, John Pastore [applause], my colleague in the House of Representatives, who has been working all over the country with us, Aime Forand [applause] - who else? [Laughter.] And John Notte, who is going to be the Governor of this State [applause], and Ferdie St. Germaine, who is going to be the next Congressman, replacing Aime Forand. I would like to have you meet my three sisters [applause], Jean, Eunice, and Pat. [Applause.] They have campaigned in this campaign in 40 States. Just to show you how long we have been engaged in this campaign, one of them is married to a citizen of New York, one is married to a citizen of Illinois, one is married to a citizen of California [applause] - at least she is a citizen now - and if we can carry, which is their responsibility, New York, Illinois, and California, we are going to win. [Applause.] And if we don't - well, I want to carry Rhode Island, and I am here to ask your help. [Applause.]

When Johnson signed the 1965 Medicare bill into law, he stated:[15]

And I am so glad that Aime Forand is here to see it finally passed and signed--one of the first authors.

Post-House years

Upon his departure from the House, Forand became the first president and chairman of the National Council of Senior Citizens,[6] which then-Sen. Kennedy announced in August 1960.[16] President Kennedy addressed the council in 1963 where he asserted in the introduction:[17]

THIS is the youngest looking group of senior citizens! I want to express my warm welcome to you, all of you, to the White House; my great pleasure in seeing my old colleague, Congressman Aime Forand, back here.

Forand died at the age of seventy-six in January 1972 due to a heart attack.[6] He is interred at Boca Raton Mausoleum.

References

  1. Footejones to Forcier. The Political Graveyard. Retrieved September 22, 2021.
  2. RI District 01 Race - Nov 03, 1936. Our Campaigns. Retrieved September 22, 2021.
  3. RI District 01 Race - Nov 08, 1938. Our Campaigns. Retrieved September 22, 2021.
  4. RI District 01 Race - Nov 05, 1940. Our Campaigns. Retrieved September 22, 2021.
  5. Candidate - Aime Forand. Our Campaigns. Retrieved September 22, 2021.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 January 20, 1972. Aime J. Forand Is Dead at 76; Served 22 Years in the House. The New York Times. Retrieved September 22, 2021.
  7. H RES 561. RESOLUTION CREATING A SELECT COMMITTEE TO CON- DUCT AN INVESTIGATION AND STUDY OF FOUNDATIONS AND OTHER COMPARABLE ORGANIZATIONS.. GovTrack.us. Retrieved September 22, 2021.
  8. HEARINGS BEFORE THE SELECT COMMITTEE TO INVESTIGATE TAX-EXEMPT FOUNDATIONS AND COMPARABLE ORGANIZATIONSH OUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES EIGHTY-SECOND CONGRESS SECOND SESSION ON H. Res. 561. American Deception. Retrieved September 22, 2021.
  9. FascinatingPolitics (December 22, 2019). The Reece Committee on Foundations: Conspiratorial Nonsense or an Expose of a Threat to the Nation?. Mad Politics: The Bizarre, Fascinating, and Unknown of American Political History. Retrieved September 22, 2021.
  10. H RES 217. RESOLUTION CREATING A SPECIAL COMMITTEE TO CON- DUCT A FULL AND COMPLETE INVESTIGATION AND STUDY OF EDUCA- TIONAL AND PHILANTHROPIC FOUNDATIONS AND OTHER COMPARABLE ORGANIZATIONS WHICH ARE EXEMPT FROM FED. INCOME TAXATION.. GovTrack.us. Retrieved September 22, 2021.
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 11.3 Guide to the Aime J. Forand papers, 1918-1972. Providence College. Retrieved September 22, 2021.
  12. TO PASS H.R. 3708, A BILL TO PROVIDE ASSISTANCE IN THE DEVELOPMENT OF NEW OR IMPROVED PROGRAMS TO HELP OLDER PERSONS.. GovTrack.us. Retrieved September 22, 2021.
  13. March 21, 1960. Hard Worker for Aged; Aime Joseph Forand. The New York Times. Retrieved September 22, 2021.
  14. November 7, 1960. Remarks of Senator John F. Kennedy, City Hall, Providence, RI. The American Presidency Project. Retrieved September 22, 2021.
  15. July 30, 1965. Remarks With President Truman at the Signing in Independence of the Medicare Bill.. The American Presidency Project. Retrieved September 22, 2021.
  16. August 12, 1960. Statement of Senator John F. Kennedy on Rep. Aime J. Forand as National Chairman, Senior Citizens-For-Kennedy Committee, Washington, DC. The American Presidency Project. Retrieved September 22, 2021.
  17. April 23, 1963. Remarks to Members of the National Council of Senior Citizens.. The American Presidency Project. Retrieved September 22, 2021.

External links

  • Profile at the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress
  • Profile at Find a Grave