William A. Rusher declared Thursday night that Barry Goldwater "has the best chance of say potential Republican candidate" to win the best presidential election. The National Review publisher dismissed former vice-president Richard Nixon as "the world's largest marshmallow."
There is sound reason to believe" that Goldwater will try for the nomination, according to Rusher, but there are no plans to change the senator's political image. "I don't think America as a whole is too far from Goldwater.
Rusher wrote off Nelson Rockefeller as a Presidential possibility, citing his unexpectedly small plurality in his last gubernatorial election. He speculated that the G.O.P. might nominate Pennsylvania's Governor Scranton for vice-president, to run with Goldwater.
The Republican Party, he said, is confronted with new opportunities right now, "the outer line in the American football game is 30 yards from the Republican goal line," because of the Democrats' strength in the South. In 1964, however, the Republicans may out into the once "solid south."
Rusher charged the Democrats with campaigning on diametrically opposed platforms in the North and South. He conceded that Goldwater's stand on integration would not please Northern liberals, but "you might make on the bananas much more than you'd lost on the pears."
He characterized this fall's elections "as something of a holding action," and observed that "the man who puts out an unpopular truth is often behind when the votes are counted."
"I think it does us an injustice to imply that we are just plain too dumb to be elected," he said.
Asked to comment, further as Richard Nixon, Rusher called him "the classic example--next to Stassen, probably the best example--of what politics can do to you if it hold of you."
Rusher recently toured the Far East and Africa , and devoted much of his talk to South Africa's apartheid policy. He spoke under the auspicious of the Harvard Young Republican Club and the Harvard Law School Republican Club, which he helped found in 1948, while at the Law School.