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John Fitzgerald Kennedy was the 35th President of the United States the youngest person ever to be elected President the first Roman Catholic and the first to be born in the 20th century Kennedy was assassinated before he completed his third year as President therefore his achievements were limited Nevertheless his influence was worldwide and his handling of the Cuban Missile Crisis may have prevented the United States from entering into another world war Kennedy was especially admired by the younger people and he was perhaps the most popular president in history Kennedy expressed the values of 20th century America and his presidency had an importance beyond its political achievements John Fitzgerald Kennedy was born in Brookline Massachusetts where he was one of nine children The Kennedy family was very wealthy and provided means for the Kennedy children to pursue whatever they chose and John F Kennedy chose politics John F Kennedy was elected to Congress in 1942 and as a new member Kennedy supported legislation that would serve the interests of his elements Kennedy usually backed bills sponsored by his party but would sometimes show independence by voting with the Republicans He also joined with the Republicans in criticizing the Truman administrations handling of China In China the Nationalist government of Chiang Kai-shek which had been supported by the United States was unable to withstand the advance of Communist forces under Mao Zedong By the end of 1949 government troops had been overwhelmingly defeated and Chiang led his forces into exile on Taiwan The triumphant Mao formed the Peoples Republic of China Trumans critics including Kennedy charged that the administration had failed to support Chiang Kai-shek against the Communists Despite Kennedys wavering within his own party platform John F Kennedy easily won reelection to Congress in 1948 and 1950 In 1952 he decided to run against functioning Republican Senator Henry Cabot Lodge Jr Kennedy was little known
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