September 23 is Checkers Day, aka Dogs in Politics Day. On this day in 1952, Richard Nixon made his famous Checkers speech.
At the time, Nixon was just the Republican vice presidential candidate, and in a lot of hot water over an $18,000 campaign contribution. The money was actually all proper and legal, but not everyone believed it. Then, on September 23 Nixon delivered a thirty minute television and radio speech – one of the first televised political speeches ever – and the rest is history.
At the end of an emotional speech laying out his financial situation and trying to show his family as a normal, everyday household, he told everyone there was one gift they had received which they weren’t giving up: Checkers, a black and white cocker spaniel.
“My mouth will speak in praise of the Lord.
Let every creature praise his holy name
for ever and ever.”