23. Kennedy was recalled and fired as Ambassador to Great Britain in November, 1940
When Roosevelt announced he was going to run for a third consecutive term as president, then unprecedented, Kennedy committed the unpardonable political sin of giving him an endorsement which was less than enthusiastic. The combination of gaffes was too much for Roosevelt to endure and though Kennedy was allowed to resign there was little question that FDR had fired him. Officially, Kennedy was said to be retired. Churchill was pleased, until Kennedy refused to go away quietly. In January, 1941 Kennedy gave a speech reported by the Associated Press in newspapers across the country, arguing against several aspects of the proposed Lend Lease bill before Congress.
Kennedy stated that he supported aid to Great Britain, but that it “should not and must not go to the point where war becomes inevitable”. Kennedy also stated that the lend-lease bill proposed by Roosevelt gave the president, “authority unheard of in our history”. The former Ambassador argued that America should rearm itself first. “The more we rearm, the larger our arsenal, the more we shall have available for England”. He also claimed that “The American people want to avoid war” and indicated that aid to Great Britain should be in the form of outright gifts, questioning the British ability to repay loans.