The United States, through its Congress, declared war Monday on Japan.
Overwhelmingly, and with the greatest unity shown in many a day on Capitol Hill, the Senate and House backed up President Roosevelt's request for a war declaration with unprecedented speed. The Senate vote, first to be recorded, of 82 to 0 and the House vote of 388 to 1, told their own story of unity in the face of common danger.
The resolutions were before both Houses within 15 minutes of the time Mr. Roosevelt ended his seven-minute, 500 word extraordinary message.
There was a half second of uncertainty in the house when Representative Jannette Rankin, R., Mont., objected to unanimous consent for immediate consideration of the war resolution.
Speaker Sam Rayburn brushed the objection aside. It was she who in the small hours of April 6, 1917, faltered, wept and finally voted "no" against a similar resolution aimed at Germany.
When the clerk came to her name on the roll call Monday, she voted no again.
A chorus of hisses and boos greeted her vote, the first cast against the war resolution.
Representative Harold Knutson, R., Minn., who also voted against American entry into the World War in 1917, said Monday this nation "has no choice but to declare war on Japan."
"I do not see that we have any other choice," Knutson told reporters. "They declared war on us."
Miss Rankin and Knutson are the only present members of the house who voted against war in 1917.
Representative Martin of Mass., the Republican leader, won thunderous applause in the House as he pledged "unqualified support" to the President.
"There can be no peace, " Martin shouted, "until the enemy is made to pay in full way for his dastardly deed. Let us show the world we are a united nation."
The officially-announced loss of two warships and 3,000 men dead and wounded in Japan's raid on Hawaii was fresh in the minds of Legislators.
"I ask," the chief executive told a joint session, "that the Congress declare that since the unprovoked and dastardly attack by Japan on Sunday, December 7th, 1941, a state of ware has existed between the United States and the Japanese Empire."
The President said that yesterday was "a date which will live in infamy."
Within 20 minutes after he finished the Senate had acted. The President recited the events since Japan's assault on American's Pacific bastions and said he had "directed that all measures be taken for our defense.".
"Hostilities exist," Mr. Roosevelt asserted. "There is no blinking at the fact that our people, our territory and our interests are in grave danger.
"With confidence in our armed forces --- with the un-bounding determination of our people --- we will gain the inevitable triumph--- So help us God."
He said Japan had undertaken a "surprise offensive" extending throughout the Pacific, noting that the Nipponese empire not only had attacked Hawaii and the Philippines but also Malaya, Hong Kong, Wake and Midway Islands.
"Always we will remember the character of the onslaught against us." the President said.
"No matter how long it may take us to overcome this premeditated invasion, the American people in their righteous might will win through to absolute victory."
"I believe I interpret the will of the Congress and of the people when I assert that we will not only defend ourselves to the utter-most but will make very certain that this form of treachery shall never endanger us again."