Nope, he would be considered a centrist today in the mold of Bill Clinton.
Let’s debunk a lot of reasons why JFK is ironically loved by conservatives these days. Now some things were true. He was against affirmative action and signed an executive order not to discriminate. Let’s get that out of the way. Now here’s some other talking points I would love to refute.
-JFK was against abortion
-JFK loved to lower taxes
Taxes on the highest earners were 91% throughout the 1950s. Take any modern day Democrat today, heck even Bernie Sanders might be on board with lowering those taxes. That was a ridiculously high rate. These days we cannot say that JFK would approve of lowering the already low 35% on the highest earners, even more.
-JFK supported gun rights
The NRA wasn’t a political lobby until the mid 1970s, and the whole reason they became a political lobby was because they were against the Gun Control Act of 1968 – Wikipedia which was ironically passed so that Americans wouldn’t be able to assassinated a president like JFK so easily. Furthermore, the first modern mass shooting happened at the University of Texas 3 years after JFK died. If JFK was in today’s age with all the mass shootings happening all the time, there’s no doubt that he would have been a gun control supporter.
-JFK was tough on communism
Most people were. Who supported the Soviets back then? Certainly not the Democrats back then nor the Republicans back then. Who authorized the Korean War and sent troops to Korea to push back the communists back to China? That’s right, a Democrat!! (Harry Truman).
Today, the Democrats are against Russia and continue to be against communism. I’m not sure where the stance of ‘Democrats are communists or sympathize with communists’ angle comes from, but I’m pretty sure Obama and Clinton and every Democrat today decries Mao and Stalin just like every Republican. This is a made up angle made to create a false partisan division and turn Republicans and Democrats against each other. The Democrats promote *democratic socialism* which is entirely different from communism.
Also, JFK was more likely to withdraw troops from Vietnam than increase them. He told NBC in Sept 1963 “it’s their war, it’s their responsibility to win it or lose it” doesn’t sound like a guy who was the ‘military hawk’ conservatives think he is.
-JFK was against relying on public welfare
This is just totally false. Do people not know that JFK was pushing for universal healthcare before his death?? LBJ passed the Medicare and Medicaid act after JFK’s death as a way of fulfilling (well not fully) JFK’s vision.
“We are behind every country, pretty nearly, in the matter of medical care for our citizens”
JFK was motivated to make the ‘healthcare’ speech at Madison Square Garden in 1962 after his father had a stroke was paralyzed; JFK was obviously able to pay for his medical bills but he was appalled that the average American would have gone bankrupt. We have the same problem to this day.
So no, JFK was not a conservative though a lot of Republicans today would like to think so.