In the consequential tradition of such big presidential campaign lies as, "If you like you doctor, you can keep your doctor," FDR, the 32nd POTUS, solemnly, specifically and frequently lied to Americans voters during his 1940 re-election campaign when he promised up and down the hustings that he would not take the country to war -- even as he was secretly planning to take the country to war, and long before Pearl Harbor.
See below as the light dawnethed eight years later for Walter Trohan, one of my favorite old-time newspapermen, on reading a confessional passage by FDR speechwriter and biographer Robert Sherwood as it appears in his book, Roosevelt and Hopkins: An Intimate History. It was Sherwood who scripted FDR's fiery non-belligerence before Election Day 1940, a time when the national mood was strongly non-interventionist. Sherwood's contribution included the infamous FDR lines -- "And while talking to you mothers and fathers, I give you one more assurance. I have said this before but I shall say it again -- and again -- and again: Your boys are not going to be sent into any foreign wars."
Gosh, about sixty million war dead and Communist dictatorships poised to enslave half the world later, Sherwood confessed: "I burn inwardly whenever I think of those words, `again -- and again -- and again.'"
Who knows or cares about this lie today? It seems that presidential lies to swindle Americans out of their votes in exchange for the awesome presidential power required to advance socialized medicine or enter "good" wars find beaming approval with the ends-justify-the-means crowd, even as they are sure to cluck over the Eighth Commandment in those cases when it advances their political agenda.
Note also Trohan's fascinating discussion of the 72-hour battle royale inside the US embassy in Moscow (including "pounding the table until the dishes danced") between anti-communist military attache Ivan Yeaton, who wanted to make quid pro quo demands on the Soviets in exchange for lend lease support, and pro-communist presidential aide ("the Rasputin of the White House," as Trohan called him) Harry Hopkins, who wanted to give the Soviets everything for nothing.
Much more here.