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About The commoner. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-1923 | View Entire Issue (June 14, 1912)
WILLIAM J. BRYAN, EDITOR AND PROPRIETOR
VOL 12, NO. 23
Lincoln, Nebraska, June 14, 1912
Whole Number 595
Mr.&ya of the Chicago Convention
'(Copyright 1912, by the Newspaper Enterprise
;,' - . Association.)-
The Chicago convention promises to be the
most exciting ever held In the history of the
country, provided, of course, there is no sur
render before the battle. Never before havo
we had a president, fighting for a second term,
pitted against an ex-president, fighting for a
third term. This alone would make it a battle
of giants, but an inexhaustible quaiitity of red
fire is supplied for the celebration by the fact
that the contestants, once bosom friends, are
' Whatever may be the cause of the feud, there
is no doubt that a feud exists, and no feud
among mountaineers has ever been more deadly
in its effect on participants and innocent by
standers. In a .street duel a stray bullet sometimes
strikes a passor-by, but in this case several
hundred thousand officeholders not to speak
of an army of aspirants have had their hopes
riddled and their broad and butter filled with
fragments of exploded shells.
In speculating as to the outcome of the con
vention one must have considerable latitude.
At the present, it looks like two conventions,
if Mr. Taft's supporters have the courage to do
all that is in their power.
The refusal of the committee to honor Mr.
Roosevelt's request for 250 tickets indicates
they have the animus to fight, but havo they
the courage to carry the fight to the last ditch?
They had the law on their side, thelaw of pre
cedent when they gave 250 tickets to the presi
dent and refused the ex-president, but the law
is never invoked botween friends. Men are at
outs when they go to lay.
. Mr. Taft has control of the national com
mittee. The committee can seat enough of the
Taft dolegate3 to give him a majority of the
convention and there will be about as much to
be said in favor of the Taft delegates from the
south as can be. said for Mr. Roosevelt's dele
gates from that section, for republican dele
gates from the south, whether they support Taft
or Roosevelt, represent, as a rule, only what
patronage can corrupt or money can buy.
There aro two questions to bo answored.
Whoever can answer them correctly can foretell
the result at Chicago.' First: Will President
Taft dare to use the machinery which ho con
trols? If ho does and the machine doesn't
break he can take his southern delegations
and, with a minority of the delegates from the
north, nominate himself.
Does he want that kind of a npmination?
And will ho risk what Mr. Roosevelt may then
do? (If the ox-president would announce in
advance that ho would abide by tho decision of
the convention ho would not have much chance
to secure a nomination; ho might as woll go to
The second question is: What will Mr.
Roosevelt do if his contesting dolegates are de
nied seats? Will ho take. a majority of the
delegates from the north, repair to another hall,
seat "his contesting delegates from the south and
then proceed to nominate himself?
That would seem to be his purpose, If indi
cations and threats amount to anything. If tho
combatants are left to themselves it is safe to
guess that Mr. Roosevelt will bo a candidate
either tho nominee of the regular convention
or the nominee of a bolting convention.
But there is a third course. Tho republican
national committee is composed of men who,
whatever their attachments to particular indi
viduals, aro still more attached to the republi
can party, and they havo it in their power to de
termine tho action of the convention. . The
committee will know hnw many uncontested
delegates Mr. Roosevelt has, how many uncon
tested delegates- Mr. Taft has, and how many
delegates Senators Cummins and La Follette
If, as is probable, Mr. Roosevelt does not havo
enough uncontested delegates to give him a
majority of the convention, the committee may
seat enough of Mr. Taft's delegates to make his
Strength equal to Mr. Roosevelt's, and leave tho
balance of power in the hands- of Cummins and
La Follette. In that case the door is open for
all sorts of compromises. Taft and Cummins
Too Good to Be True
Colonel Roosevelt intimates that if thore is
"unfair play" at Chicago he may go there in
person and take charge of the situation. Even
with the colonel at Oyster Bay the Chicago
convention will be a lively affair. But with the
colonel at Chicago and right on tho ground
but banish the thought! It is too good to be
FORECAST OF THE CHICAGO
MRS. HARMON'S RESPONSE AT THE
"DOLLY MADISON DINNER"
THE BALTIMORE CONVENTION
AN. INSIDE VIEW OF THE MONEY TRUST
THE COUNTRY IS DEMOCRATIC
' DEMOCRATIC CONVENTION OF 1841
THE BIG FIGHT AT CHICAGO
THE MAKING OF A MAN
- SENATOR KERN'S GOOD FIGHT
NEWS OF THE WEEK
WHETHER COMMON OR NOT
IT WILL BE A PROP
In a speech delivered at Birmingham, Ala.,
Mr. Oscar Underwood denounced tho initiative
and referendum, saying: "It is proposed by
some that we shall in p.art abandon tho repre
sentative government enacted by our revolution
ary fathers and adopt a system that in the end
would establish a direct democracy, when the
ultimate powers to make laws would be placed
directly in tho hands of all the people and the
independent judiciary, intended to protect the
constitutional guarantees of individual liberty,
and would become subservient to tho will of the
majority through political compulsion."
Mr. Underwood is mistaken. The Initiative
and referendum and the recall are intended as
a prop to representative government. In fact
these reforms are the only things that will pre
vent the adoption of the "direct democracy"
system and preserve representative government
upon an intelligent basis.
Former Governor Hanleyof Indiana delivered
an address at Atlanta, Ga., in which he referred
to Theodore Roosevelt as a "bungler." That is
a mighty tame epithet. How can Governor
Hanloy ever expect to keep up with the republi
can procession at this rate?.
The Philadelphia Public Ledger, an old rock
ribbed republican paper, admits that "worse
things could happen to the republic than a
split in the republican party." Yes, a republi
can victory at the polls in' November, for instance.
might bo tho result, or Cummins and LaFol-.
lotto might bo able to force tho nomination otj
a dark.horso, provided always, Mr. Roosovolt
All things considered, I would say, if I woro
inclined to speculate, but-1 am not
W. J. BRYAN.
P. S. Suppose Mr. Roosovolt is nominated
either by tho regulnr convention or by a con
vention of his own, will tho republicans who
oppose a third term bolt? Is their attachment
to tho traditions of tho fathers strong enough
to load to an organizod protest against Mr.
Tho ex-prosidont accuses Mr. Taft of bolng
tho candldato of tho bosses. Tho bosses would
be unablo to put up a fight in defense of boss
ism, but Mr. Roosovolt has studiously ignored
tho third term issuo. When men havo sug
gested that ho wants to bo president for life
with a remainder over to his son he calls them
hard names, but this kind of evasion can not
last through a campaign. Ho will havo to defino
his position, and let the public know how many
terms he considers proper or allowable.
If Mr. Roosevelt will add together tho votes
he has received at tho primaries, and compare
the total with the total vote in those states, ho
will find that ho is woefully short of a majority
even in republican states, and ho must remem
ber, too, that some who voted for him did so,
not because they loved him more, but because
they loved Taft less, and ho muBt also take into
account tho fact that many who voted for him
and a still larger number who did not vote at
all havo been disgusted by tho manner in
which ho and tho president havo conducted their
Ho must, in addition, take into account tho
fact that many who admired him when ho went
out of ofilce havo turned against him because
they feel that ho has done injustice to tho presi
dent and destroyed the party's chance for success.
There Is abundant evidence of an enormous
protest at. tho polls, even if no ticket Is put In
tho field by the anti-Roosovolt republicans.
W. J. B.
Mrs. Harmon's Response
In former issues The Commoner has pre
sented two of. the responses to toasts delivered
at tho harmony banquet given by tho demo
cratic women of Washington. It is now our
pleasure to present the response of Mrs. Judson
Harmon, tho talented wife of tho governor
of Ohio, to the toast, "Women of tho Cabi
net." Her address, as tho readers may easily
understand, was greatly enjoyed and heartily
applauded- by those who had the privilege of
WOMEN OF THE CABINET
The following is Mrs. Harmon's response:
' "The best example is required from tho
noblest in station."
In the earliest times, in the youth of tho
human race, when brute force was the criterion
of the highest, when to achieve victory man's
encounter with his fellow man was more san
guinary than with tho beasts only a little bqlow
him, the standard naturally was brutal. Only
he was a hero who most successfully wielded
the ax and the bludgeon. Only the lover who
forcibly abducted his mistress was deserving
the fair. The animal in human nature has
been long in dying, but it has had its day, and
only rarely do we see a survival of the typo
which causes us to shudder and thank God that
we are living in a more advanced age. With
the progress of evolution our standards today
aro vastly different.
Mind, not muscle, is the keynbte. Gladia
torial combats in tho .arena of the mind are tho
only encounters people are called upon today
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