The commoner. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-1923, December 01, 1916, Page 8, Image 8

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The Commoner
VOL; 16, NO. 12
Washington Banquet to Mr. Bryan
From the Washington Evening Star, Dec. 7.
A pica to the democratic party to make pro
hibition its own, to place it foremost among the
roforms which tho party will demand, was made
by William Jennings Bryan at a banquet given
in his honor at tho Lafayette hotel last night.
Tho great Commoner was never more eloquent,
his friends claim, than in his demand that tho
democratic party add a last big "P" to the slo
gan which carried it successfully through tho
recent election "Peace, Progress, Prosperity
and Prohibition." Ho addressed an assemblage
of more than 250 of his admirers, including
membors of tho cabinet, of tho son-to and house
and other high ofllclals of the government. His
spoech came to tho conclusion of a series
of eulogies upon Mr, Bryan, a Bryan
"boom" for President in 1920 being launched
by Representative Warren Worth Bailey of Penn
sylvania amid loud cheers.
Mr. Bryan predicted that tho present session
of congress would onact legislation making the
District of Columbia dry.
Every great issue must become, sooner or
later, a party lssuo in this country, Mr. Bryan
said. Ho urged that tho democrats seize their
opportunity arid beat the republicans to tho pro
hibition issue, which, ho predicted, the repub
licans would surely adopt if tho democrats wero
not forehanded, since they had exhausted all
other issues in tho last campaign.
. "I have heard it said that prohibition will di
vide tho democratic party," said Mr. Bryan.
"But I don't believe it. The lay has passed
when to bo a good democrat a man must be a
Mr. Bryan urged upon the democrats a num
ber of other Important reforms, Including the
adoption of a constitutional amendment for'na-tion-wido
woman suffrage, a constitutional
amondment for a referendum to tho people on
all declarations of war, except in the case of
actual invasion; tho abolition of the electoral
college and the adoption of easier means of
amending tho constitution itself.
Ho warned against increase in the armed
forces of the country on the ground that it would
develop a spirit of militarism arid lead to war;
against the proposal of" the railroads that the
federal regulation of tho roads be made more
complete and regulation by the states done away
President Wilson did not attend- tho banquet,
hut he sent tho following letter which .was read
by the toastmaster, Oliver P. Newman, president
of tho board of District commissioners:
"Will you not bo kind enough to convoy my
very cordial greetings to Mr, Bryan and to those
who are assembled to do him honor at tho din
ner on Wednesday evening? In the recent cam
paign no one rendered more unselfish service
than Mr. Bryan, and I am happy to know that
this dinner expresses tho genuine admiration of
all democrats lor him. May I riot by this means
convey to him my warmest congratulations and
best wishes for his continued health and happi-
i Tho dinner was "dry," but enthusiastic. Tho
toasts, first of which, proposed by Commissioner
Newman, was to President Wilson, were drunk
in water. Senator Walsh of Montana, who was
in charge of the wostern campaign headquarters
for tho democrats, responded to the toast, "How
It Happened." Ho declared that the enlightened
voters of tho country, using their best judgment,
, wero tho real cause of the democratic victory.
yy?Q the toast, "He Kept the Faith," Senator Hol-
lis of Now Hampshire said that 'William Jen-
. ntngBNvBj'yan had sowed the seeds of democracy
In Now England which resulted last November
in New Hampshire going democratic, and also
was the cause for the close race made by tho
party in other states.
Senator, Phelan of California responded to
'The Awakened West." He said that Theodore
r JloQsevet had written a book called "The Win
ning off the Tfest," out that, a new chapter must
bp added' to that history for the sake of ac-
0 '
Mr. Bryan's Wnsliington banquet ad-
dross will bo printed in full in tho
January issue of Tho Commoner. "0
& 6-
curacy.. Ho hailed the union of the west and
the south, as exemplified in tho last election.
Representative Henry L. Sladen of Texas an
swered to tho toast, "Southern Democracy,"
which was slated for Majority Leader Kitchin
of tho house, but who was unable to attend the
dinner. Mr. Sladen said that tho democracy of
the south never had been questioned, and sug
gested that when the men of the west claimed
to lead in progress, at least they paid the tribute
to the south of "progressing" to the ideals of
democracy which have been dear to the heart
of the southern states for" a century.
"Tho Thirty Peace Treaties" was the topic as
signed to Representative Bailey of Pennsylvania,
who lauded Mr. Bryan's action as secretary of
state in bringing about the ratification of peace
treaties with many of the foreign nations.
When Mr. Bryan rose to speak he was greeted
by a tremendous ovation.
From the Washington Post, Dec. 7.
Reforms to which he hopes to commit the
democratic party, and to see accomplished within
the next four years, were outlined last night by
William Jennings Bryan at a dinner given in his
honor at the Lafayette hotel by admirers among
tho democratic officials and members of con
gress. Nation-wido prohibition was urged as most
Important, and other causes. on his list included
woman suffrage by federal amendment, election
of the president by direct popular vote and
changes to make the constitution more easily
In addition to his program to be advocated,
Mr. Bryan gave a prominent place to two things
ho proposed to fight; The effort to give the fed
eral government, exclusive control over railroad
regulation and "the menace of militarism," pre
sented by proposals for universal military ser
Mr. Bryan departed from the prepared text of
his speech to advocate a referendum on proposed
declarations of war.
"The experience through which Europe is
passing," he said, "suggests the adoption of a
constitutional amondment providing for a ref
erendum on any declaration of war except when
the country is actually invaded. This wfll not
only be a safeguard to us, but will bo an example
to the nations of Europe, wrere the right to de
clare war is vested in the executiye instead of
with the legislative body as here."
Speeches lauding Mr. Bryan and particularly
his work for the party during the campaign just
won were made by many of the diners, and a
letter was read from President Wilson, with
whom the former secretary and Mrs. Bryan had
lunched during the day.
roadway of conviction, applauded the form
secretary of state and acclaimed his utter
as prophetic. ""ices
Mr. Bryan told the banqueters, who gathers
at tho Hotel Lafayette, that one of the cE
reforms ahead of this nation is national nr hi
bition. Pie advocated that tho democratic nartv
espouse prohibition as a party issue. The hieh
lights ofhis address were appeals for:
National prohibition.
Woman suffrage by federal amendment
Election of the President by direct vote of
tho people. -
Changes that will make the constitution easier
to amend.
From tho Baltimore News, Dec. 7.
That the peace propaganda preached by Wil
liam Jennings Bryan in the west did more for
the re-election of President Wilson than any
other element in the campaign is the opinion of
City Solicitor S. S. Field, the original Bryan man
.in Maryland. Mr. Field attended the banquet
given the Commoner in Washington Wednesday
The head of the city's law department was
highly pleased with the complimentary remarks
made about Mr. Bryan by Wednesday night's
speakers, and ho declared the Commoner's speech
was an inspiration and a gem of oratory.
Said Mr. Field:
"Senator Walsh of Montana, who was one of
tho speakers at the banquet rlast spring when
President Wilson opened his campaign for re
election and who was in charge of the western
campaign headquarters at Chicago during the
presidential campaign, gave the chief credit for
the President's re-election to Bryan's campaign
ing. He referred' particularly to North Dakota,
saying that Bryan's campaign there for tho
President was a triumphal procession and ho
had not the slightest doubt that Wilson's get
ting the electoral Votes of that state was due to
Mr; Bryan.
"Senator Phelan of California gave Mr. Bryan
the chief credit for carrying that state for tho
President. He said that when during a cam
paign ho (Senator Phelan) went to a meeting
over -which he was to preside in San Francisco
the doors of tho building were closed and that
to his demand for admi'nission a policeman's
voice from inside said that if he opened the doors
the people would fall out. Mr. Bryan was the
princip'al speaker.
"Senator Hollis of New Hampshire was equally
eulogistic, and the letters from the President
and Vice-President and froin Vance McCormick,
national democratic chairman", united in ascrib
ing the result in the west in a 'large measure to
-Mr. Bryan.
"It seems to me very clear that President
Wilson owes his second term, just as he owed
his original nomination at the Baltimore conven
tion, to Mr. Bryan, and that Mr. Bryan's deter
mined stand for peace emphasized by his resig
nation from the cabinet, gave him an additional
influence with the peace-loving people of the
.west and gained the additional western electoral
-. votes which were necessary for democratic victory."
From the Washington Times, December 7.
William Jennings Bryan, for twenty years a
powerful and magnetic figure in the ranks and
the forefront of the democratic party, was the
guest of honor last night at a banquet that set
political Washington talking today.
If Mr. Bryan has lost any of his hold upon
the popular imagination of any of his prestige
as a leadfer in political thingsthere was no sur
face indication of it last night.
Democrats of every shade of opinion gathered
in honor of the Nebraskan. It was a banquet
such as one. might have expected in the heydav
of Bryan's dramatic rise to the leadership of a
great party in the nineties.
Members of the cabinet, senators, congress
men, officials, and just plain democrats who aa
niire Bryan despite his defeats, and because he
has consistently moved ahead on the straight
From the Washington Star, Dec. 7.
A recent announcement made in New York by
Mr. Bryan about his future activities was, It
seems, misconstrued. He has not put all of his
eggs into one basket. He is strong for prohibi
tion, but strong also for other things. He enu
merated thenr-mst night at the dinner eaten in
honor. He has his eyes on, and is still opposed
to, militarism. He wants women to have tne
vote. He entertains some very positive views
about railroad regulation and legislation, we
considers the electoral college "clumsy, &nu
wants some provision made for a direct expres
sion of the people in the election of a preslaow.
And he suggests easier means for amending w
But greater than any or all of these is the is
sue of prohibition, as Mr. Bryan reads the time
and he expects it to provoke "the fiercest cou
test." He will not be disappointed. Driyjus
John Barleycorn out of American politics J
large orders and the time ho allows for it
Bi-j&a i