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want to be disturbed by the continuance of an exciting and uncertain struggle. They want it short, sharp, and decisive. The public mind, too, tires of a long and tedious controversy. Unless a campaign of education is essential, as in 1896, one month or six weeks ought to suffice to present both sides to the voter. Some of these days the time will come when the United States, developing her resources to a marvellous extent, will enter into competition for the world's commerce to an extent far beyond our present appreciation. When that time comes -and we are now moving steadily toward it--the people will be so engrossed with business affairs that. they will demand a Presidential term of six years, with ineligibility to reelection; and they will thankfully welcome a long respite from the disturbance and turmoil of a Presidential campaign.

For more than a generation, with the single exception of the campaign wherein the character of James G. Blaine was weighed in the balance, the Presidential struggle has been decided with little reference to the men whose names have appeared upon the banners of their respective parties. This year, with little to influence him in the difference between the two parties, the voter will find himself called upon to decide between the candidates themselves. The campaign is, therefore, in a much larger sense than for many years past a personal one. If the independent voter leans toward the Democratic candidate, he will be told that Judge Parker is eminently conservative and trustworthy, but that the party which he represents is a free-trade, silver-loving, incapable party, and that the man and his party stand together. If, on the other hand, he turns toward the Republican candidate, he will be met with the statement that President Roosevelt is impetuous and unsafe, even though his party is one of remarkable achievement, and that again the man and the party cannot be divorced.

The Republican managers have not as yet attacked Judge Parker personally; but, as was predicted here some months ago, the Democrats are levelling their artillery upon President Roosevelt, making him virtually the issue of the campaign. Their platform charged the existing Republican Administration with being "spasmodic, erratic, sensational, spectacular, and arbitrary," words which were intended to portray the President. They have, however, gone further than this. They have issued a campaign pamphlet, "Document No. 6," which is composed entirely of uncomplimentary and even bitter personal references to President Roosevelt, uttered upon the floor of the House of Representatives for

the deliberate purpose of using them as campaign material. It is stated, on excellent authority, that nearly a million copies of this pamphlet have been issued. In addition to this, Senator Bailey, of Texas, in opening the campaign in Brooklyn, declared that President Roosevelt was the chief issue of the campaign, and criticised him for being rash and erratic, even while commending him for being brave and honest. Ex-Senator Hoke Smith, of Georgia, speaking in New York, emphasizes the Democratic idea in asserting that the President has disregarded international law, overridden the rights of Congress, and violated the Constitution. The Democrats, in fact, are losing no opportunity of making President Roosevelt the conspicuous target for their attacks.

This determination on the part of the Democrats to make President Roosevelt's personality a leading issue of the campaign is not displeasing to the Republicans, who believe that his honesty, courage, independence, and energy are characteristics which appeal to the American heart. The independent and non-partisan press is outspoken in its warning to the Democratic managers that they are in danger of overreaching themselves if they insist upon forcing Mr. Roosevelt's personality into the campaign. "The American people," to quote "The Congregationalist," for instance, "like him because he has originality, forcefulness, and courage, and they cannot see that his much maligned 'impulsiveness' has inflicted upon the Republic any great detriment during the last three years. Indeed, considering his make-up, he has shown a remarkable adaptability to political situations and party demands, although no one can fairly claim that he has been a partisan President." Similar expressions from equally disinterested sources indicate that President Roosevelt does not suffer by the lime-light which is being thrown upon his sturdy figure.

The action of the Republican convention was fully discounted. The session was dignified and the prearranged programme was executed with clock-like precision. There was neither surprise nor disappointment at any stage of the proceedings. The machinery of the Republican party is always remarkable for the regularity of its movement, and nowhere was its well-oiled balance more effectively demonstrated than at Chicago. Even the attempt to create some discussion of the advisability of the selection of Mr. George B. Cortelyou as chairman of the national committee failed to arouse permanent interest. The convention met, accomplished its work without friction, and adjourned.

The story of the Democratic convention reads differently. The

delegates gathered without a clear understanding of their own minds; there was much confusion in the arrangements; and for a few hours a panic seemed imminent. Taken all in all, however, and viewed now from a comparatively distant perspective, it should be said that the convention emerged with considerable triumph from its threatened chaos. The freedom of expression which is typical of the Democratic mind was illustrated in the long and somewhat heated consideration of the platform; but when the vexed questions had been settled by the committee on resolutions, the convention acquiesced. The nomination of Judge Parker on the first ballot was the legitimate outcome of the campaign in his behalf. It recalled vividly the Republican convention at Minneapolis in 1892 when Benjamin Harrison was a candidate for renomination. An element in his party, not without numbers and certainly not lacking in position and influence, sought to defeat him. They could not, however, unite upon any one who was willing to accept their support and who could at the same time find favor with a majority of the delegates. Blaine's name had lost its charm, McKinley declined to be tempted, and every other suggestion was coldly received. The opposition, too, was without organization, while Harrison's friends, on the other hand, were superbly massed and their loyalty was unquestioned. In the same way, the Democrats who opposed Judge Parker at St. Louis could not find a candidate. They were unorganized and drifted helplessly; and it was, therefore, not remarkable that the men who made Parker a possibility, who secured delegation after delegation for him long before the national convention assembled, and who were united and enthusiastic, finally won for him the nomination on the first ballot.

The selection of Mr. Davis as Judge Parker's colleague on the Presidential ticket was a concession to the opposing factions. It has been criticised on two grounds: First, that he is a millionaire and has accumulated his wealth through his association with corporate interests; and secondly, that he is eighty-one years old.

The first objection has not really been seriously considered by the country, as, indeed, it should not be. Except in a few anarchistic minds, there is no envy of individual wealth in the United States unless that wealth is the product of systematic oppression or robbery. Mr. Davis has amassed his fortune by industry, and especially by shrewd investments in land which, at first of uncertain value, proved at a later day to be immensely rich in mineral deposits. He has a clean record, is not ostentatious of his wealth, and has done much good with his money.

As to the disability which his age imposes upon him, opinions differ. There is no question but that he is still as vigorous and active as though he were sixty-one. The years have borne lightly upon him. His mental faculties and his bodily strength are unimpaired. There are many men in the United States Senate who measure to his standard in advanced age, and who participate daily in the discussion of legislative questions. Senator Morgan, of Alabama, is eighty; Senator Pettus, his colleague, is eighty-one; Senator Allison, of Iowa, fulfils the arduous duties of the chairmanship of the Committee on Appropriations at the age of seventy-five; Senator Stewart, of Nevada, is hearty and vigorous at seventy-seven; and Senator Frye, of Maine, presides over the Senate with a capacity that does not indicate that he is considerably beyond the allotted three score years and ten. This does not, by any manner of means, exhaust the list of old men in the Senate; and if Mr. Davis should be elected, he would look down from his seat as presiding officer upon many who share with him the crown of old age. One of the number will, in all probability, be Senator William B. Bate, of Tennessee, who, at the advanced age of seventy-eight years, has been conducting a personal canvass for reëlection to the Senate. His success has been so complete that his competitor, a mere boy of sixty, has retired from the field, convinced that he cannot be chosen. It is quite evident from these examples that, while there is opportunity for young men to secure political advancement in this country, it is also true. that some of the old men are determined not to be laid upon the shelf.

It was, however, a unique and, in the minds of many people, a dangerous experiment to nominate for the position of Vice-President a man over eighty years of age; and ex-Secretary Root, as the chairman of the committee to notify Senator Fairbanks officially of the latter's nomination, took occasion to devote almost his entire address to the consideration of Mr. Davis's advanced years. Mr. Root spoke some plain truths, even though, under the circumstances, the frankness seemed harsh. He pointed out that Mr. Davis was an excellent gentleman who was born during the Presidency of James Monroe, who would be in his eighty-second year on the fourth of next March, and whose election "would furnish no safeguard to the American people against the disaster which would ensue upon the death of a President with a successor not competent to perform the duties of the Presidential office." Mr. Root went so far as to predict that if such a man attempted to administer the exhaustive details of the Government, he would speedily

break down both in mind and body, with serious result to the general welfare of the country.

There has been expressed considerable criticism of Mr. Root for these personal allusions, but it seems to me that it is perfectly legitimate to discuss Mr. Davis's age, especially as such comment invites attention to the present law respecting Presidential succession. Under the statute which was in force until 1886, it was provided that in the event of the death or disability of the President and Vice-President, the Presidential succession should devolve upon the President pro tem. of the Senate, and in case of his death or disability upon the Speaker of the House. This old law, which remained operative for nearly one hundred years, was vitally defective not only because it made possible the occupancy of the Presidential chair by some one opposed to the party which had elected the President, but also because the death or disability of the President and Vice-President might occur during a long recess of Congress, when the legislative officers upon whom the succession devolved might not have been selected. It was therefore enacted that the Secretary of State and the other members of the cabinet, in the order of their rank, should succeed to the Presidential office.

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Under existing conditions, the Secretary of State is only two removes from the Presidency. The law is hardly in consonance with the ideas of the founders of our Government, for it gives to the President the power to name arbitrarily his possible successor. It abrogates entirely the principle of popular suffrage upon which the republic rests; and as a writer in "Harper's Weekly" very properly asserts, it would have caused much exasperation if it had resulted in Mr. Gresham becoming President during Mr. Cleveland's second term. If Judge Parker should be elected, his untimely death is, unfortunately, within the range of possibility; and, in the event of its occurrence, only an octogenarian would stand between the Secretary of State and the Presidency. This would give to the selection of the President's premier an unusual interest, and there would be much anxiety in the country if the choice were not made with great wisdom. If Mr. Roosevelt should die before the fourth of next March, Secretary of State Hay would become President; but Mr. Hay has proven himself a statesman of such commanding ability, he has maintained American prestige with such firmness and distinction, and he has manifested his acute and broad mind to such an eminent degree, that the Administration would continue without the shadow of disturbance. The election of Judge Parker would, in justice

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