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Editorial

CHAMP CLARK.

(New York American.)

It is perfectly certain that the Democratic battle of 1912 must be fought upon the record and achievements of the Sixty-second Congress.

The landslide which elected six Governors and forty-seven Congressmen in 1910 was not an expression of confidence in the Democratic party. It was essentially an expression of disapproval and distrust of the Republican party. As a result, the Democratic party came into power distinctly on trial-to be measured by its achievements, to be reckoned upon its worth, to be rewarded for its fidelity, or to be condemned for its failure to meet the popular will.

The record of the House majority in the Sixty-second Congress is without a superior in our modern legislative annals for unity, coherence, definiteness and practical achievement. The Democratic party has never had such an effective fighting machine. As a result of the extra session, called by the President to pass the Reciprocity bill, the Democratic majority passed swiftly and smoothly, and yet with perfect fairness and deliberation, every single bill that its platform pledges promised to the American people. As a fighting platform for the campaign of 1912 it is flawless and complete. No party ever went with a better record to ask the ballots of the American people.

And this coherent and effective Democratic majority is as much or more the product of Champ Clark than of any other single individual. It is quite true that Oscar Underwood, as chairman of the Ways and Means Committee, has conducted the cause of the majority on the floor with consummate balance and skill. He has won and deserves golden opinions for his courage, his calmness, his discretion and his ability.

But it is also true that the Democratic majority, for four preceding years, when it was a minority, has been conducted with equal skill and effectiveness by Champ Clark. Since John Sharp Williams withdrew from the Democratic leadership, Champ Clark has led the parliamentary fortunes of the party. He led it, too, in the darkest and most despairing days of Democratic history. He has been fearless, aggressive, undaunted and clear. He has fought the Republican leaders upon the floor of the House, upon the hustings, and upon the American platform-the ablest and best of them-and has sustained the principles and the prestige of the party in every field of intellectual contention.

Moreover, it was under the leadership of Champ Clark that the despotic Cannon regime was destroyed in the House of Representatives, and that the rules were reorganized. It was his own signal judgment of men that elevated Oscar Underwood to the chairmanship of the Ways and Means Committee. Not a measure has been considered or decided upon in the all-powerful caucus of the Democratic party without the concurrence and coöperation of the Speaker of the House.

To pass, after his long experience, from the Speakership of the House of Representatives to the Executive office of the White House would be to Champ Clark simply like passing from one room to another.

In all his career there has been no act and no expression which would give his enemies a hammer to batter his record or his capacity. He is a Progressive Democrat, and the leader of the Progressive Democrats in a progressively democratic age.

There is another remarkable qualification which fits Champ Clark peculiarly for the Presidency. His long career in Congress, and his intimate knowledge of the ways of Congress and of the motives that move the two houses is an equipment for the Presidency which the history of that office will emphasize.

Grover Cleveland was one of the greatest statesmen that America has produced. Of his ability and integrity there can be no doubt. And yet Grover Cleveland's two terms were incessant wrangling conflicts with the House of Representatives, and he left the White House with his party broken and disorganized-simply because he did not know how to handle the American Congress.

William McKinley had, perhaps, the most popular administration of the Presidency that the country has known. With less

individuality than Cleveland, and perhaps with less ability, his administration was full of achievement and comparatively free of fiction, because his four terms in the American Congress had taught him how to deal with that body and how to secure legislation at its hands.

Theodore Roosevelt, with his strenuous and impulsive career, had seven years of strife and wrangle with the American Congress, which he did not understand because he had never been a member.

Benjamin Harrison, who had, perhaps, the smoothest administration of the quarter century, had served three terms in the Congress of the United States.

It is safe to say that if Champ Clark were elected President, he would know better than any man who has ever occupied that lofty station how to handle Congress in the most effective way, and how to secure from the legislative body the fullest possible coöperation with the policies of the Chief Executive. This makes a measureless advantage to a Democratic administration.

Champ Clark is the best and safest man upon whom a hopeful Democracy can reconcile its factions, compromise its differences, and march forward to a Presidential victory.

The Democratic party fronts the greatest opportunity it has known in twenty years for entering upon a long lease of power. Who is better entitled to lead the Democratic party than Champ Clark-the man who made that opportunity?

JUDSON HARMON OF OHIO-A MAN OF DEEDS, NOT WORDS.

BY ROBERT M. DITTEY.

If for no other reason other than that he possesses, in a preëminent degree, those two prime essential qualifications-fitness and availability-Governor Judson Harmon of Ohio should be selected by the Democrats as their candidate for President. Others may be equally fit, none is as available.

Blest with a strong body and a sound constitution, he has been able to perform the arduous labors and to assume the heavy responsibilities which have fallen to him during a long and active career, without drawing upon his reserve forces. He possesses the activity and strength, mental and physical, common to men twenty years his junior. In him we find the ripened judgment of the man of sixty-five combined with the vigor and energy of the man of forty-five.

His career may be briefly sketched as follows: The son of a Baptist minister, he was born at Newtown, Hamilton County, Ohio, February 3rd, 1846, and after working his way through Denison University and the Cincinnati Law School, he began the practice of his profession. At the age of thirty he was elected a Judge of the Common Pleas Court of Hamilton County, but on a contest was unseated by a Republican State Senate. Two years later he was elected a Judge of the Superior Court of Cincinnati. Being reëlected in 1883, he resigned, in 1887, to become a law partner of ex-Governor George Hoadley. Recognized as a profound lawyer, he quickly built up a large practice, and has for many years stood at the head of his profession in his home city of Cincinnati and in the State of Ohio. During his long and distinguished career as a lawyer he never accepted employment from a corporation in a case against the people.

Chosen by Mr. Cleveland in 1895 as a member of his cabinet,

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One of the Manager of the Harmon National Campaign Committee, is head of the Tax Commission of Ohio. Was born in Highland County, Ohio, in 1855, and is by profession an attorneyat-law. In working out the problem of equalizing tax burdens, he has had a conspicuous success.

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