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party. Is that a part of an economic question to be discussed in this body? Is that what you call fair treatment in legislation?
"Mr. President, as I have said in the beginning, my interest in this measure is because I believe it to be for the interests of the people of this country. I believe that it means the upbuilding of a new industry, a kindred industry to those industries which have made this country great and prosperous. It means another step in the direction of development, not confined to section or to party, but for the good of the whole country."
In conclusion Mr. Hanna turned upon his critics, and accused them of passing without a murmur a river and harbor bill containing provisions which made the ship-subsidy bill by comparison look white and innocent. Whether any particular measure for the encouragement of trade was called a looting of the Treasury or a piece of constructive economic legislation depended upon the number of Congressional districts which it happened to benefit. I have read a great deal of Mr. Hanna's private correspondence with the ship-builders and operators who would have benefited from the operation of the subsidy bill, and I failed to discover any intimation that the bill was not framed in good faith to accomplish its ostensible object. Whether, as a matter of fact, it would have done so without any benefit to private interests, beyond the amount absolutely necessary to accomplish the desired object, is a question upon which none but an expert can pass. In the course of the debate Senator Spooner made some shrewd criticisms of the details of both the bills, which might well have caused doubts in the minds of his hearers. Such doubts are bound to arise whenever the people actually benefited by any attempt to encourage a private industry have a great deal to say about the terms of its encouragement. Economic legislation which seeks to accomplish a constructive business purpose by the direct or indirect subsidizing of private interests should be framed, as it is in Germany, by experts whose opinions cannot be biassed by any prospect of personal advantage. Our American practice had, however, been entirely different. With some few exceptions all American economic legislation before 1900 was practically dictated by its beneficiaries. In allowing its beneficiaries to have a good deal to say about the ship-subsidy bill
Mr. Hanna and his associates were following a long-established precedent. But the precedent was based upon the idea that the public and private interests involved were substantially identical. Mr. Hanna himself believed them to be substantially identical; and when the subsidy legislation failed it was his honest opinion that a wise and necessary measure for promoting the expansion of American commerce had been killed by cowardice and sectional prejudice.
THE DEATH OF PRESIDENT MCKINLEY
In the preceding chapter the fate of the attempt to revive American shipping engaged in foreign trade has been followed to the end, although the end did not take place until after the occurrence of many other extremely important incidents in Mr. Hanna's life. In the meantime Mr. McKinley's second inauguration had taken place amid much jubilation and personal and party congratulations. Mr. Hanna had charge of the ceremony, and during its progress was, according to the newspapers, almost as much its hero as was the President himself. But the man who, according to his Western flatterer, could make the sun stand still could not prevent the rain from falling. The combined ceremony and festivity was marred by the usual foul weather of early March.
Local politics in Cleveland occupied much of his time during the spring of 1901. At the municipal election held in April Tom Johnson was elected Mayor of Cleveland for the first time by a substantial majority over the Republican candidate. Mr. Johnson continued to be both Mayor of Cleveland and a thorn in the flesh to Mr. Hanna for the next three years. With all his talent for political management he never succeeded in keeping the Republicans in control of his own city—and that in spite of the fact that the city usually went Republican at national elections. His street railroad interests were undoubtedly a serious embarrassment to him in his handling of the local political situation, and prevented him from acting or from appearing to act as disinterestedly as he did in state and national politics.
Senator Hanna himself was inclined to attribute the ill success of the local Republican organization chiefly to one cause. Since 1886, as we have seen, the Republicans of Cuyahoga County had been nominating their candidates for office under the so-called Crawford County system of direct primaries. The system in its operation had undoubtedly handicapped the local machine, when it attempted to dictate the party nominees, but it had also encouraged factional quarrels, weakened the organization's fighting power, and produced a lot of second-rate candidates. Mr. Hanna's own opinion of its effects and defects is expressed in a speech made by him to the Tippecanoe and other Republican clubs on May 11, 1901. He said: —
"I have watched very closely the workings of these two plans. As to the Crawford County plan, I have found that its application in the rural districts has resulted very successfully, but in the large cities we must judge theory by practice. The arguments in favor of the convention plan are conclusive. In the cities it is impossible to nominate the best candidates by the direct vote plan. The Crawford County plan does defeat the will of the majority. It has done so time and time again.
"The primaries in the city of Cleveland last spring, and in fact for several years, have not been representative of the Republican vote. An enrollment of Republican voters is advocated, but even then we are liable to be imposed upon. There are two things of the utmost importance, which cannot be accomplished under the Crawford County plan—the distribution of candidates, geographically; also the proper recognition of nationalities. Both are very important. The good men of all nationalities should have an opportunity, and they do not have it under the Crawford County plan. Only in a deliberative body, such as a convention, are they given consideration. These impressions come from close observation. Change the plan now, and we will change the trend of things in Cuyahoga County." Not even Senator Hanna's influence, however, sufficed to make Cleveland Republicans go back to the convention system of nominations. In a democracy nothing is more difficult than to withdraw from the people any power which they have once exercised.
While Mr. Hanna was meeting with stumbling blocks in Cleveland, the Republicans in the state accepted his leadership without question. The State Convention assembled in Columbus on June 25, and in it Mr. Hanna was the dominating influence. It is a rule in the politics of Ohio that one good term as Governor deserves another. Mr. George K. Nash had served satisfactorily for two years, and there was no question about his renomination. Senator Foraker was as usual the orator of the occasion, and not even Mr. McKinley's warmest friend could have extolled the administration in more glowing terms. Mr. Hanna may have chafed at times, because he was obliged to cooperate in public politics with a man with whom he was on such bad terms in private, but if so, he may have been consoled, because of the part which Mr. Foraker was obliged to play on formal occasions as official praise-monger for the administration. Mr. Hanna followed Senator Foraker, and in his speech brought the gospel of prosperity down to date. Now that it had really come, how was it to be continued? Manifestly by continuing to support the party who had brought it about. Only in this way could the newly-made confidence be retained.
"The foundation of prosperity is confidence—confidence in the future. The business man, the large operator, if he does business but for to-day and to-morrow only considers to-day and to-morrow. If he is limited to that space of action he governs his actions accordingly, and he only operates for a few hours in advance because he knows not what the future may bring forth. Now, I made it as a statement as infallible as the laws of nature that, in order to sustain present conditions in this country he must have absolute confidence as to what is in store for the future. Therefore, resting upon that foundation of security in our finances, upon the policy which has built us up as a nation, upon the policy which has carried us forward as a progressive nation, the great mass of people will continue to trust those men and that party and adopt it as evidence of security in future operations. It is the operation of that future that makes business. It is the confidence in the future which induces capital to expand and develop and that brings to all classes of labor more work."
As there was no disposition in Ohio to displace the ruling powers, the campaign was not very strenuous. Mr. Hanna himself went on the stump for about ten days just before the election, but he could have spared himself the trouble. The result was a foregone conclusion, if only because of Mr. McKinley's assassination, which had occurred in September. Mr. Nash