Page images

attract the favor of the boss by annoying the object of his resentment.

restraint of the boss.

It is only fair and simple justice that, I should say, considering The selfhis opportunities, considering his power, that our boss may well declare with Lord Clive, "Considering my opportunities, I am amazed at my own moderation." Conceive for a moment his position, and then tell me if he be not rather entitled to praise for forbearance than blame for excess. I do not believe in boss government, but I believe that under existing conditions it is inevitable. I do not believe that the boss has created the boss-ship which he administers. He is not the source of it; he is the product of it. Why, the first speech I ever delivered in Tammany Hall, I delivered against the measure which I then foresaw would result in the creation of despotic powers in this community, to which I now attribute the existence of the boss-ship as it flourishes and dominates us, and nobody applauded me more heartily than the individual who now is the boss of Tammany Hall. I do not want any particular change in bosses. All bosses look alike to me. [Prolonged laughter and applause.]

in the courts

Each one of us has rights, privileges, immunities, which are ours, The hope is secure from the interference of any boss, even though he control the executive and legislative departments of the city and state, so long as the judges are virtuous, free, and independent. But let the power of the boss be extended over the judiciary, let the judges be taught that their prospects of re-nomination, and of promotion depend not upon loyalty to the people, but upon obedience to the boss and our rights and our privileges are no longer ours to be enjoyed while we obey the laws of our country, but they become the favor that we may enjoy from the forbearance or favor of a boss.

53. The Parts of a State Political Machine

Before the first half of the nineteenth century had elapsed, that necessity for party unity against the common enemy, which Lincoln had pointed out to his colleagues in Illinois, led to an organi

zation of a system of committees and conventions for every political subdivision in the Union in which officers were to be elected. It has often happened that this magnificent organization has fallen into the hands of office seekers, professional politicians, and private persons seeking gain at public expense. The following statement from the pen of an experienced political worker, Mr. Wanamaker, indicates the manner in which a powerful party machine may be constructed by an astute leader: —

Part A. A Republican State Committee, which in every part is subjugated to serve the personal interests of Senator Quay first and the party next, without respect to the will of the people.

Part B. Great prestige and patronage, controlled by Quay as a United States Senator, with two votes, his own and the other. Part C.-Thirty Congressmen, with their secretaries, sixty persons, whose salaries aggregate $180,000 annually, and who are responsible to the machine for their respective districts.

Part D. The 419 officers and employees of the State government, who receive in salaries $1,034,500 annually, and who are selected only because they are supposed to be able to deliver the votes of their districts to any one the Quay machine dictates. These men are all assessed by the bosses.

Part E. The State Senate, with every officer, from president pro tem down to page-boys, selected to do the machine's bidding. The expenses of the Senate last year were $169,604.

Part F. The State House of Representatives, with members, officers and employees, 257 in number, who drew $468,302 last year. All committees are selected by the machine, and are chairmened by men who know no will but that of Senator Quay. Thus his machine absolutely controls all revenue and tax legislation.

Part G.-8122 post-offices, with salaries amounting to $3,705,446. Most postmasters are made the personal agents of the machine in their respective towns.

Part H.

[ocr errors]

4149 county offices, a majority of whom are controlled by Senator Quay's machine, whose salaries amount to $5,000,000.

Part I.

The Philadelphia Mint, with 438 employees, who receive in yearly salaries $326,565.

Part J.


The offices of Collector of Port, with 400 employees,

who receive in salaries $454,000.

Part K.

The internal revenue offices, with 281 employees, who receive in salaries $356,400.

Part L. The United States Circuit and District Courts, with forty-one employees, who receive in salaries $95,000.

Part M.-League Island Navy Yard and Senate arsenals, with 585 employees, who receive in salaries $725,000, making a total of 14,705 officers and employees, who receive from the State and and National Governments $7,609,911 annually.

Part N. The thousands of trustees, other officials and employees of hospitals, State and private; State prisons, reformatories, State asylums, charitable homes, State colleges, normal schools, soldiers' orphans' schools, scientific institutes and museums who are expected to support the machine, or the appropriations of their institutions will be endangered.

Part O. The combined capital of the brewers of the State, their thousands of employees and dependent patrons whom they control. It is alleged to have been the money of the brewers that paid the large sums during Superintendent of Mint Boyer's administration as State Treasurer necessary to make good shortages which saved the machine when his cashier, Mr. Livesey, became a fugitive from justice.

Part P. Besides the amounts paid for salaries of State officers which have already been accounted for, the Appropriation Committee, who are of Quay's personal selection, disburse $10,000,000 annually to schools, hospitals, penal institutions, etc. The bold manipulation of these funds for the benefit of the machine has educated people to regard moneys received for these purposes as personal contributions from Senator Quay, in return for which they must render help to his machine.

Part Q.-The State Liquor League, whose members are in every city, town, hamlet, and crossroads throughout the State,


and who maintain a permanent State organization, having headquarters and representatives at Harrisburg during the sessions of the Legislature, are always for Senator Quay's machine, and form an important part of the machine's operations.

Part R.A large number of the Common Pleas Judges throughout the State, who use their license-granting power for the benefit of the machine by rewarding those faithful to the cause of Quay, and punishing those opposed to the machine.

Part S. The millions of withheld school and personal tax moneys that are used to further the interests of the machine. At three per cent interest, the rate that Smedley Darlington testified last week, under oath, his trust company paid, the machine has taken $2,500,000 of your money since Senator Quay began his reign. Part T. The hundreds of subservient newspapers who are recipients of machine favors, with their army of newsgatherers and correspondents, who are forced to chloroform public sentiment, and hide the iniquities of the machine.

[ocr errors]

The principal allies and partners of the machine are the corporations. The 15,000 national and State office-holders, and the thousands of other officials connected with State institutions, form a small part of the whole number of obedient machine men who are constantly at the command of Senator Quay, the admitted boss of the machine. The corporation employees of the State who are controlled for Quay's use increase the number to the proportions of a vast army.

The steam railroads of the State employ 85,117 men, and pay them annually in wages $49,400,000. Of this number, the Pennsylvania and Reading Railroads furnish 37,911 and 16,083 men, respectively. The Vanderbilt system furnishes 12,432 men; the Baltimore and Ohio, 3615; the New Jersey Central, 2864; the Lehigh Valley, 12,062; and the Delaware, Lackawanna, and Western, 2150. The great street railways of the State, which have received valuable legislative concessions for nothing, give the machine loyal support with 12,079 employees who are paid in salaries $6,920,692 every year.

That monopoly of monopolies, the Standard Oil Company, pays annually $2,500,000 to its 3000 employees, who are taught fidelity to Senator Quay's machine. The Bethlehem Iron Works, whose armor plates are sold to the Government for nearly double the contract price offered to foreign countries, influence their employees to such an extent that in the city of Bethlehem it has been found difficult to get men to stand as anti-Quay delegates.

The thousands of working-men of the Carnegie Iron Works, it is said, are marched to the polls under the supervision of superintendents and foremen, and voted for Quay candidates under penalty of losing their jobs.

The great express companies who furnish franks to machine followers, one of whom is bossed by Senator Platt, with their thousands of men, can be counted on for great service to the machine.

The telegraph companies, whose State officials can, it is said, be found at the inner Quay councils, with the thousands of employees distributed at every important point throughout the State and before whom a large share of the important news must pass, are one of the most dangerous parts of the Quay machine.

54. The Political Party Included in the Legal Framework of Government

Political parties grew up as purely voluntary groups seeking to secure possession of the offices of government; and in spite of the many abuses which early crept in, it was steadily maintained that the government had no business to interfere with the organization and management of such purely private associations. It was found by experience, however, that, if the people were to retain control of the government, they must establish a regular legal control of parties. Thus the party has practically ceased to be an "extra-legal" institution. In the preamble to the recent Oregon law regulating primaries, the operations of parties are declared to have a significance almost equal to that of the state government itself.1

1 See below for primary legislation, p. 586.

« PreviousContinue »