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ticket, with Mr. Bryan second; for he is much the superior in boldness, in thorough-going acceptance of his principles according to their logical conclusions, and in sincerity of faith. It is impossible not to regret that the Democrats and Populists should not have put forward in the first place the man who genuinely represents their ideas.
However, it is even doubtful whether Mr. Watson will receive the support to which he is entitled as a Vice-Presidential candidate. In the South the Populists have been so crushed under the heel of the Democrats, and have bitten that heel with such eager venom, that they dislike entering into a coalition with them; but in the South the Democrats will generally control the election machinery. In the far West, and generally in those States where the Populist wing of the new alliance is ascendant, the Populists have no especial hatred of the Democrats. They know that their principles are substantially identical, and they think it best to support the man who seems to represent the majority faction among the various factions that stand behind Bryan.
As a consequence of this curious condition of affairs there are several interesting possibilities open. The electoral college consists of the men elected at the polls in the various States to record the decrees of the majorities in those States, and it has grown to be an axiom of politics that they must merely register the will of the men who elected them. But it does seem possible that in the present election some of the electors may return to the old principles of
SIX YEARS OF CIVIL SERVICE REFORM*
No question of internal administration is so im
portant to the United States as the question of Civil Service reform, because the spoils system, which can only be supplanted through the agencies which have found expression in the act creating the Civil Service Commission, has been for seventy years the most potent of all the forces tending to bring about the degradation of our politics. public can permanently endure when its politics are corrupt and base; and the spoils system, the application in political life of the degrading doctrine that to the victor belong the spoils, produces corruption and degradation. The man who is in politics for the offices might just as well be in politics for the money he can get for his vote, so far as the general good is concerned. When the then Vice-President of the United States, Mr. Hendricks, said that he "wished to take the boys in out of the cold to warm their toes,” thereby meaning that he wished to distribute offices among the more active heelers, to the rapturous enthusiasm of the latter, he uttered a sentiment which was morally on the same plane with a wish to * Scribner's Magazine, August, 1895.