Calvin Coolidge, the Man Who Is President

By William Allen White | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XVIII
MORE ABOUT NATIONAL POLITICS

This story of Western politics, the story of the rise to power of Charles Curtis, the leader of the United States Senate, the President's reliance in every battle with the Democrats, is as large a part of the Coolidge story as it is of the Curtis story. For until one knows the kind of politics with which Coolidge as President has been contending, and must contend, one cannot understand either his victories or his defeats. New England Republican politics are for the most part clean. Western politics, particularly Kansas politics from which Curtis has risen, are clean; they have the New England inheritance, but they are clean in a different way from the rectitude of New England. Kansas more or less typifies a group of Western states which have long controlled the majority in the Republican Party and are conscious of their control. Curtis's rise in Western politics is in many ways deeply antithetical to the rise of Coolidge. But Coolidge ceased to be a New Eng. land leader and became a national leader when Harding died in 1923. He has had to deal with Western politics, Western methods, Western men.

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