The greatest event of Arthur's administration was the passage in 1883 of the Civil Service Act known as the Pendleton bill.1 It was, as Ostrogorski truly remarked, "the Magna Charta of civil service reform."2 "The whole of the constitutional history of England," wrote Dr. Stubbs, "is a commentary on this charter."3 Like- wise may it be said that the history of civil service reform in the United States is a commentary on the Act of 1883. Grant had shown what a half-hearted executive might do without congressional support. Hayes with single-minded purpose and pertinacity, opposed by all the leaders of his party except Sherman,4 his Secretary of the Treasury, had done as much under the circumstances for the cause of civil service reform as a zealous and common-sense President could do unaided by legislative action. As the result of his grapple with the spoils system, he wrote, "Legislation is required to establish the reform."5
Garfield, champion of the reform as representative, was a sad disappointment as presidential candidate and President. Lamentable is it to record for one who admired him while living that his death rather than his life____________________
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Publication information: Book title: History of the United States from the Compromise of 1850 to the Mckinley-Bryan Campaign of 1896. Volume: 8. Contributors: James Ford Rhodes - Author. Publisher: Macmillan. Place of publication: New York. Publication year: 1920. Page number: 161.
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