A Puritan in Babylon: The Story of Calvin Coolidge

By William Allen White | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XXV
But Recites Some Dull Lines

IT WAS safe to assume that when administration newspapers began to flash the story, of the President's genuine interest in the oil scandals, the Presidential campaign of 1924 had begun. It had been eight months forming, but it was organized. After that the fight did not falter. Again we get a glimpse of the President from his secretary about this "outstanding quality of consistency."1

"He has never changed his mind on a fundamental public issue. This," quoth the nimble and happy Mr. Slemp, "is an extraordinary fact."

During the spring of 1924, President O'Neil, of the Prairie Oil and Gas Company, arrived from Canada and returned to his Company $800,000 taken out of the country by him in the Continental Oil deal. Fall, Doheny and Sinclair were re-indicted for conspiracy to defraud the government after the first indictment had failed upon a technicality. The government finally won its suits. All the oil leases were invalidated. But Doheny was acquitted. Fall went to jail and Sinclair was imprisoned for tampering with a jury. But the battle of the oil scandal left the White House early in 1924 and was conducted in the courts.

However, the moving spotlight of public interest left the courts and began playing upon the White House. The chief interest in the White House was the President's spring campaign in the primaries for delegates to nominate him at the Republican National Convention in June. Congress was in session. Small grain was grinding through the mill. The Johnson restrictive immigration bill excluding Japanese had passed. The soldiers' cash bonus bill was defeated in the Senate which then adopted the Insurance Plan known as the soldiers' bonus bill which passed both

____________________
1
"The Mind of the President" by Bascom Slemp.

-278-

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