Theodore Roosevelt: A Biography

By Henry F. Pringle | Go to book overview

Chapter XV
END OF THE REIGN

THE administration, said Roosevelt in September, 1906, when Speaker Cannon was running for reëlection to Congress, "has had no stouter friend than the Speaker of the House. . . . He is a patriotic American. He is for every man, rich or poor, capitalist or labor man, so long as he is a decent American, and he is entitled to our support because he is a patriotic man."1 A fortnight earlier, the President had written to Uncle Joe:

. . . you need never waste your time in thinking that I will give so much as a second thought to any kind of a story in the remotest degree reflecting on you. I know your attitude absolutely. All you are trying to do is from the standpoint of the welfare of the country and the party, to strengthen all the factors that can be brought into play for success in November. You have done your part up to the handle. More power to your elbow!'2

Before the end of 1908, however, this cordiality had vanished. It had never been sincere. Too long had the proud head of Congress bowed to the imperial will in the White House. The memory of frequent defeats rankled, and the revolt began in 1907. Speaker Cannon, leader of the Republican party in the House, became a general of the rebel forces. The President was no longer the potent influence he had been, for the simple reason that he would go out of office on March 5, 1909; it had been a mistake to announce in 1904 that he would never again be a candidate for the Presidential nomination. Roosevelt may have suspected, although he never said so, that his support of Taft was also an error in political judgment. The President was facing an unpleasant fact -- that power was slipping from his grasp.

Theodore Roosevelt, as the day of abdication rushed toward him all too swiftly, was not yet fifty years old. He had been the youngest President; he was far too young to retire to slippered ease. "When you see

____________________
1
Roosevelt to E. E. Clark, Sept. 5, 1906.
2
Roosevelt to Cannon, Aug. 25, 1906.

-476-

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Theodore Roosevelt: A Biography
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Foreword vii
  • Contents ix
  • Illustrations xi
  • Book I 1
  • Chapter I - Teedie 3
  • Chapter II - Growth 16
  • Chapter III - Thou Goddess, Indifference! 26
  • Chapter IV - Alice Lee 40
  • Chapter V - Butter and Jam 54
  • Chapter VI - I Rose like a Rocket 65
  • Chapter VII - Practical Politician 79
  • Chapter VIII - Gentleman Cowhand 92
  • Chapter IX - The Years Between 106
  • Chapter X - A Job Once More 120
  • Chapter XI - Sword of Righteousness 132
  • Chapter XII - The Nation in Peril 152
  • Chapter XIII - Lord of the Navy 165
  • Chapter XIV - A Bully Fight 181
  • Chapter XV - Reward for a Hero 201
  • Chapter XVI - Yearnings and Consummation 216
  • Book II 235
  • Chapter I - Middle of the Road 237
  • Chapter II - The First Attack 251
  • Chapter III - The Rights of Labor 264
  • Chapter IV - The Big Stick 279
  • Chapter V - Setting for a Melodrama 301
  • Chapter VI - I Took Panama 315
  • Chapter VII - Trimming Sail 339
  • Chapter VIII - The Imperial Years Begin 359
  • Chapter IX - Imperial Years 372
  • Chapter X - The Japanese Menace 398
  • Chapter XI - Malefactors of Great Wealth 413
  • Chapter XII - The Wicked Speculators 432
  • Chaper XIII - Substantial Justice 446
  • Chapter XIV - Handing Down the Law 465
  • Chapter XV - End of the Reign 476
  • Book III 495
  • Chapter I - The First Error 497
  • Chapter II - Among the Kings 508
  • Chapter III - Return Triumphant 525
  • Chapter IV - True Democracy 540
  • Chapter V - Battling for the Lord 553
  • Chapter VI - Drums of War 572
  • Chapter VII - The Final Blow 589
  • Appendix 605
  • Bibliography 607
  • Index 613
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