A Dual Heritage: The Public Career of Oscar S. Straus

By Naomi W. Cohen | Go to book overview

nine
THE TAFT YEARS

I

Had the choice been left to Oscar Straus, the Republican candidate for President in 1908 would have been Theodore Roosevelt. The latter had rejected the thought of a third term after the election of 1904, but Straus persistently claimed that the public favored T. R.'S reelection. After his trips to Hawaii and Georgia, he relayed reports of Roosevelt's popularity to the White House and even predicted that the President could break the solid south. Saddened that the man who had the qualifications, and who could easily have won, had voluntarily removed himself, Straus found solace in the thought that in four or eight years popular demand would arise once more for T. R. as President.

Straus' devotion to Roosevelt would permit no criticism of the President's choice of a successor. He loyally believed that T. R. had picked Taft to carry on his "moral fight" because Taft was most conversant with and best equipped to carry out his policies. As for Taft himself, Straus viewed him as a jovial person who possessed the valuable asset of a good- natured laugh. Without T. R.'s personal endorsement, however, he hardly would have been considered as likely presidential material.1

In what the press called an extremely calm campaign, Bryan

-174-

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A Dual Heritage: The Public Career of Oscar S. Straus
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page ii
  • Contents v
  • Introduction vii
  • One - The Emergence Of a Liberal 3
  • Two - Minister To Turkey 21
  • Three - A Merchant In Politics 39
  • Four - Communal Stewardship 55
  • Five - Second Mission To Turkey 74
  • Six - In the Paths Of Peace 102
  • Seven - Humanitarian Diplomacy 121
  • Eight - Secretary Of Commerce And Labor 145
  • Nine - The Taft Years 174
  • Ten - "The Future Belongs To Progressivism" 199
  • Eleven - Peace And War 228
  • Twelve - The Fight For The League 252
  • Thirteen - End Of An Era 284
  • Fourteen - In Perspective 295
  • Notes 303
  • Bibliography 365
  • Acknowledgments 379
  • Index 381
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