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Woman as a Great Factor in the Coming Election WITH 15.000,000 women marching to the polls on November 4, the fate of the next presidential campaign would seem to be in the hands of the mothers, wives and sisters of the United States. The two presidential candidates, whoever they may be, will have to deviK a new appeal and endure a new scrutiny, and the party managers are already becoming aware that p litical methods which have previously gone un questioned by the male voters may receive a very criti cal examination at the hands of the new women voters. ! v will the women vote? That is a question the true answer of which the political trainers of the coun try would give weights of gold to learn. There are those who take the view that the addi tional 15,000,000 votes will simply mean that many more votes to count without appreciably affecting the situa tion. This view is based on the assumption that the women will find their places in the two old parties in about the same ratio that the men have found theirs; that tiny will be as pliable to party appeals as the men have shown themselves. It must be said, however, that this view is not shared by the managers who have been sounding pub lic opinion during the past year. As a matter of fact, the managers are as much "in the air" as anyone on this question. The only "dark horse" that has yet appeared has been the women's vote. No one will un dertake to say with positiveness where it will bestow itself. C ertainly no party claims it as yet. And there is an uneasy feeling in party councils that the old ap peals will not make much impression on the women, which feeling is rendered still more uneasy by the un certainty as to just what appeal the women are waiting for. There is no indication that the women are con templating a woman's party which in the coming elec tion will present definite policies whose adoption with pledges to work them out will be the price of their suffrage. A woman's party is by no means an impos sibility, but there are no present indications of it at taining such strength as to form a separate political unit in the coming campaign. The women have shown a commendable hesitancy about further complicating the election problem in this country by waiting to see how capable the two old parties will prove themselves to he in meeting the situation ; that is to say, the old parties are now on trial before the womanhood of the country. They are being given an opportunity to prove themselves fit vehicles for the realization of women's ideals for the United States. Women Always Did Their Part THIS absence of rigid political organization does not, however, indicate indifference on the part of the newly enfranchised sex. Anyone, who is conversant with 'he intellectual activities of the women of the United States during the past two years, must be amazed at the energy and intelligence with which they have set themselves to master the problems that their new responsibility brings to them. The programs of most of the women's clubs are clear-cut schedules of study in the machinery of government and of the un Kttled problems that form the bulk of each campaign's paramount issue. Textbooks by the score have ap pears! to inform the women of the structure of our political system, special editions being issued to ex plain the various forms of state government. Lectures by the thousands have been delivered in schools, churches and club rooms by experts, and even the poli tician s have not been slighted they too have been in vited to appear and explain their more partisan points of view. But, in the main, the women have followed the ui partisan course of studying government and its probkms as they are, without reference to party pro gram s, party success, or candidates' am bitions. There has been a really remark able, 'hough informal, continent-wide period of study which might be de scribed as The American Women's v-oure in American Government. rhe American woman has always been in politics, at least as far as her nteret was concerned. Municipal sani tation, street cleaning, milk inspection, health protection, school facilities, the HQUOr and amusement problems have always been a part of the American wo rnan s life because these things touched her home life the health, morals and Pron ss of hcr family. Municipal gov ernment is simply housekeeping on a Community scale, and woman is the world s housekeeper. But with the war. the woman's in terest was widened. She saw the power 01 tlie vaster and more distant prob lems to affect her home. What trans srH U KurI)e intimately affected her n and family. It had power to take "er husband or son. It registered itself JW on her dinner table in "wheat sub bJ2ii r scarcty of staples. It regis hl Vtsf,f 00 her household budget in 2 stcad,1' rising cost of living. World vr . or world war suddenly was re- hekeepingCr " Prb,Cm Wr,d WorWnd then' wnen thc Americanization selvc Cnmmenced- women found them ts engrossed in the task of trying to make up for the years of criminal neglect on the part of those interests which imported peasant labor from Europe for the purpose of forming a cheap, under paid, industrial under class. Women saw that if Amer ican principles were to be taught, they must be prac ticed too. They saw the folly of putting the meaning of America into words only, when that meaning could only be conveyed by deeds. Thus the times conspired, together with the wo men's own efforts, to put them in touch with public problems, removing these problems from the academic atmosphere of the club lecture and showing them to be instinct with vital life. The parties have made their first tentative appeals to the women vote by their attitude on those questions re lating to war. Men light wars, but women suffer from them. Men have the excitement of the contest, but women have the weary waiting at home, and too often thc endless weeping of bereavement. War is a greater horror in the minds of women than of men, because women have the finer sensibilities to appreciate its abysmal barbarism. Thus, the Republican party appeals to women on the ground of its repudiation of Article X of the Covenant of the League of Nations. "By contesting and refusing to ratify this article," say the Republican managers (and the fact that the managers say it may indicate that the Republicans of the Senate are merely furnishing campaign material and not seri ously endeavoring to settle the affairs of the world), "we are saving your boy from having to fight Europe's battles." It would not be a bad argument at all if the Demo crats did not have the weightier retort "By insisting on Article X we are saving all the men and all the boys of every country in the world from having to go to war at all. Article X puts the force of civilization be hind the peace of the world. If we refuse to put American force behind peace, it is only a matter of time before another European war will break out, out of which the United States cannot possibly keep itself, and then. Article X or no Article X, American men and boys will have to go to slaughter again." The whole instinct of the women will be for peace everywhere, not in the United States only, but through out the world. There never was a time when the motherhood of the world was split on racial or na tional lines. Every mother knows how every other mother feels; motherhood is . universal ; and universal motherhood is on the side of universal peace. In this battle of the parties, the Democrats have the advantage of the Republicans in the history of their respective attitudes toward equal suffrage when it was still a debated question. The women will hardly be likely to forget, at least not as early as the next cam paign, which party most assisted them in obtaining the right of the ballot. The women themselves will not forget that the members of their own sex who cam paigned most vigorously against the ballot being given to their sisters were women whose Republican associa tions were apparent. They will not forget that it was a Democratic president who lent the weight of his leader ship to the passage of the amendment. In any case the women of the Urjited States will do well to realize that they absolutely hold the balance of power in the next election, that the next President of the United States may be chosen by their ballots, unless they fritter their opportunity away by a failure to realize the responsibility which this places upon them. If they allow themselves to follow the women leaders who have already allied themselves as auxiliary party managers; if they permit their power to be ab sorbed by the cunning manipulators whose object is to nullify the effect of the 15,000,000 new votes, they will Your Own United States F )R the first time in the history of the United States, women have equal rights with men, in select ing a president. They will hold the balance of power, and the strong Political parties realize that more than ever before, they must make an appeal for humanity, must deal with the woman instinct, which has a way all its own of divining that which is right or wrong. imp' "t 7 sr; SITfflK SPEAKING of your own United States, not so many of us realize that that includes Porto Rico, where they live in houses like thc above, and wear few clothes. The natives are being taught American ways and Amer ican ideals, but they still build their homes from bamboo sticks and use palm leaves for walls. This really makes a comfortable dwelling when one cemsiders that the climate is tropical. so greatly depreciate the power they now hold that it will be a long time before the politicians will again re gard their vote as a serious factor in public affairs. If the women are wise, they will cast their ballots with such a telling degree of unanimity for the cause of world idealism, that the politicians will be compelled to hold their power in wholesome respect ever after ward. Women for Idealism THE United States took a position during the war which no American woman will want to see sur rendered or reversed ; not the commercial and financial position about which so many boast, but the position of humanitarianism and idealism which for a time made us a prophet-nation in the eyes of the world. It is humbling to think back upon the pathetic hope fulness with which the burdened peoples of Europe hailed our announcement of purpose and ideals; it is very sad to think that now those same peoples regard us as having proved apostate to our high principles. But the women of the United States have not proved recreant to the principles enshrined in the historic Fourteen Points, and it is easily within the voting power of the women of the United States to prove to the world that the people of the United States are just as keenly desirous of the world's welfare as ever they were. A few senators have succeeded in placing an unenviable stain upon the United States' reputation for good faith; it is within the power of the women to wash out that stain and bring back hope to the world next November. These, then, are some of the effects we may expect from the 15,000,000 new votes soon to be cast: the notice given to political managers that a new and in dependent force has arisen in the country, and the assurance given the world at large that the women of the United States will insist upon the resumption of the work which has already been originated in preparation for the New Era. But another effect will follow a cleansing, purify ing effect upon our whole partisan system. Nothing possesses more power for ill in a country than the unchallenged control of any political group. The women must remember that it is not necessary for certain parties or certain candidates to be elected in order that a certain group may obtain or keep con trol. There is a super-group that retains control what ever candidate may be elected. The women can break the power of that super-group by voting according to their womanly conceptions of righteousness, and by using their power to force up for public action the liv ing issues which the political managers sometimes try to conceal. That is not always the paramount issue which is so labelled by the politicians. Often they try to switch the people to a secondary issue in order that they may not have to stand the judgment test of thc whole people voting on the issue nearest their hearts. Just now there is a desperate attempt to make the people believe that Bolshevism is the issue in the United States, when really the vital issue both to thc United States and the world is whether we are to abolish war, and with it the interests whose power and wealth con sist in their control of the devices flt which war is prepared and waged. If the women sec a question which ought to be settled, and see that ques tion sidetracked by the strategy of poli ticians, they are numerous enough to raise that issue by themselves, and strong enough to force a national de cision upon it. Their very presence will be a chal lenge to the crookedness and double dealing which so often mars the exer cise of the franchise in America. Every election case which reaches the courts is an exposure of a perfect system of under-hided control whose ramifica tions extend to the most remote ham let in the most unimportant county. Thc forces of dishonesty are well or ganized. They retain their hold by the easy going nature of the men voters who hesitate to raise questions of mor ality in connection with politics. But the women will at once sense dis honesty, and their very natures will prevent them acquiescing in it. Politi cal corruption has found a strong op ponent in the woman's presence in the voting booth. If the women of America only see their opportunity with sufficient clear ness and use it with sufficient unity and directness, politics will once more he come an honorable field of endeavor.