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i' 4 "'U V -. Commoner. The WILLIAM J. BRYAN, EDITOR AND PUBLISHER. Vol. 4t No. 29. Lincoln, Nebraska, August 5, 1904. . ! , ' Whole Number 185 Mr. Bryan's Speeches During Closing Hours of Following is Mr. Bryan's first speech on the last night of the St. Louis convention, delivered while Judge Parker's telegram was under discus sion: Mr. Chairman and Gentlemen of the conven tion: I do not know whether I can make myself heard by you. I was informed that some action was being aken here vand I came over. I understand that you have received a tele gram from the candidate, which has been read to you, and which I have yead, and that a motion has been made to send back a reply, and that the question now is on the resolution directing the sending of this reply. H I wish to state the facts in this matter and then to make a suggestion. We had a protracted session of the committee on resolutions. Wov sixteen iours we were in session .the last time. When the platform was re ported from the subcommittee it contained the gold standard plank of which you know. It was discussed in committeo. It was stated by mem bers that it would be unfortunate to insert the plank, and finally, by a vote of thirty-five to fif teen the gold plank was excluded. I then introduced some separate resolutions. I had previously introduced a resolution reaf firming the Kansas City platform. That was voted down. When we refused to declare In fayor. of the , gold standard and refused to re affirm the Kansas City platicrm, we left the question open as to the monetary standard, I called attention to the fact that there were certain questions before congress upon which we ought to express an opinion. I called attention to the fact that a bill had been reported by a committee authorizing the melting of silver dol lars into subsidiary coin at thq discretion pf the secretary of the treasury. I pointed out that the purpose of the bill was to gradually melt up the silver dollars and recoin them Into subsidiary coin of limited legal tender. I pointed out that the purpose of the bill was to decrease tne amount of standard money just to the extent of the melt ing of the coin. But the committee refused to adopt it, saying that, as we had left the gold and silver question out entirely, we ought not by any suggestion to bring any phase of the money question into the campaign. I Introduced a resolution declaring our oppo sition to any contraction of the currency by the melting or retirement of any or the silver dol lars. They objected that that brought In the ques tion. I scratched out "silver dollars" and made it read that we objected to the contraction of the volume of metallic money. They said that the words "metallic money" might bring In the sil ver question. I scratched out "metallic money" and put In "standard money" that we were op posed to the contraction of the volume of stand ard money; but they said: "We cro not want to bring the money question In at all." I then proposed a resolution condemning the asset currency, and called attention to the fact that it had no connection with the silver question, but they said that if we touched on any phase of the money question, It would bring in all of It. I called attention to the fact that we had to meet this issue; that we had to have either a perpetual debt or an asset currency, if we had the national banks of issue. But they were so anxious to get harmony and bring the party to gether that we might fight this battle as a unit, that they were not even willing to declare against an asset currency and branch banks. I then proposed a resolution declaring that the United States notes furnished better money than the national bank notes. I was trying to get a declaration on that principle which has no con nection with the silver question, out has a con- the Convention nection with a vital, living, throbbing question. But they saidi "In the interest of harmony we must leave that out," and thus every proposition on our side was voted down, ana they put it oh the ground that as the gold proposition on their side had been voted down, no phase of the ques tion should be touched. When wo came to read over tne flnal draft I found that, inadvertently, a phrase had been used in the last paragraph whicn might raise this question. Here Is the paragraph: "But also the active assistance or all of our fellow citizens, who disregarding past differences upon questions no longer in issue," etc. I moved to strike out "upon questions no longer in issue," on the ground that t was a dec laration that the money question wag settled, and substantially a declaration for the gold standard. On motion in that committeo it was fltricken out, and here (exhibiting) is the official draft of the platform with those words stricken out. 1 find that copies had been given out to the newspapers before this correction was made, and as tho plat form appears in tho papers those words (the Words stricken out) are in it. The committee took every precaution to keep this question out, and now I understand it is proposed that we shall make a declaration In this telegram that: "The platform adopted by tnrs convention is silent upon the question of the monetary stand ard because it is not regarded by us as a possible issue in this campaign, and only campaign Issues' are mentioned in tho platform. Therefore there is nothing in the views expressed by you in the telegram just received which would preclude a man entertaining them from accepting a nomina tion on said platform." In the committee I asked Senator Hill if he lenew Mr. Parker's views on the gold standard. He said he did not; that he had never talked with him on that subject, and that he did not know his views upon It. Now, my mends, if you send this "telegram and say that this question Is no longer an issue, you simply say it is settled on the gold standard side; and I Insist that if you are going to declare for the gold standard, you should be honest and manly and say so in the platform. (Applause.) Senator Tillman has said that we all know where Mr. Parker stands; that we all knew in the committee. How did we know? Only by his si lence. That was the only way. Judging by his si lence, I believed he was for tho gold standard, and I have insisted for months that he ought to state his position, so that the American people could sit in judgment upon it. and not enter a convention blindfolded on this subject. (Ap plause.) If this convention will adopt a plank declar ing that the gold standard has been, established In this country and Is accepted, I shall offer no objection to the plank except to vote against it. (Applause.) But I appeal to you to be candid with tho vot ers of this country. (Applause.) I appeal to you to take them into your confidence. If there Is any objection to our saying this plainly, why should we say it by inference; and if you say that you are willing to say this In regard to the gold standard because it is settled, then I insist, that having entered upon the money question, you shall say in the platform whether or not the party favors the molting up of tho silver dollars, wheth er it favors the asset currency, tne branch banks, and tho national bank currency. (Apiauso.) And if tho convention does not want to do this; if it wants simply to send this telegram, then I Insist that if wo are going to tell Mr. Parker that his vlows are unimportant on this question, becauso It is not an issuo, wo shall tell him that his views are important on those other phases of the finan cial question which are before tho country. (Ap plause.) Mr.'B. F. Pettlgrow of South Dakota: May I ask the gentleman from Nebraska a question? Mr. Bryan: Certainly. Mr. Pettigrew: As I recollect the telegram of Judge Parker, it practically says that the gold standard is irrevocably established and ho would veto any bill to disturb It. I want to know if his language would admit of any other Interpreta tion? Mr. Bryan: The words "flrrmy ana irrevo cably" may mean that thorc Is no Mr. Pettigrew: He says he will act accord ingly if he is elected. Mr. Bryan: Yes "irrevocably established, and (1) shall act accordingly." If ho means that it is established boyond the. power or the Amer ican people to change It, I would deny it, for the American people havo the right to fix their stand ard and to change it whenever thoy please. (Ap plause.) If, however, ho simply means that, so far as ho is concerned, ho is opposed to any change, and that ho wauts to go into the office with flBc understanding that all the influence of the exeetlvo will be used to prevent any change In the standard, then I understand it to mean that If president, and having the veto power which enables him to override anything less than two thirds of both houses, he will use that power even if the majority of the people want to caange the standard. (Applause.) I am sorry that this question ever arose. I joined in the report of tho platform committee because I wanted harmony. I joined In it because I wanted to put a united party back of our can didate. I think it is a manly thing for a man to express his opinion before tho convention ad journs; but It would have been manlier to have expressed it before tho convention met. (Ap plause.) It is a manly thing to express his opinion before the delegates act finally upon his position, but it would have been a manlier thing had he expressed his opinion before the voters through out the country went to their caucuses and their primaries and sent instructed delegates here. (Applause.) We can not be blamed for tho Injection of this question at this time. It Is the Judge's fault that he did not speak sooner, ano not our fault He has been invited to speak on numerous and sundry occasions. It is not our fault that this question was ever raised. Hier friends brought the gold plank Into the committee and tried to make it a part of tho platform; but, having been offered and having been stricken out and the convention having acted, I am not willing to send this naked statement to him, and thereby write Into our plat-, form a plank that we intended to leave out of the platform. (Applause.) I shall, therefore, oppose this telegram, or possibly as amendments must be acted on first, I will propose some amendments to the telegram, and then if the motion to send the telegram is defeated, you can propose your gold standard plank and let the convention vote upon it. If the gold standard is right, why run from It? (Ap plause.) If It is good, why bo afraid of It? and if it Is bad enough to scare you out of putting it in your platform, It is bad enough to leave out, either directly or indirectly. (Applause.) -. 2 .iJitii, mmssa