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new Speaker will have a critical task on his hands in the formation of the committees. Through his shaping of these committee groups, in whose hands most of the actual work of legislation must always be accomplished, he has the power to influence very largely the business of the session.


The Republican leaders are anxious The Republican that their party in Congress should do nothing that would lessen Republican chances for victory in the presidential campaign next year. Great wisdom and moderation will have to be exercised by this Congress if it would gain the approval of the country. It is hardly to be believed that the Republican party could derive any advantage from a policy by Congress which should be sharply and purposely hostile to the existing Democratic Administration. It must be taken for granted that the Administration is doing the best it can for the welfare of the country; and whether the Repub. lican majority in Congress should agree or disagree with the policies pursued by Mr. Cleveland and his Cabinet, there ought to be the least possible display of mere partisan fault-finding.

National Finances.

It now seems probable that the Administration will make another issue of bonds on account of the diminishing stock of gold in the treasury. It is certainly to be hoped that Congress can devise some financial relief which will obviate the deplorable necessity of these frequent additions to the nation's bonded debt. As we have more than once pointed out, the principal difficulty has grown out of a lack of current revenue sufficient to meet current expenses. With a good and ample income, it would be comparatively easy for the Secretary of the Treasury to keep up his desired stock of gold. An increase in the internal revenue tax on beer, and one or two other expedients of that kind, would provide a sufficient revenue. The country will hardly thank the Republican party if Congress should attempt to throw the tariff question wide open again. Stability is the condition that our business interests most urgently require.

Questions It will be impossible for Congress to avoid of Foreign a full and thorough discussion of several Policy. questions of foreign policy. It is only to

be hoped that good sense and ample knowledge of facts will characterize the debates. The last Congress passed a resolution expressing the desire that the Venezuelan boundary question should be settled by arbitration; and it will be the business of this Congress to ascertain what steps the Administration has taken to urge this view upon the British government. It was unquestionably the desire of the last Congress that immediate and urgent representation should be made to England of American wishes in that particular matter. At that time, and for some time subsequently, the Rosebery administration was in power. Mr. Gresham was our Secretary of State, and was undoubtedly in that condition of

gravely declining health which led to his lamented death. There is some reason to fear that no such direct representations as Congress had expected would be made, were ever actually pressed upon the Rosebery administration. And yet there is also much reason to believe that the Liberal government of Lord Rosebery would have been far more reasonable, and far more readily disposed to listen to the pacific suggestions of our government, than the rather high and mighty, all-grasping Tory administration of Lord Salisbury. It may well, therefore, be thought unfortunate that the statesmen who filled the offices of Foreign Secretary and Colonial Secretary in Lord Rosebery's cabinet, as well as Lord Rosebery himself, went out of office (months after the passage of that resolution by our Congress) without having had their attention called to the matter in any way which made it seem to them to need their immediate consideration. From all that we can learn, we must express the opinion that Lord Rosebery and his cabinet were not for one minute really aware that the American people were taking so deeply serious an interest in the Venezuela question, or that they were feeling that England could not do less in the interest of fair play than frankly to consent to the arbitration of everything in dispute regarding the boundary line between British Guiana and Venezuela.

Mr. Scruggs

on the Venezuela Boundary.

Elsewhere in this number, the Hon. W. L. Scruggs has made a statement regardthe claims of Venezuela. We do not publish this statement as an impartial one, but rather as an authoritative explanation of the grounds upon which Venezuela rests her cause. Mr. Scruggs was formerly United States minister in Venezuela; and we understand that, in what he now writes upon that topic, he speaks as an adviser or counsel of the Venezuelan government. We do not for a moment assert that England may not have some equally plausible claims to make as against the Venezuelan position. But we can say with entire calmness that the claims we have seen made for England by the English press are not of a kind which serve to change our opinion that Venezuela is morally right in asking for the arbitration of the whole broad question. We do not wish to judge the English case upon the merits of the arguments which the English press has made, because these arguments are so lame that they must certainly do Great Britain an injustice.


Secretary Olney has undoubtedly made The True American strong, explicit and proper representations of American views upon the whole subject to the British government; and Congress may feel that it will make no mistake if it sustains the position of the Secretary with promptness, without ambiguity, and without a word of bluster or harshness. The Monroe doctrine seems to us to be involved in the fullest sense; but even if it were not involved, it would be quite as reasonable for Mr. Olney and the present Administration to lay down a

Cleveland doctrine as it was for Secretary J. Q. Adams and President Monroe to announce a Monroe doctrine. We have formed the habit, here in this Western hemisphere, of settling boundary disputes by arbitration. If England desires to be considered as an "American power," it is right that she should accept the good and true principle that there is a

HON. ROBERT R. HITT, OF ILLINOIS, (Who will probably be Chairman of House Committee on Foreign Affairs).

peaceful and lawful way to settle these disputes, and that way is arbitration. As for the blustering talk which makes light of the hideous word "War," let us have none of it. War between the United States and England is as impossible as a war between Russia and the inhabitants of the planet Mars. It is not conceivable that our firm request that a scandalous little dispute in our hemisphere should be settled decently and righteously, should make for war rather than for peace.


We have observed with some amusement The English Point of the tone of the English journalists, conspicuous among them being our colleague Mr. W. T. Stead. Mr. Stead rebukes with just anathemas the American journalists who would suggest the possibility of war between England and the United States. The measureless harm of such a war is shown with eloquence and truth by Mr. Stead; but the best way he can suggest for surely averting so unspeakable a calamity is for the United States always to let England have exactly her own way in everything. The humor of the posi

tion gravely assumed by these English journalists is something they seem not able to perceive. The American reply, obviously enough, is that since England perceives the incalculable gravity of a breach with the United States, it might be well for England to act justly in a little matter in which the United States simply stands disinterestedly for the principle of fair play and international order.


Power ?"



It is certainly quite time that the Is England an "American United States should dissent emphatically from England's recent and novel claim that she was an American power" before the United States existed, and is now just as truly an American power as our own country. All of the English papers, Liberal as well as Tory, are now declaring that England is an American power "' in as full a sense as is the United States. This claim involves a very mischievous fallacy. Canada may become an "American power," immensely honored and respected, whenever she chooses to assume the responsibilities which ought to accompany the privileges she enjoys and expects. But Canada's relations to England do not make England an American power, any more than those relations make Canada a European power. England's claim, therefore, that she is just as truly an American power as the United States, with quite as much moral right to take a hand in Western-hemisphere affairs as our own government, is a preposterous assertion that deserves rebuke. England's exercise of political authority over British Guiana gives England a South American possession, but does not make England a South American power. Brazil and Venezuela are South American powers, with moral rights upon the South American continent that England by mere virtue of her colonial claims does not and cannot possess. France has a share of the Guiana coast; but the French do not for that reason declare that France is a "South American power" in the same sense that Brazil and Chili and Argentina are South American powers. If the boundary-line dispute were simply between the people who live in British Guiana and the people who live in Venezuela, its settlement would be a simple affair, that could readily be arranged upon the lines of justice and fair play. But it is a monstrous outrage upon the rights of Venezuela that the settlers in British Guiana may make any kind of encroachment they like, and then overawe Venezuela by calling in the vast power of Great Britain to sustain the encroachment. As long as the people of British Guiana may go across the seas and invoke the unlimited influence and power of Great Britain to back their territorial pretensions, for just so long the people of Venezuela may rightly look to the moral influence of the United States to save their country from present and prospective dismemberment. To any right-minded American this whole system of European colonies within the bounds of the Western hemisphere is a strife-inciting and a vexatious thing. It is not for us to give ourselves


undue anxiety about the grasping and conscienceless scramble of these European powers for colonial empire in Asia and Africa; but we may well concern ourselves with the serious question of the impudent claims to interference in the Western hemisphere which Europe is prone to assert, as an outgrowth of the surviving remnants of the colonial system on this side of the Atlantic. There is no question of war involved on our part, for the very simple reason that no European power would fire a gun against the United States for the sake of maintaining improper jurisdictional pretensions in either North or South America.


As for the question of Cuba, the duty of The Cuban Congress must depend largely upon facts which will be presented to it by the Administration, and which it may in other ways be able to obtain. It is extremely difficult to know how the Cuban rebellion actually stands. Assuredly this country is in warm sympathy with the patriots who are struggling to throw off the Spanish yoke; and if a recognition of the insurgents as belligerents should be justified by the facts of the situation, the people of the United States regardless of party would be glad to have our government take that stand. But it is a question for the most careful consideration of our ablest authorities at Washington, and it does not seem to us that anything can be gained just now by an excited or impulsive denunciation of Spain. Military affairs in Cuba seem to be approaching a crisis, and it is expected that skirmishing will soon give place to some pitched battles.

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tic foundation for these rumors. Japan is sufficiently occupied with diplomatic business nearer home. Honolulu has had a visitation of the cholera, but the Scourge seems now to be ended. It is not likely that the question of Hawaiian annexation to the United States will be seriously broached in the coming session of Congress. If the Republicans, however, should be successful in the presidential election next year, it may be considered as fairly probable that the question of Hawaii's future would become a definite issue.




On another page our readers will find The Elections the results of the November elections of November. in different States, presented in tabulated form. Speaking in general, the Republicans were widely victorious. They had suffered

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year, but it is very decisive. The politicians and newspaper writers who have jumped forthwith to the conclusion that the Republicans are sure to carry the presidential and congressional elections of 1896, are not sufficiently deferential to the lessons of our political history. There is nothing in the situation to justify confident predictions on the one side or on the other. Everything shows that the independent voter is holding a wider and wider margin of disputed territory, and that he can with increasing facility turn the balance of power. Almost everything will depend upon events and circumstances yet to unfold themselves. The most valuable victories of the past November were those won in Maryland, Kentucky and New Jersey,-three states in which Republican success seems almost incredible.

New Jersey and

Mr. Griggs, if we mistake not, is the first Republican governor New Jersey has Maryland. elected for thirty years. A complete change of party control will lift the State out of some very objectionable ruts. Mr. Griggs was lected by the active support of many of the best Democrats of his commonwealth. The contest had practically nothing to do with national issues, and was waged in behalf of a more economical, progressive and honest administration of state affairs. In Maryland there was, if possible, even a greater need of a complete shaking up. The Republican victory was won by the co-operation of many, if not all, of

the best elements of the anti-spoils Democracy of the State. Thus, while the Republicans have a right to congratulate themselves upon successes in New Jersey and Maryland, it does not follow that their victories, won through their espousal of reform in state matters, are destined to affect party lines very much when national issues are drawn. Still, some permanent party gain may be expected.


Kentucky in Republican Hands.

As for the situation in Kentucky, almost every reasonable person must admit that it is a thoroughly wholesome thing that a reputable Republican should for once serve the State as its chief magistrate. If Republican Iowa, for instance, and Republican Pennsylvania, can find it good now and then, for a change, to elect to the governorship a Boies, or a Pattison, why should not Democratic Kentucky also show enough independence to rebuke Bourbonism occasionally, and entrust the State administration to Republican hands? Now that he has been elected, nobody of intelligence in Kentucky seems to doubt for a moment the purpose and ability of Col. Bradley to make a most excellent record as governor. His success, however, was not due so much to a gain of Republican sentiment in the State as to the fierce differences of opinion that broke the Democracy into jarring factions. The split grew chiefly out of opposing views on the silver question. Mr. Hardin, the Democratic candidate for governor, and Mr. Blackburn, candidate for

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re-election to the United States Senate, were stumping the State as the advocates of the free coinage of silver, while Secretary Carlisle and other Democratic leaders, including Mr. Henry Watterson, were standing firmly by the Democratic platform, which had taken the other side of the money question. Nobody really supposes that Kentucky will fail to give a Democratic majority next year.

The New York Election.

In the State of New York the Republicans were successful by a great majority. The governorship was not in contest, but several other important State offices were to be filled, and the Legislature was to be elected. In the City of New York, which is identical in territory with the County of New York, there were no strictly municipal offices to be filled; but two county offices, Register and County Clerk, were under contest, and several judges were to be elected. In spite of the fusion between the Republicans and the anti-Tammany Democrats, which combination was supported by most of the independent voters and city reformers, the Tammany ticket was successful. Its majority was not very large, and the issues of the campaign were so confused that it is not to be considered that Tammany's victory meant anything decisive. An analysis of the election shows clearly that whenever the opponents of Tammany may act with union and decision in a clear field, Tammany can be overthrown. While most of New York City's seats in the Legislature have been won by Tammany candidates, their opportunity for mischief will not be great in view of the large Republican majority in both branches of the law-making body at Albany. Mayor Strong's administration will continue for two

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The Liquor and Sunday Laws

in New York.

It is true that many German voters, who do not consider themselves as permanent allies of Tammany, voted this year with the Wigwam in order to emphasize their protest against what they call Rooseveltismthat is to say, the strict enforcement of the excise laws. There lies before the people of New York a great discussion touching the maintenance or modification of the laws which have to do with the traffic in intoxicating liquors. At present there are between 7,000 and 8,000 licensed drinking places in the City of New York. It is strongly urged that this number ought to be reduced by at least one-half. Some diagrams which we reproduce from the New York World will show how numerous are the liquor saloons in certain crowded tenement-house districts. Incidentally, also, the diagrams show how scarce the churches are on the East Side. These areas, thickdotted with drinking places, are not exceptional in New York, and similar diagrams showing many other parts of the city might be presented. Mayor Strong and numerous other influential people are of the opinion that the Excise Board, which holds the licensing power in New York, ought to be abolished in favor of the Ohio system, which allows any one to sell liquor who will observe the laws and pay the required tax. It is thought that the fixing of an annual tax of perhaps $500 would of itself operate to close two or three thousand of the New York saloons. While it may be argued that the consumption of in

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