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One hopeful sign in the political horizon of to-day is the fact that the intense party fealty of a decade ago is yielding to the force of reason and argument, that States within the Union which but a few years ago could be counted in advance as "solid” for some Presidential candidate, are now considered "doubtful" until the people have registered their choice and the votes are counted. The demagogue who would lead his party to-day by appeals to passion and to party loyalty must give way to the political speaker who deals with basic principles, undisputed facts and living issues. No party can rightly assume to itself all the virtues of our political fabric. It is equally true that the evils of politics and the mistakes of legislators are the common heritage of all the parties that have been entrusted with power.
Political parties in any country where popular government prevails are a necessity. Freedom of speech and freedom of press emphasize differences of opinion, and men naturally take sides upon present issues and array themselves against each other in healthful and intellectual, but bloodless, combat. While this discussion of questions of the day prevails, loyal, intelligent voters, regardless of past party affiliations, will draw their own conclusions and cast their ballots for such men and for such measures as will in their opinion enhance the real interests of the land all parties love, and preserve unblemished the flag for which all loyal Americans, irrespective of party, stand ready, if need be, to die.
It is this patriotic spirit that has made men read and study and think and investigate for themselves, and if this has led to a change of convictions it was a good change and an honest change, regardless of the party affected. In this spirit of patriotism lies the real reason for the independent voter, the real power in politics to-day, and the force which all parties seek to direct by a careful, unbiased, able presentation of the issues of the pending campaign.
It is our country's proud record that in any emergency the judgment and intelligence of her people can be trusted. The great, liberty-loving heart of American citizenship is in the right place and can be depended
upon to direct the life currents of the body politic aright. It is to that heart, throbbing with patriotic impulse and with intelligent interest in our country's welfare that these pages are directed with the conviction that they will diffuse valuable information upon the disputed questions of "The Battle of 1900."
In the preparation of this book, it has been our aim as publishers to present a volume that should bear the stamp of authenticity, that should ably and fairly discuss the issues which divide the people, that should contain the most potent arguments to be adduced in behalf of all parties and their policies, that should appeal to all political leaders as a work worthy of approval and endorsement, that should enable the great army of voters to study the issues of to-day in an intelligent manner and cast their ballots in the light of their own best judgment, that should have a value extending beyond the few short months of the campaign.
We believe The Battle of 1900 meets fully its purpose. In authorship we have sought and secured writers who command respect. They are men of influence in the councils of their respective parties and “speak as those having authority;" they are thoroughly posted upon the matters of which they write; they are men whose patriotism, intelligence and knowledge cannot be questioned; they each and all possess marked literary ability and are trained in the art of writing; they are in close touch with the people and present the issues of the day ably, honestly and fearlessly, content after the smoke of battle has passed away to abide by the decision of the real arbiters, the intelligent voters of our beloved America.
THE REPUBLICAN PARTY.
A REVIEW OF ITS PAST RECORD AND WHAT IT STANDS FOR NOW.
THE ISSUES OF THE CAMPAIGN FULLY
THE LIVES OF THE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES, WILLIAM MCKINLEY
AND THEODORE ROOSEVELT.
L. WHITE BUSBEY.