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Page:Collier's New Encyclopedia v. 10.djvu/126

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about in 1910 through a coalition of Democrats and insurgent Republicans. This resulted in depriving the Speaker of some of his most important powers. During this session of Congress, the most important measures were those for the establishment of a Commerce Court, for a postal savings bank system, the Mann “White Slave” Act, and a measure providing for limitation on contributions to campaign funds.

The progressive element of the Republican party had become greatly dissatisfied with President Taft's alleged reactionary stand on important measures, and this feeling was intensified when Theodore Roosevelt returned from a trip to Africa on March 10, 1910, and expressed himself strongly dissatisfied with President Taft's administration. As a result of these conditions, the Democrats in the election of 1910, carried the House of Representatives by a majority of 66 and increased their membership in the Senate. President Taft in 1911 attempted to bring about the passage of the Reciprocity Treaty with Canada. Congress, in special session, passed the bill on July 22. It was, however, rejected by Canada. Largely as a result of a scandal in the election of senators, a constitutional amendment providing for their direct election was submitted to the people in 1912 and was ratified in 1913. In the same year the States ratified the 16th amendment to the Constitution which was submitted in 1911, granting authority to Congress to enact income tax laws. During the session of the 61st Congress, acts were passed for the government of the Panama Canal Zone, and provided for the exemption from tolls of American ships engaged in coastwise trade. An act providing for civil government of Alaska; acts providing for New Mexico and Arizona as separate States; a measure creating the Department of Commerce; and an immigration law containing a literacy test, which, however, was vetoed by the President, were also passed.

Foreign relations during these years had many important phases. The forces of occupation were withdrawn from Cuba in 1909. In the same year long-standing differences with Venezuela were peacefully settled.

In 1910 Philander C. Knox, Secretary of State, proposed to various nations the establishment of a permanent court of arbitration at The Hague. At the same time treaties of arbitration were negotiated with the principal European countries. Many of these were signed in 1911. The conditions in Mexico from 1910 to 1913 provided difficult problems for President Taft. Large forces of American soldiers were detailed to control the border during the Madero revolution and following. While the administration was opposed to intervention, it sought to protect American interests and lives. In March, 1912, an embargo was placed on the shipment of arms across the border to Mexico. President Taft declined to recognize the government of President Huerta, which succeeded that of Madero in February, 1913.

There were three prominent Republican candidates for the Presidency in 1912. These were President Taft, Theodore Roosevelt, and Senator La Follette of Wisconsin. Mr. Roosevelt did not enter the campaign until Senator La Follette was withdrawn. Preferential primaries for presidential candidates were used in many States for the first time prior to the convention. At the National Convention held in Chicago, the contested seats were decided chiefly in favor of Taft delegates. Roosevelt supporters declared the decisions wrongly made and the greater part of them declined to take part in the balloting. President Taft was recommended on the first ballot and James S. Sherman was nominated for the vice-presidency. In the Democratic party there were also several strong candidates. These included Champ Clark, the Speaker of the House; Judson Harmon, Governor of Ohio; Woodrow Wilson, Governor of New Jersey; and Oscar W. Underwood, member of Congress from Alabama. At the convention held in Baltimore, there was a strong contest between the Conservatives, led by Alton B. Parker of New York, and the Progressives, led by William J. Bryan. Forty-six ballots were required for the nomination, and Woodrow Wilson was nominated on this ballot, largely through the personal support of Bryan. Thomas R. Marshall of Indiana was nominated for the vice-presidency.

Following the nomination of President Taft, President Roosevelt left the Republican party and organized another, called the Progressive party. In August, 1912, delegates of this party met in Chicago and nominated Theodore Roosevelt for president, and Hiram W. Johnson of California for vice-president. The campaign was one of the bitterest ever waged in the history of the country. In the election on November 12, Woodrow Wilson received 6,286,214 popular votes; Theodore Roosevelt, 4,126,020; William H. Taft, 3,483,922. Thus the split in the Republican party resulted in the election of Wilson. A remarkable feature of the voting was the increase in the strength of the Socialist party. This party nearly doubled its vote in 1908. The electoral vote was 435 for Wilson,