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Page:Oregon Historical Quarterly volume 12.djvu/147

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POLITICAL PARTIES IN OREGON 139 the above mentioned caucus. 1 Prominent among these were Nat. Ford of Polk, J. C. Avery of Benton, Andrew Shuck of Yamhill and J. K. Kelly of Clackamas, the latter being presi- dent of the Council. The Statesman's definition of an inde- pendent Democrat was "one who votes for the meanest kind of a Know Nothing, nigger-worshipping apostate from the Demo- cratic party." 2 But the opposition was not to be dissipated this time by the mere applying to it a few ugly names. The revolt grew and preparations were made in different counties for nominating independent Democratic tickets as opposed to the regular. Nearly all the regular Democratic precinct and county con- ventions held in the spring of 1857 followed the lead of the caucus of January 20, in denouncing the Standard and hurling defiance at all bolters. The disregard of party nominations was held to be unpardonable sin in politics. 3 The attitude of the "hards" toward the "softs" is summed up in the expres- sion of Labish precinct, Marion county: 4 "Whereas, there are some persons who profess to belong to the Democratic party and talk about the true Democracy and stigmatize the Demo- cratic party now in power as a 'clique' ; Resolved That we recognize none as Democrats who do not support with their votes the present Democratic organization, and further, that those who bolt or countenance bolting should not be recognized as belonging to the regular organization." Some counties, however, assumed a neutral, judicial attitude. The Multnomah convention attributed the division to controversies in which the Democratic press "have so wantonly indulged, and we re- pudiate such as anti-Democratic and unjust." 5 Despite the gathering clouds, Bush stated April 7 that the party was never more vigorous and strong; that it had a con- stitution fully strong enough "to spew out the putrid matter i Ibid., January 27, February 3 and February 24. 2lbid., March 31. sDeclaration of South Salem precinct. Statesman, April 7. 4Statesman, March 31. Slbid., April 7.