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Page:Oregon Historical Quarterly volume 12.djvu/269

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POLITICAL PARTIES IN OREGON 261 ceptive candidate and he now became a very active one. He was a bombastic, self-assertive man, and was a born leader, which made him a success as a General or a politician. He had not the capabilities or training of a statesman and his speeches on the issues of the day were composed largely of generalities and platitudes. But recognizing no limitation to his abilities, he placed no limitations on his ambitions. Depend- ing first on his successful military record as the "Marion of the Mexican War", and as the hero of a number of Indian fights in the far West, and second upon his standing with his party and especially the pro-slavery element of it, he entered the field for national honors. Of course the first requisite of success was to secure the endorsement of his own state. This would have been easy enough a few years previous for in- stance, when, after his decisive victory over Gaines in 1855, Bush had carried the legend in the Statesman, "Gen. Joseph Lane for President in 1856." 1 But with the Oregon Democ- racy divided into two hostile camps, Lane faced a difficult situation in 1859. The Lane-Stout faction was in control of the Eugene Con- vention. The committee on credentials reported in favor of decreasing the size of the delegations of certain counties which were based on the vote for Whiteaker, in accordance with the recommendation made by the minority of the state central committee. For example, the size of the Marion county dele- gation was thus cut from ten to four members. 2 Upon the adoption of the report, Grover arose and said: "I am au- thorized by eight counties here to say to the convention on behalf of those counties, that they retire from the convention upon this decision." All the delegates from Marion, Polk, Wasco, Clatsop, Washington, Umpqua, Coos and Curry coun- ties then retired. They immediately assembled in another room where they resolved that inasmuch as they did not represent the majority of the counties in the state, they would not elect delegates to the Charleston convention, but pledged the De- i Supra, p. 72. ^Proceedings, Statesman, Nov. 22.