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Page:Oregon Historical Quarterly volume 12.djvu/69

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POLITICAL PARTIES IN OREGON 61 hill county had three distinct tickets in the field. 1 Bush stated the situation clearly from the Democratic standpoint. 2 He de- clared that Democracy was opposed by Whigs openly, when any hope was entertained of succeeding under "that corrupt and often rebuked organization" ; secretly, and under disguise of Independents, and Maine Law advocates where there was no prospect of victory under the odious flag of Federalism. Throughout the campaign Bush waged war on the Maine Law party ; first, on principle, opposing the doctrine of prohibition ; second, and more emphatically, on political grounds, stig- matizing the movement as a mere trick to aid the Whigs in defeating the Democrats. 3 The Marion County Democratic convention of May 6th soberly decreed that as Democrats they did not recognize the Maine liquor law as a legitimate political issue. The results of the election were generally favorable to the Democratic candidates but the latter appreciated the fact that their success had for the first time cost them a sharp struggle. The efficacy of organization on the part of the minority was demonstrated. As the Statesman averred, party lines were now distinctly and permanently drawn and there remained no back or neutral ground in Oregon politics. 4 Bush, in review- ing the election results, commended Clackamas, Linn, Polk and Yamhill counties as having acquitted themselves nobly in their struggle against all the isms of the day. On the other hand, Marion and Benton, heretofore the standard Democratic counties, had been afflicted with serious disaffections in the Democratic ranks, not resulting in total defeat, but giving much regret to the friends of Democracy everywhere. He i The vote on the legislative tickets indicates the relative strength of the parties in Yamhill county: A. J. Hembree, Democrat, 270. Martin Olds, Democrat, 252. A. G. Henry, Whig, 268. Wm. Logan, Whig, 195. J. H. D. Henderson, M. Law, 131. G. W. Burnett, M. Law, 106. 2Statesman, May 16, 1854. sStatesman, April 25 and May 2, 1854. 4lbid., June 20, 1854.