Letters of Franklin K. Lane eBook

Franklin Knight Lane
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 506 pages of information about Letters of Franklin K. Lane.

You surely ought to join us on the tariff fight, but then I wish you the best of fortune whatever your choice.  Ferd and several others with myself are now organizing what will some day be a great state, if not a great national institution.  We call it the Young Men’s Democratic League [Footnote:  This plan seems to have been to enlarge the influence of the League mentioned in a former letter.]—­it is to be made up of young men from twenty-one to forty-five; its scope—­national politics, election of President and Congressmen, and its immediate purpose to inform the people on the tariff question.  When our Constitution is published you shall have one.  We expect to organize branches all over the State and in a year or two will be strong in the thousands.

Your election article was of a singular kind but very good.  I have loaned it out among the old crowd.  I spoke of it to Judge Sullivan, who is compiling authorities on the “intention of the voter” as governing, where the spelling is wrong on a ballot.  Sullivan ran for Supreme Justice and ran thousands ahead of his ticket (the Democratic) but thinks that he was defeated by votes thrown out in Alameda and Los Angeles counties because of irregularities in the ballot—­in one case his initials were printed “J.  D.” instead of “J, F.”—­in another instance, his name was printed a little below the title of the office, because of the narrowness of the ticket.  If these ballots were counted for him he thinks he would have won. ...

Fourteen years later, when the electoral count was made of Franklin K. Lane’s ballots for Governor of the State of California, between eight and ten thousand ballots were thrown out on similar ground of “irregularities,” and he was counted out, “the intention of the voter” being again frustrated.

To John H. Wigmore

San Francisco, California, January 29, 1889

My dear Wigmore,—­ ...  I want to report progress.  We now have our bill complete. ...  The bill I send has been adopted by the Federated Trades and will be substituted by them for their bill now before the House. ...

On Saturday evening there will be one of those huge “spontaneous” mass meetings (which require so much preparation) in support and endorsement of the bill.  The most prominent men in both Houses of the Legislature will speak. ...

San Francisco, February 17, 1889

...  I never have been busier in my life than in the last two weeks.  Ballot Reform has taken up a very great portion of my time.  I have just returned from a lobbying trip to Sacramento.  The bill will not pass, though the best men in both Houses favor it.  I went up on the invitation of the chairman of the Assembly Committee to address the Committee.  I spoke for an hour and a half.  At the end of that time only one man in the group openly opposed the scheme, and he confessed that the bill would do just what I claimed for it, and made this confession to the Committee.  “But,” said he, “it tends to the disintegration of political parties and as they are essential to our life we must not help on their destruction.” ...

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Letters of Franklin K. Lane from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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