THE CONGRESS: Makings of the 73rd

No Senator from Kentucky in the last 30 years has succeeded himself in office. Last month Democrats renominated Senator Alben Barkley for a second term. Last week Kentucky Republicans, greatly heartened by a jinx that favored their candidate, assembled at Louisville, picked Representative Maurice Hudson Thatcher as their senatorial nominee. Onetime Governor Sampson, acclaiming Nominee Thatcher as an “everlasting Dry,” key-noted thus: “We’ll replace this wobbly, uncertain, barking Barkley who a few years ago was taking the Anti-Saloon League’s money to make speeches and turned Wet overnight when the Vice-Presidency was dangled before his eyes. Our nominee will beat not one Barkley but four Barkleys—the Free Trade Barkley, the Protectionist Barkley, the Dry Barkley and the Wet Barkley.” Nominee Thatcher was born 62 years ago in Chicago—a fact he omits from his Congressional biography which emphasizes his “early life on farm” in western Kentucky. While the Panama Canal was being built he served three years (1910-13) as Civil Administrator of the Canal Zone. He wrote long homemade odes for every public occasion. Sample: Drift, clouds, drift, far o’er the Western sea; Rift, clouds, rift, in loveliness to me. Blow, winds, blow! Flow, tides, flow! Gild all with glory, Sun, we ask of thee! Canal workers submitted a protest to President Taft which read: “It isn’t that we object to real poetry but Governor Thatcher’s poetry is objectionable from every point of view. Something should be done by those in authority.” Governor Thatcher’s critics at the Tivoli Hotel parodied as follows: Crow, cocks, crow, from sunset until dawn; Yelp, dogs, yelp, in torture unto me; Moo, cows, moo; Croak, frogs, croak; Make life a hell ; ’tis all we ask of thee. Nominee Thatcher was first elected to the House ten years ago. In Georgia, Charles Robert Crisp, Congressman famed for his courageous fight for the sales-tax (TIME, Aug. 8 et ante) fought Governor Richard Brevard Russell Jr., famed as one of 13 living brothers & sisters, for a seat in the U. S. Senate. Mr. Crisp said he would never have run “had I known in advance that my character was to be so severely impugned at the hands of the Chief Executive of my own State.” To this the Governor replied that he would not have slung mud had there not been mud to sling. Voters were to decide this week.

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