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Mr. HENDERSON. But we wanted you to know what the difficulties
The CHAIRMAN. You had better take that up with the House.
Mr. HENDERSON. Mr. Chairman, our organization, like a number of others that have appeared here, have not been fully in accordance with all of the provisions of this bill, but unlike some of the others, we are willling to subordinate our differences in the general interests, to try to get this legislation through Congress, because if no one ever agrees on any particular bill, you will never get one passed. We have the sense to know that..
The CHAIRMAN. Yes.
Mr. HENDERSON. Now the last question, Mr. Chairman, is that subtle undercurrent that has run through this subject of home rule for 'the District of Columbia for years, and that is the Negro vote in the District of Columbia. I feel it would be a very tragic thing, in view of the present world situation for such a matter as that to have any effect whatever in causing the defeat of this legislation. Because we are out now-I am speaking of our Nation—to try to compete with an adversary who has no hesitation of using these weaknesses and divisions that we have shown on the matter of race and racial prejudice to our great disadvantage.
We åre trying to compete for the loyalties of millions of people throughout the world, most of whom are colored, and if we allow a situation like that to affect a piece of beneficial legislation such as this, not just for the District of Columbia, but to make a more healthy American democracy, I believe, Mr. Chairman, that our great foreign policy would be thrown into serious jeopardy.
I sincerely hope that the chairman of this committee and his colleagues will do everything they can to see that the Senate again passes the home rule bill for the District of Columbia. [Applause.
I thank you.
The CHAIRMAN. Mrs. Margie Malmberg, representing the American Library Association, is recognized.
Is Mrs. Malmberg present? If not, we will pass her over, and call Mrs. Louis Ottenberg. Mrs. OTTENBERG. Senator Neely, I have had the pleasure of appearing before you recently at the clinic, and so today· The CHAIRMAN. Pardon me. The pleasure was mutual.
Mrs. OTTENBERG. Thank you, sir. And today I would like to present our chairman of legislation for the Council of Jewish Women, Mrs. Frank Rich, who will give the testimony. .
The CHAIRMAN. We will be glad to hear her.
You may give your name, and proceed in your own way, Mrs. Rich. STATEMENT OF MRS. FRANK RICH, CHAIRMAN OF LEGISLATION, WASHINGTON SECTION, NATIONAL COUNCIL OF JEWISH WOMEN
Mrs. Rich. I am Mrs. Frank Rich, chairman of legislation for the Washington section of the National Council of Jewish Women. Our parent body has sections in 239 communities, and a membership of close to 94,000 women.
Their interest in our voteless plight is twofold:
1. They have a deep and abiding faith in our democratic form of government, and the whole national program is predicated on that principle.
2. Congress, which represents the highest legislative body in the land, elected by the people of this country, should not constitute itself a city council for the District of Columbia. That its concern with national and international affairs should not be set aside to pass purely municipal legislation for the District of Columbia, such as the size of rockfish which may be caught in the Potomac, or the snow removal from the streets, and many other bills now before the Senate and House committees of like nature.
For the above and many other reasons, the National Council of Jewish Women has at each triennial since 1923 reiterated its support of suffrage legislation to Americanize the Washingtonian.
Locally our section has cooperated with other organizations to bring the vote to Washington, including support of reorganization features of the bill now before the committee."
Many costly studies made by experts at District expense concerning our complicated form of government have all arrived at the same conclusion: Let the people rule.
The present complicated boards and agencies make for inefficiency in government, and are costly. Those who fear increased taxes because of the vote may take comfort from the thought that a voice in saying how our tax money is to be spent may go far toward reducing the cost of our present government. Citizen participation in government is a cardinal principle of our democratic way of life.
Our organization is ready and willing to join with other organizations in the city to carry on until the cause is won.
Thank you very much, Senator Neely, for your leadership in speeding the legislation on its way, and arousing the citizens to a sense of their responsibility.
The CHAIRMAN. Thank you. Mrs. Rich. Thank you, sir.
The CHAIRMAN. Mr. Jerome B. McKee, representing the Federation of Businessmen's Association is the next witness.
Is Mr. McKee present? If not, we will call Capt. J. Walter McDonald.
STATEMENT OF J. WALTER MCDONALD Mr. McDONALD. Mr. Chairman, my name is J. Walter McDonald. I have been a resident of Washington for 77 years, and past conditions have been bad. We had two elements that practically ran the District. Those two men did as they pleased. One was Andrew Gleason and the other was Perry Carson. It got so bad the white people would not go to vote at all. His boy was a student at Rock Hill College in North Dakota and when he came home for the summer, they had voting here.
For myself, I went through five or six times, and voted. We all did. We thought it was fun.
· Then it was done away with, and then we got the Commissioners. Now, the question is: Are we going to have the same condition again here in the District ?
The CHAIRMAN. You do not think it could be worse than now, do you? Mr. McDONALD. It cannot be any worse.
The CHAIRMAN. It has been my theory that when things get so bad they cannot be any worse, a change will do no harm.
Mr. McDONALD. I am not either against it, nor am I for it. But what are they going to do with people from other States that hold Government positions that vote now by proxy?
The CHAIRMAN. If this bill becomes law the people will be permitted to vote on these local affairs, and still have their right to vote back home. Mr. McDonald. Would it do away with our Commissioners ? The CHAIRMAN. Yes; I would hope that it would. Mr. McDONALD. Would that give us-The CHAIRMAN. How old did you say you are, Captain? Mr. McDONALD. 1874, June 10. I will be 77 my next birthday. The CHAIRMAN. Did you say you voted here several times? Mr. McDONALD. Yes. The CHAIRMAN. For whom? Mr. McDONALD. This fellow Gleason had a saloon, The CHAIRMAN. Do you mean that you voted ? Mr. McDONALD. I was a schoolboy when I voted. We all came back from playing baseball
The CHAIRMAN. That is what I was wondering about. They have not had a vote here for how long?
Mr. VAN ARKEL. 1872 was the last year they voted here in the District.
The CHAIRMAN. I am told that they have not had a vote here since 1872. Mr. McDONALD. Here is the story,
The CHAIRMAN. Pardon me a minute. I understand there has not been any official vote cast in the city of Washington since the year 1872. That is 2 years before you were born.
Mr. McDONALD. Before I was born, but I voted, went through the saloon, and went out the back door, and young Martin Gleason. We went around-nine, and two or three substitutes. There must have been 12 that went around five times, and I thought it was fun. Today I would get locked up for it.
The CHAIRMAN. Evidently that was a spurious election. There has been no official election in the city of Washington since 1872.
Mr. McDONALD. I was a delegate in 1908. I picked this sindicating] up this morning. I was a delegate to the Democratic Convention of the District of Columbia in 1908.
The CHAIRMAN. What you are talking about is the election of delegates to the national convention. You are not talking about a vote for the election of officials to administer the affairs of the District of Columbia.
Mr. McDONALD. That is right.
The CHAIRMAN. I understood you were talking about a vote for officials here in the District of Columbia for local governmental purposes. There has been no such election.
Mr. McDONALD. These two men ran everything in the District. One is Perry Carson, who used to wear a chain as big as a dog chain on his watch.
The CHAIRMAN. Are you for this bill, Captain? Mr. McDONALD. I am in favor of anything to give us good cleancut government here. We haven't got it now.
The CHAIRMAN. That does not answer my question. We always have to take a chance on that. Congress no doubt hoped to achieve good government through the commissioner structure. Yet the commissioner structure has not resulted in good government for the District of Columbia, particularly in recent years. Mr. McDONALD. Right now.
The CHAIRMAN. That is one of the reasons I am eager for a change. I read in nationally circulated magazines lurid statements that Washington is the worst governed city of its size in the world. It is a disgrace to the Nation to permit its Capital to have that sort of a reputation. Mr. McDONALD. Are you from West Virginia ? The CHAIRMAN. Yes, sir. Mr. McDonald. Well, I cleaned your State up pretty good for you when you had Mr. Graves out there.
The CHAIRMAN. When was that? Mr. McDONALD. I was there the day that you ran for the Senate. That time you won. The next time, when I was there with United States Senator Burton, who died—he was from Cleveland, Ohio, and the old man was very fond of me—you were defeated at that time.
The CHAIRMAN. That was in 1928. Mr. McDONALD. I remember it very well. I cleaned up every place you had crime when I was out there. I had Judge Baker in one court and Judge McClinick at the other.
The CHAIRMAN. What office were you holding at that time? Mr. McDONALD. I was in charge of narcotics for 26 years; for the last 13 years Chairman of the Drug Disposal Committee for the United States Treasury. If anything came in the hands of the Customs, it came to me to keep them or dispose of them. Lots of them were worth keeping, with the war coming on, and were packed up and sent to Rahway, N. J., to be worked over, especially codeine and things of that sort.
The CHAIRMAN. I have no doubt you discharged your duties in a proper manner. I am glad to tell you that West Virginia is a wellgoverned State. The times you are talking about, of course, are times back when we had a Republican government. We had a Republican government, Republican governor, and a Republican senate, and a Republican legislature. We have reformed down there, and West Virginia has been Democratic for some time.
Mr. McDONALD. That was after the capital was rebuilt or during the fire ?
The CHAIRMAN. The capital was burned down under a Republican administration. [Laughter.]
Mr. McDONALD. It was burned when I was out there.
The CHAIRMAN. Would you care to state whether you are for or against this particular bill?
Mr. McDONALD. I am for it, provided we do not get any two men to run the whole city.
The CHAIRMAN. You are for it, then, with reservations ?
The CHAIRMAN. The next on the list of witnesses is Mrs. Gladys. Wheeler.
STATEMENT OF MRS. GLADYS WHEELER, WASHINGTON CHAPTER,
NATIONAL COUNCIL OF NEGRO WOMEN
Mrs. WHEELER. Senator Neely, I am Gladys Wheeler from the Washington chapter of the National Council of Negro Women.
Mrs. Uhle, the president of the District chapter of the National Council of Negro Women, wanted me to say we are for this bill, S. 656, and we appreciate the efforts that this committee has made to bring this bill around. We hope that Senator Neely, and his colleagues will be successful this time..
The CHAIRMAN. We thank you for that hope, and we hope that your hope will be realized. Mrs. WHEELER. Thank you. The CHAIRMAN. Mrs. Ernest W. Howard is recognized.
STATEMENT OF MRS. ERNEST W. HOWARD, DEPARTMENT
CHAIRMAN, FEDERATION OF WOMEN'S CLUBS Mrs. HOWARD. Mr. Chairman, I feel like we are getting somewhat repetitious.
I am Mrs. Ernest W. Howard, department chairman of legislation of the District of Columbia Federation of Women's Clubs.
As I told you the other day, we have long, since way back in the 1920's, been for a national representation for the District of Columbia, and the last few years we have gone on record for the Auchincloss bill and the Kefauver bill.
We are definitely in favor of this bill, and for national representation and home rule for the District of Columbia.
There are so many reasons, Mr. Chairman, you have heard so many times, the Members of Congress have heard so many times, why we want it. We know there are so many constitutional reasons why we should have it as a people. And so, I think that I will just shorten my statement by saying this one thing, since we are a women's club, and we are over 6,000 members affiliated with the general Federation of Women's Clubs.
I believe that in the next election—as you know women have come to stay in legislation, and particularly they are becoming more and , more serious in their thoughts of what is going on in the Congress. We have about decided that the thing that most affects the legisla