Select Page

We Did Not Sit and Wait

October 9, 1916 — Suffrage Meeting, Pinney Theater, Boise ID


[She spoke about self-government before good government; the founding of a democracy before its maintenance.]
These are the fundamental principles upon which the Woman’s party has been built. We would have been overjoyed if the Democratic party had lent itself to the furtherance of these ideas. We gave them every chance. We pursued President Wilson with persistence. We thought that one who could concern himself so greatly over the citizenship of the Filipinos and the Sioux Indians would have an equal interest in the citizenship of American women.
When Miss Joliffe and I, accompanied by Miss Martin and some 300 other women, went to the president last December, he said that although he had been a believe in the state by state method of procuring suffrage, he would consider changing his attitude.
This was hopeful. But we did not sit and wait. We did everything to aid him to see things differently.
In June the Woman’s party, composed of all voting women in the west who would put suffrage before party, was formed in Chicago. Then we went down to St Louis — a dozen of us. We lobbied day and night. Then Secretary Baker brought the president’s ready made platform to the convention and his instructions, which put an end to all federal suffrage activities. The man who said “I cannot speak for my party,” President Wilson himself, had spoken the first and last word on all Democratic party measures and the women were not included.



Source: The Idaho Statesman, October 10, 1916, p. 3.