"Suffrage is Debated," Oregonian, October 26, 1912, 4.
SUFFRAGE IS DEBATED / LINCOLN HIGH SCENE OF INTERESTING ARGUMENT./ Colonel Robert A. Miller Upholds Right of Women to Vote and Judge Corliss Opposes.
The women who don’t want to vote and the women who do each heard their sentiments voiced by their chosen champions at the Lincoln High School last night, when Colonel Robert A. Miller, for the Oregon Equal Suffrage League, and Judge Guy C. H. Corliss, for the State Association Opposed to Equal Suffrage, met in debate. Retainers of both sides of the question were out in force, and the auditorium was nearly filled. The audience was generous in applause, and both speakers, as they concluded their arguments, were given prolonged salvos of appreciation.
Judge Corliss maintained that while women may have a right to vote from a moral standpoint, the granting of equal suffrage would not end to simplify the solution of present political problems, but would add that, much to her duties without benefitting her or the body politic in the least.
“Suffrage is not a question of right at all,” said the speaker. “It is a question of expediency alone. It is a question of whether granting of the ballot will or will not facilitate the business of Government.” Throughout his address Judge Corliss maintained that equal suffrage would involve rather than simplify governmental matters.
Arguing that woman is entitled to the ballot not only as a moral, but as a political and economic right, Colonel Miller made an impassioned plea for the adoption of the equal suffrage amendment in Oregon.
“Women want no privileges that men do not possess,” he declared. “It is simply a matter of justice. Whether women want to vote or not, and my opponent declares that they don’t, is beside the question. I believe that they do want to vote, but they should have the right to vote whether they want to use it or not, the same as men.”
Colonel Miller ridiculed the idea that the possession of the privilege of the ballot will tend to mar the spiritual nature of woman. He declared that women will not be soiled by plunging into the pool of politics, and maintained that the feminine opponents of equals suffrage, by their activity in the present campaign, had either refuted their own logic or else had already suffered the taint that they asserted would ensue in case the amendment carried.
Colonel C. E. S. Wood argued for the election of Woodrow Wilson.
1912 October Permalink