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editors write these things knowing they are writing what is not true. Here is your Act:
"That any person within this State, who engages in betting at any race track, pool selling, or bookmaking, with or without writing, at any time or place; or any person who keeps or occupies any room, shed, tenement, booth or building, float or vessel, or any part thereof, or who occupies any place or stand of any kind, upon any public or private grounds, within this State, with books, papers, apparatus, or paraphernalia, for the purpose of recording or registering bets or wagers, or of selling pools, and any person who records or registers bets or wagers, or sells pools or makes books, with or without writing, upon the result of any trial or contest of skill, speed or power of endurance, of man or beast; or upon the result of any political nomination, appointment of election”
Suppose you had all the fellows indicted that bet on the primary last summer, gentlemen, I would have to have some more pardon planks printed. Now, listen. They are yelling, "What is the Governor going to do about the Charleston races? What is the new Attorney General going to do about the Charleston races?" You have no special Act on it. It goes on about “the result of any political nomination," etc.; "or upon the result of any lot, chance casualty, unknown or contingent event whatsoever," and so on. Therefore, my friends, your Act not only covers the race track in Charleston, but it covers gambling on political primaries, gambling on cards, church raffles, turkey raffles, or any other game of chance. Do you want me to put on a beaver hat and a Prince Albert suit, and kid gloves, and carry a gold-headed cane, and play preacher, and go around to plead with them not to violate this Act? Do you want me to go up street here in a disguise and go into a gambling den? No, you would think it was beneath the dignity of the office, and unbecoming a gentleman. Yet some people seem to want me to go to Charleston and sniff around to see if I can find somebody betting on horse races. It is done to mislead the uninformed. That is all. My position in the enforcement of all law it this: If a law is violated, let some man swear out a warrant and charge the guilty ones with the violation of it. If the magistrate doesn't do his duty I can't remove him. Your honored Supreme Court says that the little magistrate is above the Chief Magistrate. No, I can't remove him. But the grand jury may be able to do something to him when they meet about six months afterwards, as, for instance, in Dorchester, where they have court twice a year. If your magistrate
and sheriff say they can't enforce that law, if they call on me I will enforce it, just as I did in the town of the Senator from Bamberg, when the blind tigers were running over the little town and the mayor called on me to help him. “The blind tigers are about to take the town.” I sent him help and enforced the law, if they did make two of my men walk out of town with their hats in their hands. I am not going on the sly, but I am going to enforce the law, and I am tired of hearing them holler, "What is the Attorney General going to do?" I will tell you what he is going to do; any man who can eat up a Lyon certainly can do his duty as Attorney General.
Now, my friends, I want to speak of another thing. In yesterday morning's News and Courier you will find in big headlines, “Blease Blocks Militia's Trip. Will not go to Waslıington if he can prevent. Governor will not permit State militia to participate in inaugural parade and will keep Clemson and Citadel cadets at home, if in his power. Reasons for attitude.” Now, gentlemen, here are the "reasons for attitude:” “The Governor said that no formal invitation had been extended and that unless such was forthcoming he would not permit the militia to go to Washington, if in his power to prevent, and that he had declined to sign the Adjutant General's order to that effect. The Governor stated as further reason for his attitude that Capt. William E. Gonzales, of Columbia, would have control of the South Carolina part of the inauguration; that it was his opinion that Mr. Gonzales would, if possible, place the Governor, as commander-in-chief of the State militia, in an embarrassing position, and that he did not wish the State troops to suffer thereby. Asked if his prohibitive stand included the Citadel and Clemson, the Governor said he did not know whether or not he had authority over these institutions, but if so, he would prevent the cadets going to Washington."
Now, the same man that sent that report to the News and Courier sent this report to the Atlanta Journal, and I want you to listen to the two reports and see what lies the News and Courier's big, glaring headlines give you. Here is my position, plainly stated, in the Atlanta Journal :
“The Governor replied: 'In part your information is correct. The Adjutant General's department presented me with the written order, I presume you would term it, for the national guard to take part in President Wilscon's inauguration. I declined to sign the same upon the ground that no formal invitation to the Governor of South Carolina as commander-in-chief, or to the Adjutant General, has been
received, asking that we participate in the inaugural ceremonies. Until such is received, or unless such is received, I most assuredly will not attend the inauguration, nor will I permit, if I can possibly help myself, any military company from South Carolina, to participate in such ceremonies. I do not propose for the South Carolina troops to go to Washington and be mistreated, or treated discourteously, because of their commander-in-chief, knowing full well who will have control of the South Carolina part of the inauguration, William E. Gonzales, and knowing that it will be his pleasure to place the Governor of South Carolina in any embarrassing position on that occasion in which he could place me, by fair or foul means, or by treachery, which is so well known to his race of people. Therefore I decline to allow myself or the South Carolina troops to be placed under his command or in any manner or form under his dictation. If an invitation comes from the proper source which will guarantee to my troops an honorable position in the inaugural parade, and will guarantee to them fairness and equality, I am in favor of accepting it and of their participating in the inaugural ceremonies. Otherwise, I am not. That is all there is to it, and this is what I propose to stand by. I do not propose to let our troops go to Washington and possibly be put in behind some negro troops, as was done on one occasion when General Wilie Jones received the humiliation of his life and by his military genius and strategy switched positions on the negroes and placed himself in a respectable position." "Does that prohibition include the Citadel and Clemson ?" the Governor was asked. “I do not know," he replied, "that I have any authority over those two institutions in regard to the matter, but if I have, I most assuredly will protect the farmers' sons at Clemson, and the professional men's sons at the Citadel, from being humiliated, and I am satisfied that if the authorities in charge of these two institutions will stop and think they will agree with me. Some people may say, "Oh, well, there is nothing in it." Possibly not, but I do not propose to put myself in a position to be insulted, and, then, if I am insulted, and I am not the cause of it, I will take care of the man that does the insulting."
Mr. Caldwell sent that report to The News and Courier ; Mr. Caldwell sent that report to The Atlanta Journal. The Atlanta Journal publishes it as it was; The News and Courier garbled it so as to mislead the people of South Carolina into believing that I am trying to prevent the military companies from going to Washington. Gentlemen, I have never been anywhere I was not invited if I knew it;
I have never been anywhere that I was not wanted, that I knew of, and if I had been, as soon as I found it out I would have left, and I do not propose to go to Washington and let a Cuban mixed-breed assign me to a humiliating position, possibly so that when they march up street people would be saying there is the Governor of South Carolina, possibly marching behind negroes. No; I won't do it. That shows you what newspapers do, and how fair they are.
Now, gentlemen, I have been severely criticized for pardoning people. I just want to show you that I am not done yet. Listen here:
"State of South Carodina–Office of Superintendent of Penitentiary. Columbia, S. C., January 18, 1913.
"To His Excellency, Cole. L. Blease, Governor: We, the undersigned members of the South Carolina General Assembly, do earnestly pray that you parole Fannie Cooper, during good behavior, from Darlington county. Also, we earnestly recommend that you have Sudie Jones transferred from the Penitentiary to the Asylum for the Insane. All of which is respectfully submitted. (Signed) C. D. Fortner, N. C. Creech, E. M. Fripp, H. F. Harrelson, J. P. DeLaughter, W. S. Rogers, Jr., A. M. Hiott.”
Now, that shows you, gentlemen, that, with all the pardoning I have done, your legislators can come down here and in a fifteenminutes' walk find where other people ought to be out of the Penitentiary. How do you expect me to stop it?
Now, gentlemen, I suppose you have noted that I had no prepared speech. I have simply said, in a rambling way, some things that I thought should be called to the attention of you getlemen today. There is one other matter, and that is the matter of bonds, and I shall have finished. You gentlemen ought to pass a law prohibiting any bonding company from carrying more than a certain amount of the bonds of the county or State officials of your State. There is a bonding company in your State, which, I understand, has $100,000 capital, which is possibly worth $40,000. That company is on the bonds today of a very large number of the county and State officers of South Carolina. Now, gentlemen, I say that is not right. The American Bonding Company sent me a bond for the State Treasurer of $90,000. I signed it after investigation with Attorney General DeBruhl. The American Bonding Company sent me some other bonds. I signed them. Then the American Bonding Company sent me some other bonds, and I turned them down. Why? Because I believed the State Treasurer's bond of $90,000, with these other
bonds which I had already approved, gave that bonding company all the responsibility South Carolina should have it carry. In the Gulf and Atlantic States Company they sent me bond after bond. I approved some of them, but I do not believe a company with only $100,000 capital has any business being on the bond of every county treasurer in South Carolina. Now, I turned a good many of them down. Some people said it was politics. I turned down the bond of Solicitor Gunter, whom I appointed to the office of Solicitor, and whom the people unanimously re-elected.. I turned down the bond of Solicitor Albert E. Hill, and I do not think anybody-not even Otts—would say that Albert E. Hill was not a Blease man. That shows you it was not a matter of politics, but a matter of business, and you ought to look into it. Your county treasurers will come up to take charge of their offices on the first of July, by special Act of yours. Is it right for all of them to be bonded in one company? Why, gentlemen, you may say there will not be any defaulters; you may say you won't have any defaults. Why, nobody would ever have blamed the officials of Lexington for putting money in the Lexington Savings Bank; nobody blames the Superintendent of the Penitentiary for putting money there; and yet, find out what South Carolina and what Lexington county have lost by putting too much money in the hands of one man.
You ought to have an Act that after a bonding company is on the bonds of State or county officials for a certain amount, they can not be on other bonds of State or county officials. That is a matter for you. I do not care personally; but I call it to your attention, so if any shortages do occur, and you find there are no bonds behind the officers, the people to whom I am pledged to do my duty can not say, "You did not call the attention of the Legislature to it."
Now, gentlemen of the General Assembly, today the Governor's office is clean. There is not a letter in it to be answered—they are all answered, unless it be one or two which have come in this morning. All the messages which I have proposed to send to you have been sent, possibly to the extreme gratification of some of you. The record is clear. If another man were to go down and take charge of the office now, he would find it clean, with nothing on his hands. The petitions for pardon have been passed upon. And I shall tryand God help me that I may-to wipe off the slate and let the past be the past. I hold, so help me, God, in my heart, malice for no South Carolina citizen-remember, I said South Carolina citizen. I hold no malice in my heart, so help me, God, towards any true