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Washington Correspondence

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Washington, D. C, May 16, 189. Senator Patton has been a fullfledgedUnited States Senator ever since the afternoon of the ioth instant, when, with uplifted hand, he :ook the usual oath administered to ill Senators and RepreseNtatives in congress, which is as follows: "I, , do solemly swear (or iffirm) that I will support and deFend the constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign ind domestic; that I will bear true Eaith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the iuties of the office on which I am ibout to enter. So help me God." While there were many interested spectators who witnessed the swearing in of the new Senator, including several Michigan men, the mosc interested of all were the wife and two little sons of the man upon whom Governor Rich had so suddenly thrust the highest honors that any state can bestow upon one of its citizens. They, in company with two or three lady friends who accompanied them to the capital from Mr. Patton's old home in Pennsylvania, where they visited for a day on the way here, occupied a front seat in the President's gallery of the senate chamber. It is stating the case mildly to say that it was the proudest moment in the life of the young man, who, although not quite forty-four years old, was thus entering upon his duties as a Senator of the United States from the state of his adoption and one of the grandest of all the forty-four states of the union. If it was a proud and happy moment for Senator Patton, it was equally so to Mrs. Patton, and she made no effort to disguise or hide the pleasure she feit. Senator Patton's Yale college chums, Senators Dubois of Idaho, Higgins of Deleware and Wolcott of Colorado, had placed an elegant bouquet of roses on his desk and were ready to welcome him personally. With Senator McMillan and those three to introduce him, ie was made acquainted within the first two or three hours of his senatorial career with nearly every member of the senate who was present that dav. Although having had no previous legislative or congressional experience, the new Senator takes hold like a veteran. If he continúes to apply himself as closely to his new duties as he has thus far, he will very soon familarize himself with the multifarious duties that belong to or are thrust upon a senator of the United States, and his influence in shaping legislation will very soon begin to be feit. While he is well known to be a ready and eloquent speaker, tradition will keep him from attempting to make a speech until after he has been a senator for at least several months if not for a year or two. Unless he is elected by the legislature nest January to succeed himself, he may not find a suitable occasion to make a senatorial speech during the eight months for which Governor Rich appointed him. A senator or representátive can, however, be a very active and successful Iegislator and never make a speeeh. There are some notable examples of men who have never made a speech, long or short, during the entire twenty years of their congressional career. Senator Patton occupies a seat in the rear rowon the republican (east) side of the chamber, almost directly behind Senator McMillan, who now becomes the "senior senator from Michigan" instead of the "junior," as before the late senator's death. They sit so near each other that they can pass letters or telegrams back and forth during the session, without either rising from his seat. The "boys" are not required to stand on the floor or sit with the big girls every time they whisper, as was the case in the old fashioned district schools of long ago, so the two Michigan senators are very favorably located for visiting or talking business, as they may wish to do, during sessions of the senate. The mail of the Michigan senators and representatives is being flooded with letters from Michigan editors and others who labor under a mistaken idea in regard to book postage. The writers thereof believe that in the postoffice appropriation bill that recently passed the house, the postage on all unbound books, etc, was increased from two up to eight cents per pound, and that the senate is likely to pass the bill in the same form, unless some strong influence can be brought to bear upon that body. The facts are that when the bill in question was being considered in committee of the whole by the house, a new section was added to it as follows: Sec. 4. That all publications purporting to be issued periodically and to subscribers, but which are merely books or reprints of books whether they be issued complete or in parts, whether they be bound or unbound, or whether they be sold by subscription or otherwise, when offered for transmission by mail shall be subject to postage at the rate prescribed for tnird-class matter. This fact was telegraped all over the country, henee the scare. When the bill went back to the full house for its action, the obnoxious amendment was promptly voted out of the bilí by a vote of about four to one. The bill, minus the amendment, was then passed by the house, and in that form will pass the senate in due time. Chairman Henderson, of the house postofflee committee, who offered the amendment to his own bill, and tried to secure its passage, said to the writer hereof, when questioned about the amendment: "As the house voted down the amendment before the final passage of the bill, the people of Michigan need have no fear that it will come up again for rhe present at least, for it dead beyond resurrection during the life of ths present congress.


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