Nominating Speech for Theodore Roosevelt, August 7, 1912


THE CHAIRMAN: The Chair recognizes Mr. Funk, who will escort Miss Addams to the platform. (Applause)

(Miss Addams was escorted to the platform by Senator Funk and greeted with loud applause).

THE CHAIRMAN: Ladies and Gentlemen of the Convention: America's most eminent and most loved woman, Miss Jane Addams, of Chicago. (Applause)

MISS JANE ADDAMS: Mr. Chairman, fellow delegates of the convention. I rise to second the nomination of this convention stirred by the splendid platform adopted by it. [page 2]

Measures of industrial amelioration, demands for social justice, long discussed by small groups in charity conferences and economic associations, have here been considered in a great national convention, and are at last thrust into the stern arena of political action. (Applause)

A great party has pledged itself to the protection of children, to the care of the aged, to the relief of overworked girls, to the safeguarding of burdened men. Committed to these humane undertakings, it is inevitable that such a party should appeal to women, should seek to draw upon the great reservoir of their moral energy so long undesired and unutilized in practical politics -- one is the corollary of the other; a program of human welfare on the one side, the necessity for women's participation on the other; one meets and completes the others.

We ratify this platform not only because it represents our earnest convictions and formulates our high hopes, but because it pulls upon our faculties and calls us to definite action. We find it a prophesy that democracy shall be actually realized until no group of our people -- certainly not ten million of them so sadly in need of reassurance -- shall fail to bear the responsibilities of self-government, and that no class of evils shall lie beyond redress. [page 3]

The new party is for the moment and will be [forever] more the American exponent of a world-wide movement towards juster social conditions, a movement which the United States, lagging behind other great nations, has been unaccountably slow to embody in political action. But finally the hour has come and the men and women assembled in this hall from all parts of this continent have crystallized a program and united on a common purpose.

I should like, therefore, to second the nomination of Theodore Roosevelt, because he is one of the few men in our public life who has been responsive to the social appeal and who has caught the significance of the modern movement. Because of that, because the program will require a leader of invincible courage, of open mind, of democratic sympathies, one endowed with power to [illegible] ↑interpret↓ the common man and to identify himself with the common lot, I heartily second the nomination so eloquently made by the gentleman from New York. (Great applause)

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