Derek Harrison's Crossword Message Board

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Re(2): Mugwump

In case anyone is interested, read on:

"In 1884 many Republican intellectuals and reformers deserted their party and worked for the election of Cleveland. These independents were given the sarcastic name of 'Mugwumps' supposedly after a New England Indian word meaning 'great captain'. Young Theodore Roosevelt and other Republican regulars made savage fun of the Mugwumps, but their revolt seriously hurt Blaine's chances.
Blaine became Speaker of the House of Representatives [position now held by Paul Ryan] in 1869. He sold his influence in Congress to various business firms. In one deal he received $110,150 in bonds and cash for performing various services, including the saving of a federal land grant, for the Little Rock and Fort Smith Railroad. In 1876 and again in 1880 the Republican conventions passed Blaine by because of this .... But in 1884 he was nominated for President on the fourth ballot. Millions of Republicans no longer cared about the scandal."
Enough. Draw your own conclusions about our American politicians. This summary was taken from "The American Past", a popular history.


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