Effect of Death on Business
Consensus of Belief Is Loss of President Will Not
Disturbance in Country.
Washington, D. C., Sept. 13.—[Special.]—There
is a wide difference of opinion on the subject of the effect of
President McKinley’s death on the business situation of the country,
but the general belief is there will be no general disturbance to
commercial prosperity and that all danger is reduced to a minimum.
The history of the United States demonstrates
that the death of a President, even when his successor was more
or less in accord with the policy of his party, temporarily at least,
is a serious interruption of the business interests of the country.
The causes which lead to this condition of things are not far to
seek. The policy of the dead President, if he has served any considerable
length of time, has become more or less defined, and the business
interests of the country have become more or less adjusted to that
But on the accession of a new President
everything, for the time being, is suspended in the air. Large business
enterprises grow conservative, capital grows timid, and there is
a general halt all along the line of business investments until
confidence is established in the new order of things.
The history of the administration
of John Tyler, who succeeded Filmore, and that of Andrew Johnson,
who succeeded Mr. Lincoln, demonstrated how great an injury can
be inflicted upon the business interests of the country.
Roosevelt in Accord with Policy.
But in the accession of Mr. Roosevelt
to the high office of President there is nothing in his private
or public career to lead any sensible person to take a pessimistic
view of his future public policy.
It is well known that he is in and
has been in perfect accord with the policy of his predecessor. During
his incumbency of the office of Vice President he has been one of
Mr. McKinley’s most trusted advisers. Unlike most Vice Presidents,
except Hobart, he has been at all times a welcome visitor at the
White House, and it is well known that he has never thrust his advice
unasked upon the President.
While it is known that he is a man
of sturdy independence, one who is inclined to do his own thinking,
it is also known at this point among public men and throughout the
country that he is also a man whose patriotism has never been questioned.
Those who know the man best in Washington
believe he will faithfully carry out the policy outlined by Mr.
McKinley’s administration and that the shock to public business,
if any there be, will be reduced to a minimum.
May Be Changes in Cabinet.
No man, certainly no man at the national
capital, knows just what changes, if any, Mr. Roosevelt will make
in the Cabinet of his predecessor. It has been rumored for months
that Secretary Hay would like to retire from public life on account
of the condition of his health and on account of a recent great
domestic affliction. It has been stated by his intimates that he
would have resigned some months ago, but was induced to remain at
the personal solicitation of Mr. McKinley.
Secretary Root practically abandoned
a large law practice at the solicitation of the President and his
advisers and his personal friends to accept the portfolio of war.
He has expressed on several occasions, to those who best know him,
a desire to resume his practice, but his great regard for the wishes
of the President, who wished him to remain during his second term
of office, and a profound sense of public duty, induced him to forego
an immediate return to his neglected private business.
Postmaster General Smith, it is well
known, has only remained in the Cabinet up to date because of his
profound love and admiration for his chief. He is the editor and
chief of a great daily newspaper, is comparatively a poor man, and
every hour he remains in the Cabinet is subjected to financial loss.
May Accept Some Resignations.
According to public custom all members
of the McKinley Cabinet will, in due time, tender their resignations
to the new President. Whether he will retain any or all of the members
of the Cabinet of his predecessor time will determine. Public opinion
is divided here on that point.