THE STATEHOOD FIGHT

Mohave County Miner, Kingman Arizona, September 1, 1906

The Kansas city Journal one of the influential republican papers of the United States, has the following to say anent the statehood fight:

One of the most interesting political fights of the year is going on in Arizona and New Mexico over joint statehood. The contest is good natured but warm enough to suit the most pugnacious who delight in broils, political or otherwise. President Roosevelt's popularity is being used to conjure with by the advocates of joint statehood and his letter, writeen since congress adjourned, urging the territories to come into the Union as one state, is the strongest asset on their side of the question.

Judging by the unanimity with which the people of Arizona opposed joint statehood in congress, emphasized since then by the action of the republican and democratic territorial committees in uniting against the proposition, and outsider would naturally suppose that there could be no doubt about the result of the election, the only question being as to the size of the majority against. However, the advocates of statehood are making a shrewd campaign, supported by the federal office holders as well as almost every politician who hopes to get office in the new state, and by the saloon and gambling elements which were threatened last winter with the wrath of the federal administration if they aided in the continuence of territorial conditions. The Mexicans and half-breeds are also solidly in favor of statehood, inspired by the belief that they will be able to rule the affairs of the new state, and believing, curiously enough, that their dignity and social standing will be greatly increased under the new order of things.

Like the negroes in the South during reconstruction days, they believe that when they get things in their hands the millennium will come.

On the other side, a large majority of the white people of Arizona and a considerable percentage in New Mexico are solidly opposed to joint statehood The Arizonians point out that their progressive American civilization would be swamped by the Mexicans and halfbreeds of New Mexico, who outnumber them nearly two to one. Nearly 64 per cent of these Mexicans cannot read or write, and their ideas of government correspond with their literary ignorance. A still stronger ground for the opposition is that Arizona has nearly double the assessed wealth of New Mexico, although her population and indebtedness are 50 per cent less. In other words, Arizona would furnish double the assets to the new state while New Mexico would contribute all the liabilities, of debt, ignorance and unprogressiveness. Naturally enough, the business interests and the intelligent white people of Arizona are strongly opposed to such a bargain.

The thinking people of Arizona and New Mexico believe, notwithstanding Mr. Roosevelt's admonitory advice that this will be their last chance to get statehood for many years, that each of the territories is worthy of statehood, or soon will be, on its own merits. They are willing to wait for that day, and patiently endure their territorial disabilities, because of the larger advantages which will ultimately be derived from separate statehood. In this patriotic and stateman-like view they are supported by most of the influential newspapers of both territories. That they will be rewarded for their patience there can be no reasonable doubt. With the unexampled prosperity of the southwest, and its rapid increase in the best classes of population, it is only a question of time - and not any great length of time - when New Mexico and Arizona will be fully equipped to form two splendid states; and their title will be so clear and irrefragable that their right to admission into the family of the American Union cannot be denied.





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