Sunday, March 13, 2016


The Cortland Democrat, Friday, October 16, 1891.

More Concerning Mr. Squires' Record.

   MR. EDITOR: The first impression on reading the article in the Standard of Oct. 1st, was that brother Clark [Cortland Standard publisher] had concluded to give [District Attorney] candidate Squires a full certificate of character. Such a certificate being so widely at variance with Clark's opinion of the man would have been a little surprising. A closer examination of the article, however, shows that with the exception of about twenty-nine lines, it is a production of Squires. The article so far as it attempts to parry any of "Taxpayer's" blows, is after Clark makes his bow and introduces Squires in these words:
   "A representative of the Standard called on Mr. Squires last week in reference to the communication and obtained the following statement."
   Squires makes a labored attempt to show that "Taxpayer's" article does him an injustice. He might with much greater reason denounce the Board of Supervisors for having made a Journal whose figures are continually "roasting" him and his co-partner [Republican candidate for Sheriff] Miller. But even Squires dare not dispute a single figure contained in "Taxpayer's" article. The favoritism and oneness that existed between Squires and Miller are well known in this village, and have been the subject of discussion for years, and any denial of Squires now will not avail.
   That there was a marked increase in Justice's bills commencing with his election he is compelled to confess, but seeks to account for it by saying a law was passed in 1886, making it a misdemeanor to defraud a boarding house, and that cases of this kind made a large amount of costs in 1887, 1888 and 1889. He says that the enforcement of that law in these years, had the effect of securing to boarding house keepers their rights. The law passed in 1886, did not give Justices the right to try these cases, as Squires was made painfully aware, when Justice Williams directed a jury to find a verdict against him for having assumed to try a case of this kind, and held that a Justice could only hold a defendant to await the action of a Grand Jury.
   On the 15th day of April, 1889, an amendment was passed allowing Justices to try boarding house cases. We have thus seen that up to April 15th, 1889, punishment could only follow an indictment. Squires sent Miller to distant cities to make arrests in boarding house cases, and at an enormous expense to the taxpayers. We challenge Squires to point out a single case, where the Grand Jury indicted a man that he bound over for an alleged violation of this law. He cannot name such a case, for no such case ever existed. How then did this large expense protect boarding house keepers? It did not protect them, and Squires insults the intelligence of voters when he claims otherwise. It is notorious that he would issue warrants in these cases upon evidence so frivolous, that no other Justice would consider it.
   He says "it was almost impossible to get the costs paid by the defendants, who were a class of worthless fellows." Yet with the full knowledge that the people would have to pay these bills, his itching anxiety for costs was so great, that for trifling sums claimed to be due boarding house keepers he would send his officers to distant parts of the State to make arrests.
   That his warrants were not justified by the evidence upon which he granted them is clearly shown by the fact, that no indictment ever followed one of these arrests. The punishment was all for taxpayers, the gain was all for Squires and the officer who made the arrest. He next attempts to excuse himself for having worked up a bill of $24.22 in the Ross case and in doing so, contradicts his record of conviction. "Taxpayer" cited the Ross case as a sample of Squires' way of creating costs.
   Ross was arrested [and] charged with intoxication in a public place on Main-st. The witnesses were near at hand, and but very few would be necessary on either side, and if only those actually necessary were subpoenaed, the expense would not exceed $2.00. Convictions for intoxication are intended to be summary and no jury is allowed. The manner in which the Ross case was dragged along, shows that it was nursed and kept alive for the purpose of swelling the costs. Think of it, taxpayers, $24.22 costs in an intoxication case, where the defendant pleads guilty! Squires claims that this case was peculiar. That the bill was peculiar and inexcusable is true. It is a bill of costs peculiar to Squires' court. No other Justice ever reached the colossal figures of $24.22 in an intoxication case. He may be able to find bills much larger, but he will also find that they originated in his court.
   Squires talks about the fines he returned in 1887, 1888 and 1889. I have not examined to see how much he returned in 1887 and 1888, but in 1889 he returned $150.00 in fines and his bill against the town of Cortlandville alone for criminal business was $1,385.05 that year. If he paid more in fines in 1887 and 1888, when his bills were smaller, it would indicate that his grasp upon the fines became a little tighter as the years rolled on.
   Squires says that he returned in 1887, 1888 and 1889, fines amounting in all to $613, but omits to say that for those years his bills against the town and county were $3,633.53, as the Supervisors' Journal shows.
   These enormous bills against the town and county commenced with Squires' advent to office and ended when he stepped down and out. Squires as a Justice of the Peace has been tried and his record is found reprehensible beyond all precedent. A public officer should guard the taxpayers from imposition as far as possible. Squires has shown himself reckless in making expenses where he or Miller were the beneficiaries. Every man who believes in an economical administration of local affairs, should vote against him. No one who votes for Squires should be permitted hereafter to complain of a high tax rate.
[Jerome Squires was elected District Attorney--CC editor.]

Concerning Promises.
   EDITOR DEMOCRAT:—The Standard in denying a report that Dan Geer is to be appointed deputy, in case Miller is elected, also denies that Miller has promised any one an appointment. If the Standard is correct there is a wide misapprehension of what constitutes a promise.
   Possibly Crossman was laboring under a misapprehension, when he resigned his birth as janitor of Firemen's Hall, and took charge of Miller's canvass. It may be that he is laboring under a misapprehension in supposing that the ring has slated him for the nomination for sheriff three years hence.
   One year ago last February, the Standard in fact, if not by name, spoke of Mr. Crossman in language very far from complimentary.
   Probably the Standard then thought it would never be called upon to support Mr. Crossman, and doubtless thought it would not under any circumstances. It would have been equally positive at that time, that it would never support Jerome Squires. Notwithstanding what may appear in the Standard its editor doesn't really relish crow.
   When Crossman mounted the Republican chariot and took the reins, Clark no doubt felt like exclaiming as the Irishman did when the mule put his foot in the stirrup:
   "Be jabbers, if you're going to get on, I will get off."
   Crossman is now a high priest in the Republican Temple, he is mounted, booted and spurred.
   If the Republican throne is represented by Mr. Bronson and Mr. Courtney, Crossman is the power behind and will be the power behind the throne, just as long as the people sustain nominations forced upon them, by ring caucuses and ring conventions.

Jacob S. Fassett.
   John W. Vrooman, the Republican candidate for Lieut. Governor, was elected clerk of the Senate by the vote of Tammany Senators. Is Tammany any worse now than it was then?
   Lieut. Gov. Jones is acting as one of the mouth pieces of Tom Platt. The latter told [Republican candidate for Governor] Fassett to go about the country howling "Tammany," and Mr. Jones is engaged in the same playful and senseless occupation.
   Peter D. Muller, the Democratic candidate for Member of Assembly, is in favor of passing a law reducing the rate of interest to 5 per cent per annum. Will Tripp, the banker candidate, vote for such a bill if he should happen to be elected? Certainly not. Bankers are not built tha-way.
   Superintendent of Public Instruction Draper can count on the votes of Tripp and Peck for re-election. Even if they wanted to vote for some other candidate they could not because they would be bound by the Republican caucus. Do the Republicans of this county want Draper re-elected?
   Jones of Binghamton says he favors the defeat of the Democratic State ticket, and claims that his position is in accord with that taken by the late Governor Tilden, who opposed Tammany Hall domination in the Democratic party of this State. But suppose General Jones had been nominated instead of Mr. Flower by the same convention at Saratoga, wouldn't he have accepted the nomination? To be sure, he would. His churlishness is caused by the fact that he did not get the nomination. His course since the convention shows very plainly that the delegates acted wisely in not giving him the nomination. His claim that the nomination was dictated by Tammany is as absurd as his churlishness for Mr. Flower [who] was nominated without New York and Kings county.
   Last year the Board of Equalization of Taxes fixed the aggregate valuation of property in this county at the sum of $11,335,351 upon which amount State tax of $26,290.72 was levied and collected. This year the Board of Equalization of Taxes has fixed the aggregate valuation of property in this county at the sum of $10,132,651, a reduction of $1,102,700 upon which amount a State tax of $13,932.29, will be levied and collected. This is a reduction of $12,358.33 from last year. The Legislature of 1890 was Republican and the Legislature of 1891 was Democratic. If the taxpayers of this county prefer low taxes they will vote for Peter D. Muller, the farmer. Those who prefer high taxes will vote for Jas. H. Tripp, the banker.
   Few men of his race are so influential in politics as the Hon. William H. Johnson, president of the Afro-American league, who announces his purpose to support Mr. Flower and the entire Democratic ticket at the coming election. Mr. Johnson has been an active member of the Republican State committee and in 1884 was one of the Republican presidential electors-at-large for the State of New York. For years he has been one of the most eloquent campaign orators in his party, and no man ever worked harder for the Republican party than he has. Mr. Johnson is a leader of his people and has been foremost in promoting the legislation in which the Afro-American league is interested. His activity in behalf of his race dates back to the period of early civil rights legislation. Mr. Johnson speaks earnest words to his friends in behalf of the Democracy and he riddles the record of Mr. Fassett. All through this State, in Pennsylvania, Ohio and Massachusetts colored voters are awakening to the hypocrisy of the Republican party and to its deceitful promises to them. Mr. Johnson's statement will carry great weight and will contribute much to Democratic success.—Albany Argus Oct. 1st.

The Crazy Protection Logic.
(From the Louisville Courier-Journal.)
   Mr. Mills is right; the Republican hypocrisy is fully exposed by the pretense that the McKinley bill cheapens sugar by repealing the duty and cheapens tin by putting a duty on it. Further, to sustain the assertion that the tariff is a tax for the benefit of the producer, we have only to point to the sugar bounty given as a compensation to the planter for the repeal of the tariff tax.
   If the people of Ohio are intelligent they will heed Mr. Mills and bury Mr. McKinley.


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