Concerning Senator Borah

Courtesy Reuters

IN due course Senator Borah has been made Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Relations. He has come into this high estate not by election of the people or by choice of his own party but under the rule of seniority. He has outlasted his predecessors. I mention this fact because it establishes his independence at the outset. A man who has attained an office because he is alive and because he continues to be elected by the people of Idaho is under no great compulsion to regard himself as the mere mouthpiece of a President or of a Secretary of State. Deo volente, he will survive them both. If only he continues to eat moderately, to exercise regularly, to sleep well, and to keep about half the voters in the State of Idaho on his side, he can look with cool detachment on any suggestion that issues from the White House.

The ordinary inducements to conformity count for little in Mr. Borah's case. There are many more voters on the island of Manhattan alone than in the whole State of Idaho; with such a small constituency to nurse Senator Borah does not have to worry about the favors and threats of the national administration. His constituency is manageable. He can really talk to it and make a direct personal contact with the local leaders who dispose of votes. No wonder his faith in an appeal to the people is unshaken, for there are so few people to whom he has to make his appeal. A loyal following of less than seventy-five thousand voters in Idaho is enough to make his reëlection certain. Mr. Borah does not need to worry. A national administration cannot help or hurt him much.

But he can help or hurt the Administration. He is the greatest figure in the Northwest, and the Northwest is about as warmly attached to the Republican Party as the Irish Free State is to the United Kingdom. The Northwest votes

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