Woman suffrage by federal constitutional amendment, comp. by Carrie Chapman Catt : Stories, History

Table of Contents

CHAPTER I Why the Federal Amendment? By Carrie Chapman Catt - PAGE There are seven reasons for Federal enfranchisement of women. Other countries have so enfranchised women. Conditions of men's enfranchisement in U. S. were easy. Many State constitution today practically impossible to amend. Election laws do not protect State amendment election from fraud. Men's right to vote protected by Federal Constitution; state by state enfranchisement would not give this protection to women. Woman Suffrage a national question. Decision on technical and abstract question of Suffrage demands different class of intelligence from election of candidates. - I

CHAPTER II State Constitutional Obstructions By Mary Summer Boyd State Suffrage amendments defeated in recent years by technical difficulties. Ratification by Legislature and People theory of State Constitutional Amendment. So adopted in South Dakota and Missouri. In most states technicalities make amending impossible. Classes of technicalities. Limit to number of amendments. “Constitutional majority.“ Passage of two Legislature. More than majority of the people required for ratification. Indiana. Time requirements. New Mexico. Revision by Convention. Some s tates have no or infrequent Constitutional Conventions. New Hampshire. Delaware Constitution alone amended by Legislature or Convention without popular vote. Thirty states gave foundations male suffrage by this easy means - 12

CHAPTER III Election Laws and Referenda By Carrie Chapman Catt. State Election Laws defective. Many state suffrage amendments undoubtedly lost by frauds in elections. In twenty-four states election law or precedents offer no correction of returns in fraudulent amendment elections. In twenty-three states Contest on election returns probably possible. In eight states recount of votes made. A court procedure and expensive. Punishment for bribery. Relation to Contest Ohio cases. Vagueness of election laws protects corruption. Ignorant vote used by corrupt. Form of ballot often helps corruption. Only 13 states have headless ballots. Form of Suffrage amendment ballots in recent years aided in defeat of measure. Examples. Non-partisan referendum not protected from fraud like party questions. In most states women cannot be watches at polls. Aliens can vote in eight states. Illiterate can vote in most states. Résumé - 21

CHAPTER IV The Story of the 1916 Referenda By Carrie Chapman Catt Three states voted on Woman Suffrage amendments. Some causes of failure. Story of Iowa election. Woman's Christian Temperance Union provers forty-seven varieties of corruption. South Dakota. Foreign vote defeated Woman Suffrage there. Figures of some countries. Relation between Prohibition and Woman Suffrage votes. West Virginia. Illiteracy and conservatism defeated Women Suffrage there. Liquor influence felt. Corruption in Berkely County, West Virginia. Special Legislative session called but investigation of frauds abandoned. Analysis of vote of certain counties. Résumé - 36

CHAPTER V Federal Action and States Rights By Henry Wade Rogers Judge of U. S. Circuit Court of Appeals, N. Y. C. Would Federal Amendment violate local self-government or conflict with State Rights? States rights a sound doctrine, but has been perverted, misapplied and carried to extremes. Henry St. George Tucker maintains this way of gaining woman suffrage is contrary to rightful demarcation of powers of federal and state governments. Constitutional Convention 1787 provided that amendments be ratified by three-fourths State Legislatures, State Constitutions may not violate United States Constitution for this is supreme Law. Amendment to U. S. Constitution valid regardless of provisions in State Constitutions. Ratification by State Legislatures does not violate States rights for by it states act as sovereigns. Same argument for removal of sex lime in Suffrage as that on which 13th, 14th and 15th amendments were based. 15th amendment gives the sound basis for woman suffrage amendment - 55

CHAPTER VI Objections to the Federal Amendment by Carrie Chapman Catt States Rights objection discussed. U. S. Constitution twice amended recently under Democratic administration. Federal Prohibition Amendment introduced by Southern Democrat. Even if all state constitutions gave woman suffrage U. S. Constitution would contain discrimination against women in work “male“ Objection that woman suffrage will increase Negro vote. If true, would be objection also to State suffrage amendment. White supremacy will be strengthened by woman suffrage. Discussion of figures of Negro and white population in 15 southern states. Testimony of Chief Justice Walter E. Clark. Objection that women do not want the vote. Men of 21 and naturalized citizens become voters without being asked. Only those who wish to need use the vote. That many women do want the vote is shown by western figures in election of November, 1916. Objection that unfavorable referenda in various states show that constituency has instructed its representatives in Congress against woman suffrage. Unfavorable majority against a suffrage amendment is in reality a minority of constituency. Objection on ground of political expediency. Meaning of this argument as used by different interests. If government “by the people“ is expedient, then government by all the people is expedient. If Government by certain classes is better, then basis of franchise should be morality and education, not sex. Objection that Woman Suffrage will increase corrupt vote. Woman Suffrage will increase intelligent electorate. Statistics. It will increase the moral vote. Only one in t wenty criminals is a woman. Election conditions in equal suffrage states. Objection that Prohibition sentiment is stronger than Suffrage sentiment since former has spread faster. Prohibition can be established by statute and by local option and suffrage cannot - 69