Teddy Roosevelt Lies

A 3rd Term For Progressive President

Taft's A Fraud

During the presidential campaign of 1912, both men railed against each other as only enemies could. Roosevelt called Taft disloyal and claimed him to be a fraud. Taft replied that Roosevelt was unethical and egotistical. The nation had never seen such a frenzy of insults and hatred as it did during this campaign, and Republicans were forced to choose sides in the battle. The extent of the rift in the Party was evident at the Republican convention in the Chicago. When President Taft received the party nomination, Roosevelt and his Progressive supporters left the convention hall and within hours formed the Progressive Party. Needless to say, the new Progressive Party nominated Roosevelt as their presidential candidate. When asked by a reporter if he was fit for the rigors of another Presidential campaign, Roosevelt replied that he was as fit as a bull moose.

President Shot On The Way To Speech

Strong as a Bull Moose

Just before 8:00 the evening of Oct. 14, 1912, as Roosevelt was entering a car on his way to deliver a speech at a campaign rally in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, a mentally-unstable assailant named John Schrank fired a .38-caliber bullet point-blank into the ex-president’s chest. Roosevelt waved off his doctor and insisted on being driven to the rally and delivering his prepared remarks. With the bullet lodged in his chest and blood slowly seeping into his shirt, Roosevelt began his speech by telling the crowd: “I don't know whether you fully understand that I have just been shot; but it takes more than that to kill a bull moose.”

What happened next was grand theater, as described in the reporter’s eye-witness account reprinted below. For over an hour Roosevelt delivered his speech, driving the crowd of 15,000 into paroxysms of anxiety whenever he occasionally winced in pain, paused for a drink of water, or seemed to falter as his voice grew weaker. But each time, the Spanish-American War veteran and renowned big-game hunter rallied his legendary strength, calmed the worried crowd, and continued. When he finished the speech, the crowd roared with a response the reporter said was “deafening.” And little wonder!

Democracy: The Moose That Roared