the two countries for almost 80 years, and during the life of which Russia had repeatedly proved herself to be a reliable friend of this country.
The Jews wanted just two things from William Howard Taft: the abrogation of the Russian treaty and the veto of what Congress had repeatedly tried to do, namely, put a literacy test on immigrants. Jewish immigration into the United States being so important an element of Jewish plans, American Jews never cared what kind of human riffraff filled the country as long as the Jewish flood was not hindered.
Presently, President Taft had undergone the persistent nagging characteristic of such campaigns and had asked, perhaps impatiently, what they wanted him to do.
“Have a conference with some of the leaders of American Jewry” was the proposal made to him, and on February 15, 1911, there walked into the White House, Jacob H. Schiff, Jacob Furth, Louis Marshall, Adolph Kraus and Judge Henry M. Goldfogle. They had lunch with the President’s family and adjourned to the library.
The President was fairly wise in the matter. There was no chance whatever for him in an argument. His guests had come prepared to talk, to “tell” him, as some of the same men lately “told” an eastern publisher, pounding the table and uttering threats. The President was to be overwhelmed, his good nature carried with a rush.
But, instead of anything like that, the President, as soon as they gathered in the library, took out a paper and began to read his conclusions! That staggered the Jewish ambassadors at once—the President was reading his conclusions! He was “telling” them!
The President’s statement is really worth reading, but it is far too lengthy to present here. He called attention to the right which this country exercised to say who shall, and who shall not sojourn here, and also to the conflicting interpretations which American secretaries of State had given the Russian treaty. He contrasted with that Russia’s consistent interpretation from the beginning. He then said that the treaty was sacred because under it for more than 50 years the citizens of the United States had made their