Mail Tribune 100, Aug. 27, 1918
The following news items were drawn from the archives of the Mail Tribune 100 years ago.
Aug. 27, 1918
MAN POWER BILL PASSED BY SENATE
All Men Between 18 and 45 Brought Within Army Draft—Modified Work of Fight Clause Included—Many Amendments Calling for Elimination of Younger Classes Defeated as Do Those Calling for Extension to Ages of 60.
The man power bill bringing within the army draft all men from 18 to 45 years old, was passed late today by the senate with a modified work or fight clause.
All efforts to change the age limits or to form separate classes of youths under 21 failed and the measure now goes to conference between the house and senate with no difference for serious controversy except the work or fight provision.
The senate was recorded unanimously for the bill. Senator Gore of Oklahoma, who cast the only negative vote on roll call, withdrew it and was excused from voting. There were 75 affirmative votes.
The work or fight amendment written into the new man power bill by the senate military committee was approved by the senate today by a vote of 40 to 29 with an amendment providing that is shall not apply to strikers who return to work and submit their demands to the war labor board.
The test came on a motion by Senator McKellar of Tennessee to strike out the clause after the modification, proposed by Senator Cummins of Iowa, had been adopted by 73 to 0.
Senator Falt’s amendment to make men up to 60 years of age subject to draft and providing for their classification for military, industrial or other service, subject to the President’s regulations, was rejected, 54 to 9.
Vigorous support for the “work or fight” clause was given by Senator Poindexter of Washington who said “so-called labor leaders” opposing the section do not truly represent American working men. He expressed the opinion that a majority of working men do not seek any special privilege or exemption under the draft law and resent the activity of union leaders.
An amendment by Senator Poindexter of Washington to make the minimum draft age 19 instead of 18 years was defeated 58 to 14.
Senator Varaman’s substitute to make the minimum age 21 years was rejected by an overwhelming viva voce vote.
Senator Kirby’s amendment to make the minimum draft age 20 years was rejected 60 to 12.
For more stories like this, check out “The Archive,” a weekly podcast series at mailtribune.com/podcasts