Calvin Coolidge? E. E. Whiting? Harold Schoelkopf? Styles Bridges? Apocryphal?
Dear Quote Investigator: President Calvin Coolidge was once told that a U.S. Senator was an S.O.B. He replied with comical and wistful statement about group representation within a democracy. Would you please explore this anecdote?
Quote Investigator: The earliest match located by QI appeared in a Michigan newspaper in March 1944 within a column titled “Between You and Me” written by an author with the initials “L. A. W.”. The bowdlerization in the following occurred in the original text. Emphasis added to excerpts by QI: 1
Here’s a President Coolidge story I like about a Southern senator who bitterly attacked Coolidge on the floor of the senate. One of the President’s friends rushed over to the White House and excitedly explained to Coolidge what was going on.
“The dirty so-and-so.” exclaimed Coolidge’s friend. “He’s nothing but a son-of-a- —–!”
Coolidge never lost his composure for a second
“Well,” he quietly remarked, as was characteristic of him. “I guess after all there are enough of them in the country so that they are entitled to representation in the senate.”
Coolidge was the U.S. President between 1923 and 1929, so this tale is somewhat late, and future researchers may discover earlier evidence.
Below are additional selected citations in chronological order.
- 1944 March 19, Port Huron Times Herald, Between You and Me, Quote Page 4, Column 6, Port Huron, Michigan. (Newspapers_com) ↩