Remarks on Being Made a Member of the Press Club in Milwaukee, Wisconsin

April 03, 1903

Mr. President, gentlemen:

I accept with all gratitude the honorary membership in your club. I am glad that I was here some years ago and that I am able to come back now. And as ye are speaking among ourselves—with no reporters present—I want to say just one word, and that with all my heart. I have found that if I felt I wished to tell something to someone whom I know would not repeat it, if there was secret essential to keep quiet, I could take an honorable man connected with the press into my confidence and my faith would be justified. Among the closest friends I have made in every station which I have held where I wanted to test a man's friendship to see if he had the stuff in him that made it worth while making friends with him, whether in the army, as governor, or now as president, I found that among men in your profession I have some of the closest and staunchest of friends. And as you are reasonably astute men it would not be worth while to tell you anything but the truth, so what I say I mean—I believe. I will say also that I did not always get along well with them all. There are some to whom I have objected, and they have known it. But I wish to say with all emphasis that there has been no more honorable body than the men of your profession; the vast majority of them are men the same as you would have in your club.

Theodore Roosevelt, Remarks on Being Made a Member of the Press Club in Milwaukee, Wisconsin Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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