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November 11 2012

The Speech That Saved Teddy Roosevelt’s Life


On October 14, 1912, just after eight o’clock in the evening, Theodore Roosevelt stepped out of the Hotel Gilpatrick in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and into an open car waiting to take him to an auditorium where he would deliver a campaign speech. Although he was worn out and his voice nearly gone, he was still pushing hard to win an unprecedented third term in the White House. He had left politics in 1909, when his presidency ended. But his disappointment in the performance of William Howard Taft, his chosen successor, was so great that in 1912 he formed the National Progressive Party (better known as the Bull Moose Party). He was running against Taft and the Republicans, the Democrats’ Woodrow Wilson and the Socialist ticket headed by Eugene Debs.

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