April 8, 1936

At sea, playing bridge en route to Zamboanga, where on arrival went that evening to dinner with Mr. and Mrs. Joe Cooley. Very pleasant. Quezon had a little dinner dance on board the Arayat for the Karagdags and Alanos. At 1:30 that night I was driven out of bed by mosquitoes and met Quezon walking restlessly around the deck. We talked for an hour or so; and discussed his advantages as Chief Executive over all of his predecessors, because he is the only one of us who has really known his own people. He laughed and said he always prefaced his interviews with Filipinos by saying “Now, I’m not an American Governor General–I’m a Filipino so tell me the truth!” He said he was not indispensible as many told him; that he knew at least four Filipinos who were capable of carrying on.

He then gave his impressions of American Presidents he had known in the past; T. Roosevelt impressed him by his vigour and likeableness; Taft by his sympathy and amiability; Coolidge was a small and dull man, and even his questions about the Philippines were foolish. As soon as Quezon read of the Lincolnian scene of Coolidge taking the oath of office before his father in the simple home under the lamp, he saw the beginning of a great and probably successful press campaign by “the interests”; Governor Forbes told him then that Coolidge would be a second Lincoln; “but (said Quezon) I never did think much of Forbes’ brains.” Told me more of Stimson and remarked how rough he was, but honest; they quarreled nearly every day, but never let the public know of it. Quezon felt respect and affection for him.

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