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Respectfully Quoted: A Dictionary of Quotations. 1989.

AUTHOR: Champ (James Beauchamp Clark) Clark (1850–1921)
QUOTATION: The truth is being more and more realized by the public that, other things being equal or anywhere near equal, the value of the Representative or Senator increases in proportion to his length of service. A man must learn to be a Representative or Senator, just as he must learn to be a farmer, carpenter, blacksmith, merchant, engineer, lawyer, doctor, preacher, teacher, or anything else. Of course some men learn quicker than others—some of exceptional ability and powers of observation very speedily, and some not at all. The best plan for a constituency to pursue is to select a man of good sense, good habits, and perfect integrity, young enough to learn, and re-elect him so long as he retains his faculties and is faithful to his trust. Such a man grows into power and high position as surely as the sparks fly upward. As a rule, in both House and Senate, the best places go to men of long service, provided they are capable, sober, industrious, vigilant, and punctual in the discharge of their duties. No man should be sent to either House of Congress solely to gratify his own ambition, but because he has qualifications for the position which he seeks—indeed, better qualifications than any of his opponents.
ATTRIBUTION: Representative CHAMP CLARK, My Quarter Century of American Politics, vol. 1, p. 220 (1920).

Champ Clark was Speaker of the House 1911–1919.
SUBJECTS: Congressmen