John E. Moss

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John Emerson Moss

(D - California)

This series of pages are in memory of John Emerson Moss.  John served in the US Congress (House of Representatives) from 1953 until 1978.

It was my great fortune to know and speak with this gentleman for a year prior to his death just after midnight on December 5, 1997. I visited with him repeated during his last days in the hospital in San Francisco. John was my father-in-law.

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Rep. John Moss (1915 - 1997).

John never worried about being popular. He believe that each person should do what was right, what was ethical. One comment from his obituary in the Sacramento Bee best describes John's actions:

"Too many people want to be popular around here," Moss said in the days before he retired. "I don't really give a damn. If it's the right vote, it will become popular."

John's personal political ethics he best found expressed by Edmund Burke in Orations and Essays.

Certainly, Gentlemen, it ought to be the happiness and glory of a representative to live in the strictest union, the closest correspondence, and the most unreserved communication with his constituents. Their wishes ought to have a great weight with him, their opinions high respect; their business unremitted attention. It is his duty to sacrifice his repose, his pleasure, his satisfactions, to theirs, and above all, ever, and in all cases, to prefer their interest to his own.

But his unbiased opinion, his mature judgment, his enlightened conscience, he ought not to sacrifice to you, to any man, or to any set of men living. These he does not derive from your pleasure, no nor from the law and the Constitution. They are a trust from Providence, for the abuse of which he is deeply answerable. Your representative owes you, not his industry only, but his judgment; and he betrays, instead of serving you, if he sacrifices it to your opinion.

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Copyright 1997-2005 by Denise L. Moss-Fritch. All rights reserved.
Revised: 30 Jan 2009 11:12:57 -0800.

Copyright 1997-2009 by Denise L. Moss-Fritch. All rights reserved.
Revised: 30 Jan 2009 11:12:57 -0800.