W. Bourke Cockran, The Forgotten Democratic Congressman Who Championed Churchill & Free Trade
Winston Churchill learned to appreciate a good cigar, free trade, and fine oratory from an Irish-American orator who was his mother’s lover—and believed in young Winston more than his own father ever did.
The Oscar-nominated movie Darkest Hour, though compelling, misleads on this part of the British Bulldog’s biography. Winston Churchill never needed to wander around wartime London seeking his muse. He had found him 45 years earlier in Gay Nineties’ Manhattan.
Actually, Churchill was only one of many of W. Bourke Cockran’s seductions—and fans. When this Irish immigrant turned super-lawyer, spellbinder, and legislator died suddenly in Washington in March, 1923, two hours after a dinner celebrating his 69th birthday, the nationwide mourning had nothing to do with Churchill, who was by then a political has-been. Cockran’s mentorship of Churchill offers a relevant epilogue to a rich all-American life that dazzled turn-of-the-century Americans with colorful prose and crystal-clear logic delivered theatrically in a resonant Irish brogue....
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