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Claude Kitchin

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Claude Kitchin

Claude Kitchin
House Majority Leader
In office
1915–1919
Preceded by Oscar W. Underwood
Succeeded by Frank W. Mondell
House Minority Leader
In office
1921–1923
Preceded by Champ Clark
Succeeded by Finis Garrett
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from North Carolina's 2nd district
In office
March 4, 1901 – May 21, 1923
Preceded by George H. White
Succeeded by John H. Kerr
Personal details
Born (1869-03-24)March 24, 1869
Scotland Neck, North Carolina
Died May 21, 1923(1923-05-21) (aged 54)
Wilson, North Carolina
Political party Democratic
Alma mater Wake Forest College

Claude Kitchin (March 24, 1869 – May 21, 1923) was a U.S. Congressional Representative from North Carolina and floor leader of his party in the House during the 64th, 65th, and 67th Congresses.

He was born in Halifax County, North Carolina in 1869. His father was William H. Kitchin and William Walton Kitchin was his brother. First elected in 1900, after his party secured a constitutional amendment excluding blacks from the ballot boxes of the state, a campaign in which he served as a leading orator, he served in Congress as a member of the Democratic Party until his death. In Congress, he served on the House Ways and Means Committee, chairing the Committee from 1915 to 1919. From 1915 to 1919 he was House majority leader; from this position he opposed the Wilson administration's "Preparedness" crusade, seeking unsuccessfully to hold down the growth in size of the army and navy.

He was one of the representatives who voted against declaring war on Germany in April 1917; indeed, his example and speech against American entry probably swelled the number of dissenters to 50. He threw himself into the war effort thereafter but remained a critic of some of the administration's war policies, especially regarding taxation policies. He championed an "excess profits" tax that was steeply progressive

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