Unclean elections were as common as unclean streets in early twentieth-century America. Few politicians questioned the process that put them in power, but John Shafroth -- 'Honest John' -- did. On 15 February 1904, the five-term Colorado congressman stunned the US House of Representatives by resigning his seat. He declared that the November 1902 election had been tainted with fraud and he had unwittingly benefited. After his resignation, a Supreme Court justice told him: "Only a brave and honest man would do as you did. Such actions make one proud of his country and sure of its future." John Franklin Shafroth helped to build that future. In two terms as Colorado's governor (1909-1913) and one term as US senator (1913-1919), he advocated a set of reforms, including women's suffrage, the federal reserve system, and the initiative and referendum -- that shaped twentieth-century policy and politics. More than anyone else in Colorado's history, Shafroth lifted politics out of the mire.