« AnteriorContinuar »
Jan. 14, 1837.)
N. and L. Dana.
[H. OF R.
before entering into the consumption of the country, provided (see 2d vol. United States Laws, p. 571) that the duties were refunded.
where a distiller had been “ really and truly prevented And here again I beg the attention of the honorable from employing or working his still or stills, during any gentleman from Tennessee, and of the House generally, part of the term for which he had rendered it liable to the fact that this case of the French citizens is not to pay a duly upon its or their capacity, by the deone where the facts could bave escaped the notice of struction or failure of fruit and grain, or any other unaCongress, while the law in its favor was on its passage. voidable cause, within the district in which he resides," It is not a precedent that was established through the &c., he might pay upon its capacity a pro rala duty for negligence of Congress. So well did Congress under the time his still or stills were actually employed. stand wbat the measure and the case was, and so care. The same principle was adopted by the act of March fol were they in the recognition of the principle it in. 3, 1797, relating to duties laid upon mills employed in volved, that the facts of the case were especially set the manufacture of snuff. The second section of that forth in the preamble of the bill, as I have read it from act provides as follows, (see 2d vol. United States Law's, the statute book.
p. 590:) " That in all cases of licenses granted under Congress herein recognised the principle, that inas. the said act, where, by failure of water or other casual. much as the property destroyed had not actually entered ty, occurring to the mill or mills, or to the implements, into the consumption of the country, and had not gone or to the proprietor or other person licensed, the use into the market, but was held “ on account of the same and benefit of such license bas been lost, or considerably importers"-in other words, had never changed hands interrupted, and the duties thereon required, or paid, and owners--it was but just, and honest, and politic, to may be considered peculiarly unequal and injurious, ibe refund the duties paid upon it, though it had been sev Secretary of the Treasury, upon due representation and eral months in the country.
proof of such case, shall be, and hereby is, authorized Sir, I do not press the principle in this broad extent to cause to be refunded or remiited such part of duties
I do not say I would recognise it to such an ex. paid or secured on such license as shall appear just and tent now. I cite the case only to show how much broad. reasonable under the circumstances of the case, and hav. er is the principle upon which Congress has beretofore ing regard to the loss, injury, or peculiar hardship, sus. acted in the remission of duties, than in the one now in. tained as aforesaid." volved by the case before us. Surely, sir, if the case of I may cite the case of the Providence merchants, the French citizens be admissible in half its extent, the found in vol. 3, p. 433, of the Laws of the United case of Messrs. Dana & Co., now before us, is beyond States. The collector of the district of Providence, question.
in the State of Rhode Island, was authorized and di. The case of Jabez Rogers is another case founded on rected, by the law of their case, to remit the duties on the same policy of the Government. It is entitled “ An such parts of two certain cargoes of teas as were import. act for the remission of the duties on certain distilled ed on the 29th of July, 1800, by Thomas Lloyd & Co., spirits destroyed by fire.” It was approved June 7, and on the 22d of August, 1800, by John J. Clark, “as 1794, and reads as follows-(see United States Laws, remained deposited to secure the payment of duties, unvol. 2, page 485:)
der the care of the officers of the customs, on the 21st "Whereas Jabez Rogers, junior, who had erected day of January last, in the aforesaid town of Providence, large works at Middlebury, in the State of Vermont, for and shall be proved, to the satisfaction of the said col. distilling spirits from the produce of the country, has lector, to have been burned and destroyed.” had the same twice destroyed by fire, with a quantity of This was approved March 3, 1801. spirits therein, on which by law duties had become pay. The committee who reported this last case for relief able to the United States:
say: “And whereas, considering the equity of the case, * Your committee are of opinion that, as the goods said duties ought to be remitted; therefore,
were under the care of the officers of the customs at the “ Be it enacted, &c., That the duties payable to the time they were consumed by fire, and not subject to the United States on all such distilled spirits as shall be pro- control of the owners; and that, as granting relief in this ved, to the satisfaction of the supervisor of the disirict case cannot establish a precedent dangerous to the rev. of Vermont, to have been destroyed by fire in the distil. enue, the prayer of the petition ought to be granted.” leries lately burnt at Middlebury, in the State of Ver. American State Papers, vol. 1, on Finance, p. 698. mont, be and are hereby remitted."
Here the principle of not exacting duties on goods de. Here, again, the principle adopted is altogether more stroyed before entering into the ordinary consumption broad and liberal than is asked or contemplated in the of the country is distinctly and undeniably recognised, case of Dana & Co., now before the House. It not only and is the great leading principle of the case. Here, also, adopts the principle of refunding the duties that had ac the principle of remission is extended far beyond the crued to the Government, because the dutiable article nature of the case presented by the Messrs. Danas & was destroyed before entering into the ordinary con Co., because it is made to cover a loss arising from a sumption of the country, but, also, in a case where the risk against which an ordinary insurance and ordinary loss incurred was from a risk against which ordinary vigilance would have protected the owners. The fact prudence would have protected the owner; where an in- that the property was still in possession of the Govern. surance of the property, against the very loss incurred, ment does not alter the case, only so far as it may prewas possible. The case before the committee imbodies sume to shut out the possibility of fraud on the part of all the merit of the first principle, without being expo. the importers, because this fact did not take the case out sed to the derogation of the last-mentioned circumstance. of the principle of ordinary insurances, nor release the
The principle of refunding duties imposed by Govern. owners from exercising ordinary vigilance to secure ment, in cases where the purpose of both the Govern themselves against loss from such a risk. ment in imposing such duties, and of the individual in Mr. Speaker, I might go on and cite, in detail, each paying them, has been defeated by inevitable and unfore- of the several cases that have come before Congress for seen accident, which is precisely the principle of the remission, but for consuming too much of the time of case of the Danas, was fully recognised and adopted by the House. Suffice it to say that, after careful and vigiGovernment in the act of June 1, 1796, entitled " An act Jant search, I find no case conflicting with the principle providing relief to the owners of stills within the United of the case now presented, and when the fact that ihe States, for a limited time, in certain cases.” That act property destroyed was so situated as not to be insura
H. Or R.]
Abolition of Slavery.
(Jar. 16, 1897.
ble was taken into consideration. Cases may be found ought to be recognised in all legislation towards the where there was a want of proof of vigilance and ordi mercantile community. These are the principles laid nary care, or where the property was insurable in the down in this report of the Committee of Ways and ordinary way, or where it has been exposed to new Means. And let it be established that, in those cases, and risks, against which the Government could not properly in those cases only, will Congress remit duties on goods be made a partner with the importers or owners. Such destroyed, wherecases have been, and very properly, too, rejected. The 1st. The goods were, when destroyed, in their orilast case of this kind, I believe, which was acred on by ginal state as imported, and had not entered into the Congress, was that of George and William Bangs, in mass of commodities destined for the immediate conJanuary, 1830. It was a case of goods destroyed by sumption of the country, fire. But, sir, on turning to the proceedings of the 20. Where the circumstances of the loss are such as House upon this case, I find it to bave been one clearly not only to excite no suspicion of fraud, but as expressly excluded by the principles of the report of the Com. and directly to exclude the possibility of it. mittee of Ways and Means in the case before us. The 3d. Where the loss could not have been covered by case of Bangs* was one of neglect and want of ordinary ordinary insurance, or guarded against by the caution care. The gentleman who is now the oldest Repre. and diligence of a vigilant and prudent man of business; sentative of Rhode Island upon this floor (Mr. PEARCE] and where the evidence to all these points is full, direct, was among the number who opposed the bill, and he unquestionable, and of the highest nature the case will opposed it on the ground that the argument urged in its permit. support "would establish a bad precedent"-" would Sir, I ask the allowance of this Dana case only upon lead to the conclusion that Government would guaran'y all those principles, as a case justified in every requirement goods imported, which, through neglect, might be de- of those principles beyond any controversy or question. stroyed in the store, or which might be exported by 1 can conceive of no danger or possible injustice to the coast wise navigation from the North to the South.” He Treasury of the Government by adopting these fundamendenied that there was any analogy between this case and tal rules of remission. I can conceive of no sound ergu. that of the goods destroyed by fire at Savannah, and ment that can be adduced on the opposite side, that will upon which the duties were remitted.
| not do injustice to the commercial ioterests of the country. The honorable chairman of the Committee of Ways Surely Government cannot desire to pursue a policy that and Means of the present House was also among the shall work injustice to the vigilant importing mercbant, number who opposed the bill in favor of the Bangs. He nor lo speculate upon bis inevitable misfortunes. If the did it expressly on the ground that “the eflect of the merchant, under any case that can be conceived of as passage of the bill would be to encourage the importing coming within the principles I have adverted to the merchants !o neglect their business. He attributed the just ones to control this case, can stand up against the fact of this claim being made to the remissness of the loss incurred, without any fault on his part, of the oriimporter, who ought, as every merchant who knows his ginal cost and expenses of importation of the goods so business does, to have insured his property. This was a di stroyed, surely the Government may well abstain from case, he contended, of gross and palpable negligence; exacting of him the payment of duties upon the prop. and if the flouse sbould adopt the principle of the bill, erty; and surely, moreover, the Government that is unwe would have our tables crowded with memorials willing to relax its demands upon the unfortunate mer. whenever a fire takes place in the United States. The chants in a case of such extreme hardship must be re: merchants in the interior of the country had as good garded as slow indeed in the encouragement of honest right to claim a remission of duties on goods destroyed enterprise. I trust such is not the character of our by fire as the importers."
Government. Be ibat as it may, I have discharged my Sir, I accord' most fully with these views, and the duty towards the claimants in this, and every similar principles upon which they are founded. Bill, sir, a broad, marked, and manifest principle distinguishes the Aller further debate, and before any question was case now before the House from the Bangs case, as thus taken upon the bill, represented. In a case not only deficient in proof of The House adjourned. ordinary vigilance on the part of the importer, but thus marked by proof of “gross and palpable negligence," I should feel it my duty, as every other member of this
MONDAY, JANUARI 16. body would feel it to be his duty, to reject the claim. Sir, the argument of such a case does noi touch or affect
ABOLITION OF SLAVERY. the merits of the present one.
The unfinished business of the morning hour was the Thus much, Mr. Speaker, have I felt it my duty to say in relation to precedents. I will venture to affirm,
petition presented on Monday last by Mr. Adams, from
forty inhabitants of the town of Dover, in the county of that while numerous precedents of remission can be Norfolk, in the State of Massachusetts, praying for the adduced, covering all of the principles of the present abolition of slavery and the slave trade in the District of case, and stretching even far beyond it, not one case will be found rejected, wherein the facts set forth are
Columbia; the pending question being on the metion of not distinguishable in point of strength and merit from
Mr. Lawler that the petition be not received.
Mr. BYNUM was entitled to the floor. this case, and therefore not deserving of weight as authority against it, even with those gentlemen who wish
Mr. HOWARD requested the gentleman from North
Carolina [Mr. Brxum) to yield the floor, with a view.do to be governed by precedent. But, sir, I appeal now to those naked principles of States a chance of getting in their petitions. There
enable him (Mr. H.) io make another effort to give the justice and policy, which this House and Congress ought were more than lialf the states in the Union that could and may safely adopt, as decisive of all cases. I ask not to have this Dana case regarded as an exception to all rule, to enable Lim to offer a resolution that the States
not bave the opportunity. lle proposed to suspend the general principles of legislation, but as coming fairly be called for petitions in reverse order. and rightsully within those general principles which Mr. BYNUM said he would have great pleasure in + See Gales & Seaton's Rigister of Debates, vol. 6,
yielding the foor for that purpose, if it should be under: part 1, p. 622.
stood that he would be enriiled to the floor when this petition should neve come up. He thought the llouse
Jan. 17, 1837.)
Memorial from District of Columbia - Protection to Commerce, c.
(H. of R.
should suspend the rule, to enable the member from The SPEAKER said the effect of the motion would Maryland to submit his resolution.
be to suspend all action, and to leave the petition exactly Mr. ADAMS said he hoped the rule would not be where it was. suspended. He begged the House and the Speaker to And the question was taken, and decided in the afrecollect that this state of things
firmative: Yeas 89, nays 37. Mr. W. B. SHEPARD rose to a question of order. So the preliminary question was laid on the table. A motion to suspend the rule he understood not to be debateable, and he hoped the Chair would enforce the
PROTECTION TO COMMERCE. rule.
Mr. LAWRENCE presented the memorial of George The SPEAKER said the motion could not be de- Hallett, and four hundred merchants of the city of Bosbated.
ton, praying Congress to establish steam and other ves. Mr. ADAMS called for the yeas and nays on the mo sels for ihe protection of the navigation of ships of the tion to suspend the rule; which were ordered, and were: United Sta!es coming on our coast in the winter. Yeas 123, nays 58.
Mr. L. adverted briefly to the fearful loss of life and So the rule was suspended.
property which bad taken place on our coast during Mr. HOWARD then offered the following resolution: the last year, to an extent unprecedented in our history.
Resolved, That in calling the States for petitions on This loss was to be attributed in part to the want of this day, the Speaker do call in the reverse order, be a good system of pilotage, but mainly to the fact that ginning with the youngest Territory.
vessels coming, after very long voyages, on a bleak and Mr. ADAMS called for the yeas and nays on the wintry coast, and short of provisions, required some proadoption of the resolution; which the House refused to tection and assistance which their own crews were not order.
able to render. He moved that the petition be refer. And the question was then taken, and decided in the red to the Committee on Commerce, and expressed a affirmative: Yeas 125, nays 33.
hope that some action would be speedily had upon the So the resolution was adopted.
subject. Petitions and memorials were then called for in the The petition was referred accordingly. reverse order of States and Territories.
During the day, a number of petitions, praying for Mr. E. WHITTLESEY said, it having been the sense the abolition of slavery in the District of Columbia, were of the House that petitions relating to the abolition of presented; which were, in every instance, met by the slavery should not be discussed to-day, he begged to motion to lay the preliminary motion of reception on the state that he had several such in his possession, but that table, and which motion prevailed. he refrained from offering them, under the hope that, After the reception and disposal of several resolutions when he did offer them, he might be heard for a few mo of inquiry, ments in relation to the direction which he thought The House adjourned. should be given to them by the House. MEMORIAL FRON DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA.
TUESDAY, JANUARI 17.
KEEPING THE JOURNALS. jurors of the county of Washington, in the District of Mr. UNDERWOOD asked the consent of the House Columbia, soliciting that hereafter no petitions may be to submit a resolution, which he desired might be read received or entertained by Congress, from societies or for the information of the House. inhabitants of the non-slaveholding States, for the abo Mr. JARVIS objected to the reception of the resolulition of slavery in the District of Columbia.
tion and to its reading. Mr. PINCKNEY moved to lay the momorial on the Mr. UNDERWOOD said, if the Clerk would return table.
the resolution, he (Mr. U.) would state briefly its subMr. WASHINGTON called for the reading; and it stance to the House, was read accordingly.
Mr. ADAMS said, if the gentleman from Kentucky Mr. GRAHAM called for the yeas and nays on the was permitted to read the resolution, he (Mr. A.) hoped motion of Mr. PincksEY; but the Ilouse refused to order no more objection would be made to members reading them.
papers in their places. And the question was then taken, and decided in the The SPEAKER said the question could not be deaffirmative.
bated. So the memorial was ordered to lie on the table. Mr. UNDERWOOD inquired if it was in order to Mr. JENIFER moved that the same be printed. make a brief statement of the contents of the resolu.
The SPEAKER said the motion was not now in tion. order.
The SPEAKER said it was in order so to do, but it Mr. HIESTER presented the petition of 240 females was not in order to read the resolution itself. of his congressional districi, praying for the abolition of Mr. UNDERWOOD said his object was to submit a slavery in the District of Columbia, and moved that the series of resolutions, declaring the sense of this House same be referred to the Committee on the said District. that it was not competent, under the constitution of the
Mr. W. B. SHEPARD objected to its reception. Mr. United States, to change, alter, expunge, mutilate, or s. said that, whenever a proper opportunity presented destroy, the journals of either House of Congress; that itself, it was his intention to offer a few remarks on this the priservation of the journals of either House of Consubject. He did not feel disposed now to violate the gress was a subject of national importance, and a fit agreement which had been made with his colleague, subject of national legislation; that, after these journals [Mr. Benum,] that this discussion should lie over; and he bal been faithfully kept and preserved-moved, therefore, that the further consideration of the Mr. CUSMAN called the gentleman from Kentucky petition be postponed until Monday next.
Mr. DAVIS moved to buy the preliminary motion of M". UNDERWOOD declared that he had not yet reception on the table.
completed the brief statement of the contents of ihe Mi. STORER inquired if the effect of the motion to resolutio:, though he had nearly done so. Jay on the table, should it prevail, would not be to re The CHAIR said he muit request the gentleman from ject the petition for the time being.
Kentucky to submit his motion to the House.
H. OF R.]
Public Lands-Executive Administration.
(Jar. 17, 1837
Mr. UNDERWOOD said his motion was to suspend ferred to a select committee, to consist of nine members, the rule to enable him to offer this resolution. Could with power to send for persons and papers, and with be not read what was the purport of that resolution? instructions to inquire into the condition of the various
The CHAIR said he ihought not, the reading of the executive departments, the ability and integrity with resolution having been specially objected to. A mem. which they have been conducted, into the manner in ber could not himself read what the Clerk was not per which the public business has been discharged in all of mitted to read.
them, and into all causes of complaint, from any quar. After a few further remarks on the point of order, ter, at the manner in which said departments, or their Mr. JARVIS, with a view to save the time of the House, bureaus or offices, or any of their officers or agents, of withdrew his objection to the reading of the resolution. every description whatever, directly or indirectly con
The same was accordingly read, and is as follows: nected with them in any manner, officially or unofficial Resolved by the House of Representatives, That the ly, in duties pertaining to the public interest
, bave ful3d clause of ihe 51 section of the 1st article of the con filled or failed to accomplish the objects of their creation, stitution, in the following words, to wit: “ Each House or bave violated their duties, or have injured and im. shall keep a journal of its proceedings, and, from time paired the public service and interest; and that said to time, publish the same, excepting such parts as may, committee, in its inquiries, may refer to such periods of in their judgmeni, require secrecy; and the yeas and time as to them may seem expedient and proper." days of the members of either House on any question To which resolution Mr. D. J. PEARCE bad offered an shall, at the desire of one fifth of those present, be en amendment, for which Mr. FRENCH had offered a subtered on the journal," confers no power whatever on stitute. either House of Congress, at a subsequent session, to Mr. McKEON said the reading of the resolution must change, alter, de face, expunge, or destroy, its journal, bring to the attention of the House the fact that a large or any part thereof, when the same has been regularly portion of its time had been expended upon the discus and faithfully kept during a previous session, and duly sion of the various topics which had been introduced in. published.
to the debate. He was deeply impressed with the ne. Resolved, further, that the journals of both Houses of cessity of confining any remarks he might offer within a Congress, kept and published as aforesaid, after the ad. narrow compass. He assured the House that nothing journment sine die, become national archives; and that would have induced him to prolong a debate already too all attempts and acts of either House separately, or of much extended, except that justice to those with #bom both by joint resolution, to change, alter, deface, ex he acted, and to himself, required bim to notice some of punge, or destroy, either journal, or any part thereof, the observations made in the course of the debale. are violations of the constitution.
When the resolution of the gentleman from Virginia Resolved, that the preservation of the national ar [Mr. W 18E) was introduced, I viewed it (said Mr. Mck.) chives from mulilation, disfiguration, and destruclion, is as a measure novel in its character, and one calculated to a fit subject of legislation. Wherefore,
establish a precedent which might hereafter be perverted. Resolved, That the Committee on the Judiciary be di- In the phraseology of the resolution I saw a power of unrected to report a bill providing for the deposite of the limited extent intrusted to a committee of this House. original journals of each House, after their adjournment I am not of that school which insists upon a search warsine die, in the office of the Secretary of State; and for rant to authorize you to examine your public offices, the punishment of every and all persons, their aiders but I cannot but believe that, if you intend to examine and abettors, who shall alter, change, deface, expunge, any matter beyond the manner in which your public or destroy, any part of either journal after such adjourn. agents discharge the duties of their appointment, you
will require something more than a resolution of this Mr. MORGAN called for the yeas and nays on the House. What does the original resolution propose motion to suspend; which were ordered, and were: Yeas
To examine into the official and unofficial conduct of 77, nays 118.
those who are directly or indirectly connected with the So the rule was not suspended.
public departments. This is the lask which is to be al
lotted to a committee of this House. This is the inquisiTHE PUBLIC LANDS.
torial tribunal you propose to create. If we appoint the The unfinished business of the morning hour was the committee, how can it proceed in the discharge of its resolution of Mr. C. Allan, providing that certain grants duty? The power of this House can go no further than of the public domain be made to such States as have not
to examine into the official conduct of those who are in yet received them, together with the several amend.
office, who receive their compensation at your hands ments thereto proposed.
and who are liable to censure and removal for any breach The pending question was on the motion heretofore of duty. In every point connected with your public of submitted by Mr. Boyd, to lay the resolution and amend. fices, in every matter of an official character, you have ments on the table.
the right and the power to exact a rigid, strict examina: On which motion the yeas and nays had been hereto. tion; but when you will attempt to inquire into the unos. fore ordered; and having been now taken, were: Yeas ficial conduct of a public officer, or to make the wide. 114, nays 82.
spread investigation proposed by the resolution, the suc. So the resolution and amendments were laid on the
cess of your investigation will depend more upon the dis. table.
position of those who may be called before the commitEXECUTIVE ADMINISTRATION.
tee than on any power of this House to compel ibem to
satisfy your inquiries. You will search in vain for a pfe The House proceeded to the consideration of the fol cedent for this movement in parliamentary history; but lowing resolution, heretofore offered by Mr. Wise: you may find one elsewhere. There can be found one
" Resolved, That so much of the President's message direction to which it bea a strict resemblance. The as relates to the condition of the various executive de. command of this House to the committee may be found partments, the ability and integrity with which they have in that of Dogberry to the watch, a sweeping resolution been conducted, the vigilant and faithful discharge of the public business in all of them, and the causes of
to “comprehend all vagrom men,” and to lei all go who
will not stand according to order. Let it be considered complaint, from any quarter, at the manner in which they have fulfilled the objects of their creation,' be re
that we have several standing committees, whose duly it is to investigate the affairs of your departments. Let it
1402 Jar. 17, 1837.) Executive Administration.
'[H. of R. be considered, also, that, but a few days since, we appoint rights of any branch of the Government, why is be not ed a committee, at the head of which is the gentleman from placed in a situation where he will be required to de. Virginia, (Mr. GARLAND,} which committee is daily en. fend his public character from these accusations? If we gaged in the examination of one of the subjects referred to have watchful sentinels on the ramparts of constitutional in this resolution. Yes, sir, the very point which, I be- liberty, let them not only sound the alarm, but let them lieve, according to the mover of this proposition, gave rise seize upon him whom they represent to be an enemy of to this proposed investigation. But in addition to these the country. That country has a right to demand this means which are within our power, the anondment of movement at the hands of those who are so desirous of the gentleman from Rhode Island is offered. That preserving its interests from violation. Nothing is easier amendment is, in my opinion, not open to the objections than to denounce. We ask for the evidences to support which may be made to the original proposition. It is in the charges they make-we ask for action. The Execaccordance with parliamentry practice. It is no part of utive has been represented as a violator of his plighted the duty of a Legislature to undertake an exploring ex faith, as one who had broken every pledge. Let us look pedition in search of abuses; but if abuses are charged, it to his inaugural address, which ought to be considered as becomes a solemn duty to investigate them. The amend an exposition of the policy which would characterize his ment proposes to create a tribunal before which charges administration. In regard to your foreign policy, he bad can be made, and to examine into the truth of those stated that he would endeavor to preserve peace and culticharges. Suppose a petition was presented to this House, vate friendship with all nations on honorable terms, and and referred to one of the appropriate committees, pray. to adjust our differences in the forbearing spirit becoming an examination into the manner in which your public ing a powerful nation, rather than the sensibility belongofficers discharge their duties, and setting forth that abu ing to a gallant people. Has this been fulfilled? Do ses existed. Your committee would ask the petitioners you find the violation of this pledge in the elevated posifor specific charges, and if they were produced the ex tion which our country sustains amongst the nations of amination would be made. I doubt very much whether the earth? He pledged himself to a spirit of comprothey would inquire of your different departments and mise, equity, and caution, in regard to your tariff, by bureaus for something to sustain the allegation of the the promotion of agriculture, commerce, and manufacpetitioners.
tures; and if any encouragement should be given, it was But, sir, it appears that your standing committees, only to those articles which might be found essential to your select committee, the amendment, will not be satis our national independence. Let his messages to Confactory. Nothing will give sufficient latitude but the gress show how far he has labored to discharge this original resolution. I prefer sustaining the amendment, pledge. He avowed his determination to reform abuses, believing it cannot be perverted hereafter into a danger by depending for the promotion of the public service ous precedent; but if ihat cannot be adopted, I shall not not on the number, but on the efficiency, the integrity, be found denying investigation. I am willing to give the zeal, of public officers. Let the consequences of the every facility, and to afford ample means, to pursue the toils of those agents, visible in the negotiation of foreign desired examination; to have the official transactions treaties, and in the happy results of the faithful discharge and correspondence of your public offices laid open. Aş of duties within our country, be his defence on this point. the representatives of the people, we are bound to guard He promised to facilitate the extinguishment of the public every department. We are bound to pour lighë into debt. Has that been discharged? Does not the contest every portion of this Government. It is due not only to here for the division of an immense surplus in your the country, but to the incumbents, to those on this floor Treasury speak for him on this subject? Has not, duwho wish the examination, that some decision should be ring this administration, the novel speciacle been pre; had on this subject, and that without delay. The de sented to the world of an immense republic, unshackled bate which has arisen upon this resolution has resusci.
with a national debt? When the violence of political tated the denunciations and charges which we had rea feeling shall have subsided, but one opinion, sir, will be son to believe were long since buried. I have been sur given of the present administration; and if, as some gen. prised to observe the course of the present discussion. tlemen insist, the coming administration will be but a conThe same accusations of corruption, of proscription, and tinuation of the policy of the present, the country may of abuses of every nature, which were made at the last be congralulated on the prospect of a career of brilliancy session, with a view of operating on the then approaching and prosperity. It will be a continuation of a policy political contest, are reiterated upon the present occa which seeks to enlarge the liberties of every citizen, and sion.
We ought to suspect that our fate has been that to promote the welfare of the Union. of Rip Van Winkle; that we have been sleeping quietly The corruption which exists in the Government is a while the thunders of the opposition, louder far than any fruitful theme. The dictation of the Executive, and his which reverberated through the Catskill, have been interference with the elective franchise, have been blapealing over us, and we have been unconscious of the zoned forth to the world. Sir, if we have had a dictapresidential contest which has just closed. If there is tor, he bears but little resemblance to the Sylla of other to be a repetition of those charges, it is full time we days. The Roman retired when the aristocracy had should be aroused. I bave sought for new statements, been armed with the sceptre, but our dictator is about but none are offered. Let it be remembered that the to surrender his trust when the democracy is triumphant. same representations which are made now were made Do gentlemen suppose that the intelligence of this coun. before the struggle commenced; that the same evidence, try is to be deceived with this outcry? May we ask sustained by the aid of the same distinguished gentle. when and where this dictation took place? Who were men, was laid before the people of this country, and that the individuals who yielded, or the States that submitthe people supported him against whom these charges ted to his commands? We hear of Tennessee! That were intended to operate. Why do gentlemen stop even State did not vote for the individual who is said to have now? Why do they hall? Why not cross the Rubicon? obtained his election by the dictation of the Executive. There is still remedy left. If outrages upon the consti
If the dictation of the President was of any avail, it must tution, if violations of the liberties of the people, have have been united not only with omnipotence but omnibeen committed, why, instead of making the accusation,
presence. Its results are seen in Maine, and at the same is not the individual who is the author of these evils
time in Louisiana in the Atlantic States and in your far made liable to the consequences of impeachment? If he West. This charge (let gentlemen consider) of dicta. bas violated the rights of any of your citizens, any of the tion and of corruption, reaches not only the Executive,