« AnteriorContinuar »
Jan. 28, 1833.)
The Tariff Bill.
(H. OF R
most forgotten: I allude to that arising out of our success are made worse by the change) made out of your farmers in foreign markets.
and mechanics who have not sought to flee from regular inThe mystery about it is simply this: Where the English dustry, and have inclined to abide in the land of their namanufacturer commands and controls a market, without tivity. Sometimes they are made from your merchants domestic competition in the way, he will not glut his own and seafaring men, who have brought their toilsome gamarket to reduce the prices he can regularly obtain; and therings from every nation and clime under the sun, home thus the prices there are higher than in the contested to their own native village, perhaps, fondly hoping to markets; and when we interfere with them but slightly, enjoy their careful earnings, and spend the remainder of with our irregular and occasional shipments, we traffic, un- their days in security in the green vales of their boyhood, molested, under their standard of prices; but were we mate- and by the graves of their fathers; men who love their rially to affect the supply of such market, it would become, homes for their country's sake, and their country for their at once, like other disputed markets, to be contested by re- home's sake-little dreaming that their own nation's duced prices, and become the prize of those who possess councils were to be the bane of these hopes; men who, to the power to sacrifice the most and hold out longest. And secure these hopes, at some favorite spot near by, have by giving an advantage to others, and weakening and stayed the headlong torrent at some appalling chasm, led worrying out our present struggling competition, we may its mighty waters out, as in bonds, and taught them to have the benefits again of a foreign standard and prices labor, and do bandiwork for themselves and their counin an uncontested market in our own country. There is try. Such are your manufacturers, whose undertakings another impression which, from these arguments and ob- and foundations are to be overturned by this bill. They servations, would seem, with some, to have consideration are a great branch of your middling interest, which, in calculating the consequences that may befall our ma- above all, should be protected; the strength of your insti. nufactures, viz. that the effects of our legislation are not tutions, the source and substance of your nation's enterso direct, immediate, and extensive, as is generally be- prise, prosperity, and glory; not your delicate shrubbery lieved; and that distance, local markets, and many other in the yard, or your ornamental trees in the streets, or circumstances come in, materially to check and equalize the solitary, lordly shade on the plain, but your sturdy these effects. But, sir, in these times of improvement groves and forests, staying, by their stability and united and adventure, our whole market, with that of the world, strength, the storms of party and commotion from sweepto a great extent, is like one great body of fluid, where ing over the land; the source of convenience, comfort, any variation in height affects the pressure on all the and native variety, and beauty, in all the walks of life. fountains that feed it, and an addition or diminution But, sir, the axe at the root of the tree, as well as the torfinds a level with the rest as soon as the laws of nature vado or earthquake, may prostrate the whole, and tumcan act, and any commotion or disturbance of it runs like ble them in heaps and confusion one upon another; and circling waves over the whole, and into all the sinuosities the firewecd, and the thistle, and the thorn, will succeed of the branches and bays connected with it. Let us think amidst the ruín and decay. And such will be the effects of it as we may, in heated or cold debate here, the effects of this bill on this class of men. of the passage of a law, on this subject particularly, and But let us look, for a moment, at another general feaoften the mere proposal of one, to some extent, touches, ture of the bill. I consider it as partial and basty in its as rapidly as news can Ay, every town, village, manu- intended operation. factory, and workshop, to the extremity of the Union; If we are not permitted to raise duties to the point of and, through the whole line, as by a stroke of electricity, full protection on those articles we can supply in abunbenumbs the arm and unclinches the hand of industry, dance, and in perfection; if we cannot be permitted to and the wheel stands still and the water runs by, and the save, for the benefit of the country, such duties as, in owner, if a capitalist, has lost so much capital, according many states of the market, are wholly levied on the foto the shock, and the ordinary manufacturer, perhaps, reign manufacturer and producer; if we must be probihis whole estate; the former probably buys out the latter bited the advantages of bestowing such duties on works at the sacrifice, and, at length, at the approach of better of improvement, to facilitate our intercourse, bind us totimes, the weaker is serving the stronger in the same es-gether, and render our country the convenience, the tablishment, at a correspondent reduction of prices. gården, and the glory of the world; and if we must, from
There is much said, in these times, about making the this sad clog on the legitimate objects and energies of our rich richer, and the poor poorer'; tủe true mode is disco. Government, forego so much the great ends of national vered-disturb, effectually, the industry of the country. association; if, indeed, the revenue, or rather duties and While industry is regularly sustained, money finds em protection, must, at all events, be reduced, now or at some ployment through the medium of labor, in its disturbed other time, before a more propitious day in public sense state, on the fragments of its former acquisitions. And shall succeed, that reduction should begin with the systhus your moneyed men, as they are called, are made tem as modelled and perfected with a view to protection; mere men of money without the intervention of labor, be in some due proportions as to the present amount, and and, like wreckers on dangerous shores, have the best gradually extended as to time, to secure, as far as possibusiness in the most disastrous and distressing times; and, ble, the following important results, so indispensable for though even it may be a favor to the owner of a stranded the security of individuals, and the prosperity of the na. cargo or a wrecked fortune to pay salvage or bear the sa- tion at large: that, in the first place, the manufacturer crifice rather than lose the whole, it is no compliment to may withdraw, if he finds he must, after mature deliberathe times or to the cause which makes this business or tion, and with the least possible sacrifice; that he may, this class of men useful or necessary. But permit me in in the next place, bave full time to bring into requisition, this place, sir, for a moment, to inquire who and what economically, every practical improvement; and, in the sort of men these are who are thus to suffer when these third place, the nation may see, without needlessly hatimes come on.
I know they have been familiarly called zarding the interests of any, when the revenue arrives at here, (not so much of late, I think,) robbers, plunderers, the point of expenditure; and, lastly, that the nation, one and sordid capitalists, and seem to be looked upon by and all, may calmly and deliberately see and consider, as some as monsters or hydras, preying upon the vitals of it progresses, its true bearing and operation on all their the public. Sir, I believe they are much like other men interests and concerns, and mature, amend, or change in other business, except that they are born to more care, the policy as experience shall dictate. But what is the perplexity, and dependence on the whims and feelings of bill but a general defeat of all these objects? others. They are generally (and I do not know that they But, sir, there is one more feature of the bill that I dis.
H. or R.]
The Tariff Bill.
[Jan. 28, 1833.
like, and that I deprecate more, if possible, than the ge- of the whole importations. The proportional part of the neral consequences to be expected from the bill: I mean whole six millions, therefore, on these two articles, cota distinct and unavoidable sectional partiality looking to. tons and woollens, would be but two millions; whereas wards, but operating against, the interests and prospects the reduction put upon them is four and a half millions; of New England.
of which New England must bear twice as much as all the I do not intend to attribute any design, but to show the rest of the Union, besides her proportion in other artifact as it is in the bill. It is not my object here to call cles, and the disadvantages as in the calculation before. your attention particularly to the fact, or the question But, sir, I will not pursue this unpleasant view any furwhy it is that the iron, sugar, lead, coal, and hemp, and ther. It seems to me it would have been hardly possible other articles of certain sections and States which have to shape a bill more pointedly destructive to the interests heretofore ranged, in the amount of protection, very of New England without expressly mentioning her by nearly with the cotton and woollen fabrics of New Eng- name in the bill itself. land, have been left with duties twice and three times as Comparatively speaking, the whole burden of this Inigh as their fellows, when these same articles have a great change of our financial affairs is put off on New practical protection, in their bulk and weight, equal to England. She, without lot, is made the scapegoat to all that is now left on cottons and woollens. Nor is it my bear off (and to some “ uninhabited land" it is to be intention here to inquire why it is, that, out of one hundred hoped) the present ordinary and extraordinary sins of the and forty-two classes of articles, as arranged in the table nation. Of her the committee demand a bullock for the the committee exhibited to us, including both protected sacrifice; of the rest, two turtle doves or two young piand unprotected articles, on eighty of them specific du- geons. In a word, I consider the bill as altogether caties are retained, ranging from twenty to one hundred pricious, partial, and arbitrary in its provisions, and, as a and twenty, one as high as three hundred and ninety per whole, altogether unjust and insufferable. cent., and but six below twenty per cent., the highest Mr. HOWARD, of Md. next rose. I have hitherto been, on cottons and woollens.
said Mr. H., a patient auditor of this debate, and would have In the report of the New York convention, it appears been content to remain so, if it had been confined to what that New England has in the cotton business about twen- I conceive to be the fair and legitimate question before ty-eight millions of capital, to the rest of the Union's the House. But the excursions which gentlemen have twelve millions, if I recollect; but some of the States that made into the almost interminable field of the tariff have were not represented there may have had some capital been so extensive, and the light which they have shed not estimated, say it is as twenty-eight is to fourteen 'mil- diffused over such a wide space, in their successive illuslions, or two to one; and probably it is much so as to trations of the obscure parts of the subject, that the point woollen manufactures, at least near enough for the use I which we are called upon to decide has received but little expect to make of it. Now this reduction of six millions illumination from their efforts, however brilliant. I know of revenue which the bill contemplates, affects us like a that, under the rules of the House, a motion to amend tax on protection, and should be levied accordingly. any part of the bill opens the consideration of the whole
The proportion to New England would be about one subject in the form of a discussion of the general princimillion. Now, if the reduction of duties on the articles ples of the bill; and I am not disposed to complain either of wbich she has more than her proportion, is greater of the existence or application of the rule. It is highly than on the rest, she pays more than her proportion, both proper that a general debate upon the leading features of in proportion to her excess of quantity, and the inequality any bill, involving important general principles, should of reduction. If the reduction on cotton and woollen precede a particular examination of its clauses; in order goods is ten per cent. more than an average on the rest, that the house, baving settled the main point, may be she pays or loses twice as much of it as all the rest of the better able to adjust the details. If the debate, to which Union. And when we find that inequality of reduction we have listened for so long a time, bad conformed to the thirty or forty per cent., as it is, the whole burden im- spirit of this rule, I should not have troubled the commitposed becomes more unequal and enormous. But again: tee with the few remarks that I propose to submit. , But The reduction is calculated thus in the tables from the it has not; and this deviation explains the singular and treasury:
one-sided condition of the debate, presenting to the view The amount of duties on cottons, under the
of the nation a series of attacks upon this bill from every act of 1832, in round numbers, say $5,700,000 quarter, assailing it wherever a breach was thought to be Those under the present bill,
3,100,000 practicable, whilst the garrison within preserved a stub
born and ominous silence. That the bill may have sufferLeaving the reduction under it,
2,600,000 ed in the estimation of the people, and even of the mem
bers of this committee, by the fact of its friends (with the On woollens, thus:
exception of the commiitee who reported it) refraining Duties by the bill of 1832,
4,000,000 from stepping forward in its defence, is not iinprobable; By the present bill, nearly
2,000,000 but if the debate had been confined to what is properly
the general principle of the bill, it would not have been Making the reduction
$2,000,000 difficult to muster a force sufficient to establish that geneMaking the reduction on these two articles only four ral principle triumphantly. It purports to be a bill to million six hundred thousand-say four and a half millions reduce the revenue to the wants of the Government. ---three-fourths of the whole reduction to be made; of This is its main object. A secondary one is to "otherwhich New England must suffer twice as much as all the wise alter the duties upon imports,” so as to make our rest of the Union, equal to three millions out of four and tariff more conformable to the present condition of a half millions; and this aside from her proportion in the things. But this last object can only be inquired into by rest, and a very severe proportion, too, in paper and adjusting an immense mass of details; and it is in this conglass, and some other articles; and besides having to bear fused heap of yards and pounds, and per centages, that lier proportion of the high duties on sugar, coal, and lead, gentlemen have been searching for some general princi&c. (whatever it may be,) which the other sections retain ple, when no such thing can be found, as the subject is and gain. But let us look at it in one more view. The now placed before the House. If the question were whole amount of dutiable articles imported is reckoned " shall this bill pass?" and the committee had previously at eighty-nine millions dollars, and the amount of cottons determined that all these details should stand, then indeed and woollens about thirty millions dollars-say one-third it would be easy to extract the essential spirit of the bill,
JAN. 28, 1833.]
The Tariff Bill.
[H. OF R.
and examine it by any alembic that might be thought ap- a better one? The members of this Congress studied the plicable. But the committee have yet to pass through subject of the tariff for nearly six months last winter, and ihe investigation of all these minutiæ. If a child were have renewed their attention now. How unreasonable is learning A, it would be thought strange to thrust upon it to expect that a body of men will ever assemble here, him the acquisition of all the other letters of the alphabet who have devoted more time to the investigation of this
Whilst the investigation of the details of the bill complicated subject. One of the gentlemen from Massais, as yet, nothing more than a distant prospect ahead, we chusetts (Mr. Cuoate] assum.ed the position that an equitafind our attention constantly drawn to every part of it in ble tariff might possibly be made, which would satisfy the succession, at the imminent hazard of this accumulated reasonable men of all parties, and contended that this information being all forgotten, when the time shall arrive result could only be the work of patient research, laboriat which it might be useful. During our last session, we ous investigation, and cool judgment; and yet protested passed a bill to reduce the revenue; but found, after we against this Congress undertaking it, who have bestowed ceased to work at it, that it was insufficient to answer our more time and attention upon the subject than any future purposes, because its effect would be to create more re. Congress can be expected to give. I dissent from the venue than sound policy would justify us in collecting. It opinion expressed by that gentleman, that such a tariff became manifest that, owing to the amendments engraft- cculd be produced by a single effort, however much preed upon the original bill as it passed through the Commit- paratory labor had been expended upon it. I think that tee of the Whole, and which were added to give further it can only be the result of repeated efforts; and thereprotection to this or that species of manufacture, the fore it is that I am willing to try again. Gentlemen object amount of money that would how into the treasury would to this bill, but do they forget the course of the bill of the not fall short of eighteen millions of dollars from imports last session? We set out with one intended to raise a alone, and the general principle of this bill is, “shall the revenue of twelve millions, and ended with one produrevenue be reduced to a sum proportioned to the ex-cing eighteen millions. I voted against many of the penses of the Government?” the affirmative of which pro- amendments as they were successfully engrafted upon it position few would deny. A few years ago a theory was in its passage through the Committee of the Whole, but partially broached, that the Federal Government should was in a minority. But I cannot see how those who were intentionally raise more money than its ordinary expendi- the most zealous supporters of those amendments, and tures require, that it might have a fund upon which to who carried a majority of the House with them, should draw for donations for various purposes. But the opinion now be afraid to trust that majority. There is, indeed, of the people was soon found to be unfavorable to this one consideration which was rather hinted at than argued, doctrine; and now no party maintains it. From the mo- by the gentleman from Connecticut, who opened this dement, therefore, of passing the act of 1832, it became bate, (Mr. Huntingtox,) who said that “he was not apparent that it must be reviewed; and the precise point insensible of the weight of Executive recommendations in of time when this review should take place, could be a this House.” If he means to say that the President is exmatter of small moment, except that the permanent ad- erting the influence of his station to conciliate the jarring justment of the tariff is so desirable to all interests and and sectional divisions that now unhappily prevail, and classes of men, that every consideration of justice and that have made discord where there formerly was harpolicy concurs in recommending its speedy accomplish- mony, I agree with him in the fact, and will further exment. The proper question now before us is merely press my belief that the people of this country will sustain “shall we now undertake this review?” after deciding him in this effort. This Congress may or may not rewhich in the affirmative, every section, line, and letter of spond to his sentiments; but the irresistible power which the bill will be brought under our view, and will of course shapes and directs the course of this Government in all be open to amendment. If these amendments are reject- its concerns, I mean the calm and disinterested voice of ed when offered, or are not satisfactory when adopted, public opinion, will array itself upon the side of “modethen will arise the proper question, whether the bill is, rate and healing councils,” and compel its decision to be upon the whole, a proper bill, and ought to pass. But the respected. But, in the mean time, differences of opinion only inquiry is now, whether we will look into the subject are passing into acrimonious strife; the breach between at all.
the two grand divisions of the country is becoming wider I have been surprised that the most strenuous opposi- and wider, and the difficulty of a final adjustment of this tion to reviewing the tariff is made by those members of fiercely contested question is enhanced as each Congress the House whose votes are recorded against the act of the leaves it as a legacy to its successor. I am disposed to last session. One would have thought a law which was review our legislation. Those who think that the act of so objectionable as to receive the hearty condemnation of 1832 is the last effort that ought to be made on the part these gentlemen both by voice and vote, would have been of the Federal Government, who are content to see a surrepealed by them at the earliest opportunity, and yet, when plus revenue of six millions of dollars flow into the treasury a proposition is made to reconsider and review it, they forever, or who anticipate more knowledge, better feeling, instantly take shelter under its protection, and insist upon and greater tranquillity in legislation, on the part of the its remaining the permanent law of the land. Have they succeeding Congress, with less acerbity in the public changed their opinions with regard to it? Or if not, mind to be encountered, do well to postpone the present how can they reconcile what appears to me an irrecon- consideration of the subject. What aspect this bill will cilable inconsistency, of desiring a bad law to remain wear when it issues from the Committee of the Whole, upon the statute book? No interests have been built up, whether it will experience the fate of its predecessor of no capital invested, no durable arrangement of labor last year, and be so altered, that, like Anson's ship, after taken place as yet under the act of 1832, and it may her voyage round the world, scarcely a stick of the original therefore be reviewed without meeting with those serious timber remained in consequence of its repeated patchings; difficulties that oppose us when about to change a law or whether it will wear the appearance that the Committee which has been in force for years. But it is said that it of Ways and Means have given it, no one can foresee. would be better to suffer this bad law to remain, than to The gentleman from Connecticut, (Mr. Young,] who has incur the hazard of having a worse one. Are we not, just taken his seat, has expatiated upon the destruction it sir, the same members identically who enacted the other would bring upon the woollen and cotton factories, and law and what reason can be given for the apprehension has argued arithmetically upon the condition of those esthat a worse law will be the result of our deliberations, tablishments. I think there is a vitious principle in the any more than the existence of a hope that we shall pass whole of our legislation upon the subject of woollens; I
H. OF R.]
The Tariff Bill.
[Jan. 28, 1833.
say vitious, because it does not accomplish the end in of introducing the raw material from a foreign country,
In the discussion of the last tariff, we first fixed free of duty, are inconsistent with opinions expressed a upon a duty to be put upon raw wool, for the purpose of few days sirce, adverse to the importation of fossil salt protecting the wool grower; and then proceeded to assess from Liverpool. But the difference is clear between the the duty upon the manufactured article by the argument two cases. I stated then that the gravamen of the comand calculation of the gentleman from Massachusetts, (Mr. plaint was, the encouragement of British shipping, owing Davis,] raising it so as to correspond exactly with the to their enjoyment of a trade in which our vessels are not duty upon wool; for, said he “the manufacturer will allowed to participate. Coming to Nova Scotia for timhave to pay an enhanced price on his raw material, and ber, they can bring this article at a low freight, as othermust therefore have additional protection.” So that, after wise they would come in ballast. If the American shipping having protected the wool grower, we next proceeded to could enter upon the competition upon equal terms, it render the manufacturer entirely independent of him, by might perbaps be conformable to my doctrine about wool, putting it in his power to import his wool, and regulate that the manufactories of this salt should be scattered the duty for the express purpose of enabling him to im- over the Atlantic coast, and the raw material admitted port it. We place the grower of wool entirely at the free. But waiving for the present all other considerations, mercy of the manufacturer, (an antagonist interest,) and it is sufficient to rest the point upon the advantage afthen tell him that he is well protected. Sir, is there any forded to British shippinga and the consequent injury of philosophy in this legislation? In practice it works ex. our own. Our vessels from the Middle States go to the actly as might be supposed. The manufacturer having Southward for a cargo of cotton, which they take to Euthe growth of the raw material entirely at his command, rope, and bring back in exchange foreign manufactures: can beat him down to whatever price he chooses to give. but as the return cargo is not so bulky as the outward, Hence it is, that, upon recurring to the statistical tables and the surplus space cannot now, as heretofore, be filled upon our desks, during the last year of which we have up with salt, they must either lose a portion of freight, any returns, nearly seven millions of pounds of raw wool or charge more upon the transportation of the outward were imported, paying a duty of upwards of two hundred cargo, neither of which is desirable. In passing over and seventy thousand dollars. I should like to show this this subject, I will refer to a statement which I have obto one of our farmers, and ask him how he relishes such tained from the records of the treasury, upon which the protection. But it may be said that the price of wool is gentleman from Maine may ruminate until we arrive at enbanced by it, because, if the domestic seller will consent the salt part of the bill. It appears that, during the year to take a little less than the cost of importation, he will be ending on the 30th September, 1832, the importation of sure of a market. The argument is specious, and deserves salt into the district of Passamaquoddy, which includes a moment's consideration. When the proprietor of any all that part of Maine into which this fossil salt is brought, article is more anxious to sell than the purchaser is to buy, amounted to 9,7813 tons, valued at $17,078 11, and that depreciation is the necessary consequence. The farmers the item of tonnage stands thus: are detached from each other, and have little opportunity
Tons. of judging how much it costs to purchase wool abroad, American
Entered, 3,553 and pay its freight home. He is offered a price, and he has
Departed, 4,222 no means of comparison between this price and the cost Foreign
Entered, 63,356 of the foreign article. All that he knows is, that the fo
Departed, 63,274 reign article can be imported to advantage under our The very recital of this disproportion is enough to laws, and that if he does not sell it at less than this cost, create astonishment. A gentleman near me says, “ the whatever it may be, he will lose the sale altogether. The West India trade.” Not so, sir. I have examined the purchaser can turn his back upon him and look abroad original returns made by the collector, of all the articles for a supply, and our laws put it in his power to do so. imported into the district, and will show to the House, But a convincing proof that our present system of legis- when the proper time arrives, from the nature of the imlation is of no service to the wool grower, is found in the portations, that this redundance of British shipping is not fact, that (except in the year 1831, in which a speculation owing to the West India trade. On the contrary, the took place in wool, temporarily raising its price,) the arrangement of that trade, as settled by this administraprice has not increased since the act of 1828. Its ave. tion, has been held unjustly responsible for the sin of the rage value has remained the same as it was prior to that fossil salt duty. law. The gentleman from Massachusetts (Mr. APPLETON) The gentleman from Connecticut, who has just addeclared in his speech that he had always felt himself au- dressed the committee, (Mr. Young,] deplored also the thorized to say, on behalf of the manufacturers of wool- consequences that would fall upon the cotton spinners, lens, that a clear duty of 25 per cent. ad valorem would by the smallness of the duty proposed to be levied upon be a sufficient protection, provided wool was made free. cotton yarn or cotton twist. Upon this point, I hope that For one, I would at once close with his suggestion, and his complaints are premature, and that the committee adopt it; and I would myself make the proposition, if will arrange this duty differently when we come to that there was any chance of carrying it. But I fear there is part of the bill. I am inclined to think that it can be none. I thought in 1828, and I think still, that the sub-changed for the better. stantial interests of the wool growers would be promoted There is now lying before me the latest Liverpool by the adoption of a policy which would build up the price current, by which it appears that the price of cotmanufacturing establishments in the first instance, and ton is as follows: when they had struck the roots of their prosperity deep Sea island
11}d to 200 into the soil, to look forward either to the competition Stained
65 10 amongst them, or to subsequent encouragement, for the Bowed, Georgia producers of the raw material. But the effort to build
7 up two rival, and, in some respects, hostile interests si
65 75 multaneously, involves too much contradiction to be suc Surat
41 6 cessful. If either one of them had been strong, you might Bengal
5 55 have burdened it for the advancement of the weaker; but The price of the East India cotton is generally in prowhere both are weak, it is almost impossible to foster both portion to the above rates. I confess I cannot see why at once.
the Committee of Ways and Means should bave made a It may be thought that these views upon the propriety distinction between the duty upon cotton yarn and cotton
Jax. 28, 1833.]
The Pariff Bill.
(H. OF R.
goods, making the former less than the latter; nor can II shall do it, sir, more in sorrow than in anger; but a sense acquiesce in its propriety. The yarn spun from the East of stern and inexorable duty will compel me to do it. India cotton is, of course, an inferior article, and the cot- But at present my business is not with her. I am dealing ton 'mills of our country are not calculated to spin it, and with the other Southern States. No one could bave watched cannot do it without an entire alteration of their machine- the course pursued by those States during the past six ry. This yarn, therefore, should be kept out of the months without intense anxiety. The question of tariff country, because it is too unreasonable to require the cot- or anti-tariff is often, much too often, made to turn in this ton mills to revolutionize their spinning apparatus. And House upon the distinction between free and slave labor. besides, it is better to consume our own cotton, under Whenever that position is taken, it ties another knot in every view of the subject. This is one of the cases in the ligament that binds the South together, and preserves which I should hold it unwise to introduce the raw material the distinction which at some day or other will be most apt of another country. Gentlemen may call it a solitary ex- to dissolve this confederacy. If it were not such a frequent ception or a special exception, or what they choose; but occurrence to go into a Committee of the Whole on the an exception it ought to be made. I will also join the state of the Union, the very term ought to induce caution gentleman from Connecticut in keeping out fabrics made and forbearance upon this topic. The spirit of comproof this East India cotton, in some advisable mode; whether mise that prevailed with our fathers when the constituthis can be best done by the adoption of the minimum tion was adopted, has, in some measure, evaporated in principle, put just high enough to act upon articles made these our days; and it might be doubted whether such a of East India cotton, will best appear when we examine compromise as exists, with regard to representation in minutely that part of the bill. With regard to the other this House, could be now obtained. All the feelings of coarse cottons, our documents show that they have suc- the Southern States were as much opposed to the tariff cessfully encountered the competition of British cottons as South Carolina; but they have arrayed themselves on in the inarkets of Mexico and South America; and the the side of the Federal Government, and for that I feel gentleman from Massachusetts (Mr. Appleton) declared, grateful to them. I listened, however, with pain to the if I understood him correctly, that the great Waltham fac- declaration of the gentleman from Georgia, (Mr. Wilde,] tory always had orders for goods three months ahead, in- that he would not assist in the passage of any law for the tended for exportation. In and near Baltimore, about two collection of the revenue, until this tariff bill was passed. millions of yards of cotton goods are manufactured, and For one, sir, I have no hesitation in saying that if that from four to five millions are received from the Eastward opinion were entertained by a majority of the members annually, a large proportion of which, perhaps one-half, from the Southern States, I would cease action upon this is exported. The continuance of the practice of expor- bill instantly. I would plant my foot firmly, and not move tation indicates that the merchants do not lose by the ope- another step, no, not an inch. But it is because I believe ration; and surely no good reason can be assigned why that such is not their opinion, that I am willing to proceed. this competition with the rival factories of England could At the first moment that a test vote shall be taken in this not be as successfully maintained at Charleston or Savan- House, by which the opinion of members can be ascer. nah as at Mexico or Valparaiso. It will scarcely be said tained, if it should turn out to be contrary to my present that the intelligence of the inhabitants of the former expectation, my course is taken, and I will not swerve places is not sufficient to enable them to distinguish be- from it. South Carolina has placed herself, as I conceive, tween a superior and inferior article. The advantages of in what tacticians call a false position. I believe that the the tariff system are many to those places where the theory of nullification is erroneous, and cannot stand manufactories are situated. It keeps money at home, en- against the constitutional legislation of Congress. It rests courages industry, and affords a market for agricultural for support upon this—that the legislation now existing is produce. But I have never been able to perceive any the entire exercise of the powers of the Federal Governadvantage that the Southern States derive from it. If it ment. If the whole population of a State, acting through be said that they are supplied with cheaper and better its courts and juries, should determine that every case goods than they could import from foreign countries, then shall be decided, whether in law or fact, so that the verthey would voluntarily keep them without being coerced dict of the jury or judgment of the court shall be against to take them. The only plausible argument is, that the the revenue laws, no matter how their constitutionality general consumption of cotton goods throughout the na. may be drawn into question, it is impossible to carry those tion is increased, and the sale of cotton thereby extended. laws into effect as long as the State courts sball exercise This may be, but the extent of the benefit is the subject concurrent jurisdiction with the courts of the United of conjecture, not calculation.
States, and refuse an appeal to be carried up to the latter. But it is said, Mr. Chairman, that Congress ought to But it seems to me that these are dormant powers existing suspend its action upon the tariff, on account of the posi- in the Federal Government under the constitution, by tion of South Carolina, and not be driven by fear into which it can give its own courts exclusive jurisdiction a change in its legislation. Fear! sir. Fear of what? over matters relating to the revenue. This is then the Are our lives, or liberties, or property endangered? Can point now at issue. This subject however will come up no other motive be found than this miserable and con- hereafter, and will doubtless receive a more extended distemptible one of fear? For one, I repel and scorn it. I cussion. But I cannot refrain from remarking upon an have observed, sir, through life, that brave men are al- occurrence in our history, which shows how early and ways the last to attribute fear to another. Not conscious firmly our revolutionary ancestors exercised power, speakof the influence of the motive themselves, they are not ing in behalf of the nation. The circumstance was brought aware of its power over others, and, being unable to esti- to my notice in examining what we call the old claims for mate its force, are not apt to make the charge. Gentle French spoliations. On the 6th February, 1778, the men mistake the feeling that they mean to appeal to. Congress of the United States concluded a treaty of alliPride, sir, pride might do much to induce us to withhold ance with France, guarantying to her perpetually the legislation for the present; and of the influence of this possession of her West India islands. At the same time feeling, I confess that I have not myself been entirely des- when this treaty was signed, Congress had absolutely no titute. Reflection, however, has subdued it. With South power at all, except a revolutionary authority depending Carolina we shall have to deal hereafter. When the pro- upon voluntary obedience. The articles of confederation per committee of the House shall report upon that matter, were not signed until four months afterwards, and yet this I shall be found ready to support such measures as I may Congress plunged the nation into an agreement, which judge necessary for the enforcement of the revenue laws. the treaty-making power of the present constitution would