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March 1, 1837.)
Supplemental Speeches.- Recognition of Texas.
by Spain. No; the question does not depend on threats, spise? Do we want their authority, the shield of their but on the actual state of things. If the vaporing of precedence, before we dare to acknowledge the indeMexico is to settle this matter, I hope we shall first ex- pendence of a new State in our own America-upon amine how far she is able to carry her threats into exe. this our own continent-a State upon our borders--a cution. To show her utter inability to do this, I will state filled with our own citizens? No. This is purely an call the attention of the Senate to her divided condition, American question. And shall we refer it to the potentorn as she is by intestine broils and civil convulsions. So lates of Europe? I cannot but say tha', as an American entirely has she been disabled by this her condition from Senator, I feel myself soniewhat degraded by the mere carrying a war of conquest into a neighboring territory, suggestion. Are we to ask of the Powers of Europe that she is scarce able to maintain the authority of Gov- | how we are to conduct our foreign relations? Why, any ernment within her own limits. Her internal stale ex. more than our domestic? Recognition is the mere adhibits one scene of unceasing civil convulsion. Insur mission of a fact, and one which we must decide upon rections rise, one after another, in a constant succession, our own judgment, and not that of any European montill her streets run down with the blood of her citizens, arch. Governors, members of Congress, and Presidents. But But we are told in the public prints that a vote has one of her Chief Magistrates has retired peaceably from been taken in Texas on the question of annexing that the chair of state. Iturbide was Emperor; but what was State to these United States. I am not to be driven his fate?. His glory ended in banishment; which baving into that matter now. It is a totally distinct question. broken, he was seized and publicly executed. Victoria The two must not be mixed up; they are wholly sepawas President; his career also ended in banishment. His rate. The one does not follow from the other; and you successor was deposed by a military force, and Guerrero have no right to connect them together. They are not was placed in power. And how did he prosper? Be- connected either in fact or in law. Shall this Senate ing self-deposed, he was put to death. Then came adopt the principle, that though there may, in fact, be Bustamente. And had he peace? No; he was deposed an independent Government in Texas, we must refuse to by Santa Anna. Santa Anna was put down by the fed. recognise it, because the people who conquered Texas eral party; but, afterwards triumphing over bis enemies, are in fact Americans, the descendants of a glorious anhe overturned the constitution, and established a mili. cestry.-our own children--who have carried our language, tary despotism. This was soon followed by a rebellion our laws, our free institutions, and our pure religion, inio in Zacatecas, a revolution in Texas, and commotions in that fertile soil? Are we prepared to give this as a rea
Tampico and both the Californias. And, after all this, son to the civilized world: that we cannot recognise we are told that Texas is threatened by the Mexican them because they love their native soil, because they Governient! It is the threat of a child against a giant. ( bad left it and gone into another State, under a solemn Mexico is not able to recover her dominion; if she had | guarantee that ihey should still live under a free Guvernbeen, she would before now have attempted the libera- ment? Because in this hope they have resisted opprestion of her captured President. When the news of his sion and expelled all invaders? Because, when they have capture was receivel, Mexico issued a proclamation, established their independence, they are unambitious? from the language of which a stranger would conclude Because they are ready to lay all their laurels at the feet that she had one hundred thousand troops at her dispo- of the mother republic? Is this the ground we are ready sal. But what has she done? She has raised a petty, to take and to avow? Because they love their mother, contemptible, half-clad collection of vagabonds, under shall we hate them? No. We must have better grounds Bravo, and sent them to Saltillo. They were always on than this to show. If they had sought to repose upon the the point of dissolution. Two thousand out of the three mighty arm of England, and had offered her a treaty of thousand which set out reluctantly on the expedition free trade; if she had sought to become a Southern have already gone; the rest are without money or clo-Canada, then I suppose we should hasten to acknowledge thing; and Bravo has resigned in disgust. If, then, the her; but because she has sought another connexion, betrue question of the fact of Texian independence was sus cause she is ambitious that the banner of this Union shall pended un the success of this invasion of Bravo's, is it not float over her, and seeks to have a s! are in the blessings settled! Has not the threatened invasion failed? Where of our laws and our institutions, shall we on this acis the difference whether the expedition bas been dis- count refuse to do her justice? Yet I have heard no comfited without the limits of the Texian territory or other ground taken, no better argument advanced. within them? What matters it whether the invading ar. Were it in order, I would refer to another resolution, my has been defeated by capture, by victory, or by in. adopted by a different body, and which leaves the quesability to march? Let every Senator lay his hand upon tion to the President of the United States. I ask the his heart and say whether he does in truth believe ihat Senate, will they now avoid the question, and remain siMexico is able successfully to invade the Texian repub- , lent? I have the highest confidence in the President fic. If not, will you hesitate in spreading the truth upon elect, as well as in him who still fills the presidential the records of the Senate?
chair, and bave no doubt that right will be done; but But it has been intimated that we ought, in prudence, still it becomes us to express our opinion, as a branch of to wait till some foreign Power shall have gone before this Government. We might as well turn over to the us, and shown us the way. It is a sufficient answer to President our domestic relations as to leave him the sole refer the Senate to the words of their own resolution. judge of all that belongs to our foreign. The resuluWhat! shall an American Senate, shall an American tions passed by both Houses assume that Congress should Congress, wait and ask if any foreign Power has ac take the responsibility of this matter upon itself. And knowledged the independence of the new State upon shall we now, skulk from il! shall we trust a question per border! It is a question of national sovereignty, which belongs to us to the decision of the President? and we cannot dodge it without national dishonor. Does not the President himself say, in bis message, that Would England or France, in a like case, wait to ask it is inexpedient ibat the Executive alone should act in a us! Would they wait our movements? Would they not matter of this character? oes he not declare it to be feel themselves disgraced by the mention of such a the duty of Congress to judge of it? We bave the facts thing? What! leave the decision whether they shall or of the case before us. [Here Mr. W. went into a recapitshall not recognise a rising State in Europe lo ibe decis. ulation of the chief points he had made.] with all these ions of an American Congress? Can we, then, be so lost things before us, we are called to vote down the resoluto honor as to pursue a course which they would de. I tion, and thereby to say that'these are not facts. Can any
Supplemental Speeches. - Reduction of the Tariff.
[FEB. 23, 24, 1837.
gentleman consent to do so? Will any man Jay bis hand with the salt tax; but, when the proper opportunity upon his heart and say that Mexico still retains and ex should come, Mr. D. would show that the fisheries stand ercises sovereign power over the province of Texas? I upon two legs. cannot bring myself to believe that such will be the decision of the Senate. No; with all those feelings which are natural lo honorable men, to American freemen, I
IN SENATE, FEBRUARY 24. trust we shall come up to the mark, and declare what
REDUCTION OF THE TARIFF. we know to be the fact, that Texas is an independent Mr. PRESTON observed that what he bad meant to and sovereign State.
say when last up was, that the tariff question, so far as
party was concerned, was an open question, on which In SENATE, FEBRUARY 23.
each individual might hold and advocate his own opin
ion, without derogation to his standing with his own REDUCTION OF THE TARIFF.
party; and that, therefore, assurances as to the sentiMr. BENTON made a low reply to Mr. Davis, in ments of the President elect ought not to brave Ibat which he was in part understood to say that the boun weight with the Senale to which they would otherwise ties on the fisheries were a reimbursement of so much be entitled. He had said that the Senator from Pentmoney as was paid by the fishermen as a duty on salt. sylvania was a high tariff man, and his State a high tariff Mr. B. liad information on this subject as well as the State. In making this remark in regard to the honoraSenator from Massachusetts; and no American citizen, at ble gentleman, Mr. P. had had reference to his course all acquainted with the affairs of the country and the his. in former years. The grounds on which that gentleman tory of France and England, was ignorant of the value bad advocated the retaining of the duty on coal were disof ihe fisheries. Yet, Mr. B. had authority in his hands tinctly tariff grounds; and when a man advanced arguto say that, from the foundation of the Government, the ments of this description, for a protection duty on such an encouragement here to the fisheries was smaller than in article as coal, Mr. P. was in the habit of calling bim a tariff Great Britain. At an early stage of the Government He would not, however, call the Senator from here reports were made in Congress for and against the Pennsylvania a tariff man, if that gentleman was indigbounty on the fisheries, and the allowance was revoked posed to be so denominated. Mr. P. should certainly by Government. At that time the first allowance was consider him
as a very great and valuable acquisition to made on fish cured and exported; and in the very same
the anti-tariff cause. clause of the same act the same bounty was granted on Mr. BUCHANAN observed, in reply, that the Senaexported beef and pork, all resting on the same princi tor from South Carolina was at full liberty to call bim a ple of refunding the duty on the salt used in curing these tariff man; for such he proposed to be. As to the pres. Three articles. In 1789, when the duty on salt was six ent duty on coal, it was not extravagant, amounting, as cents, and afterwards when it was increased to twelve it did, to less than five cents a bushel, or one dollar per and a half, tbe drawbacks on salt were increased in the ton., Mr. B. had said, and he still maintained, that, on same proportion. Laws to the same effect were after all the principles of the protection policy, foreigo coal wards passed, so that fish, beef, and pork, kept company should pay a duty for the protection of the bome article. in this respect, till, on the breaking out of the war, the The gentleman from South Carolina bimself was in fasalt tax was retained as a war tax, the fish bounty was vor of the compromise bill, and would vote for this duty continued, while the drawbacks on beef and pork were though he spoke against it. Mr. B. contended that the discontinued. For this gentlemen give a satisfactory rea repeal of this duty would violate the compromise, while son: that it was not possible to export beef and pork du- it would go to destroy a branch of business in which ring the war. But, when the war was ended, and the com there bad been invested, within the State of Pennsylvapromise to take the tax off salt was disregarded on ac. nia alone, a capital of more than forty millions of dollars. count of the public debt, the fish bounty was still con. Yet the gentleman from South Carolina employed the tinued, while beef and pork were dropped. The classes weight of his powerful name for persuading others to were separated, and they made fish of one and flesh of vote for this measure, and thus to violate the compromise the other. The fisheries draw about $250,000 per an. of 1833; while, at the same time, he professed, for him. num from the public Treasury, while the constitution self and bis State, and the whole Souili, to be bound to requires that taxes should be laid equally; and what is observe it. The country was now resting on that com. got by taxes on one part of the Union is ibus bestowed promise; and the “bigh tariff State," to which the geuon another. But let it be; Mr. B. would not oppose it. ileman alluded, had never uttered a murmur against it. Still, he would appeal to the friends of the fisheries to Mr. B. had trusted that her reputation might have essay whether this was not an immense money-making caped such commentaries. Pennsylvania loved to do lo business. They ought at least to relieve the West of others as she would bave others to do to her. Mr. B. the burden; and while they got a bounty of $250,000, put it to the gentleman, whether, bad he risen in his they ought to allow the salt tax to be taken off. Mr. B. place, and solemnly declared that that gentleman was here read an extract from a former speech of bis, against “permitted" lo argue against the compromise while he the fish bounty. These remarks, he said, were made voied in its favor, whether the honorable Senator would for the purpose of showing the Senator from Massachu have considered bim quite as courteous as he ought to sells that the salt duties rest on one leg only. The fish. | be. Would not such a remark bave implied that the eries draw back their share of the tax, but the West did gentleman was under an irresistible authority, which not. Mr. B. also alluded to extensive frauds on these governed and controlled all bis public actions; but tbat, drawbacks, said to be discovered by Mr. Ingbam. on this particular point, ibat authority bad relaxed the
Mr. DAVIS said he knew the subject of the fish buun- leading strings, and allowed him to play the freeman? ly would interweave with the duty on salt.
Mr. PRESTON regretted that the honorable Senator ham, he said, was bostile to the bounty on the fisheries, did not still appear quite to comprehend what had been and he therefore found it very easy to make out supposed the scope and meaning of bis remarks. The word frauds, which might be correct or incorrect. But Mr. “permii" had been used by him in its technical meanD. wished that frauds might not be stamped on the fishing, as applied exclusively tó party politics. It had been eries without the proper and adequate proof. Ile contended, that to support the present administration thought the Senator from Missouri had made bis remarks would be the means to secure the ascendency of the because he foresaw that the fislı bounty would interweave I anti-tariff policy. This position Mr. P. did not admit; and,
to prove that it was unsound, bad adverted to the fact that Means baš told us that the present bill appropriates the tariff was an open question with the party, on which about nine hundred thousand dollars to fortifications; members of the party might differ and oppose each and that he contends ought to be noted, because it does other, without forfeiting or disturbing their party rela. not exceed the usual amount annually appropriated to tions; just as in England the Catholic question was held the same objects. Sir, it is true that this does not exto be an open question, on which members of the same ceed the amount usually appropriated; but the honorpolitical party advocated opposite opinions. There were able gentleman has omiited to inform us tbat there was, every day political questions on which gentlemen must on the 1st of January, a balance of upwards of six hunvote in one particular way, or not be recognised as mem dred thousand dollars remaining in the Treasury of the bers of the same party; while there were other questions appropriations of the last year to the same objects, beon wbich they were free to vote differently, and still be sides between two and three hundred thousand in the held as good members of their own party. The party hands of the disbursing officers yet unexpended. He arrangements “permitted" them so to vote. It was in has neglected to inform us that, in fact, about nine this parliamentary and technical sense alone that Mr. | hundred thousand dollars of the last year's appropriations P. had made use of the word. As to the compromise to fortifications remain to be expended during the present of 1833, the end and purpose of it was a reduction of year; for I take it for granted that the work upon the duties. For this the whole South went as one man. The fortifications has not been persisted in to any great exonly question was whether, according to that act, the tent during the winter. Thus, sir, instead of the amount reduction went on fast enough. The act proposed to proposed to be applied to this branch of the public sercontinue all duties above twenty per cent. until the year vice, during the present year, we propose to apply 1842; after which time there was to be a rapid deduc- double that amount. Is there any thing in the present tion. As there seemed to be an acquiescence, on the bigh prices of labor and materials, any thing in the great part of the South, in this arrangement, Mr. P. supposed demand for laborers of all kinds, or is there any thing in that he was not at liberty to depart from it. He bad the present prospect of peace with all nations, which come to the conclusion that the faith of the South was calls for this unusual amount to be applied to fortificapledged. They bad shaken hands with their Northern tions? Are we not pushing these works too rapidly to brethren over this bargain; and he was not for going to admit of solid constructions? But, sir, (said Mr. B.,) I war against it. Mr. P. preferred the mode of reduction do not attach much importance to ibis view of the subprovided by the act of 1833 to the mode proposed by ject. Not only double, but treble and quadruple the the bill now before the Senate. He was in favor of all amount of these appropriations can be expended by the reduction; but he preferred the compromise, because Government, if it is found necessary in order to increase he believed that it would reduce the tariff more certain appropriations--if we shall, by our imprudent complily. Holding himself bound to adhere to that arrange. ance with the demand of the Executive, encourage ment, he could not, of course, vote for the present a race between appropriations and disbursements--if amendment, wbich would otherwise receive bis decided the appropriations are to be increased according to the support. The Senator from Pennsylvania had said that ability of the Goveroment to expend, or rather waste, as the present duty on foreign coal was not enormous. much as this House shall, from year to year, be found The duty amounted to between forty-five and fifty per willing to appropriate. I repeat, if this shall be the cent., and it struck Mr. P. that this was enormous. measure of our appropriations, we need not care bow
large they are, they will all be expended. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, FEBRUARY 24.
But it is a practice exactly the opposite of this which DISTRIBUTION QUESTION.
I wish to bring to the notice of the members of this
House. It appears, from the executive reports which (The beginning of this speech is inserted on pages have been laid on our tables, that there were in the Treas1926 and 1927; the concluding part having been ac
ury unexpended balances of the appropriations of the cidentally omitted, the speech is given in full here.]
year 1836, on the first day of the present year, of nearly Mr. BELL said he rose for the purpose of calling the $14,000,000, besides the large amount drawn from the attention of members to a few facts connected with the Treasury in advance of the actual demands of the public subject under consideration, and with the subject of the service, and now in the hands of the disbursing officers. Treasury, and the expenditures of the Government gen- The official organ of the Government (the Globe) has erally, which he thought were either unknown to many informed us that the amount thus withdrawn from the honorable members, or, if known, had not received that Treasury by requisitions, and remaining in the hands of attention which, from their extraordinary nature, they the disbursing agents in the beginning of the year, is were entitled to receive from the representatives of the six millions. I have but little doubt, if the whole truth people and the guardians of the public interest.
were known, that the amount thus withdrawn from the The fact that the permanent expenditures of the Gov. Treasury at the close of the year was nearer twelve mil. ernment had been doubled in amount within a few years lions, but, taking the statement of the Globe to be true, past had been noticed heretofore. I wish (said Mr. B.) it shows, on the first day of the year, there were to bring to the notice of honorable gentlemen another $20,000,000 remaining unexpended of the appropriamost improper and unprecedented anomaly in the action lions of the year 1836. It is thus manifest that we are a of Congress upon the subject of the appropriation and year in advance of the actual demands of the public serexpenditure of the public moneys. The committee of vice in our appropriations. I call upon the gentleman Ways and Means have given their sanction to appropri- from New York, (Mr. CAMBRELENO,) who is at the head ations for the service of the present year, amounting to of the Commiltee of Ways and Means, to explain and upwards of thirty millions, if I have not made some mis- justify this extraordinary practice. How is it that we take in the estimate of this amount. Besides these, are called upon to make increased appropriations for the there are other bills, reported by the standing committees present year, when twenty millions or upwards remain of the House, which will swell them to about thirty-five unexpended of the last year's appropriations! This millions—an amount but litile short of the appropriations state of things certainly demands an explanation. The to the same objects made at the last session of Congress. average balances in the Treasury, until within the last Do the members of this House know what proportion of two years, bave never exceeded five millions; I believe the appropriations of the last year remains unexpended? I might say four. Whence is it that we have this sum The honorable chairman of the Committee of Ways and I quadrupled? Let it not be said that the appropriations
H. OF R.]
Supplemental Speeches.- Distribution Question.
(FEB. 24, 1837.
for the last year were not made until half the year had stead of six millions at the end of the present year, we elapsed; and that that is a sufficient explanation. The may have twenty millions so disposed of, if there shall amount in the Treasury unexpended on the first day of be no interest created to counteract it. Again, sir: the year 1836 was, if I do not forget, more than double some remedy is imperiously demanded, by the most sathe usual average; and when we were voting the appro- cred and vital considerations, against the perpetual priations of the last year, the House was repeatedly re- temptation which, under the present state of things, is minded that the year was so far advanced that it was not held out to increased, unnecessary, and prodigal expendpossible to expend the large sums which were demand. itures by the Federal Government. I can think of none ed by the Government; yet, sir, they were voted. The better at present than the one which I now propose, true explanation is, that we then had a large surplus in and will send to the Chair. I do not intend to enter inthe Treasury. We anticipated a still greater one, and to an elaborate argument upon the proposition I sball the majority of Congress were determined to keep pace submit. It is too late in the session for such a course. with the increased revenue by increased appropriations. Besides, I consider the argument is already before the if the surplus could not thus be actually exhausted, it House and country, and I entreal gentlemen who are fawas intended that it should be so apparently. The same vorable to the measure to forbear discussion. policy directs the same course at the present session. Mr. B. concluded by moving to amend the bill by adWheiher the land bill shall pass or not, it is now certain ding thereto the following: that we shall have a considerable surplus in the Treasury Be it enacted, That the money which shall be in the at the end of the year. Under any probable contingen. Treasury of the United States on the 1st day of January, cy, it cannot be less than ten millions; it will probably be 1838, reserving a sum of five millions of dollars, sball be much larger. To diminish the amount of surplus at the deposited with the several States, on the terms of the beginning of the present year, the device of withdrawing 13th, 14th, and 15th provisoes of the act regulating the large amounts from the Treasury, and placing them in deposites of the public money, approved the 230 of the hands of disbursing agents, was fallen upon. This June, 1836. practice, however unsafe, will be continued; and, in