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merce "among the several states." The word "among" means intermingled with. A thing which is among others is intermingled with them. Commerce among the states cannot stop at the external boundary line of each state, but may be introduced into the interior.
It is not intended to say that these words comprehend that commerce which is completely internal, which is carried on between man and man in a state, or between different parts of the same state, and which does not extend to or affect other states. Such a power would be inconvenient and is certainly unnecessary.
Comprehensive as the word “among” is, it may very properly be restricted to that commerce which concerns more states than one. The phrase is not one which would probably have been selected to indicate the completely interior traffic of a state, because it is not an apt phrase for that purpose; and the enumeration of the particular classes of commerce to which the power was to be extended, would not have been made had the intention been to extend the power to every description. ... The genius and character of the whole government seem to be, that its action is to be applied to all the external concerns of the nation, and to those internal concerns which affect the states generally; but not to those which are completely within a particular state, which do not affect other states, and with which it is not necessary to interfere, for the purpose of executing some of the general powers of the government. The completely internal commerce of a state, then, may be considered as reserved for the state itself.
But, in regulating commerce with foreign nations, the power of Congress does not stop at the jurisdictional lines of the several states. It would be a very useless power if it could not pass those lines. The commerce of the United States with foreign nations is that of the whole United States. Every district has a right to participate in it. The deep streams which penetrate our country in every direction, pass through the interior of almost every state in the Union, and furnish the means of exercising this right. If Congress has the power to regulate it, that power must be exercised wherever the subject exists. If it exists within the states, if a foreign voyage may commence or terminate at a port within a state, then the power of Congress may be exercised within a state.
This principle is, if possible, still more clear, when applied to
commerce “among the several states.” They either join each other, in which case they are separated by a mathematical line, or they are remote from each other, in which case other states lie between them. What is commerce "among” them; and how is it to be conducted? Can a trading expedition between two adjoining states commence and terminate outside of each? And if the trading intercourse be between two states remote from each other, must it not commence in one, terminate in the other, and probably pass through a third? Commerce among the states must, of necessity, be commerce with the states. In the regulation of trade with the Indian tribes, the action of the law, especially when the constitution was made, was chiefly within a state. The power of Congress then, whatever it may be, must be exercised within the territorial jurisdiction of the several states. The sense of the nation, on this subject, is unequivocally manifested by the provisions made in the laws for transporting goods, by land, between Baltimore and Providence, between New York and Philadelphia, and between Philadelphia and Baltimore.
We are now arrived at the inquiry, What is this power? It is the power to regulate; that is, to prescribe the rule by which commerce is to be governed. This power, like all others vested in Congress, is complete in itself, may be exercised to its utmost extent, and acknowledges no limitations, other than are prescribed in the constitution. These are expressed in plain terms, and do not affect the questions which arise in this case, or which have been discussed at the bar. If, as has always been understood, the sovereignty of Congress, though limited to specified objects, is plenary as to those objects, the power over commerce with foreign nations, and among the several States, is vested in Congress as absolutely as it would be in a single government, having in its constitution the same restrictions on the exercise of the power as are found in the constitution of the United States. The wisdom and the discretion of Congress, their identity with the people, and the influence which their constituents possess at elections, are, in this, as in many other instances, as that, for example, of declaring war, the sole restraints on which they have relied, to secure them from its abuse. They are the restraints on which the people must often rely solely, in all representative governments.
EXTRACTS FROM STATUTE FOR THE PERMANENT COURT OF
INTERNATIONAL JUSTICE PROVIDED FOR BY ARTICLE 14 OF
ARTICLE I A permanent court of international justice is hereby established, in accordance with article 14 of the covenant of the League of Nations. This court shall be in addition to the court of arbitration organized by the conventions of The Hague of 1899 and 1907, and to the special tribunals of arbitration to which States are always at liberty to submit their disputes for settlement.
Organization of the Court
The permanent court of international justice shall be composed of a body of independent judges, elected regardless of their nationality from amongst persons of high moral character, who possess the qualifications required in their respective countries for appointment to the highest judicial offices, or are juris-consults of recognized competence in international law,
The court shall consist of 15 members—11 judges and 4 deputy judges. The number of judges and deputy judges may hereafter be increased by the assembly, upon the proposal of the council of the League of Nations, to a total of 15 judges and 6 deputy judges.
ARTICLE 4 The members of the court shall be elected by the assembly and by the council from a list of persons nominated by the national groups in the court of arbitration, in accordance with the following provisions:
In the case of members of the League of Nations not represented in the permanent court of arbitration, the lists of candidates shall be drawn up by national groups appointed for this purpose by their Governments under the same conditions as those prescribed for members of the permanent court of arbitration by article 44 of the convention of The Hague of 1907 for the pacific settlement of international disputes.
The members of the court shall be elected for nine years.
They shall continue to discharge their duties, until their places have been filled. Though replaced, they shall finish any cases which they may have begun.
The seat of the court shall be established at The Hague.
The president and registrar shall reside at the seat of the court.
Unless otherwise provided by rules of court, this session shall begin on the 15th of June, and shall continue for so long as may be deemed necessary to finish the cases on the list.
The president may summon an extraordinary session of the court whenever necessary.
The full court shall sit except when it is expressly provided otherwise.
If 11 judges can not be present, the number shall be made up by calling on deputy judges to sit.
If, however, 11 judges are not available, a quorum of 9 judges shall suffice to constitute the court.
The jurisdiction of the court comprises all cases which the parties refer to it and all matters specially provided for in treaties and conventions in force.
The members of the League of Nations and the States mentioned in the annex to the covenant may, either when signing or ratifying the protocol to which the present statute is adjoined, or at a later moment, declare that they recognize as compulsory ipso facto and without special agreement, in relation to any other member or State accepting the same obligation, the jurisdiction of the court in all or any of the classes of legal disputes concerning:
(a) The interpretation of a treaty.
(c) The existence of any fact which, if established, would constitute a breach of an international obligation.
(d) The nature or extent of the reparation to be made for the breach of an international obligation.
The declaration referred to above may be made unconditionally or on condition of reciprocity on the part of several or certain members or States or for a certain time.
In the event of a dispute as to whether the court has jurisdiction, the matter shall be settled by the decision of the court.
When a treaty or convention in force provides for the reference of a matter to a tribunal to be instituted by the League of Nations, the court will be such tribunal.
The court shall apply:
1. International conventions, whether general or particular, establishing rules expressly recognized by the contesting States.
2. International custom, as evidence of a general practice accepted as law.
3. The general principles of law recognized by civilized nations.
4. Subject to the provisions of article 59, judicial decisions and the teachings of the most highly qualified publicists of the various nations as subsidiary means for the determination of rules of law.
This provision shall not prejudice the power of the court to decide a case ex æquo et bono if the parties agree thereto.