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Gov. P-w-ll's Speech in the British Parliament, on a Motion for repealing

the Duty Axts affecting America. "HE introductory part of this speech, chief. Power, thus used, will inflame for the seeming presumption of a single in- cause, and every further exertion of that Svidual, in offering propofitions to the power will only press the people closer toHouse, upon a measure wherein whole gether, and render inore intense and arparties and bodies of men, however they dent that heat with which they are alreamay differ in other points, have concurred dy inflamed. in an undecitive fufpenfe, is purposely

There is, in the minds of men, an uniomitted; the maiter of the speech being versal apprehension of the dangerous conof fuch moment, and treated in so jutt sequences of this state of things; there is and materly a manner, that every apolo. a reluctance in all, and a determination in gy on account of inconsiderableness and most men against using power. All look er.connection, of inability to speak in for some mode of policy. Nay, I will venpublic, and of being of no party, or ture further, to fay, that all seem to be trifting to be of any, how necessary foe- agreed in what that policy ought to be ver before the House, is altogether indif- -Namely, That we take ihe first occafiferent to the public,-proceed we then to on, which offers, to get back again 10 e patter.

that old safe ground of administration, on There is, says the governor, a general which the American afairs were conditatisfaction and unealiness, as well here dufted until within a few years of expeas to America, at our falling back into riment. People differ only as to the octhat controversy and contest between the casion and the time which may lead to gorerament and the colonies, which we this. They say, we will take the proper sere once so happily delivered from. All occasion, when the proper time conies, nou are convinced that there are no means when we see the proper ground we will ef deciding the controversy; that there repeal these revenue laws, that we may are no hopes of putting an end to the get back gain to the old ground. conteft. Every event that arises, raises But, Sir, times and occations are not fresh dirñiculties; nothing but power can in our power, we cannot make them ; perale, and that can operate only to mis. when they arise, and are in event, all we January, 1770.



have to do is to profit by them. If now, law which declares it---And if I could Sir, I can fhew ihat this is the proper oc- think myself capable of proposing any cafion, the very crisis in which govern. thing which might derogate from this, ment should interpole to extricate itself even in an lota, I should not only think with honour and lafety, perhaps the only myself unworthy of being a meinber of occafion in which it can to interpole, I this House, but even a meinber of the fhall not only vindicate myself for having community. When, therefore, people say made the motion at this tiine, but if I can that when the colonies recede, ihe proper explain this truth, with that conviction occasio will arise, wherein the govern. with which it lies in my own breast, I ment of Great Britain may concede; I Thall be able to perfuade the house to act say that occasion never can arise. Great allo upon this occafion.

Britain ought never to concede, if by those That this point of time, this crisis, concessions are meant the giving up any may be seen as it Itands formed in itself, of their rights or power, which are necefin all its relations, and in all its conse- jary to the fupremacy and sovereignty--quences, it will be necessary to mark every nor is ie what the colonies either with, de. line which leads to this point, this crifis. fie, or expect. They only wish to hold

And firit, of the sovereignty and fu. under this supremacy those rights which premacy of parliaments. That is a line they have hitherto enjoyed, and to exerfrom which you ought never to deviate, cife

' them in the manner in which they which ought never to be out of sight. have been hitherto permitted to use them... The parliament hath, and ever will have, § Let us then see what is the case ; you from the nature and efence of the con. bave not only declared this your power, ftitution, a sovereign fupreme power and but you have exerted this your power, by jurisdiction over every part of the domi- pafling laws for railing a revenue for the nions of the state, to make laws in all fupport of civil government in the colocases whatsoever ; this is a proposition nies, independent of the people of those which exists of absolute necessity- colonies. This mode of providing for the its truth is intuitive, and need not be de- fupport of civil government, although monstrated---and yet there may be times there can be no doubt in the rigiit and and occasions when this qught to be de. power of the taxes by which the provision clared and held forth to the eyes and no. is intended to be made, yet it operates as tice of the fubject---Such was the time a revocation of the rights and privileges when the law declaring this power was of the legiNatures of those colonies, as made---it enacted nothing new---it decla- they have been permitted hitherto to en. red no power that did not exist before--- joy them---It is a total change in the but it was like the hosting your colours, manner in which they have been hitherto the fixing your standard, io which all permitted to exercise them; it is a moving true patriots of this country might repa r, of old boundaries; and you have done it under which they might arrange them- by a law that is unjust, inefficient, and selves, and to which the duty and obe- . direaly contrary to all the principies of dience of all might be directed--- And as commerce respecting your own interest. you cannot, as you ought not, to give up The legislatures of the colonies have ihe least, the most inconsiderable point of been bitherto permitted to hold that check this right, of this power thus claimed, so' and controul upon the government, unought you not, fo can ye not lower thele der which the people, whom they reprecolours one inch, nor remove your stand. fent, live, that they have granted, appro. ard for a monient--

priated, and held the dispolal of the proAlthough this declaratory law is no vision for its fupport. And although ihey part of the superstructure of the edifice of complain of their being aggrieved in hav. our conftitution, yet, Sir, it is a visible ing this power taken from them, yet they sign and symbol of its sovereignty affixed have fubmitted to your authority, have to it, and if ever any one, now it is fo manifelted their obedience :o your laws, fixed as a symbol on the edifice, should and have paid your taxes. They ba ve inattempt to erase, or to remove it, the deed petitioned again the exercise of ibis whole edifice would fall to pieces. power of raising a revenue for this pur

This, Sir, is my idea of the sovereign- pose, yet they obeyed before they comty of parliaments, this is my idea of the plained; and if they were all now actu


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ally under military law and discipline, as own wisdom; juftice and policy can alone føme too much feem to be, they could not actuate you. The people of the colonies be charged with mutiny; having obeyed are waiting for the issue of this eventfirft, before they complained.

and as it is now in your power, and rests Although they think themselves ag, wholly upon your own discretion, it is grieved—yet you command their duty in now perhaps alone (commanding the point their att and deed, and even despotifm it. of your own honour) that you will be able kelf cannot command tbe wilt.

to choose your own ground witli fafety. They are at the lowest point of fube Matters are now brought to a crilis, at mission. If you endeavour to press them which they never will be again; if this down by one hair's breadth lower, like a occalion is now lost, it is lait for ever. If spring they will fly all to pieces,----and this session elapses with parliament's do-i they will never be brought to the faine: ing nothing, American affairs will perpoint again.

haps be impracticable for ever after. They have huinbled themselves in hopes, You may exert power, but you can nein confidence, that as you are stout, you ver govern an unwilling people ; they. will be merciful--but if you continue to will be able to obstruct and pervert every exert your ftoutness, you will find them effort of your policy; they will render. as sturdy as they have been bumble. If ineffectual every exertion of your govern. you will not accept their submission now ment; and will shut up every fource, one they are at your feet, froin the moment after another, by which you should derive that you reject their submission, froin that any benefit or advantage from thein.moment you will never be able to govern 1. As your authority and power has its; them.- They will not oppose power 10 full effect at this time your power, they will not go into any act 2. As the people have subınitted—are ci ledition, they will not commit any acts paying the taxes--and are at peaceof treason; but they will be impractica- 3. As you have rejected their applica. ble.

tions, and have renounced their princi. There have been strange violences and ples. optrage in America, the winds have beat. 4. As nothing remains to oppose, or en hard, the storm has been high.---The to obstruct, the vigour of your own prinHale, like a ihip, hath been driven into ciples.extreme danger, amidit fhoals and break- 5. As you are at this hour, at perfect ers - but the people are now in a state of liberty and masters of your own motives, fubmiflion—they are in fufpenfe-all is: - This is the proper time, the proper oc. peace—there is a lull at this moment ;, casion that you mould take to recur only now then is the moment to refit your rig. to yourselves, to your own motives, to the. ging, to work out the vessel from amidit principles of commerce, policy and jufthele breakers, and to get ber under way,' ticein ber old safe course, and you may bring As there is nothing from without that ter 19 tbe barbour that you wish. can obftruct your own motions, inquire

Thus of their obedience, that it is what there is within yourselves that fox at this crisis, at the very lowest point obstructs the way, and prevents your ger.. that it ever will be ; lo, on the other hand, ting back again to that old ground, on e your power, it is now at its - height which you have, for so many years, fafe-. Yea bave in the plenitude of your power ly and bappily food; examine and you at nag rejected the petitions of the coio. will find that nothing but this unjust, in-, Bies, but you have renounced the princi- etficient and injudicious law (maxle in the ples which those petitions contain, and yet 7th year of his present majetty) does prethey continue to obey to this hour-Ar vent youthis hour therefore, there remains nothing Examine first wliat are the in ixims and that opposes your authority, nothing that principles of the police of commerce, with militates against the principles of your fo. which government hath acted towards Tereignty, nothing that can be supposed the colonies for a centory past; they can to influence or limit your power. Every nb where better be described than they are movement mult, now at this hour, derive in the act for encouraging trade, passed its spring from the vigour of your own in the 15th year of the reign of Charles principles alone. The principles of your II. That act points out that the true fpi


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Jan. rit of law for regulating trade between commerce between us, instead of securing this country, and its colonies, is, the monopoly of it?

1. To maintain a greater correspond- Let us therefore view in this light, and ence and kindness between them and us-- by those principles of police, commerce

2. To keep them thereby in a firmer and justice, the American revenue act, of dependence

the 7th year of the reign of his present 3. To secure the vent of English goods majesty, which hath occalioned all this teki and manufactures in the colonies- uneasiness--which obttructs the way to

4. To make this kingdom a staple for your getting back again to your old ground the produce of the colonies, and a market-which is onjuit in its purport, inefficifor thole supplies which are necessary for ent as a measure of finance, and operates them

in direct opposition to every principle of 5. To render them more advantageous the laws of commerce, as they itand reand beneficial to this country, and to lated to the mother country, keep them and their trade to ourselves ift. As it proposes to raise a revenue alone

for the support of government in the coNow, Sir, will one say that this reve. lonies, independent of the people, it is nue act, of his present majesty's reign, contrary to, and is a revocation of that hath a tendency to maintain a greater system of rights and privileges on which kindness and correspondence between this the government of the colonies hath been kingdom and the colonies—has it not established.-- That establishment hath from had a direct contrary effect :- I speak only the beginning given to them the same to faet.

check and controul upon the servants of Will any one say that the spirit of this the public, by their legislatures having act, and the measures taken to carry it in- the granting and disposal of the provision to execution, have bad a tendency to keep for the support of government, as parthe colonies in a firmer dependency upon liament hath here--and as the subject in us--have they not, on the contrary, iha- both cases hath been always hitherio es. ken that dependency to the very root? teemed to have the same rights and privi.

Will any one say that it hath a tenden- leges, the plan of political liberty hath cy to promote the vent of British goods been always the same in both cases, al. and manufactures in the colonies on the though the scale is less—but this measure contrary, have not the people in every co. brought forward by this law, hath a tenlony upon the continent, come to one ge- dency to revoke and change the whole of neral agreement, not to import any Bri- that system -and as it is unnecessary it tish goods upon which any of these du- is unjult, and a grievance in every

deties are laid, in addition to that arbitrary gree.price which we, by our monopoly, are 2d. It is unjust as demanding such i enabled to demand ?

revenue from all the colonies indiscrimiWill any one say that duties, thus laid nately, when several provinces bave al. on your own merchandizes and manufac- ready made ample and adequate provision tures exported to America, do not ope- for this very purpose, conformable to the rite to a certain degree, as a prohibition royal infructions, by acts which have re. against your own prudence and labour, ceived ihe royal confirmation. The inand as a premium and encouragement to truction which I believe hath been conthat of the colonies-has it not had that stantly given to every governor of every effect:

province, says, “ that the governor muit Have these measures a tendency to ren- is require the legislature to make provider this country a staple for the produce “ fion, by a permanent law, wiihout li. of America, and a market for the sup. “ mitation of time, for the support of plies necessary to it-on the contrary, has “ civil government in that province, of it not opened the way to a contraband sup. " the administration of justice, for the ply from foreign markets?

“ making and repairing fortifications, Will any one say that under all these “ and other defence for the protection of circumstances, the colonies are rendered “ his majelty's dominions." more beneficial and advantageous to us, Mark first, that every purport of this or that we are not taking the direct way revenue act, of the 7th of his present mato break the intercommunion of trade and jetty, is contained in this inftruction ; and


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