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the population amounted to five thousand male inhabitants, were to compose their legislature, should adopt such laws of the original states as might be necessary and suitable to their circumstances, which, unless disapproved by congress, should be in force until the organization of a general assembly, which was to take place when the population reaches the number before mentioned. These laws may therefore be considered as emanating from the United States, and the judicial authority as that of the United States.
In respect to those portions of land which become the property of the United States for the purposes of arsenals, dockyards, &e. it may be observed, that exclusive legislation generally implies exclusive jurisdiction. Yet the peculiar nature of this possession may require some qualification, and, therefore, a reservation by a state of the power to serve its civil and criminal process therein by its own officers, is not objectionable. It prevents the particular spot from becoming a sanctuary for criminals or debtors, and from the assent of the United States it results, that the state officers, in executing such process, act under the authority of the United States. (115) Indeed, a general provision to this effect has been made by an act of congress,(116) although no reservation be made by the state.
The power of exercising exclusive legislation over such districts as should become the seat of government, like all others which are specified, is conferred on congress, not as a mere local legislature, but as the legis lature of the Union, and cannot be exercised in any other character. A law passed in pursuance of it is the supreme law of the land; is binding as such on the
states, and a law of a state to defeat it would be void. The power to pass such a law, carries with it all those incidental powers which are necessary to its complete and effectual execution; and such law may, it seems, be extended in its collateral opération throughout the United States, if congress think it necessary to do so. But if it be intended to give it a binding efficacy beyond the district, there ought to be language used showing this intention, especially if it is to extend into the particular states, and to limit and control their penal laws. (117)
So also the power vested in congress to legislate exclusively within any other place ceded by a state, carries with it a right to make that power effectual. They may therefore provide by law for apprehending a person who escapes from a fort, &c. after committing a felony, and for conveying him to or from any other place for trial or execution. So they may punish those for misprison of felony, who out of a fort conceal a felony committed within it. (118)
Where a fortress within the acknowledged limits of a state, was surrendered under the treaty of 1794 with Great Britain, and was afterwards constantly possessed and garrisoned by the United States, but was never purchased from the state by the United States, or ceded to the latter by the former, the United States do not possess the right of exclusive legislation or exclusive jurisdiction over such fortress, but crimes committed therein may be punished under the laws and by the courts of the state. To give the United States exclusive legislation and jurisdiction over a place, there must be a free cession of the same, for one of the
(117) Cohens v. Virginia, 6 Wheaton, 264. See United States
v. Moore, 3 Cranch, 159.
(118) 6 Wheaton, 264.
poses specified in the constitution, they cannot acquire it tortuously or by disseisin of the state, or by occupancy with merely the tacit consent of the state, when such occupancy is as a military post, though obtained after a treaty by which foreign garrisons were withdrawn from our posts. And the rule is the same, although the title to such place be vested in the United States, by purchases from individuals, and it has been occupied by them as a military post; for if there has been no cession by the legislature of the state to the United States, the right of legislation and jurisdiction over such place, remains exclusively in the state where it is situated. (119)
(119) 1 Hall's Journal of Jurisprudence, p. 47.
Of the Appellate Jurisdiction.
THE general expressions of the constitution are, that the Supreme Court shall have appellate jurisdiction in all cases of law and equity, both as to law and fact, with such exceptions and under such regulations as congress shall make, of all controversies to which the United States shall be a party; controversies between two or more states; between a state and citizens of another state; between citizens of different states; between citizens of the same state claiming lands under grants of different states, and between a state or the citizens thereof and foreign states, citizens or subjects.
The power given to except and to regulate does notex vi tirmini-carry with it a power to enlarge the jurisdiction: so far therefore as it relates to the subjects of jurisdiction, we must consider it as confined by
the enumeration of them.
But on another question the constitution is not equally explicit. It is not said whether the revision of the sentences of other courts extends to state courts, or is limited to the courts of the United States. Some discussions took place on this subject in the state conventions, and the question was not perhaps entirely at rest till the year 1821, when it again arose in the Supreme Court, received its close attention, and it would be presumed, its final decision.
The clear and convincing elucidations of the chief justice would suffer by abridgment, and could not be improved by the substitution of other language.
He observes that the United States for many and most important purposes form a single nation.
"In making peace, we are one people. In all commercial regulations, we are one and the same people. In many other respects, the American people are one, and the government which is alone capable of controlling and managing their interest in all these respects, is the government of the Union, and in that character the people have no other. America has chosen to be in many respects and to many purposes a nation; and for all these purposes, her government is competent and complete. The people have declared, that in the exercise of all powers given for these objects, it is supreme. It can, then, in affecting these objects, legitimately control all individuals or governments within the American territory. The constitution and laws of a state, so far as they are repugnant to the constitution and the constitutional laws of the United States, are absolutely void. These states are constituent parts of the United States. They are members of one great empire--for some purposes sovereign; for some purposes subordinate.
"In a government so constituted, is it unreasonable that the judicial power should be competent to give efficacy to the constitutional laws of the legislature? 'That department can decide on the validity of the constitution or law of a state if it be repugnant to the constitution or to a law of the United States. Is it unreasonable that it should also be empowered to decide on the judgment of a state tribunal enforcing such unconstitutional law? Is it so very unreasonable as to furnish a justification for controlling the words of a constitution ?
"When a government is confessedly supreme, in respect to objects of vital interest to the nation, there is