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traffic in slaves in alluring the thousands of years, after all her aboriginal hunters of our land to conquests have been swallowed up the cultivation of the soil and of in despotism, or become the spoil the mind—in exploring the inte- of barbarians. Some diversity of rior regions of the union, and in opinion has prevailed with regard preparing, by scientific researches to the powers of congress for leand surveys, for the further appli- gislation upon objects of this nacation of our national resources to ture. The most respectful defethe internal improvement of our rence is due to doubts, originating country.
in pure patriotism, and sustained In this brief outline of the pro- by venerated authority. But nearmise and performance of my im- ly twenty years have passed since mediate predecessor, the line of the construction of the first na. duty, for his successor, is clearly tional road was commenced. The delineated. To pursue to their authority for its construction was consummation those purposes of then, unquestioned. To how maimprovement in our common con- ny thousands of our countrymen dition, instituted or recommended has it proved a benefit ? To what by him, will embrace the whole single individual has it ever proved sphere of my obligations. To the an injury ? Repeated liberal and topic of internal improvement, em- candid discussions in the legislaphatically urged by him at his in- ture have conciliated the sentiauguration, I recur with peculiar ments, and approximated the opisatisfaction. It is that from which nions of enlightened minds, upon I am convinced that the unborn the question of constitutional pows millions of our posterity, who are er. I cannot but hope, that, by in future ages to people this con- the same process of friendly, patinent, will derive their most fer- tient, and persevering deliberation, vent gratitude to the founders of all constitutional objections will the union; that in which the be- ultimately be removed. The exneficent action of its government tent and limitation of the powers will be most deeply felt and ac- of the general government, in reknowledged. The magnificencelation to this transcendently im. and splendor of their public works portant interest, will be settled and are among the imperishable glo- acknowledged, to the common saries of the ancient republics. The tisfaction of all; and every specu. roads and aqueducts of Rome lative scruple will be solved by a have been the admiration of all practical public blessing. after ages, and have survived, “ Fellow citizens, you are ac.
quainted with the peculiar circum- dence, my own fate, and the future stances of the recent election, destinies of my country.” which have resulted in affording The vacancies which were made me the opportunity of addressing in the cabinet by the election of you at this time. You have heard the secretary of state and war to the exposition of the principles the presidency and vice-presidency, which will direct me in the fulfil- and by the retirement of the secretament of the high and solemn trust ry of the treasury, rendered it expeimposed upon me in this station. dient to convene the senate, immeLess possessed of your confidence, diately after the dissolution of the in advance, than any of my prede- eighteenth congress. On the 4th cessors, I am deeply conscious of of March, the same day when the the prospect that I shall stand more president was inaugurated, the and oftener in need of your in- members assembled, and after the dulgence. Intentions upright and necessary formalities were gone pure; a heart devoted to the wel. through, the vice-president took fare of our country, and the un- the chair, and addressed the senate ceasing application of the faculties upon the importance of its duties, allotted to me, to her service, are and the immediate dependence of all the pledges that I can give for all the other departments of the the faithful performance of the ar- government upon that body. Afduous duties I am to undertake. ter glancing at the construction of To the guidance of the legislative the senate, and commending the councils ; to the assistance of the character it had sustained, he proexecutive and subordinate depart- ceeded to say, that while presiding, ments; to the friendly co-opera- “ he should only regard the senate tion of the respective state govern- and its duties, and should strive ments; to the candid and liberal with a feeling of pride to preserve support of the people, so far as it the high character already attained may be deserved by honest indus- by the senate for dignity and wistry and zeal, I shall look for whai dom, and to elevate it, if possible, ever success may attend my public still higher in public esteem.” service: and knowing that, except The new members then appeared, the Lord keep the city, the watch- and took their seats. Upon the man waketh but in vain, with fer- presentation of the credentials of vent supplications for his favor, to Mr. Lanman, of Connecticut, a his overruling Providence, I com- question was raised as to his right mit, with humble but fearless confi- to a seat under the following cir
cumstances. Previous to the ex- tion was there raised as to his right piration of his term of service, the to take his seat. The senate then legislature of Connecticut had en- determined in favor of Mr. Tracy deavored without success to choose by a vote of 13 to 10. a person to fill the vacancy when- Two cases subsequently occur. ever it should occur, and finally red similar to this precedent, viz. adjourned without making a choice. Joseph Anderson, a senator from After the adjournment of the legis- Tennessee, in 1809, and John Willature, the governor transmitted to liams, from Tennessee, in 1817. Mr. Lanman a temporary appoint- To the admission and qualification ment as senator, in contemplation of these senators no objection was of the vacancy, under that part of made. The question was consithe constitution authorising ap- dered as settled by the decision in pointments by the state execu- 1801, and they took their seats. tives, “ when vacancies happen by The senate now, however, came to resignation or otherwise, during an opposite conclusion, and by a the recess of the legislature.” vote of 23 to 18, decided that Mr.
A committee was appointed to Lanman was not entitled to his search for precedents, and reported seat. the following cases bearing on the The senate then went into the question before the senate. consideration of executive busi
On the 27th of April, 1797, ness, and confirmed the nominaWilliam Cocke was appointed a tions made by the President for senator by the governor of Ten- the several departments. Henry nessee, to fill the vacancy caused Clay, of Kentucky, was appointed by the expiration of his term of secretary of state ; Richard Rush, service on the 3d of March pre- of Pennsylvania, secretary of the ceding, and took his seat on the treasury ; James Barbour, of Vir15th of May, and was qualified. ginia, secretary of war.
This case differed from Mr. Lan- To the appointment of Mr. man's only in the fact that Mr. Clay, a warm opposition was made Cocke was appointed after the va- on the part of a few senators, and cancy had occurred, and Mr. L. the injunction of secrecy being rewas appointed in anticipation of a moved, the vote appeared to have vacancy. The case of Uriah Tra- been 27 in favor, and 14 against cy, from Connecticut, in 1801, re- it. sembled the one before the senate Mr. Noble, of Indiana, who in every particular, and the ques- came in after the vote had been taken, requested permission to re- some of the senators, and other cord his name in the affirmative, but views had been taken of the subthe senate decided it not to be in ject by others, and the treaty was order. As the vote removing the rejected by a vote of 28 to 12. injunction of secrecy did not ex. The divisions which had been tend to the reasons urged by the taken on the foregoing questions, opposers of his appointment, we left little doubt that the new admicannot present to our readers their nistration was destined to meet motives for voting against Mr. Clay. with a systematic and organized Mr. Noble, however, thought it ne- opposition ; and, previous to the cessary, on account of his absence, next meeting of congress, the osto declare what his vote would tensible grounds of opposition were have been, and to assign his rea- set forth at public dinners and meetsons for voting in favor of Mr. ings, so as to prepare the commuClay : these were, first, his distin- nity for a warm political contest, guished talents, and secondly, “be- until the next election. Those cause he would not oppose an ad- who placed themselves in opposiministration, at the commencement, tion to the administration, without for party purposes."
reference to its measures, urged as After disposing of the nomina- reasons for their hostility, that Mr. tions made by the executive, the Adams' election was the result of a senate took into consideration the bargain between Mr. Clay and himtreaty made with Colombia for the self; and his election of Mr. Clay, suppression of the slave trade. as secretary of state, was relied This treaty was made in conformi- upon as a conclusive proof of the ty with a resolution of the house bargain ; that he was elected against of representatives, recommending the expressed will of the people ; to the executive to make treaties, and that congress, by not taking giving the mutual right of search general Jackson, the candidate of ressels in suspected parts of the having the highest number of world, in order more effectually to votes, had violated the constituprevent the traffic in human flesh. tion, and disobeyed their constituThe amendments proposed by the ents. Personal objections were senate, at the last session, to the also urged ; but as these formed treaty with Great Britain, for the no part of the justification of the same purpose, were introduced into opposition which was to be arrayed this treaty, but the fate of the trea. in anticipation of measures, it is ty with England had probably unnecessary to give them a place. caused a change in the minds of Those who were friendly to the
new administration, or disposed to refused to take the appointment of judge of it by its acts, replied to secretary of state from Mr. Adams, these objections, that Mr. Clay, as because he had contributed by a representative, was obliged to his vote to elect him to the predecide between three candidates sidency. As to the fact of his sefor the presidency, and that his lection as secretary of state, they vote was in accordance with all his vindicated it on the ground, that previous declarations : that his own his situation as speaker 'of the situation as a candidate who might house, and his long and intimate possibly succeed, rendered it un- acquaintance with our national afsuitable for him to express any pre- fairs, made him the most promiference for either of the other can- nent candidate for that station, and didates, until the decision by the the strong support he received in legislature of Louisiana (first heard the west for the presidency, showed at Washington 27th December,) that his appointment would gratify had left him free to decide between a part of the union, which, until : his former competitors: that Mr. then, had never been complimentCrawford, though constitutionally ed with a representative in the a candidate, was virtually with- cabinet. drawn by the situation of his The other objections to the elechealth, and that as between Mr. tion of Mr. Adams, they contended Adams and general Jackson, the were contrary to the spirit and letprevious deliberate expression of ter of the constitution. By the his sentiments as to the latter's electors refusing to give a majority character and qualifications for a for either of the presidential candicivil office, rendered it impossible dates, they had committed the quesfor him to vote for him without the tion to the decision of congress. most gross inconsistency : that Mr. The will of the people, so far as Adams' experience, learning, and expressed, was, that no person talents were guarantees for his should be elected, except by the proper performance of the duties concurrence of thirteen states in of the chief magistracy, which congress; and they were empowwere not in the power of his com- ered to select either of the three petitor to offer, and that having highest candidates. That this conbeen compelled to discharge this stitutional provision was to prevent duty as a representative of the the choice by any number less than people, it would have argued an a majority, and that to confine conimproper distrust of his own cha- gress to the selection of the candidate racter and of public opinion, to have having the highest number, was to