Слике страница


Military Peace Establishment.

[Dec. 24 to 29, 1829.

Mr. MARKS adverted to certain documents in his pos- why the bill ought to be passed, were explained more at session which would elucidate the principle of the bill, length in various other documents. but not anticipating the consideration of the bill to-day, he Mr. BENTON, in reply, said, that he would be sorry had not brought the papers to the House with him. He, to be the occasion of introducing any innovations into the therefore, moved to lay the bill on the table for the pre- proceedings of this body; but if it was any innovation, he sent, but withdrew his motion at the request of

considered the present instance of sufficient importance Mr. SMITH, of Maryland, who said that the bill did not to authorize a departure from the usual practice. It was contemplate the admission of any claims for advances, or a case, he said, which stood alone, and which, in his opinthe examination of any accounts; there were none to be ion, not only justified, but required a preamble. The rendered—they had all been settled and paid—and the bill object of the preamble was to explain the nature and the is for the allowance of interest on those claims which have end of the act itself. The necessity for the preamble in been settled and paid. Instead of laying the bill on the this particular case, was, that the reasons for the act only table, he preferred postponing it to Monday, and making existed in the secret Executive records of the Senate, and it the order of the day; which motion be made, and it could not be known to the public or the other House was carried.

unless stated in this way. There was no danger to be

apprehended of its growing into precedent, nor of our TAURSDAY, DECEMCER 24, 1829.

bills being loaded with unnecessary preambles. He thereThe Senate were engaged to-lay in receiving and refer- fore hoped that the motion of the gentleman from New ring petitions and reports of committees. Adjourned to York would not prevail. Monday.

Mr. SMITH, of Maryland, said that precedents arise,

and only arise, from the repetition of particular cases, MONDAY, DECEMBER 28, 1829.

which increase gradually till at length they become comThere was no debate in the Senate to-day.

mon usage. Thus, if it be acceded to in the present in

stance, it would be quoted hereafter in support of a reTUESDAY, DECEMBER 29, 1829.

petition of it. He considered it wrong to follow the En

glish practice in this respect, as the reports of our ComMILITARY PEACE ESTABLISHMENT.

mittees, with which all bills are accompanied, supply the The Senate proceeded to the special order of the day place of preambles. on the bill explanatory of the act to reduce and fix the Mr. HOLMES deemed a preamble nothing but an apomilitary peace establishment of the United States, passed logy for legislation; and for apologies he thought there March 2, 1821.

was no necessity. His chief objection to preambles was, The bill is as follows:

that they rendered legislation complex instead of eluci"Whereas doubts have arisen in the construction of the dating it. act of Congress, passed the second day of March, one Mr. HAYNE said, that in the good olden times, when peothousand eight hundred and twenty-one, entitled “ An ple were not ashamed to tell the truth, bills were precedact to reduce and fix the military peace establishment of ed by preambles always. They were used to set forth the United States,” which have hitherto prevented it from the object of the bill, and the means by which that object being carried into execution, so far as relates to the ar- was to be obtained. It now happens that the practice is rangement of a colonel to the second regiment of artil- changed, and preambles have come into disuse because lelery: And whereas it was the true intent and meaning of gislative bodies are less candid. So much for precedent, the said act, that the vacancy aforesaid should be filled by which has led us to dispense with the use of preambles. arranging to it one of the colonels in the army of the He knew cases in which it would have been well to have United States at the time of the passage thereof: And retained the old practice. He knew a case in which a whereas, in the execution of said act, Daniel Bissel, then preamble would have been of infinite advantage--he a colonel in the line, and a brevet Brigadier General in meant the Tariff law. A preamble to that act would the army of the United States, was ordered to be dis- have stated its true objects--that it was for the purpose, charged as a supernumerary officer, which order, as it not of raising revenue, but for the protection of the manaffected the said Daniel Bissell, and some other officers, ufacturing interests. As to the apprehensions of the genwas held by the Senate to be illegal and void: And where- tleman from Maryland (Mr. Smitu) he (Mr. H.] would as the President of the United States has since nominated say that there was no danger of its becoming a precedent the said Daniel Bissell to be colonel of the second regi --on the contrary, the only danger to be dreaded was, ment of artillery aforesaid, which nomination the Senate that we may be left without a precedent for stating the have not acted upon, because they hold the said Colonel grounds of our legislation. The gentleman not only oband Brevet Brigadier General Daniel Bissell to be in the jects as to the danger of its becoming a precedent for fuarmy, and to need no new appointment: Now, therefore, ture action, but he also says that it is not proper to spread to put an end to all doubt and disagreement upon this sub- our reasons for legislating upon record. This very case, ject, and to enable the President to carry said act of March he (Mr. H.] contended, required that the reasons should second, one thousand eight hundred and twenty-one, into go with the act. Suffer it to go to the world naked, and execution:

what will it appear? Why, that Colonel Bissellis assigned Be it enacted, &c. That the President be, and he is to the command of the sccond regiment of artillery by hereby, authorized to fill the vacancy in the second regi- an act of Congress. This would seem out of course, and ment of artillery, by arranging Daniel Bissell thereto.' what, he would ask, would be the consequences? Why,

Mr. BENTON, in support of the passage of the bill, that Congress undertakes to fill vacancies in the army by read the report of the Committee on Military Affairs, to special acts. But this is an extraordinary case, and to whom was referred that part of the President's message prevent the possibility of its being misvinderstood, we to Congress in 1826, which relates to this subject. state the reasons of passing the bill in a preamble to it.

Mr. SANFORD moved to expunge the preamble from Unless these reasons were spread upon record, he would the bill. He considered it wholly unnecessary, and stat- hesitate much whether he should vote for the passage of ed that there was no instance in our Government in which the bill, as he was not disposed to search for the reasons a preamble to a hill was employed as a vehicle of the rea- amongst the public documents of the Senate, or the Exsons why the bill itself ought to be passed. It was, he ecutive archives of the Senate. lle hoped, therefore, repeated, wholly unusual and unnecessary; and, in the the reasons for this act would go with it, and speak for present case, especially unnecessary, since all the reasons themselves to all future time. The preamble of a bill,

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors]

he said, was the key to unlock the motive which induced Mr. BIBB asked the yeas and nays. He said he was its passage.

equally opposed to the principle of the preamble and the Mr. FOOT said that this bill required no key to unlock bill. He thought the decision of the President right and it. The bill was perfectly simple, and easily understood; this bill wrong. He was also opposed to paying any man it reads, “that the President be, and is hereby, author- a sum of perhaps fifteen thousand dollars, who had renized to fill the vacancy in the second regiment of artille- dered no service for it. ry, by arranging Daniel Bissell thereto.” As to assigning The yeas and nays were ordered. reasons for the passage of a bill he thought there was no Mr. SMITH moved to lay the bill on the table. He necessity for it. He was opposed to making apologies thought the bill could be amended by the insertion of a for our public acts--he would make no apology. As the clause, providing against the payment of this individual gentleman from Maryland had well observed, the reports for the time he has been out of service. accompanying the bills contain the reasons of our legislation. The motion was agreed to.

Mr. KANE said there was some difficulty with him about this matter. The necessity which gave rise to the

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 30, 1829. bill was a different construction being given to the act of 1821 by the President and the Senate. The President

NATIONAL CURRENCY. thought that he had not the power to arrange General The following resolution, submitted yesterday by Mr. Bissell to the command of the second regiment of artil- BARTON, was taken up: lery, and the Senate, on the contrary, thought he had the Resolved, that the Committee on Finance be instructauthority to do so. A bill has been formed for the pur-ed to inquire into the expediency of establishing a unipose of settling the difficulty. If the bill pass in the pro- form national currency for the United States, and to report posed form, without the preamble, we call upon the Pre-thereon to the Senate." sident to sign a bill stating that to be right which he has Mr. BARTON said that, in offering this resolution to declared or believed to be wrong; we call upon him to the Senate, his chief object was to produce inquiry into sign against his conviction. As he stated before, the Pre- the subject, which he viewed as one of importance. If sident denies that he has the authority which the bill sup. the resolution was adopted, he should move to refer some poses. He moved to amend the motion of the Senator documents in relation to the subject to the Committee on from New York, by striking out all from the word “ar- Finance. tillery” to the words “ And whereas," exclusive.

Mr. BENTON said the resolution was a very important Mr. SMITH said that this very motion showed the im- one, and he therefore hoped that the gentleman who had propriety of introducing preambles into bills. The Sen- moved it would state what objects he had in view in offer. ator from South Carolina (Mr. Hayne) considered a pre-ing it. amble necessary to show the intent and meaning of an act; Mr. BARTON was proceeding in compliance with the and he said that if a proper preamble had been placed be request of his colleague, to state his reasons for offering fore the tariff bill, the objects set forth would be widely this resolution, which he said he would do in general different from what was there stated. His opinion was, terms, whenthat the preamble was wholly unnecessary; if it prevail Mr. BENTON rose and stated that he had mistaken the in one case it must prevail in all, and the result will be nature of the resolution proposed. His impression was, that, instead of discussing bills, we will be employed in that it was the resolution proposed yesterday, by the genthe consideration of preambles.

tleman from Connecticut, (Mr. Foot) in relation to the Mr. DICKERSON said he would vote against striking public lands, which was under consideration. out the preamble in this particular case, though he ob Mr. SANFORD hoped that the gentleman from Misjected to the general use of it. In reply to the gentleman souri (Mr. Barton) would still proceed to state his object. from South Carolina (Mr. HAYNE) who expressed his re. Mr. BARTON declined this for the present. He gret that a preamble was not introduced into the Tariff thought a better opportunity would be afforded for this in bill

, Mr. D. read the preamble of the act of 1789, laying a report from the Committee, and any explanatory obserduties, which was as follows:

vations he had to make would be more appropriate when “Whereas it is necessary for the support of Govern- the subject should come to be considered by the Senate. ment, for the discharge of the debts of the United States, In the mean time, he would state that although he was and the encouragement and protection of manufactures, one of those who believed in the advantage of a well rethat duties be laid on goods, wares, and merchandises, im- gulated paper currency, he did not claim the merit of oriported.”

ginating this proposition. As respected it he was merely Mr. HAYNE said the gentleman had given the best the disciple of others. reason why the practice ought not to be dispensed with. The question on the adoption of the resolution was carIf the real object of the Tariff act of 1828 had been pre- ried in the affirmative, nem. con. fixed to it, we could then have gone to the judiciary and Mr. BARTON then moved to refer to the Committee a tested the constitutionality of that law.

volume containing sundry printed papers on the subject Mr. KANE, with the consent of the Senate, so modi- of a national currency, among them a memorial signed by fied his amendment as to read, “And whereas it was de Thomas Law, Esq. of this city, Walter Jones, Esq. and cided by the Senate to be the true intent and meaning,” &c. others, some years ago presented to Congress, and an es

This amendment was agreed to-Ayes 21, Noes 15. say on the subject, addressed to the Columbian Institute,

The question on striking out the whole preamble was by Mr. Law. next taken, and negatived-Ayes 19, Noes 20.

The motion was agreed to, and the papers were referMr. SMITH, of Maryland, inquired whether the per- red accordingly. son referred to in the bill would be entitled to his pay for

THE PUBLIC LANDS. the time from which he was deranged to the time when he is to be arranged.

The following resolution, offered yesterday by Mr. Mr. BENTON replied that each officer was obliged to FOOT, was taken up for consideration: give a certificate of honor that he was employed, and had Resolved, That the Committee on Public Lands be inincurred the usual expenses, during the time for which structed to inquire into the expediency of limiting for a he claims pay, before he is entitled to any emolument. certain period the sales of the public lands to such lands

The question of engrossing the bill for a third reading only as have heretofore been offered for sale, and are subbeing stated,

ject to entry at the minimum price. And also, whether


The Public Lands.

(Dec. 30, 1829.

It was one

To stop

the office of Surveyor General may not be abolished with a bill. It was then debated on its own merits. If, after disout detriment to the public interest.”

cussion, it went to a committee, it went with the advantages The resolution having been read,

of being illuminated by all the light which the intelligence Mr. BENTON hoped that the gentleman from Connec. of the whole body could shed upon it. He was willing to ticut, (Mr. Foot) would take notice of the request he had discuss this resolution. He wished to do so. made to another gentleman, [Mr. Barton] but which was of infinite moment to the new States in the West. It was intended for him.

a question of checking the emigration to them. Mr. FOOT replied, he certainly would take no- the surveys, to suspend the sales of fresh lands, was an old tice of the challenge given by the gentleman from Mis- and favorite policy with some politicians. It had often souri, (Mr. Berton) although he had hoped the very been attempted. The attempts were as old as the existterms of the resolution would be sufficiently explanatory ence of the Government. He wished to have a full deof its purport. He had, he said, been induced to offer bate, and a vote of the Senate upon that policy. He knew that resolution from the circumstance of having examined the mover of the resolution (Mr. Foot) to be a direct man, the report of the Commissioner of the Land Office, at the who would march up firmly to his object. He would, there. last session, by which he ascertained that the quantity of fore, suggest, that he had better change the form of his land which remained unsold at the minimum price of resolution; give it an imperative character; make it a re$1 25 per acre, exceeds 72,000,000 of acres. In addi- solution of instruction instead of inquiry: He paused to tion to this inducement, he was actuated by another: On gi the Senator an opportunity to say whether he would examining the report of the Land Commissioner, made dur- thus modify his resolution. ing the present session, in which he found the following Mr. FOOT acknowledged the kindness of the gentlewords: "There is reason to believe there will be an annu- man from Missouri, but he must say that he had not the al demand of about one million acres land, which will vanity to pretend to understand this subject, and therefore probably be increased with the progress of population could not consent to give the resolution that peremptory and improvement, &c. That the cash sales in one district character which he (Mr. B.) wished for. His object was in Ohio, where the lands were of inferior quality, and not inquiry—to obtain information. When the committee more than three or four hundred thousand acres for sale, shall have reported on the subject, then would be the amounted to $ 35,000, and in other places, where there are time for gentlemen to submit their views on it.

He was immense quantities, and of very superior quality, the sale, not disposed to alter the phraseology of his resoultion. during 1828, amounted to only $2,000.”

He preferred to act upon it as it was. From this statement of the Commissioner, Mr. F. said, Mr. BENTON said that the refusal of the gentleman to he was induced to institute an inquiry into the expediency modify his resolution could not prevent bim from treating of stopping, for a limited time, this indiscriminate sale of it as a resolution of instruction. He could still oppose it, public lands, and whether the public interest did not de- and give his reasons for doing so. It was not usual (Mr. mand that an end should be put to it. His own State, B. said) to oppose the reference of resolutions of inquiry; every State in the Union, was interested in it, since there but this was a resolution to inquire into the expediency of lands are the common property of the United States. If committing a great injury upon the new States in the the fact was as it was stated in the Commissioner's report, West, and such an inquiry ought not to be permitted. It the subject was worthy of inquiry; Mr. F. thought it was was not a fit subject for inquiry. It was immaterial to better to confine the sales merely to those lands which him what the design or object of the mover might be, the have been already brought into market; an inquiry into effect was what he looked at, and it was clear that the efthe expediency of which was all that his resolution pro- fect, if the resolution should lead to correspondent legisposed. As the gentleman from Missouri [Mr. Berton] lation, would be to check emigration to the Western States. had observed, this was a subject which involved important Such would be its inevitable effect. (Mr. Foor here interests; the whole United States have a deep interest in shook his head.] The Senator from Connecticut shakes it; and as such, he hoped that he had a right to make the his head, but he cannot shake the conviction out of my proposed inquiry. These were the reasons, which he head, (said Mr. B. ? that a check to Western emigration said he stated briefly, why he was induced to offer the re- will be the effect of this resolution. The West is my solution.

country; not his. I know it; he does not. I know the Mr. HOLMES made an inquiry as to that part of the practical effect of his resolution would be to check emiresolution relating to the propriety of abolishing the office gration to it; for who would remove to a new country if it of surveyor general. There were, he said, five survey was not to get new lands? The idea of checking emigradistricts in the United States; one northwest of the Ohio, tion to the West was brought forward openly at the last one south of Tennessee, one in Missouri, one in Alabama, increase of the tariff. The Secretary of the Treasury and another in Florida. These officers in the districts he gave it a place in his annual report upon the finances. Fie had mentioned, were known by different names, some dwelt openly and largely upon the necessity of checking were called surveyors, and others surveyors general. He the absorbing force of this emigration, in order to keep wished to know, did the gentleman from Connecticut people in the East to work in the manufactories. I commean to extend his inquiry to all these States.

mented somewhat severely upon his report at the time. I Mr. FOOT said, he was not aware of any difference in reprobated its doctrines. I did it in full Senate, in the the names of the officers when he submitted his resolu- current of an ardent debate, and no Senator contested the tion. His object was to inquire if the office of surveyor propriety of the construction which I had put upon ought not to be discontinued, if it should appear that sur-the Secretary's words. No Senator stood up to say that veys were no longer necessary. He wished his resolution emigration onglit to be stopped for that purpose; but systo include surveyors as well as surveyors general. His tematic efforts go on, the effect of which is to stop it. The object was to abolish the office, if the quantity of land al- sentiment has shown itself here in different forms, at variready surveyed was considered sufficient for the demand. ous times, and has often been trampled under foot. The re

Mr. BENTON said, that he did not challenge the right of solution now before us involves the same consequence, the Senator from Connecticut (Mr. Foor) to offer resolu- but in a new phraseology: What are the lands to which tions. He, himself, was not opposed to resolutions: on the gentleman would limit the sales? What are they that the contrary, he thought they presented the best mode of could be sold, if his resolution should take effect Scraps; presenting subjects for discussion. They presented the mere refuse; the leavings of repeated sales and pickings! principle, or object aimed at, in its simplest form, uncon- Does le suppose that any man of substance would remove nected with the details which trammel and encumber it into the West for the purpose of establishing his family on

Dec, 30, 1829.]

The Public Lands.



hese miserable remnants! They are worth something to be necessary to institute an inquiry to discover whether any those who are there, to farmers whose plantations they offices existed in our Government which were sine cures, adjoin, to settlers who have made some improvement upon in order that they might be abolished. It was not [he them; but they are not the object to attract emigration. said) his motive, in supporting the adoption of this resoluThe man that moves to a new country wants new land; he tion, to check emigration to the West.

When the peowants first choice; he does not move for refuse, for the ple go there, they are still our people; the Western States crumbs that remain after others are served. The reports are a component part of our common country, and he trustof the registers and receivers show the character of these ed in God they would always remain so. He was not an seventy millions to which the gentleman refers, and which advocate of the exclusive or sectional legislation. But alone would be in market under his plan, to be such as I the fact here developed is, that there are seventy-two milhave represented it; the good land all picked out, inferior lions of acres of land at present in the market, of which and broken tracts only remaining, such as may be desirable it appears that only one million a year can be sold. for wood, or outlet, or to keep off a bad neighbor, to the have, therefore, from these calculations, enough to supply farmer whose estate they adjoin, or to a poor family, but the market for seventy-two years to come. If, then, at no object to induce emigrants to come from other States. the end of seventy-two years, a similar inquiry to that So much (said Mr. B.] for checking emigration. But I now contemplated is proposed, it might then be said that have another objection to the gentleman's plan. It will the motive which induces it is a desire to check emigration operate unequally and partially among the Western States. to the West. Suppose, according to the reasoning of the It will fall heavily upon some States and not touch others. gentleman from Missouri, (Mr. BENTON) that it is all reHow would it operate in Ohio? Not at all. It would have fi se land-all poor land; then certainly there is much no effect there; all her lands have been surveyed, all have need of inquiry; very much indeed. How, he would ask, been offered for sale, all would, therefore, still be in mar- has it happened that these surveyors have surveyed land ket, under the gentleman's plan; every acre within her which is good for nothing? How has it happened that so limits would be open as ever to sale and settlement. How many thousands of dollars have been appropriated to surwould it operate in Louisiana? I wish the Senators from vey lands which no one will inhabit? Does not this state that State would answer the question. It would stop the of things indicate the necessity of instituting an inquiry? surveying where millions are yet to be surveyed; it would If this office of surveyor is a sinecure, he hoped the docstop the sales where millions are yet to be sold; it would trines of the day would be extensive in their operation, lock up twenty-five millions of acres of her soil it would and that all sinecures would be abolished. If officers have prevent twenty-five millions of acres from being surveyed surveyed seventy-two millions of acres of bad land, of and sold! Such (said Mr. B.] would be the difference of which one million only is sold every year (whereby it will the operation of this plan in the two States of Louisiana last for seventy-two years) should we not inquire why it is and Ohio. The Federal Government has done nothing so? Should we not inquire why this state of things has towards settling Louisiana, for I count as nothing the two come to pass? He would ask, was it not important to inhundred thousand acres which she has sold in a quarter of stitute the inquiry, even for this cause alone? He never a century. The Kings of France and Spain gave the five changed his views as to the propriety and necessity of millions of arpents which compose its settlements. For all making inquiries; he was always in favor of them; he that the Federal Government has done, that State would would prune wherever it was necessary; he would nenow be a desert; and the effect of this resolution would ver spare the knife. He was an advocate of “reform" be to crown the policy that has held her back, by locking in the true and legitimate sense of that term—not of that up twenty-five millions of her soil from further use. This, species of “reform" which reforms a good man out of however, is a subject of too much moment to be disposed office and puts a bad one in; which removes an opponent of in this brief way, or to be sent to a committee of inquiry. for the purpose of substituting a favorite. When we do I have not risen to speak to it, but to make a motion—not not want officers let us discharge them. a motion to lie on the table, for I dislike that mode of get- Mr. H. said, he recollected being a member of a comting rid of a subject--but to move to place the resolution mittee in 1817, in the House of Representatives, to inquire upon the calendar, to make it an order for some future day, into the abuses which, it was thought, had crept into the that the Senate may discuss and act upon it after the holy- Executive Departments. That committee was supplied days, when the members are all present.

with large powers; they could call for persons and papers, Mr. NOBLE said it was unusual to vote against a resolu- and could issue subpanas ad testificandum. So “searchtion simply of inquiry, but the object of the one now being” were their “operations,” that they were repeatedly fore the Senate was too palpable to be misunderstood. obliged to exercise their powers. The result of our labor's When (said Mr. N.] I see such a disposition manifested on was, [said Mr. H.] that the different heads of the Dethis floor, as that which dictated the resolution of the gen-partments united together and gave us the basis of the tleman from Connecticut, I cannot be silent. He well act of 20th April, 1818. He was, he said, in the Senate recollected, and he supposed it was within the memory of in 1821, a member of the Committee on Finance, which many members of the Senate, when the governor of a was then employed in reforming abuses in the customs, State in that region of country, (alluding to New England) and exerted his humble talents in passing the act of the submitted to the Legislature of the State over which he 7th May, 1822. He recollected, also, being once associatpresided, a message urging a measure similar to that em-ed with the gentleman from Missouri, (Mr. Benton] on braced in the present resolution; and we as well recollect other subjects of reform; he meant the control of Exethe feelings of public indignation with which it was treat- cutive patronage, and the abolition of useless offices. The ed. If gentlemen were detemined to press the resolu- gentleinan from Missouri was chairman of the committee, tion forward in its present form, they might do so; it will and made the following able report, to which he (Mr. H.] still be a legiti:nate subject for discussion after the com- would beg leave to call the attention of gentlemen for a mittee shall have reported. But, as it had been observed, few minutes. Mr. H. then read the following passage: he would prefer to meet it at the threshold. He would “Mr. Bextox, from the Select Committee to which move, therefore, that it be laid on the table, and made the was referred the proposition to inquire into the expedienorder of the clay for Monday next.

cy of reducing the patronage of the Executive GovernMr. HOLMES expressed his regret, at so early a stage ment of the United States, made the following report: in the new administration, to see symptoms of an inclina. That, after mature deliberation, the Committee are of tion to prevent inquiry. He supposed that the operation opinion that it is expedient to diminish or to regulate by of inquiry would be certain; he had expected that it would llaw the Executive patronage of the Federal Government,


The Public Lands.

(Dec. 30, 1829.

whenever the same can be done consistently with the pro- ple have been promised this, and we must fulfil that provisions of the constitution, and without impairing the mise. We should inquire whether there are any useless proper efficiency of the Government. Acting under this officers; and if there are any, they ought to be discharged. conviction, they have reviewed, as time and other engage. It would seem the land surveyors bad nothing to do; not ments would permit them to do, the degree and amount at least for seventy years and upwards. He wished to see of patronage now exercised by the President, and have ar- whether the land was valuable or not, and whether surveyrived at the conclusion that the same may and ought to be ors were any longer required. If the land is not valuable, diminished by law.”

why has it been surveyed? If these officers are useless, Executive patronage! From all this, and what else he we ought to prune, and not to spare the knife. These facts had observed, he had come to the deliberate conclusion (said Mr. H.) imperatively demand inquiry. that the Executive patronage“ has increased, is increasing, He would not, he said, detain the Senate any longer, as and ought to be diminished.” Mr. H. proceeded to read it seemed probable that the subject would come up again. a few other passages from the same report, as follows: He hoped that no feeling to prevent inquiry would deter

“The King of England is the fountain of honor:' the gentlemen from voting for this resolution. He was against President of the United States is the source of patronage employing officers who had nothing to do: he was opposHe presides over the entire system of Federal appoint- ed to sinecures. Mr. H. concluded by stating, he was ments, jobs, and contracts. He has power over the sup- willing to facilitate emigration to the West, but that he port of individuals who administer the system. He makes was opposed to the increase of the Executive patronage, and unmakes them. He chooses from the circle of his and he hoped that in this respect the gentleman from Misfriends and supporters, and may dismiss them, and upon souri retained his former sentiments. all the principles of human action will dismiss them, as of Mr. BENTON immediately rose, when Mr. Holmes sat ten as they disappoint his expectations. His spirit will down, and said that he had seen all that before ; that a animate their actions in all the elections to State and fede newspaper had been sent to him last summer, containing ral offices. There may be exceptions, but the truth of a the extract from his report, which the gentleman had read; general rule is proved by the exception. The intended also a train of remarks similar to the gentleman's, and an check and control of the Senate without new constitution- interrogatory like his. He had not given any answer to al and statutory provisions will cease to operate. Patron- an anonymous writer; but since the same process was gone age will penetrate this body, subdue its capacity of resist- over in the Senate, and by a Senator in his place, he would ance, chain it to the car of power, and enable the Presi- reply to it, and say that the two years which followed the dent to rule as easily, and much more securely, with than making of that report, were not favorable to his object-without the nominal check of the Senate."

that it was an unpropitious season for enlarging the rights “ Your Committee have reported the six bills which have of the people. if this answer was not sufficiently explicit, been enumerated. They do not pretend to have exhaust- Mr. B. would be more particular. (Mr. H. said the aned the subject, but only to have seized a few of its promi- swer was sufficient.] Mr. B. proceeded to remark upon nent points. They have only touched in four places the the suppression of inquiry. He denied that there was any vast and pervading system of Federal Executive patron- attempt to suppress on his side, but rather on the other, age: the Press, the Post Office, the Armed Force, and the He was for discussion, ample discussion in full Senate, and Appointing Power. They are few, compared to the whole upon an appointed time. Does that look like suppresnumber of points which the system presents, but they are sion? Does it deprive the Senator from Maine of any right? points vital to the liberties of the country. The Press is on the contrary, does it not enlarge the exercise of his put foremost because it is the moving power of human ac- rights? For, if the resolution goes to the Committee namtion: the Post Office is the handmaid of the Press: the Arm- ed for it, he not being a member of that Committee, will ed Force its executor: and the Appointing Power the di- have no share in the inquiry; but if it is discussed here, he rectress of the whole. If the Appointing Power was itself takes his full part in the discussion. Does he call that supan emanation of the popular will, if the President was him- pression? Mr. B. returned to the resolution, not for the self the officer and the organ of the people, there would purpose of debating it now, but to say that he would debe less danger in leaving to his will the sole direction of bate it hereafter. That he would trace the progress of all these arbiters of human fate."

these measures to check emigration to the West through Solemn language, this, said Mr. H. The Committee re- a series of forty-four years. Since all that time a system of ported six bills, in one of which is this extraordinary pro- measures had been pursued-he did not speak of their devision:

sign, but their effect--to check emigration to the West. “Sect. 2. And be it further enacted, That in all nomina- He was able to trace these measures, and would do it. It tions made by the President to the Senate, to fill vacancies was time to arrest them-time to make a stand-to face occasioned by an exercise of the President's power to re- about; and to fight a decisive battle in behalf of the West. move from office, the fact of the removal shall be stated He acquiesced in the motion of the Senator from Indiana to the Senate at the same time that the nomination is made, (Mr. NOBLE] but wished a longer day. The young West, with a statement of the reasons for which such officer may she said] had been saved from an attempt to strangle it in have been removed.”

the cradle, forty years ago, by Virginia and the South. These six bills were reported in the session of 1826, and The Senators of Virginia are now absent, engaged in parin that session it was too late to act upon them. During amount duties at home. He wanted their presence again, the next session they were not called up. The succeed- now that the old and persevering policy which would ing session (Mr. H. said] he was not here, but he under- check emigration--not to Ohio, but to the further West stood they had not been called up since.

and South West, was to have a formal decision. He would, Mr. H. said he was pleased that any subject occurred in therefore, move a longer day, to allow time for these Sethe Senate, which enabled him to call their attention to nators to arrive; he named Monday week. this able report of that able chairman. He presumed that Mr. NOBLE acquiesced in the day named. that gentleman, as he himself did, entertained the same Mr. HOLMES added a few remarks. The subject in views now as at that period. The Exccutive patronage is his opinion imperatively demanded inquiry; and as he saw increasing, and, do what we will, it always will increase: and knew something of surveys, he thought it required a for the more power a President assumes, the more popular thorough examination. He wished that a Select Commitwill he become. Mr. H. was desirous that this inquiry tee should be appointed for the purpose. It was absoluteshould be instituted, especially in these days of reform, ly necessary, since it was seen that surveys had been made when the people are expecting retrenchment. The peo- and large appropriations of money; and such a large quan

« ПретходнаНастави »