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laws and natural partiality to the countries of their birth are not reasonable causes for declaring this to be one of the rights incommunicable in future to adoptive citizens.
We, therefore, your petitioners, relying with entire confidence on the wisdom and patriotism of our representatives in General assembly, clothed preëminently with all the powers of the people which have not been reserved to themselves, or enumerated in the grant to the General Government delegated to maintain all their rights and relations not expressly and exclusively transferred to other jurisdictions, and stationed as sentinels to observe with watchfulness and oppose with firmness all movements tending to destroy the equilibrium of our excellent but complicated machine of government, invoke from you that redress of our violated rights which the freedom and safety of our common country calls for. We denounce to you a great crime, wicked in its purpose, and mortal in its consequences unless prevented, committed by citizens of this commonwealth against the body of their country. If we have erred in conceiving the redress provided by the law, we commit the subject to the superior wisdom of this house to devise and pursue such proceedings as they shall think best; and we, as in duty bound, shall ever
(Endorsed in Mr. Jefferson's hand: " This rough paper contains what was agreed upon."]
I. In order to bring the members of society together in the first instance, the custom of the country has established that residents shall pay the first visit to strangers, and, among strangers, first comers to later comers, foreign and domestic; the character of stranger ceasing after the first visits. To this rule there is a single exception. Foreign ministers, from the necessity of making themselves known, pay the first visit to the ministers of the nation, which is returned
II. When brought together in society, all are perfectly equal, whether foreign or domestic, titled or untitled, in or out of office.
All other observances are but exemplifications of these two principles.
I. 1st. The families of foreign ministers, arriving at the seat of government, receive the first visit from those of the national ministers, as from all other residents.
2d. Members of the Legislature and of the Judiciary, independent of their offices, have a right as strangers to receive the first visit.
II. 1st. No title being admitted here, those of foreigners give no precedence.
20. Differences of grade among the diplomatic members, gives no precedence.
3d. At public ceremonies, to which the government invites the presence of foreign ministers and their families, a convenient seat or station will be provided for them, with any other strangers invited and the families of the national ministers, each taking place as they arrive, and without any precedence.
4th. To maintain the principle of equality, or of pêle mêla, and prevent the growth of precedence out of courtesy, the members of the Executive will practice at their own houses, and recommend an adherence to the ancient usage of the country, of gentlemen in mass giving precedence to the ladies in mass, in passing from one apartment where they are assembled into another.
Charges exhibited to the President of the United States against
the Honorable Arthur Sinclair, as Governor of the territory of the United States north-west of the river Ohio.
1st. He has usurped legislative powers by the erection of counties and location of the seats of justice, by proclamation, on his own sole authority.
2d. He has misused the power of negativing legislative acts, by putting his negative on laws useful and necessary for the territory.
3d. He has refused to perform the duties of his office but on the payment of arbitrary fees not established by any lawful authority.
4th. He has negatived an act of the Legislature abolishing those fees, and passed their act giving him five hundred dollars
-meant as a compensation for that abolition, thereby holding both the fees and the compensation.
5th. He has attempted to effect the dismemberment of the territory, and to destroy its constitutional boundaries, in order to prevent its advancement to those rights of self-government to which its numbers would entitle it.
6th. He has granted commissions generally during pleasure; but that of Attorney General to his own son during good behavior.
7th. He has endeavored arbitrarily to influence and control the proceedings of the Judiciary, and has revoked or effected a surrender of the commissions of those who have refused to bend to his will, (acknowledged, p. 22; revoked three commissions, p32.)
8th. He has appointed persons residing out of a county to offices, the duties of which were to be habitually performed within them. (Acknowledged, p. 20, in the case of Robb, his son-in-law, made Recorder of Clermont though living in Hamilton-executed by deputy.)
9th. He has obstructed the organization and disciplining of a militia for the defence of the territory, by withholding the appointment of officers years after a law had passed establishing them.
10th. He has avowed his hostility to the form and substance of republican government.
1st. The ordinance in the paragraph respecting counties, speaks of laws adopted or made, which must refer both to the first and second stage of government; it then gives the Governor power to lay out counties from time to time, reserving a right to the Legislature thereafter to alter them. This may mean that the Governor is always to lay out first, and the Legislature thereafter to alter ; or it may mean that the Governor is to lay out during
the first stage of government, and the Legislature to do it in the second, reddendo singula singulis. The first construction renders the power reserved the Legislature null, because the Governor having a negative will not permit the other branches to act against his opinion manifested in the original laying out. The second construction gives it full effect, and must therefore be understood to be that intended by Congress, who certainly meant to reserve a practicable right to the Legislature—not a nugatory one, and the rather as the forming counties is an act of lawmaking, not of the execution of a law. The place of dispensing justice may not seem essentially legislative at first view, but to rest naturally with those who are to dispense it; yet when we consider it in all its relations to public convenience as well as justice, at how early a date it was deemed a grievance in England, and fixed by law, and how universally so in these States, this gives a sure practical construction of what Congress must have intended.
2d. The policy of giving a negative on laws to the Executive seems to be : 1st, to provide protection against the Legislature for the other independent departments. 2d. To protect such portions of the citizens as might be oppressed by a local or partial interest happening to predominate in the Legislature at the moment. But not to set up the judgment of a single individual in cases of ordinary legislation against the collected wisdom of the nation. If these ideas be just, Governor Sinclair is guilty on the second charge.
5th. The ordinance permits the whole territory north-west of the Ohio to be divided by Congress into three or five States, and says, whenever any of the said States shall have sixty thousand inhabitants it shall be received in Congress. The change of boundary proposed by the late act of the north-west Legislature did divide the population into two parts, so that both would have been much longer reaching sixty thousand than if the boundaries remained fixed by the ordinance. That the act dismembered that portion of territory which claimed to be a State, is certain. That Governor Sinclair assented to it at least is certain. That he promoted it by his influence, and with a view to continue himself and friends the longer in place and power, is suggested by many, and will be judged of by every one according to the opinion entertained of his attachment to his office, or his power of preserving his mind unbiassed by that attachment or any other particular views. See Sinclair's letter to Harrison, printed State papers, March 14th, 1800.
6th. The censure implied in this charge seems to be not so much in the Governor's giving commissions during pleasure in the judiciary line, though a tenure for life there is familiar, as the making the Attorney General an officer for life, a thing unprecedented, and its being in the case of his own son. The reason assigned by the Governor that he gave him this fixed tenure, because he at that time proposed himself to retire from office, and meant thus to protect his son against his successor, admits the fact charged, and is far from justifying it.
7th. Admitting the tenure of every commission, without any special limitation, to be during the will of him who grants it, the conduct of the three justices whose commission was revoked, and that of Mr. Finlay whose resignation was not accepted, is not sufficiently clear of blame to fix the charge of arbitrarily influencing and controlling the judiciary.
8th. This charge is admitted to be true by Governor Sinclair, in the case of his son-in-law, made Recorder of Clermont, while he lived in Hamilton. See pp. 20. He urges some matters in justification. Several other instances are stated by Worthington and Meigs. Will's case, p. 46.
9th. This cannot be decided but on a view of the laws.
4th. That one of these acts was meant as a compensation for the other, is not proved. See p. 24, 43.
3d. The real charge here is that the Governor and judges selected laws from the codes of the States to give themselves fees. I was a member of Congress, and I believe of the committee which prepared the first plan for the organization of the new States. A Legislature to be composed of the Governor and judges was a measure of necessity in the earliest stages of those territorial governments; yet we were sensible it was fundamentally wrong to submit freemen to laws made by officers of