Слике страница
[ocr errors]

responsibilities and cares of that office you know better than I. The seven years of your administration as Governor have been years full of labor and fraught with many trials and difficulties, yet rich in rewards of honor and praise. During all of those seven years you have faced opposition before which only a strong man could stand and over which only a determined and resourceful mind could triumph. The measure of your victory has been shown in the yearly increasing manifestation of public approbation as expressed at the polls. I am sure I express the deep sense of both my own and my party's conviction when I say that to the popular confidence produced by your intelligent, economical and honest administration of public affairs is largely due the emphatic declaration of the people last November against any transfer of political stewardship. They have found in you, their servant, a sturdy defender of constitutional rights, a resolute and consistent champion of home rule, a wholesome example of honest and honorable partisanship, a faithful, able, and fearless Executive, whose bold personality and administrative genius have left their lasting imprint upon the affairs of our State and won a warm place in the people's hearts. I congratulate you sincerely, sir, upon your distinguished achievements, and in the new field of responsibility to which you have been commissioned may the same honesty of purpose, the same force of character and the same rare ability bring new laurels to your well-earned fame.

FELLOW CITIZENS: -I am here to take in your presence the solemn oath which marks my installation into the honored office to which you have elected me. The simple ceremony will be quickly over, but the obligations which it imposes will ever remain increasing reminders of your trust and my responsibility. Profuse promises betray generous intentions but too often excite distrust. I make none. I prefer that by my acts

rather than by my pledges you shall judge my fidelity to your interests and my devotion to your happiness and prosperity.

Yet this occasion suggests to me, more vividly perhaps than it can to you, the magnitude of the undertaking which I am about to assume and the dependence which an Executive must feel upon the generous indulgence and kind cooperation of his fellow citizens. I have no ambition save to win your esteem and respect. I expect and invite criticism of my official acts, but I also appeal to your disinterested patriotism to assist in raising the standard of the public service, in inspiring a loftier conception of official responsibility, and in encouraging a more general feeling of State pride and a broader view of State policy.

Our State is still the Empire State. In commerce, in finance, in industry it acknowledges no superior. Its six millions of people represent well the intelligence, the learning, the social and political ideals of our country. Surely with such great resources and advantages no inferior rank in the sisterhood of States should satisfy our citizens. Our continued supremacy should be our dearest wish and the studied object of our most intelligent statesmanship. But that is to be attained only by the broadest conception of our possibilities and the fullest appreciation of our part in our country's progress and development. So closely are our interests allied to those of our sister States that by their prosperity in a large degree do we measure

More necessary is it then that as an example to other States as well as for our own happiness we should solve wisely the growing problems of statecraft and become a leader in genuine political advancement.

The rapidly changing conditions of industrial, business and social life present new questions for solution and demand thorough study by the most competent minds. New conditions demand new laws and with increasing population and


multiplying interests the law-making and administrative functions of

government must ever be expanding centres of influence for good or bad; but danger only lies in forsaking those simple but vital principles which make up the theory of American government and furnish the best guarantees of liberty.

Fellow citizens, and you especially who are to be associated with me in official place, I ask your generous assistance in giving to the people plain, honest and simple government, relieving them of all unequal and unnecessary burdens whether of taxation or of restrictive and class legislation, encouraging the spread of education, extending wisely the powers of municipalities, limiting discreetly the encroachments of State authority, and while assuring to every citizen the fullest protection of our laws, yet expecting from him in return the heartiest support of enlightened patriotism. Let us join in fostering healthy pride of our State, in advancing its prosperity, in augmenting its commanding influence, and by sympathetic cooperation between the people and their public servants present a worthy model of government to our sister States.



Executive Chamber,

Albany, January 5, 1892. TO THE LEGISLATURE:

A sense of diffidence must always animate the official communications of the Executive to the law-making body. His office is indeed a co-ordinate branch of the government, and is invested by the Constitution with powers equal or superior in scope to those of the Legislature, yet his recommendations and suggestions, however closely they may be made to reflect the sentiments and wishes of a majority of the people, are but the utterances of a single officer addressed to a vastly greater number of the people's representatives. Doubly sensitive must the Executive be, therefore, when for the first time in his official capacity, and almost as the first of his official acts, he complies with the constitutional obligation to communicate to the Legislature “the condition of the State, and recommend such matters to them as he shall judge expedient.”

It is a reason for great satisfaction and encouragement, however, that in my discharge of this first important duty I am able to address my suggestions to a Legislature in political accord with the Executive. For the first time in eight years both branches of the Legislature and the Executive represent the same political ideas and a majority of the popular vote.

[ocr errors]

This fact gives assurance that desired legislation, long delayed by reason of conflict between Legislature and Executive, may be speedily and wisely enacted, and that Legislature and Executive may work in harmony for the best interests of the people.

I congratulate you also that the new year which opens coincidently with the convening of your honorable body, finds the State in prosperous condition and the people happy and contented. An overruling Providence has been even more bountiful than usual in His dispensation of blessings during the year just ended. The products of agriculture have been large, and industry and commerce have been active and have yielded good returns. The State is practically out of debt, State taxes are low, and the government has been honestly and well administered. Let it be our joint endeavor to maintain these conditions of prosperity, so far as may be in our power -- to legislate wisely and impartially, and to give the people those measures of relief which they properly desire and to which they are justly entitled.

ENUMERATION AND APPORTIONMENT. The paramount duty before the Legislature is to provide for an enumeration of the inhabitants of the State, preparatory to a reapportionment of Senate and Assembly districts.

If there was needed heretofore any direct proof of the injustice of the present legislative apportionment, it is now furnished by the returns of the Federal census of 1890. Defective as that enumeration was, especially in the city of New York, it shows an increase of population in the State since 1875 of nearly 1,300,000 inhabitants, or twenty-seven per cent. Yet the same apportionment now exists for the 5,997,853 inhabitants of the State, as was established in 1879 for the 4,698,958 persons enumerated in the census of 1875. If the

« ПретходнаНастави »