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his breast the sole record of the transac- | does therefore call on its co-states for an tion; that a very numerous and valuable expression of their sentiments on the acts description of the inhabitants of these concerning aliens, and for the punishment states, being by this precedent reduced as of certain crimes hereinbefore specified, outlaws to the absolute dominion of one plainly declaring whether these acts are or man and the barriers of the Constitution are not authorized by the federal compact. thus swept from us all, no rampart now re- And it doubts not that their sense will be mains against the passions and the power so announced as to prove their attachment of a majority of Congress, to protect from to limited government, whether general or a like exportation or other grievous pun- particular, and that the rights and liberties ishment the minority of the same body, of their co-states will be exposed to no the legislatures, judges, governors, and dangers by remaining embarked on a comcounsellors of the states, nor their other mon bottom with their own but they will peaceable inhabitants who may venture to concur with this commonwealth in considreclaim the constitutional rights and liber-ering the said acts as so palpably against ties of the states and people, or who, for the Constitution as to amount to an undisother causes, good or bad, may be obnox-guised declaration, that the compact is not ious to the view or marked by the suspi- meant to be the measure of the powers of cions of the President, or to be thought dan- the general government, but that it will gerous to his or their elections or other proceed in the exercise over these states of interests, public or personal; that the all powers whatsoever. That they will friendless alien has been selected as the view this as seizing the rights of the states safest subject of a first experiment; but and consolidating them in the hands of the the citizen will soon follow, or rather has general government, with a power assumed already followed; for, already has a sedi- to bind the states (not merely in cases tion act marked him as a prey: that these made federal) but in all cases whatsoever, and successive acts of the same character, by laws made, not with their consent, but unless arrested on the threshold, may tend by others against their consent; that this to drive these states into revolution and would be to surrender the form of governblood, and will furnish new calumnies ment we have chosen, and live under one against republican governments, and new deriving its powers from its own will, and pretexts for those who wish it to be be- not from our authority; and that the colieved, that man cannot be governed but states recurring to their natural rights in by a rod of iron; that it would be a dan-cases not made federal, will concur in degerous delusion were a confidence in the claring these void and of no force, and will men of our choice to silence our fears for each unite with this Commonwealth in rethe safety of our rights; that confidence is questing their repeal at the next session of everywhere the parent of despotism; free Congress. government is found in jealousy and not in confidence; it is jealousy and not confidence which prescribes limited constitutions to bind down those whom we are obliged to trust with power; that our Constitution has accordingly fixed the limits to which, and no farther, our confidence may go; and let the honest advocate of confidence read the alien and sedition acts, and say if the Constitution has not been wise in fixing limits to the government it created, and whether we should be wise in destroying those limits? Let him say what the government is, if it be not a tyranny, which the men of our choice have conferred on the President, and the President of our choice has assented to and accepted over the friendly strangers, to whom the mild spirit of our country and its laws had pledged hospitality and protection; that the men of our choice have more respected the bare suspicions of the President than the solid rights of innocence, the claims of justification, the sacred force of truth, and the forms and substance of law and justice. In questions of power, then, let no more be said of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution. That this Commonwealth
EDMUND BULLOCK, S. H. R.
Passed the House of Representatives,
Attest, THOS. TODD, C. H. R.
Jas. Garrard, Gov. of Ky.
HARRY TOULMIN, Sec. of State. House of Representatives, Thursday, Nov. 14, 1799. The House, according to the standing order of the day, resolved itself into a committee of the whole House, on the state of the commonwealth, Mr. Desha in the chair; and after some time spent therein, the speaker resumed the chair, and Mr. Desha reported that the committee had taken under consideration sundry resolutions passed by several state legislatures, on the subject of the alien and sedition laws, and had come to a resolution thereupon, which he delivered in at the clerk's
table, where it was read and unanimously the general government be permitted to agreed to by the House, as follows :— transgress the limits fixed by that compact, The representatives of the good people by a total disregard to the special delegaof this commonwealth, in General Assem- tions of power therein contained, an annibly convened, having maturely considered hilation of the state governments, and the the answe sundry states in the Union, j creation upon their ruins of a general conto their resolutions passed the last session, idated government, will be the inevitarespecting certain unconstitutional laws of ble consequence: That the principle and Congress, commonly called the alien and construction contended for by sundry of sedition laws, would be fithle, indeed, the state legislatures, that the general govto them-el and to those they represent. ernment is the exclusive judge of the exnly to acquiesce in the pria- tent of the powers delegated to it, stop be main thing short of despotism since the dis
ment. CGRes O
cip and doctrines attempted tained in all these answers, that of Vir-cretion of those who administer the gov nia only excepted. To again enter the ernment, and not the Constitution, would fld of argument, and attempt more more fully be the measure of their powers: That the cibly to expose the unconstitutional- several states who formed that instrument ity of these ebaci de laws, would, it is 'being sovereign and independent, have the apprehended, be as unnecessary as unavail- unquestionable right to judge of the inind Wẹ cann t, however, but lament¦ fraction; and that a nullification by those that, in the discussion of those in sting vereinties of all unauthorized acts done subjects by uniry of the beslätures of, under color of that instrument is the rightate untouc JUE 1 retion-ful remedy: That the Commonwealth and uncardid in-inuations, der tol does, under the most deliberate reconsidthe true character and principle of this eration, declare that the said alien and commonwealth, have been substituted in sedition laws are. in their opinion, palpaplace of fair reasoning and un aru-ble violations of the said Constitution; opinions of these alam and, however cheerfully it may be disposed the-neral government, t to surrender its opinion to a majority of its asons those opinions. Sister states, in matters of ordinary or d with decency and with tem- doubtful policy, yet, in momentous regulaper ani submitted to the discussion and tions like the present, which so vitally judgment of our fellow-citizens through it wound the best rights of the citizen, it the Union. Whether the like decency would consider a silent acquiescence as and temper have been observed in the an- highly criminal: That although this comewers of most of these states who have monwealth, as a party to the federal comdenied attempted to obviate the great act, will bow to the laws of the Union, triks contained in those resolutions w ret it does, at the same time, declare that have only to submit to a candid world. (it will not now, or ever hereafter, cease to Faithful to the true principles of the Fed-ppose in a constitutional manner every eral Union, un pascions of any designs to attempt, at what quarter soever offered, to disturb the harmony of that Union, and violate that compact. And, fnally, in orAKS only to escape the fangs of despot-der that no pretext or arguments may be ism, the good people of this commdrawn from a supposed acquiescence on wealth are regardless of censure or calum- the part of this commonwealth in the conniation. Lest, however, the silence of stitutionality of those laws, and be thereby this commonwealth should be construed, used as precedents for similar future violainto an acquiescence in the doctrines and tions of the federal compact-this comprinciples advanced and attempted to be monwealth does now enter against them its maintained by the said answers, or lest solemn protest. those of our fellow-citizens throughout the Union who so widely differ from us on those important subjects, should be deluded by the expectation, that we shall be deterred from what we conceive car duty, or shrink from the principles contained in those resolutions therefore.
Extract, &c. Artest. T. TODD. C. H. R. In Senate, Nov. 22, 1799-Read and concurred in.
B. THURSTON, C. S. Washington's Farewell Address to the Peo
ple of the United States, Sept. 17, 1796. Accepted as a Platform for the People of the Nation, regardlaas oj party.
FRIENDS AND FELLOW-CITIZENS :
Resolved, That this commonwealth considers the Federal Union, upon the terms and for the purposes specified in the late compact, as conducive to the liberty and The period for a new election of a citihappiness of the several states: That it zen to administer the executive governdzeɛ now unequivocally declare its attachment of the United States being not far ment to the Union, and to that compact, distant, and the time actually arrived when agreeably wits obvious and real intention, your thoughts must be employed in desigani will be among the last to seek its dis-nating the person who is to be clothed with solution: That if those who administer that important trust, it appears to me pro
and prudence invite me to quit the political scene, patriotism does not forbid it.
In looking forward to the moment which is intended to terminate the career of my public life, my feelings do not permit me to suspend the deep acknowledgment of that debt of gratitude which I owe to my beloved country for the many honors it has conferred upon me; still more for the steadfast confidence with which it has
The acceptance of, and continuance hitherto in, the office to which your suffrages have twice called me, have been a uniform sacrifice of inclination to the opinion of duty, and to a deference for what appeared to be your desire. I constantly hoped that it would have been much earlier in my power, consistently with motives which I was not at liberty to disregard, to return to that retirement from which I had been reluctantly drawn. The strength of my inclination to do this, previous to the last election, had even led to the preparation of an address to declare it to you; but mature reflection on the then perplexed and critical posture of our affairs with foreign nations, and the unanimous advice of persons entitled to my confidence, impelled me to abandon the idea.
per, especially as it may conduce to a more distinct expression of the public voice, that I should now apprise you of the resolution I have formed to decline being considered among the number of those out of whom a choice is to be made. I beg you, at the same time, to do me the justice to be assured that this resolution has not been taken without a strict regard to all the considerations appertaining to the relation which binds a dutiful citizen to his coun-supported me; and for the opportunities I try; and that in withdrawing the tender of have thence enjoyed of manifesting my service, which silence, in my situation, inviolable attachment, by services faithful might imply, I am influenced by no dimi- and persevering, though in usefulness unnution of zeal for your future interests; no equal to my zeal. If benefits have redeficiency of grateful respect of your past sulted to our country from these services, kindness; but am supported by a full con- let it always be remembered to your viction that the step is compatible with praise, and as an instructive example in our annals, that under circumstances in which the passions, agitated in every direc tion, were liable to mislead; amidst appearances sometimes dubious, vicissitudes of fortune often discouraging; in situations in which, not unfrequently, want of success has countenanced the spirit of criticism,-the constancy of your support was the essential prop of the efforts, and a guarantee of the plans, by which they were effected. Profoundly penetrated by this new idea, I shall carry it with me to my grave, as a strong incitement to unceasing vows, that Heaven may continue to you the choicest tokens of its beneficence; that union and brotherly affection may be perpetual; that the free Constitution, which is the work of your hands, may be sacredly maintained; that its administration, in every department, may be stamped with wisdom and virtue; that in fine, the happiness of the people of these
I rejoice that the state of your concerns, external as well as internal, no longer renders the pursuit of inclination incompati-states, under the auspices of liberty, may ble with the sentiment of duty or propriety; be made complete, by so careful a preserand am persuaded, whatever partiality vation and so prudent a use of this blessing may be retained for my services, that, in as will acquire to them the glory of recomthe present circumstances of our country, mending it to the applause, the affection, you will not disapprove my determination and the adoption of every nation which is to retire. yet a stranger to it.
The impressions with which I first undertook the arduous trust were explained on the proper occasion. In the discharge of this trust, I will only say, that I have with good intentions contributed towards the organization and administration of the government the best exertions of which a very fallible judgment was capable. Not unconscious in the outset of the inferiority of my qualifications, experience, in my own eyes-perhaps still more in the eyes of others has strengthened the motives to diffidence of myself; and every day the increasing weight of years admonishes me, more and more, that the abode of retire-parting friend, who can possibly have no ment is as necessary to me as it will be personal motive to bias his counsel; nor welcome. Satisfied that if any circum- can I forget, as an encouragement to it, stances have given peculiar value to my your indulgent reception of my sentiments services, they were temporary, I have the on a former and not dissimilar occasion. consolation to believe that, while choice Interwoven as is the love of liberty with
Here, perhaps, I ought to stop; but a solicitude for your welfare, which cannot end but with my life, and the apprehension of danger natural to that solicitude, urge me, on an occasion like the present, to offer to your solemn contemplation, an to recommend to your frequent review, some sentiments, which are the result of much reflection, of no inconsiderable observation, and which appear to me all-important to the permanency of your felicity as a people. These will be afforded to you with the more freedom, as you can only see in them the disinterested warning of a
every ligament of your hearts, no recom- the same intercourse benefiting by the mendation of mine is necessary to fortify agency of the North, sees its agriculture or confirm the attachment. grow, and its commerce expanded. Turning partly into its own channels the seamen of the North, it finds its particular navigation invigorated; and while it contributes, in different ways, to nourish and increase the general mass of the national navigation, it looks forward to the protection of a maritime strength to which itself is unequally adapted. The East, in like intercourse with the West, already finds, and in the progressive improvement of in
The unity of government which constitutes you one people, is also now dear to you. It is justly so; for it is a main pillar in the edifice of your real independencethe support of your tranquillity at home, your peace abroad, of your safety, of your prosperity, of that very liberty which you to highly prize. But as it is easy to foresee that, from different causes and from different quarters, much pains will be taken, many artifices employed, to weaken interior communication, by land and by your minds the conviction of this truth: water, will more and more find, a valuable as this is the point in your political fortress | vent for the commodities which each brings against which the batteries of internal and from abroad or manufactures at home. The external enemies will be most constantly West derives from the East supplies reand actively, (though often covertly and quisite to its growth or comfort, and what insidiously directed, it is of infinite mois perhaps of stili greater consequence, it — ment that you should properly estimate the must, of necessity, owe the secure enjoyimmense value of your national union to ment of indispensable outlets for its own your collective and individual happiness; productions, to the weight, influence, and that you should cherish a cordial, habitual, the maritime strength of the Atlantic side and immovable attachment to it; accus- of the Union, directed by an indissoluble toming yourself to think and speak of it as community of interests as one nation. Any of the palladium of your political safety other tenure by which the West can hoid and prosperity, watching for its preserva- this essential advantage, whether derived tion with jealous anxiety; discountenan- from its own separate strength, or from an cing whatever may suggest even a suspicion apostate and unnatural connexion with any that it can, in any event, be abandoned; foreign power, must be intrinsically preand indignantly frowning upon the first carious. dawning of every attempt to alienate any portion of our country from the rest, or to enfeeble the sacred ties which now link together the various parts.
For this you have every inducement of sympathy and interest. Citizens, by birth or choice, of a common country, that country has a right to concentrate your affections. The name of American, which belongs to you in your national capacity, must always exalt the just pride of patri- | otism, more than appellations derived from local discriminations. With slight shades of difference, you have the same religion, manners, habits, and political principles. You have, in a common cause, fought and triumphed together; the independence and liberty you possess are the work of joint counsels and joint efforts, of common dangers, sufferings, and successes. But these considerations, however powerfully they address themselves to your sensibility, are generally outweighed by those which apply more immediately to your interest; here every portion of our country finds the most commanding motives for carefully guarding and preserving the union of the whole.
The North, in an unrestrained intercourse with the South, protected by the equal laws of a common government, finds, in the productions of the latter, great additional resources of maritime and commercial enterprise, and precious materials of manufacturing industry. The South, in
While, then, every part of our country thus feels an immediate and particular interest in union, all the parts combined cannot fail to find, in the united mass of means and efforts, greater strength, greater resource, proportionably greater security from external danger, a less frequent interruption of their peace by foreign nations; and what is of inestimable value, they must derive from union an exemption from those broils and wars between themselves, which so frequently afflict neighboring countries, not tied together by the same government; which their own rivalship alone would be sufficient to produce, but which opposite foreign alliances, attachments and intrigues, would stimulate and embitter. Hence, likewise, they will avoid the necessity of those overgrown military establishments, which, under any form of government, are inauspicious to liberty, and which are to be regarded as particularly hostile to republican liberty; in this sense it is that your union ought to be considered as a main prop of your liberty, and that the love of one ought to endear to you the preservation of the other.
These considerations speak a persuasive language to every reflecting and virtuous mind, and exhibit the continuance of the Union as a primary object of patriotic desire. Is there a doubt, whether a common government can embrace so large a sphere? Let experience solve it. To listen to mere speculation, in such a case, were criminal
We are authorized to hope, that a proper our own choice, uninfluenced and unawed organization of the whole, with the aux-adopted upon full investigation and mailiary agency of governments for the re- ture deliberation, completely free in its spective subdivisions, will afford a happy principles, in the distribution of its powers issue to the experiment. It is well worth uniting security with energy, and cona fair and full experiment. With such taining within itself a provision for its own powerful and obvious motives to Union, amendment, has a just claim to your conaffecting all parts of our country, while ex-fidence and your support. Respect for its perience shall not have demonstrated its authority, compliance with its laws, acimpracticability, there will always be rea- quiescence in its measures, are duties enson to distrust the patriotism of those who, joined by the fundamental maxims of true in any quarter, may endeavor to weaken liberty. The basis of our political system its bands. is the right of the people to make and to alter their Constitutions of government; but the Constitution which at any time exists, till changed by an explicit and authentic act of the whole people, is sacred
In contemplating the causes which may disturb our Union, it occurs as a matter of serious concern, that any ground should have been furnished for characterizing parties by geographical discriminations-ly obligatory upon all. The very idea of Northern and Southern-Atlantic and the power and right of the people to estabWestern: whence designing men may en- lish government, presupposes the duty of deavor to excite a belief that there is a real every individual to obey the established difference of local interests and views. One government. of the expedients of party to acquire influence within particular districts, is to misrepresent the opinions and aims of other districts. You cannot shield yourselves too much against the jealousies and heartburnings which spring from these misrepresentations; they tend to render alien to each other those who ought to be bound together by paternal affection. The inhabitants of our Western country have lately had a useful lesson on this head; they have seen in the negotiation by the executive, and in the unanimous ratification by the Senate, of the treaty with Spain, and in the universal satisfaction at that event throughout the United States, decisive proof how unfounded were the suspicions propagated among them, of a policy in the general government, and in the Atlantic States, unfriendly to their interest in regard to the Mississippi-that with Great Britain, and that with Spain, which secure to them everything they could desire in respect to our foreign relations, towards confirming their prosperity. Will it not be their wisdom to rely for the preservation of these advantages on the Union by which they were procured? Will they not henceforth be deaf to those advisers, if such there are, who would sever them from their brethren, and connect them with aliens?
All obstruction to the execution of laws, all combinations and associations under whatever plausible character, with the real design to direct, control, counteract, or awe the regular deliberation and action of the constituted authorities, are destructive to this fundamental principle, and of fatal tendency. They serve to organize faction, to give it an artificial and extraordinary force, to put in the place of the delegated will of the nation, the will of a party, often a small but artful and enterprising minority of the community; and, according to the alternate triumphs of different parties, to make the public administration the mirror of the ill-concerted and incongruous projects of fashion, rather than the organ of consistent and wholesome plans, digested by common counsels and modified by mutual interests.
However combinations or associations of the above description may now and then answer popular ends, they are likely, in the course of time and things, to become potent engines, by which cunning, ambitious, and unprincipled men will be enabled to subvert the power of the people, and to usurp for themselves the reins of government; destroying, afterwards, the very engines which had lifted them to unjust dominion.
To the efficacy and permanency of your Union a government of the whole is indispensable. No alliance, however strict between the parties, can be an adequate substitute; they must inevitably experience the infractions and interruptions which all alliances, in all time, have experienced. Sensible of this momentous truth, you have improved upon your first essay, by the adoption of a Constitution of government, better calculated than your former the energy of the system, and thus to unfor an intimate union, and for the effica- dermine what cannot be directly overcious management of your common con- thrown. In all the changes to which you This government, the offspring of may be invited, remember that time and
Towards the preservation of your government, and the permanency of your present happy state, it is requisite, not only that you steadily discountenance irregular oppositions to its acknowledged authority, but also that you resist with care the spirit of innovation upon its principles, however specious the pretexts. One method of assault may be to effect, in the forms of the Constitution, alterations which will impair