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thing else is worth preserving. In the words of a great man, give us union, but give us liberty first. Do not deprive us of all our blessings under the empty sound of union. Do not steal from us our senses under the bewitching charm of union. Do not, like the Madagascar bat, suck us to death while you are fanning us to sleep by the cooling breezes of your widespread wings of union. We begin to understand all this delusion, and we are awake to the sufferings you have insidiously inflicted upon us by the talisman of union. If you will not withdraw your exactions, if you will not live with us upon the terms of equal rights, I tell you in the language of plain truth, to which, perhaps, you are unaccustomed, we shall certainly part from you, and part, I hope, in peace. Then you may hug to yourselves your darling American system; then you may tax your people to your hearts' content; and then, if you choose, you may take to yourselves other gods; but, as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord of Liberty and all the people of the South shall cry, Amen.
In the ensuing presidential election South Carolina, in protest against the Democratic candidate, Andrew Jackson, and the Whig candidate, Henry Clay, both of whom had declared against nullification, voted for Governor John Floyd, of Virginia, a pronounced nullificationist.
On November 24, 1832 (two weeks after the presidential election), the people of South Carolina in convention assembled issued an ordinance of nullification against the tariff, the substance of which was as follows:
ORDINANCE OF NULLIFICATION
BY THE PEOPLE OF SOUTH CAROLINA
"Whereas the Congress of the United States, by various acts, purporting to be acts laying duties and imposts on foreign imports, but, in reality, intended for the protection of domestic manufactures and the giving of bounties to classes and individuals engaged in particular employments at the expense and to the injury and oppression of other classes and individuals, and by wholly exempting from taxation certain foreign commodities, such as are not produced or manufactured in the United States, to afford a pretext for imposing higher and excessive duties on articles similar to those intended to be protected, hath
exceeded its just powers under the Constitution, which confers on it no authority to afford such protection, and hath violated the true meaning and intent of the Constitution, which provides for equality in imposing the burdens of taxation upon the several States and portions of the confederacy: And, whereas the said Congress, exceeding its just power to impose taxes and collect revenue for the purpose of effecting and accomplishing the specific objects and purposes which the Constitution of the United States authorizes it to effect and accomplish, hath raised and collected unnecessary revenue for objects unauthorized by the Constitution;
"We, therefore, the people of the State of South Carolina, in convention assembled, do declare and ordain that, [these acts] are unauthorized by the Constitution of the United States and violate the true meaning and intent thereof, and are null, void, and no law, nor binding upon this State, its officers, or citizens. And it is further ordained that it shall not be lawful for any of the constituted authorities, whether of this State or of the United States, to enforce the payment of duties imposed by the said acts within the limits of this State; but it shall be the duty of the legislature to adopt such measures and pass such acts as may be necessary to give full effect to this ordinance and to prevent the enforcement and arrest the operation of the said acts within the limits of this State from and after the 1st day of February next.
"And it is further ordained that, in no case of law or equity, decided in the courts of this State, wherein shall be drawn in question the authority of this ordinance or the validity of such act or acts of the legislature as may be passed for the purpose of giving effect thereto, or the validity of the aforesaid acts of Congress, imposing duties, shall any appeal be taken or allowed to the Supreme Court of the United States; and, if any such appeal shall be attempted to be taken, the courts of this State shall proceed to execute and enforce their judgments, according to the laws and usages of the State, without reference to such attempted appeal, and the person or persons attempting to take such appeal may be dealt with as for a contempt of the court.
"And we, the people of South Carolina, to the end that it may be fully understood by the Government of the United States, and the people of the co-States, that we are determined to maintain this our ordinance and declaration, at every hazard, do further declare that we will not submit to the application of force, on the part of the federal government, to reduce this State to obedience; but that we will consider the passage by Congress
of any act authorizing the employment of a military or naval force against the State of South Carolina, her constitutional authorities or citizens; or any act abolishing or closing the ports of
THE VALUE OF A UNIT WITH FOUR CYPHERS GOING BEFORE IT
[Calhoun as the Terrier "Nullifies" the Jackson Administration]
From the collection of the New York Historical Society
this State, or any act to coerce the State, shut up her ports, destroy or harass her commerce, or to enforce the acts hereby declared to be null and void, otherwise than through the civil tribunals of the country, as inconsistent with the longer continuance of South Carolina in the Union; and that the people of this
State will thenceforth hold themselves absolved from all further obligation to maintain or preserve their political connection with the people of the other States, and will forthwith proceed to organize a separate government, and do all other acts and things which sovereign and independent States may of right do.
This ordinance, signed by more than a hundred prominent citizens, was officially communicated to the President of the United States.
ENFORCEMENT ON THE STATES OF FEDERAL LAWS
FOURTH ANNUAL MESSAGE OF PRESIDENT JACKSON
In his annual message of December 4, 1832, President Jackson, stating that the public debt would shortly be extinguished, proposed a reduction of the tariff in order to conciliate the disaffected section of the Union.
Nevertheless he announced that the defiance of Federal laws by the Southern nullificationists would no longer be tolerated.
"It is my painful duty to state that, in one quarter of the United States, opposition to the revenue laws has risen to a height which threatens to thwart their execution, if not to endanger the integrity of the Union. Whatever obstructions may be thrown in the way of the judicial authorities of the general Government, it is hoped they will be able, peaceably, to overcome them by the prudence of their own offices, and the patriotism of the people. But should this reasonable reliance on the moderation and good sense of all portions of our fellow-citizens be disappointed, it is believed that the laws themselves are fully adequate to the suppression of such attempts as may be immediately made. Should the exigency arise, rendering the execution of the existing laws impracticable, from any cause whatever, prompt notice of it will be given to Congress, with the suggestion of such views and measures as may be deemed necessary to meet it."
The legislature of South Carolina, which met in December, 1832, elected Senator Robert Y. Hayne governor and, in obedience to his message, resumed sovereign powers which the State had resigned to the Federal Government on its ratification of the Constitution,
empowered the State officers to resist the collection of customs, and put the State in readiness for war. though the State still retained its Senators and Representatives in the Federal Congress, the acts of its legislature were, in national law, a virtual secession from the Union.
On December 10, 1832, the President of the United States issued the following proclamation:
PROCLAMATION AGAINST NULLIFICATION
After reciting the ordinance of South Carolina he said:
"Whereas the said ordinance prescribes to the people of South Carolina a course of conduct in direct violation of their duty as citizens of the United States, contrary to the laws of their country, subversive of its constitution, and having for its object the destruction of the Union-that Union which, coeval with our political existence, led our fathers, without any other ties to unite them than those of patriotism and a common cause, through a sanguinary struggle to a glorious independence-that sacred Union, hitherto inviolate, which, perfected by our happy Constitution, has brought us, by the favor of Heaven, to a state of prosperity at home, and high consideration abroad, rarely, if ever, equaled in the history of nations: To preserve this bond of our political existence from destruction, to maintain inviolate this state of national honor and prosperity, and to justify the confidence my fellow-citizens have reposed in me, I, Andrew Jackson, President of the United States, have thought proper to issue this my proclamation, stating my views of the Constitution and laws applicable to the measures adopted by the convention of South Carolina, and to the reasons they have put forth to sustain them, declaring the course which duty will require me to pursue, and, appealing to the understanding and patriotism of the people, warn them of the consequences that must inevitably result from an observance of the dictates of the convention.
"The ordinance is founded, not on the indefeasible right of resisting acts which are plainly unconstitutional and too oppressive to be endured, but on the strange position that any one State may not only declare an act of Congress void, but prohibit its execution; that they may do this consistently with the