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FEB. 2, 1833.]

Revenue Collection Bill.


sembling in convention. It is true, they assembled in parts. But this question is not left to mere reason; the their several States; and where else should they have people have, in express terms, decided it, by saying, this assembled? No political dreamer was ever wild enough constitution, and the laws of the United States which to think of breaking down the lines which separate the shall be made in pursuance thereof,' shall be the suStates, and of compounding the American people into preme law of the land; and by requiring that the memone common mass. Of consequence, when they act, they bers of the State Legislatures, and the officers of the act in their States. But the measures they adopt do not, executive and judicial departments of the States, shall on that account, cease to be the measures of the people take the oath of fidelity to it. themselves, or become the measures of the State Governments.

"The Government of the United States, then, though limited in its powers, is supreme; and its laws, when made in pursuance of the constitution, form the supreme law of the land, any thing in the constitution or laws of any State to the contrary notwithstanding.'



"From these conventions the constitution derives its whole authority. The Government proceeds directly from the people; is ordained and established,' in the name of the people; and is declared to be ordained in "It is the Government of all; its powers are delegated order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, by all; it represents all, and acts for all." If these preensure domestic tranquillity, and secure the blessings of mises are correct, the conclusion cannot be resisted withliberty to themselves and their posterity.' The assent out a violation of common sense. How is the General of the States, in their sovereign capacity, is implied in Government to take care of the interests of all? How is calling a convention, and thus submitting that instrument the Government to take care of the interests of thirteen to the people. But the people were at perfect liberty to millions of people, unless its administration can be felt accept or reject it; and their act was final. It required over that extent of population? It was not to be wondered not the affirmance, and could not be negatived by the at, if the Chief Justice said that the proposition comState Governments. The constitution, when thus adopt-manded universal assent; that, within its enumerated ed, was of complete obligation, and bound the State sove-powers, the Federal Government was supreme. One can reignties. hardly turn to a page of the constitution without seeing "It has been said, that the people had already surren- that this has always been regarded as one nation. As a dered all their powers to the State sovereignties, and had matter of fact, he thought it was deeply to be deplored nothing more to give. But surely the question whether that, in the face of the world, it should be declared on they may resume and modify the powers granted to the this floor that we are no Government. He had always Government does not remain to be settled in this country. I supposed that the name of American citizen was a passMuch more might the legitimacy of the General Govern- port over the world, and that a man needed no better ment be doubted, had it been created by the States. The passport to ensure him respect. Yet he had now to learn powers delegated to the State sovereigntics were to be that this was all a mistake, and this Government was exercised by themselves, not by a distinct and indepen-merely an ignis fatuus, existing only by the light which it dent sovereignty created by themselves. To the forma- borrowed from the State Governments. tion of a league, such as was the confederation, the State The constitution declares that "the citizens of each sovereignties were certainly competent. But, when in State shall be entitled to all privileges and immunities of order to form a more perfect union,' it was deemed ne-citizens in the several States." A citizen of New Jersey cessary to change this alliance into an effective Govern- is thus a citizen of all the United States; and wherever ment, possessing great and sovereign powers, and acting he may sojourn or abide throughout the whole confededirectly on the people, the necessity of referring it to the racy, he has the privilege of the citizen of the State and people, and of deriving its powers directly from them, of the United States. How can the interests of the States was felt and acknowledged by all. and of the United States be more commingled than by this clause in the constitution?

"The Government of the Union, then, (whatever may be the influence of this fact on this case,) is emphatically and truly a Government of the people. In form and in substance it emanates from them. Its powers are granted by them, and are to be exercised directly on them, and for their benefit.

Congress has passed laws of naturalization. The foreigner who comes hither is naturalized under these laws, and is admitted to the privileges of a citizen of one State and of all the United States. Yet this is to be regarded as no Government; is to be held as liable to be "This Government is acknowledged by all to be one of put down whenever the States shall choose to recall their enumerated powers. The principle that it can exercise delegated powers. If Congress were to attempt to vote only the powers granted to it, would seem too apparent up such an abstraction, the people would vote it down to have required to be enforced by all those arguments just as fast as it was sent out to them. which its enlightened friends, while it was depending before the people, found it necessary to urge. That principle is now universally admitted. But the question respecting the extent of the powers actually granted is perpetually arising, and will probably continue to arise as long as our system shall exist.

Having arranged these premises, he would come now to consider the bill itself. This bill had been severely attacked, by calling it hard names. The gentlemen on the other side, not contented with calling it a bill worse than an abomination, a bill to repeal the constitution, to erect a military despotism, to create a dictator, had yesterday called it a Boston port bill, a riot act, a prison-ship bill, &c. Every appellation which could be devised to make the bill odious had been heaped upon it. He would adopt no such mode of warfare. He would use no such weapons;

In discussing these questions, the conflicting powers of the General and State Governments must be brought into view; and the supremacy of their respective laws, when they are in opposition, must be settled. "If any one proposition could command the universal and if they were offered to him, he would request that assent of mankind, we might expect it would be this: that the persons who might offer them would take them away the Government of the Union, though limited in its pow- from him. The people of the United States have become ers, is supreme within its sphere of action. This would so enlightened now that they will require arguments of seem to result necessarily from its nature. It is the Gov-sounder stuff than hard words to work convictions in their ernment of all; its powers are delegated by all; it repre- minds. They have too far advanced, and if gentlemen sents all, and acts for all. Though any one State may be do not quicken their speed, the constituents will soon go willing to control its operations, no State is willing to allow ahead of their representatives in the science of politics, others to control them. The nation, on those subjects on and leave them far behind in the wilderness. Such an which it can act, must necessarily bind its component array of names would not carry a question even in a town


Revenue Collection Bill.

[FEB. 2, 1833

meeting. It would not excite an emotion even in an as-sible to estimate the force against which it would have to semblage of five hundred citizens out of the thirteen be employed. There were also other laws to which he millions which compose our population. So much for the might refer the Senate; the law of 1790; of 1795, aunomenclature. It had been said that, to pass this bill thorizing the President to call out the militia to execute would be conferring extraordinary powers on the Execu- the laws, to suppress insurrections, &c.; of 1807, simliar tive. The gentleman from Pennsylvania had informed in its character, authorizing the calling out of the militia, the Senate, the other day, that with the exception of a and such part of the naval and military force as might be single clause in the first section, it was perfectly familiar necessary, in case of insurrections or obstructions of the to our legislation. laws.

The Senate would remember the intercourse bill of

He would ask, then, if those were not groundless fears 1802, regulating our trade with the Indians. That bill which would restrain gentlemen from again confiding contained a clause to this effect: "and it shall moreover such powers to the President, who is made by the constibe lawful for the President of the United States to take tution commander-in-chief, and is required by another such measures, and employ such military force, as he may clause to see that the laws are faithfully executed. Who deem necessary to remove from the lands of the Indian was to be trusted, if he could not? Who was to be trusttribes any persons who have made, or may make, settle- ed, if not the President? Who would execute the power ment thereon." "Employ such military force," &c. Here under his responsibility to Congress? Gentlemen could Congress delegated the power to employ the force, and not terrify him with the cry of despotism. Why, if it left it to the discretion of the Chief Magistrate to fix the were now to be put to decide whether he would have a amount of force necessary, and to employ that force in despotism controlled by law, or a despotism without law, such manner as he should deem best to drive off the or in defiance of law, he should prefer the first. He settlers from their lands, whether they were situated in would prefer the despotism of law to the despotism of South Carolina or in Tennessee, or in any other State. nullification. He would discard the despotism of a fracHere was a plain duty to be performed. A treaty had tion, of a small portion of this federal community, and been made with the Indians, and to fulfil this treaty the would run in the broad path marked out by the constitulaw was passed. This law stands unrepealed in the statute tion, where, if he met danger, he should be supported book, and has been frequently enforced without causing by his conscience, and by the virtue of the country. It any excitement. Whenever it was necessary to employ was a singular argument to say, take care you do not force, the President had left it to the officer to determine create a despotism, and, at the same time, as the gentlewhat force was necessary to give sufficient strength to the man from Kentucky had said, take care how you make Executive arm to effect the object. This was not an un- war on South Carolina. Who makes war on South Caroadvised discretion. In these emergencies, it was impossi- lina? Who meditates war? If there is to be a war, she ble for Congress to know the strength of the intruding will make it herself. It will be her own hand which will families, and, consequently, to apportion the adequate lay the axe to the root of her prosperity. What have force. General Washington, on one occasion, sent a mes- we done? We have passed a law operating on her, as sage to Congress, stating that five hundred families had well as on all the other States. What else have we done? intruded, and asking Congress if he should use military The coat he wore was one on which he paid a duty to the power to expel them? They unanimously answered, yes; treasury. And she would make war rather than submit and referred the message back to him. The Executive to pay this tax common with the rest of the Union. He must use power. The Congress of that day was not submitted that all the features of the bill were defensive distracted by fears on the subject, and why should we? in their character, and not warlike in any one of their Why should we, when our laws are counteracted, and attitudes. Instead of making war by brute force, the bill when we are told that our efforts to collect the revenue was only intended to come in to the aid of law, to enforce in South Carolina shall be resisted, and put down by the the laws, and to make them respected; to make the State interposition of her civil and military power? What was of South Carolina obey the law. He would proceed to to be done, when our authority was thus defied? were we prove this. to sit still and do nothing? Surely, even the gentlemen The first section of the act provides for the removal of on the other side would not advise this course. The Pre- the custom-house. He hoped that gentlemen would be sident has told us that it is impracticable to execute the just to the motives of the Executive. There had been laws without further aid from Congress. many fulminations against the President for this clause. In his message he recommends the removal of the customhouse with a view to prevent collisions. What says the message?

"There would certainly be fewer difficulties, and less opportunity of a direct collision between the officers of the United States and of the States, and the collection of the revenue would be more effectually secured, (if, indeed, it can be done in any other way,) by placing the custom-house beyond the immediate power of the county."


The measures proposed by the bill are revenue measures. Looking at them in this view, he referred the Senate to the act to provide for the better security of the duties imposed on foreign goods, by which the President was authorized to cause to be built and equipped twelve revenue cutters, &c. Here twelve revenue cutters were authorized to be armed and equipped, and, at the discretion of the President, to be used for collecting the reveBut there was another provision in this bill, which was of great importance. In case any vessel should not bring to, on being summoned, after hoisting the pennant, The motives of the President, therefore, were pacific. and firing a gun, it was made lawful for the cutter to fire It was to prevent collisions that he advised the removal into such vessel. Here, then, was a tremendous power of the custom-house. If, in an unhappy hour, South given to the President; to arm and equip twelve cutters, Carolina should push her State sovereignty to the dreadand to authorize the officer commanding a cutter, if a ful emergency of opposing resistance to the officers of merchant vessel refused to come to when hailed with all the United States, the President suggests, in order to the accustomed formalities, to discharge his whole artil- avoid this contingency, the removal of the custom-house. lery into the bosom of the vessel. What was this? It was Was this the conduct of a tyrant? Was this a course inmaking war on our citizens quite as efficiently as can be dicating a disposition to hurry the country to the verge of done under any of the clauses in this bill. Merchant ves- a precipice? Nothing like it. If this was a question with sels are not armed, therefore the number of cutters was a foreign Government, policy would forbid this conces limited. In the bill concerning the Indian lands there sion, and would require that we should keep the customcould be no limitation of power, because it was impos- house where it is, and stand by it there. With a foreign

FEB. 2, 1833.]

Revenue Collection Bill.


Government he would contest it to the very last punctilio. | try the issue. Why does she not come here? She says He would consider it important to take a determined we have given to our bill a wrong title. Why not bring position until the last tribute should be exacted. But her controversy with us to the proper tribunal? We are with our sister State of South Carolina, he would forbear. here ready to meet her. It is urged that the constitution If, said Mr. F., she urge me from the custom-house on should be amended. The constitution provides that this land, I would retire to a vessel; and if there were some may be done, but not without the concurrence of threebleak and desolate rock, I would be willing to retire fourths of the States. Why, then, should South Carolina, thither. I would not suffer myself to forget, misguided of herself, usurp the right of violating the laws, and as she has been, that she is a loved and honored sister. I breaking down the constitution? He would like to see would not forget that her soil contains the sepulchre of this question answered. Why had such a convention been many of that gallant band who fought and bled to establish called? The Senate had been told that there had been a this Union. I would retire backwards even to the walls, majority of Congress opposed to it, and therefore the and permit her to pursue me with her menaces, until that State of South Carolina had no chance of satisfaction by awful moment when longer forbearance would be trea- this constitutional mode. That State also passes by the son; until the last fearful issue should be, strike, or sur judicial tribunal which is authorized by the constitution render the honor, the dignity, and security of the Union. to decide in matters of controversy. She dares not come There had been some who suggested that a stand ought to the Supreme Court. It is probable that she believes in to be made at the custom-house where it is; but the com- her conscience that that court would decide against her. mittee had been anxious to respond to the recommenda- I believe it would. Thus, when she is guilty of these tion of the Executive, and thus to prevent collision, and infractions, she cannot amend the constitution to her wishes, the shedding of fraternal blood. because there is a majority every where against her. It had been said that a dangerous discretion was given The Congress is against her; all the States are against her; to the President in the last part of the first section, which and if there is any reliance on the statements in the newsauthorizes the President to employ force to prevent any papers, all the country is against her. Now we are ready obstruction, &c. He would put it to the gentlemen who to meet South Carolina in the Supreme Court, and to entertained this view whether it was well founded. The plead with her; and if the Supreme Court shall decide collector goes to the custom-house on the arrival of a that it is unconstitutional, we will give up the tariff. Not vessel or cargo, and makes a demand of the duties. The a State interested in that policy, not a State in all the captain refuses, and throws himself behind the shield of north and east will offer to nullify the decision of the the State of South Carolina. The collector then makes court. But South Carolina will not come and meet us his seizure. When does the President act? Not until an there; yet she says she will refer the controversy to the effort is made to rescue the vessel, and the violators of judicial tribunals. She will not come here to our court, the laws are about to carry off the goods, triumphing in but she has invited us to come into her courts. Mark the their success. The constitution lays it down that the jealousy which her conduct exhibits. She is afraid of the President is to take care that the laws are faithfully exe- Supreme Court. She is afraid of the federal tribunals. cuted. He is now required to perform this duty, and if She is even afraid of herself. She will not trust her own he cannot do this by any other means, he is authorized to tribunals. The Supreme Court is to be dragged before use the military arm. Similar powers have been formerly one of her county courts, where she has taken care to conferred on the Executive three different times, as will have every judge and juror sworn to decide against us. appear by the statute book. It had been said, this was Would you, sir, agree to carry a cause into any court making war on South Carolina. If South Carolina can under such circumstances? We are gravely asked to go justify such opposition to the laws, and if she, or any other into a court for trial where all are sworn against us! In of the States, should prefer the protection of her ordi- all fairness, this was the last mode of settling a controvernance to the alternative of obedience and union, she must sy I have ever heard of. It shows the deep, thorough, and lie down on the bed of her own making. But we are not heartfelt conviction which South Carolina feels of the into give up our laws. While the other States are paying justice and the unsustainable character of her own cause. high duties, can South Carolina, continuing a member of How has New Jersey acted in similar circumstances? the Union, be permitted to import her goods duty free, She is one of the sovereignties: a little sovereignty, I adwhich her enterprising citizens would pour into all the mit, among all these great sovereignties, and not to be neighboring States? Could it be expected that she would named with the others. She had a controversy. Her Lethus be permitted to set the laws at defiance? The bill is gislature took a course not warranted by the constitution. not making war on South Carolina. It is only to remove It was brought here to the Supreme Court, and that obstructions out of the way of collecting the revenue. It court put down the legislation of the State, and all the is a case in which the execution of the laws is put beyond people submitted at once, as they ought, to the decision. the reach of the Executive; and Congress has often given Maryland, too, has had her controversy, and has submitthis power before. ted. Pennsylvania resisted the Federal Government, al

The next clause gives jurisdiction to the circuit court of most to the point of the bayonet; yet, to her immortal honthe United States for the purposes specified. It was alto-or, she also submitted, rejected the misguiding councils gether defensive in its character. Mr. F. made various by which she had been led into error, and returned to her references to the ordinance and the replevin act of South duty. Old Virginia, too, the Ancient Dominion, whose Carolina, to show the necessity for this section. independence is sung from east to west, she opposed her

The third section of the bill was defensive. It transfers self to the General Government, and she also submitted. jurisdiction from the State courts to those of the United Now, South Carolina has set up her ordinances and laws States, and was intended by a judicial course to counter-against those of the United States, and puts herself in an act the policy of South Carolina. He could not help attitude of defiance; and, assuming the post of a creator, here remarking, that the judicial policy adopted by South points down below to the creature called the Supreme Carolina was the most extraordinary he ever had seen. It Court, refuses to permit that court to interfere, insists on had no parallel. It had become indispensable to protect the Supreme Court going to her courts, and will not even the United States' officers. What does South Carolina permit us to go to her tribunals until she has sworn all do? She professes her willingness to meet this question the judges and jurors to decide one way. Gentlemen, afon great judicial principles. We are willing to meet her ter all this, talk of despotism. Why, there is a despotism on that ground, and let her have a fair chance. We have never before heard of at this moment now operating in our judiciary, and we are willing to meet her there and the State of South Carolina, where that noble, independ


ent, brave, and honorable body of men, the Union party, are subjected to the most cruel proscription.

Revenue Collection Bill.

[FEB. 2, 1833.

union of the States is to be upheld or surrendered, then he is authorized to call out and employ the force placed by that section at his disposal. What are the powers of a sheriff of South Carolina, if he should be called upon to resist the execution of the laws? He may call out the posse comitatus; he may invoke the whole power of the county. What is the whole power of the county? Every man in it capable of bearing arms. If Gen. Hamilton and his 10,000 men were at hand, the sheriff would call on him, as the Executive of the State, to execute the laws of the State; in the same manner as the President of the United States is now required to execute the laws of the Union, with the aid of the force of the United States. Here, continued Mr. F., our recollections have been refreshed by a reference to the Jersey prison-ship, and all its horrors. He referred the Senate to the replevin act to show the situation in which the officer of the United States is placed, whenever he shall attempt to repossess any goods; being subjected to fine and imprisonment, even although he shall go into the State with the broad

Every man who did not yesterday take the test oath lost any situation of trust which he filled, and was rendered incapable of enjoying any State office, according to the provisions of the ordinance. What a despotism is this! I would rather, said Mr. F., give the President 50,000 men at his disposal, to put down this spirit of hostility to the laws, than suffer such a despotism to continue. What! after inflaming the public mind throughout the State by publications and speeches at patriotic meetings, shall these opposers of the laws be permitted to drive, by the force of their test oath, the most honorable of their fellow-citizens into absolute occlusion from all the immu nities of their condition, unless they will come in and give their adhesion to blind measures which their consciences refuse to approve? Shall they be permitted to say to this conscientious and orderly band," You must take that oath or lose your commission?" But that is not all. If the judges decided against the United States, and the marshal should (and what marshal would not?) go seal of the Supreme Court. He is thus treated as a maleinto the courts of the United States to make complaint factor in the State for going there to do his duty, and that he has had his goods seized, he is then liable to fine to obey the laws, by enforcing the process of the court. and imprisonment. Here, then, it appears, that South This is nullification; but that is not all. In order to banCarolina passes by all the known tribunals of the country; ish every shred of federal authority from the State, it is swears her own judges to decide according to her own decreed that if any offender against the laws of the United views; and if the officer of the United States dares to go States shall be taken, no citizen shall be at liberty to of to the United States courts with his complaints, fines and fer a place for his confinement. Yet the gentleman from imprisons him. And this is called a peaceful remedy. It Kentucky says, the feature in our bill which meets this is a remedy which sets at defiance all the principles and contingency is an odious one, because it leads back his elements of peace. And if we dare to interrupt South recollections to the old Jersey prison-ship. Why, ConCarolina in this course, we are told that we are making gress, so long ago as 1791, in a resolution, conveyed a war against South Carolina. If we were to carry this power precisely similar to this. In many of the States controversy into any court which has not been thus sworn there were not, at that time, any jails for the reception of against us, we should have a fair prospect of a decision in the debtors of the United States; and that resolution auour favor. I should like, continued Mr. F., to see any thorized the marshal to hire temporary dwellings for the judge, who would come to the consideration of this case purpose of jails. The provision was precisely similar to with an unbiassed mind, give a judgment upon it. Yet that contained in this bill. under the ordinance and laws of South Carolina, the marshal cannot carry his complaint into an impartial court, but on pain of fine and imprisonment.

The next section refers to the furnishing a record of any case, where a record cannot be obtained from the State court. A copy of the record may be obtained on the affidavit of the refusal. Mr. F. read the following paragraph: "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, I have been asked, continued Mr. F., and I regret that shall any appeal be taken or allowed to the Supreme the reference has been made to me, whether any of the Court of the United States, nor shall any copy of the rec- neighboring States are likely to take up the cause of South ord be permitted or allowed for that purpose; and if any Carolina. The question was, "Would Virginia, or North such appeal shall be attempted to be taken, the courts of Carolina, or Georgia, send forth their militia on a call this State shall proceed to execute and enforce their judg- from the President of the United States?" I can anticiments according to the laws and usages of the State, pate no other result, when such call shall be made on without reference to such attempted appeal; and the per- these States to enable the Executive to perform the duties son or persons attempting to take such appeal may be imposed on him by the constitution. I cannot doubt that dealt with as for contempt of the court." all these States would join to enforce the execution of the laws. I cannot anticipate the painful spectacle of Vir ginia and North Carolina reaching forth a helping hand to uphold resistance to the majesty of our laws. Sir, should such an exhibition ever be made, should these honored States suffer our laws to be defied, the public

The Senate would then perceive that this provision is necessary to meet the obstructions therein in the way of judicial proceedings. All the principles contained in the above paragraph have been embodied into the legislative acts of the State, with some trivial exception. The fifth section of the bill authorizes the employment authorities to be contemned, the dearly cherished stars of the military and naval force. Mr. F. read the section, and stripes of our Union to be struck in disgrace and trailand continued: If the crisis provided for in this section ed like a loathsome weed in the dust, the occasion would should arrive, the President is not even then, in the first be the death scene of the American Union. The moral place, to resort to force, but merely to issue his proclama-bond of sentiment and good feeling will be then cruelly tion, and thus to reason with the misguided citizens. smote on all its links, and the pall of despair will envelope Should all this fail, and the crisis be hurried on, when forever the best hopes of freedom here, and under the there is no other alternative than that the dignity and whole heavens.

He had thus gone over all the material provisions of the bill, and he would most earnestly submit to the Senate whether there could be any well-grounded fears on the subject of the passage of this bill. It was not intended, as he said in the opening of his remarks, as long as the judicial legislation of South Carolina could be met by legislation and the judiciary of the United States, to resort to force. When the State should assail the custom-house on land, we would retire with it to the water. But when unlawful and dangerous combinations put the peace of the country in danger, the Executive is clothed with the authority to put them down.

FEB. 4, 1833.]

Revenue Collection Bill.


Adjourned to Monday.

The Senator from Pennsylvania asked us the other day,

He concluded with expressing his hope that the issue of importance which did not meet his assent. If any one this debate would be a response to the voice which had principle was better established than another, in referreached the Capitol from all parts of the Union. ence to our institutions, it was that the military should be subordinate to the civil authority. If any one principle was sacred, it was this. It was one which no emergency justified us in departing from; one which constituted the very essence of a republican form of government, and without which free institutions could not exist. When we establish the doctrine that military authority may step in to execute the law, before the judiciary has exerted its powers, then the essence and spirit of our institutions Mr. BROWN, of North Carolina, rose. He did not are essentially changed. It has been our boast that in believe, he said, that he should be able to say any thing to cases where other nations resort to war, we resort to a equal the high intellectual entertainment which the gen- peaceful mode of attaining a settlement of the question; tleman who preceded him in this discussion had furnished and to the judicial tribunals is committed the administrato the Senate. But he would endeavor to remunerate tion of these peaceful measures. He did not at all object whatever attention the Senate might give to his plain, to the due administration and operation of the laws of the homely effort, by the brevity of his remarks. If he had United States. He wished the laws to find support in the consulted the admonitions of discretion rather than of du- energy of the constitution. It was vain to say that coerty, he should have been silent, nor have offered to oppose cive measures are necessary in this case; for there is an his views to those of gentlemen of such distinguished inherent energy in the constitution which will enable the ability. But the bill before the Senate involved questions laws to triumph without an appeal to force. of such magnitude, that he could not content himself with a silent vote upon it. The subject was of high interest if we were unwilling that the powers proposed to be givto the State which he had the honor, in part, to repre- en to the Executive by the bill should be confided to the sent, both as a member of the common Union, and in present President of the United States. But that was reference to her peculiar position, bordering, as she does, not the question. He would say that the past course of upon the State out of whose legislation arose this ques- the President had been such as to entitle him to unlimited tion. This obligation of duty derived additional force confidence, and there was no individual to whom he would from the resolutions of the State of North Carolina, in- more willingly confide this power than to the President. structing her Senators to exert their influence to obtain a But there was no man, however elevated in station and "peaceable adjustment of this controversy," and to pro- ennobled by virtue, however pure his integrity and honest duce a restoration of harmony between the Federal Gov- his purposes, to whom he would give a power which was ernment and the State of South Carolina. While it al- unwarranted by the constitution. We are told that a ways afforded him pleasure to comply with the re-jealous watch over the repositories of power is the only quests of his constituents, in obeying their injunctions on way of preserving liberty. He could not believe for a this occasion, he followed also the dictates of his own moment, that, if this power were given to the President, judgment and ardent wishes. It was his earnest hope he would abuse it. But it might, in worse times than that this contest, which was now assuming an angry and these, and in worse hands than his, be abused to the dethreatening aspect, should be settled in a peaceable man- struction of our institutions. We may be told that the ner. He need not say that he disapproved of the course power will be limited as to continuance and application. of South Carolina, or that his State disapproved of it. But what does history teach us? That the fact of to-day Her course, he thought, had been rash and uncalled for becomes a precedent to-morrow. Our own history shows by the exigency of the times. She should have relied, us instances of powers, some well established as constituas he did, upon a constitutional remedy; upon the return- tional, which the framers of the constitution and its early ing sense of justice in the people of the Northern and friends would have shrunk from with dread. The GenEastern States; and upon the wisdom and patriotism as- eral Government has been gradually drawing to itself the sembled in the legislative halls of the country. But the exercise of doubtful powers. When told that they are State of South Carolina thought differently, and took re- not given by the constitution, they reply that they are jusdress into her own hands. She was responsible to herself tified by precedent. for her course. It was not his business to sit in judgment The honorable gentleman from Pennsylvania, in the upon her, but to express, on his own part, and that of course of his remarks, spoke of the submissive manner in his State, disapprobation of her course. which that State would yield obedience to the most unThe bill, though proposing on its face to be general in just and injurious legislation of Congress. The history its application, was manifestly intended to be applied to of that State was illustrated by the virtues and patriotism South Carolina alone. Though the name was not written of her citizens, but the Senator would pardon him if he under the picture, he who runs may easily read. What should say that the State of Pennsylvania was not quite is the proper way of settling this question? What course exempt from the faults which are imputed to the State of is most likely to lead to a peaceable adjustment of it? This South Carolina. The course of Pennsylvania, in the fais the question before us. The Committee on the Judi- mous Olmstead case, had some agency in bringing about ciary must excuse him, if, notwithstanding the high re- the present state of things in South Carolina. Though spect he entertained for their talents, he should wholly South Carolina had not derived her impulse from that dissent from the specific remedy which they propose. source, yet the doctrines once contended for by PennHe did not believe that the bill by them presented to the sylvania were appealed to in justification of her present Senate was calculated to carry out the glorious, the ines- course. The opinions and principies of Pennsylvania in timable principle of our institutions, that our Government the Olmstead case had been cited in the discussions in should be essentially pacific in its remedies. He believed South Carolina, as justifying her resort to self-redress. that, in its consequences, it would be attended with vio- He did not stamp his approbation on them, nor on those lence, and perhaps lead to civil war. He objected to the of Carolina. [Mr. B. then read extracts from the report provision which authorized the repulsion by force of any made in the House of Representatives of Pennsylvania, attempt to execute the laws of South Carolina in refer- on the message of the Governor, relative to the mandaence to the revenue. To that provision he mainly ob- mus of the Supreme Court of the United States, in the jected, but there were some other provisions of minor case of Gideon Olmstead, as follows:]



The Senate having again proceeded to consider the bill to provide further for the collection of the duties on imports

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