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NATIONAL CONVENTION-MR. VAN BUREN.

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Others of the same party denounced bitterly this mode of putting men in nomination. A large number of the administration party evinced an early and decided partiality for the promotion to the Presidency of Hugh L. White, Senator from Tennessee. In the winter of 1835, he was nominated by the Legislature of Alabama, by the people of Tennessee, and the representatives of that State in Congress, save J. K. Polk and Cave Johnson. A State convention in Mississippi nominated Mr. Van Buren.

The National Democratic Convention met at Baltimore on the 20th of May, 1835. Over six hundred dele. gates were present, representing twenty-two States. Mr. Van Buren was nominated on the first ballot, as none but his friends participated in the convention. Col. Richard M. Johnson, of Kentucky, was nominated for Vice-President, receiving 178 votes to 87 for William C. Rives, of Virginia. The delegation from Virginia protested against the nomination of Mr. Johnson.

The candidates named by the Whigs were three; William H. Harrison, of Ohio, Daniel Webster, of Massachusetts, and John McLean, of Ohio.

The opponents of Mr. Van Buren were unable to harmonize on any one candidate; yet conducted the contest

and determination. It was hoped to lessen the chances of the Democratic candidate by throwing the election into the House. These calculations failed of a realization. The triumph of Mr. Van Buren with a clear majority over the combined opposition, attests the efficiency and power of party discipline.

There were 294 electoral votes, of which Mr. Van Buren received 170; General Harrison, 73; Judge White, 26; Mr. Webster, 14; and Mr. Mangum, 11. For Vice-President, Mr. Johnson received 144; Francis Granger, who was supported by the friends of General

with energy

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Harrison, 77; John Tyler, indorsed by the supporters of Mr. White, 47; and William Smith, 23.

The final session of the twenty-fourth Congress, commenced December 5, 1836, and closed by its constitutional limitation, March 3, 1837. Little was transacted of general interest. Internal improvements were again indorsed by the passage of acts making appropriations for rivers, roads, and harbors.

COL. BENTON'S EXPUNGING RESOLUTION.

Mr. Benton gave notice, on the passage of the resolution introduced into the Senate by Mr. Clay, pronouncing the President's proceedings in the removal of the deposits “in derogation of the Constitution and laws,” that he should move from time to time to have the same expunged. He should continue so to do until its erasure was effected, or he ceased to be a member of the Senate. He accordingly moved, February 18, 1835, that the resolution be expunged, because it was “illegal and unjust, of evil example, indefinite and vague, expressing a criminal charge without specification; and was irregularly and unconstitutionally adopted by the Senate, in subversion of the rights of defence which belong to an accused and impeachable officer; and at a time and under circumstances to endanger the political rights, and to injure the pecuniary interests of the people of the United States.” The resolution

the table. Mr. Benton faithfully kept his word, by moving, at each succeeding session, to expunge the resolution of Mr. Clay from the records of the Senate. The subject came up for the last time, at the 2d session of the twenty-fourth Congress. Such changes had been wrought in that body as to give the Administration the majority. The resolu

upon

was laid

EXPUNGING RESOLUTION-SPECIE CIRCULAR.

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tion to expunge was discussed at some length, and with a bitterness of feeling which the circumstances tended to engender. Those who had triumphed before were now to be proştrated and humbled by defeat.

The subject was discussed on Friday and Saturday, and arrangements were made for its final settlement on Monday. The session on Monday was a protracted one. The opposition Senators uttered a solemn protest against the defacement of the Journal, and the act which they foresaw was about to be consummated. The fiat had gone forth; the vote was taken about midnight yeas 24, nays 19, absent 5. Immediately after the passage of the resolution, the Secretary of the Senate, as ordered, took the manuscript journal of the Senate, and drew a square of broad black lines around the resolution of the 28th of March, 1834, and wrote across it, “Expunged, by order of the Senate, this 16th day of January, 1837."

The specie circular issued by the Secretary of the Treasury, soon after the expiration of the last session of Congress, created so wide-spread and universal dissatisfaction that a bill passed both branches of Congress, designating and limiting the funds receivable for the revenues of the United States. It provided that the government should receive the paper of such banks only as should thereafter issue no notes less than five dollars, and after Dec. 30, 1839, none less than ten dollars, and should pay their notes on demand in gold and silver. It was amended, on motion of Mr. Rives, to restrict those banks to the issue, after 1841, of notes less than twenty dollars; and, on motion of Mr. Clay, to rescind the treasury order. So amended, it passed the Senate, by a vote of 41 to 5-Messrs. Benton, Linn, Morris, Ruggles, and Wright. It received the sanction of the House, 143 to 59.

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It was transmitted to the President, March 2d, one day prior to the expiration of the present Congress, and of President Jackson's administration. The President returned the bill to the Senate with his objections thereto. This was his last public act as President.

General Jackson issued to the people of the United States a farewell address—setting forth an embodiment of his political views. He attended the inauguration of his successor and friend, Martin Van Buren, after which he retired to his home and to private life.

General Jackson's administration constituted a period of eight years in the history of our country-marked by the agitation, and to some extent settlement of questions of great and commanding interest. The public acts of the President were applauded by some, deprecated and de-. nounced by others. Different results could not be expected. To claim for General Jackson as a public man, perfection, would be folly if not impiety; to denounce him as devoid of patriotism would be unjust. The effects of those measures which he urged, and those which he opposed, must be adjudged by subsequent developments in our national history.

CHAPTER X.

ADMINISTRATION OF MARTIN VAN BUREN, 1837-1841.

MR. VAN BUREN, the eighth President of the United States, was inducted into office on the 4th of March, 1837. The ceremonies were such as usually attend the inauguration of the Chief Magistrate. The introductory address was delivered in a clear and impressive manner.

After its conclusion, Chief Justice Taney administered the oath of office.

The cabinet officers of General Jackson were retained by the President elect, except the appointment of J. R. Poinsett, of South Carolina, Secretary of War. This office was made vacant by the resignation of Mr. Cass to accept an appointment as Minister to France.

The circumstances attendant on the accession of Mr. Van Buren to the Presidency were not auspicious. The specie circular had produced a money pressure already severe, and which threatened a financial revulsion farreaching and disastrous. In the Spring the crisis culminated. By mutual consent, in May, the banks of New York city suspended specie payment. Other banks followed their example. Failures, to an extent never before known, filled the commercial cities and the country at large with distress and consternation. All kinds of prop

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