« ForrigeFortsett »
KEYES - WILSON
of the States against the supposed usurpations of resolve as amended, to the Convention, with a president Madison, and yet we are called upon recommendation that it ought to pass. to disregard the rights of Massachusetts, and Mr. MILLER, of Wareham. This whole subyield up everything to the general government.ject of the seventh article was referred to a ComI was about to say, that these men of 1814 were mittee and the report is made ; but it seems to me the only decent statesmen that we have ever had ; that the Committee on the Militia have reported and I will say, that their names are now held in on some matters which were not referred to them ; veneration, and will be remembered long after and the subject may come up again on another many of our modern statesmen have passed into report, as I understand it. merited oblivion.
Mr. OLIVER. By a resolution, the date of Now, Sir, in these arguments that have been which I do not remember at this moment, the presented here for the last hour or two, the ques- various Committees were authorized to act upon tion has hardly been touched. The vote on the such subjects as might be germane to that which amendment just taken, seems to say to the na they had under consideration, if any were to be tional government, “ Massachusetts is nothing; found in the Constitution. The Committee have she has no reserved rights; do with her as you therefore acted accordingly. please.” The decision of the court of Massachu The question being taken upon the motion that setts, to which the gentleman for Wilbraham the Committee rise, it was decided in the affirmahas referred, in support of the action of the gov tive. ernor, was correct, and it was trampled upon by The President having resumed the Chair of a slave-holding bench of judges in Washington.
THE CONVENTION, I do not know that I wish to apply the term " traitor to the democratic party” to that judge Committee had had the resolve in relation to the
the Chairman, Mr. Boutwell, reported that the who gave the decision, but perhaps it is none the less true that he was a traitor to the democratic instructed him to report the same back to the
militia under consideration, and that they had party and also to New England, by that decision,
Convention, with certain amendments. and also for his decision in the celebrated Prigg But that matter has been argued so often,
The question being upon agreeing to the amend
ments reported by the Committee of the Whole, that I will not go into it at length on this occasion.
it was taken and decided in the affirmative. Mr. HALLETT. If the gentleman will allow
So the Report of the Committee was agreed to. me, I will inform him that that judge was a democrat when appointed to office, and at that period
The resolve as amended, was then ordered to a in his history, although he afterwards changed
second reading. his political opinions.
Qualification of Voters. Mr. KEYES. He changed very rapidly after Mr. WALKER, of North Brookfield, from he went to Washington then. But I have only the Committee to whom was referred so much of alluded to this case to show that a vote upon so the Constitution as relates to the Qualifications of important an amendment as that ought not to be Voters, submitted the following resolution, which taken by so few members of the Committee. To was read :be sure, it is to be passed on again by the Con
Resolved, That the Constitution be so amended vention; but when a matter is discussed here in
as to require a voting list or registry, and to Committee, after most of the gentlemen have gone protect the presiding officers in adhering thereto. home, it will become necessary to go over again, On motion by Mr. BRIGGS, of Pittsfield, the and such a course tends to lengthen the debate, Report of the Committee was referred to the after we go into Convention upon it. I believe
Committee of the Whole, and ordered to be it highly proper for the gentleman from Boston to printed. offer the amendment which he did, conceiving, as
On motion, the Convention then, at ten minutes he did, that the Committee would be willing to
before 7, P. M., adjourned. rise, and let the debate on the question be postponed until to-morrow.
Mr. WILSON. I will suggest that the best way to reach this matter is for the Committee to
TUESDAY, June 21, 1853. rise, and report that the resolve ought to pass as The Convention met, pursuant to adjourna whole; and at some future time in Convention, ment, and was called to order by the President, at the gentleman can renew his amendment and we 10 o'clock. can have a vote upon it in a full house. I there Prayer by the Chaplain. fore move that the Committee rise, and report the The Journal of yesterday was read.
BOUTWELL - EAMES — DENTON.
30 36 30
9 12 18 18 15 10 5
Reference to a Committee. Mr. JENKS, of Boston, offered the following On motion by Mr. BRINLEY, of Boston, the order, which, with the accompanying table, was paper presented by him on the 13th instant, conreferred to the Committee of the Whole, and or taining a plan of representation in the House of dered to be printed :
Representatives, was referred to the Committee
of the Whole having that subject in charge. Ordered, That the Committee on the House of Representatives consider the expediency of amend
The Council. ing the Constitution, so as to provide that the several counties of the Commonwealth, as now
On motion by Mr. BOUTWELL, for Berlin, organized, shall constitute Representative Dis the resolves on the subject of the Council were tricts, each of which shall be entitled to elect the taken from the table, and placed in the Orders of number of Representatives hereinafter assigned, the Day. in such manner as may be prescribed by law: each Representative so elected to be an inhabitant Committee of Revision and Arrangement. of the District wherein he is chosen ; and not more than three representatives to be inhabitants
On motion, by Mr. BOUTWELL, for Berlin, of any one town or city ward within any District. it was
Reps. The County of Suffolk shall form one District, and choose 36
Ordered, That a Committee of members Essex,
be appointed to reduce such amendments as have Middlesex, "
been, or may be, agreed upon, to the form in Worcester,"
which it will be proper to submit the same to the Hampshire,
people for ratification.
Hour of Meeting.
The order offered yesterday by Mr. EAMES,
of Washington, and laid over under the rules, Barnstable,“
that on and after Wednesday next, the ConvenNantucket and Dukes,"
tion meet at nine o'clock, A. M., until otherwise
determined, was now taken up for consideration. Table, showing the Proportion of Representatives, Mr. EAMES, of Washington. My object,
both as to Population, and the number of Regis- Sir, in introducing that order, was, if possible, to tered Voters, in each County, according to the .expedite business. We have now been here proposition for erecting Counties into Representa- about seven weeks; sufficient time has been altice Districts.
lowed to the various Committees to make their reports to the Convention, and I supposed that as
the weather was so warm and uncomfortable, the Counties.
Convention would not be unwilling to meet at nine o'clock in the morning, as that was the cool
est part of the day. I hope the order will be Suffolk, 36 145,758 22,604 1 to 4,000
adopted. Essex, 30 127,170 24,292 1
1 " 800
Mr. DENTON, of Chelsea. I have received Middlesex, 36 155,762 27,447 1 "
a notice from the messenger informing me that 4,300 1 " 740
the Committee of which I am a member, will Worcester, 30 126,565 25,588 1 * 4,200
meet to-morrow morning, at nine o'clock. As Hampshire, 34,290 7,378 1 " 3,800
the chairman of the Committee is not present to Hampden, 50,224 9,505 1 " 4,200
speak in relation to the business of that CommitFranklin, 30,888 6,968 1" 3,430
tee, I will state that subjects are before it which Berkshire, 48,937 9,744 1 " 4,000
cannot be acted upon until other questions, to Norfolk,
13,887 1 "
4,300 I “ 750 which they have some relation, have been conBristol, 74,979 13,240 1 4,300
sidered and decided by the Convention. If this, Piymouth,
order is adopted, it will, of course, be impossible 54,509 12,409 1 3,600
for the members of the Committee to attend the Barnstable, 10 33,997 7,3171
Convention at that hour. Dukes & Nan't, 13,195 2,431 1 " 2,600 1 " 480
The question was taken on the adoption of the 240 973,715 182,810
order, and it was, upon a division-ayes, 89 ;
noes, 65-decided in the affirmative. 4,050 average population to each Representative.
So the order was adopted. 760 average number of voters to each Representative.
Mr. WILSON, of Natick, moved that the de
Ratio of Rep's
Ratio of Rep's
to No. Voters.
1 to 630
as Proposed No.
1 " 830
1 " 820
HOOPER - Wilsox
HALE — BRINLEY THOMPSON.
bate in Committee of the Whole upon the Report propositions that may be submitted. It is quite of the Committee on the subject of the House of possible that a vote upon the pending question Representatives, and the subjects connected there may be taken before the time named by the genwith, cease at eleven o'clock on Friday morning tleman from Natick, (Mr. Wilson,) but I am next.
opposed to any order which provides for the closMr. IIOOPER, of Fall River. It scems to ing of debate upon the amendments which may me, that it is altogether premature to make a mo be offered to the main question. I hope that the tion of that kind in the present stage of the dis- | motion as it now stands will not prevail. cussion. For myself, I am opposed to it. I Mr. BRINLEY, of Boston. I feel obliged, think we had better wait a day or two and see Sir, to oppose the proposition submitted by the what progress will be made, before we adopt any gentleman from Natick. The discussion upon such order making an assignment so long in ad- subject, thus far, has, if I mistake not, been subvance. It is possible we may finish the discus- stantially confined to the Majority and Minorsion upon this subject at an earlier day even than ity Reports of the Sub-Committee. Now, if I that proposed by the gentleman from Natick. I am correct, there are six other plans before the see no reason, therefore, for naming that day and Committee of the Whole-I do not know but there hour as the time for closing the debate, and I may be more-- which, if that motion prevails, we hope the motion will not prevail.
shall not have an opportunity to discuss, though Mr. WILSON. I suppose, Mr. President, they all more or less, deserve the attention and there is but one opinion in the Convention in re consideration of this body. I may be permitted gard to the expediency of bringing this session to to allude to a proposition which I had the honor a close at the earliest possible day. Indeed, we have to submit myself. complaints from all quarters that so much time Nearly a week has elapsed since it was prehas been expended in discussion, and the uni sented to this body and ordered to be printed, and versal desire is, I believe, that the Convention until this morning, the printed document has not should adjourn as soon as it is possible for it to been returned to us, and, even now, not a suffido so. We have now spent nearly five days in cient number has been supplied by the printers the consideration of the Report of the Commit- to furnish every member with a copy. The subtee upon this subject; and my motion will allow ject is, in my opinion, the most important one that three days and a half more, making eight days is to come before the Convention, and I think we and a half, which will be devoted to this subject ought not to restrict ourselves unnecessarily in in the Committee of the Whole, which I think is regard to time in discussing it and the various ample time; and after the Committee have re propositions which have been submitted; but we ported the subject, it may then be discussed in should allow a sufficient time for every member Convention for any length of time that members who may desire to express his views upon the may see fit. It seems to me, therefore, that if we question, to do so, without being limited by any intend to get through at an early day,—and I see such provision as is proposed by the motion of the no reason why we cannot finish our businesss in gentleman. These various propositions may be two weeks,—we must commence voting in a very discussed in Committee of the Whole, perhaps, short time. As I said before, my proposition, better than in Convention, and I trust we shall besides allowing three days and a half for discus- have ample time to consider them. I hope the sion in Committee, also gives an opportunity to motion will not be adopted. members to debate the question in its two stages, Mr. THOMPSON, of Charlestown, I feel in Convention. I see no reason why the debate constrained also to oppose the order which has upon the subject may not be closed at an early been proposed by the gentleman from Natick, for day, and I hope that a provision may be made to I think it would be improper to sacrifice the sevthat effect.
eral propositions before the Committee, to any Mr. HALE, of Bridgewater. If I understand such restrictions as would be imposed by its the motion correctly, it is that the vote shall be adopti n. Besides, there are other propositions taken upon the several propositions that are in- still to come, all of which will certainly require cluded in the subject of the Report of the Com- consideration, and, perhaps, amendment. If the mittee on the House of Representatives. If that time is to be now fixed when the debate upon the is carried out it is my belief that we shall be com- subject is to cease, and these propositions have not pelled to vote upon all the amendments that may been fully considered and it is quite probable be offered, without discussion, and it seems to me, they will not be—the consequence will be that therefore, that we had better not fix any particu- | motions for reconsideration of the several subjects lar time for taking the question upon all the will be constantly made, that some change may
- HOOPBR — STETSON.
be suggested, and more time by far will be thus of a century, and we must remember, therefore, consumed than if the debate was allowed to take that it is not to be treated like a legislative session, its course and be continued until the whole matter subject to the restriction of a rule limiting our was perfectly understood. I think if the subject sitting to one hundred days. Besides this, the is allowed to take the usual course, it will tend indulgence of the Convention may be asked by much more to forward the business of the Com- | gentlemen who may have already trespassed upon mittee than if we attempt to force it through by its time, and who have been replied to with great the adoption of an order of this kind. I hope the ability, and sometimes with great severity, and motion will not prevail.
who may desire an opportunity for explanation. Mr. CHOATE, of Boston. I appreciate per I therefore respectfully submit-I put it rather fectly the influence, and the just influence of the in the form of an appeal to the gentleman from honorable mover of this order. But I shall be Natick-to allow his motion to lie upon the table constrained to appeal to him to allow his motion for the present. It has been well said that, under for the present to lie upon the table, and not quite the circumstances of the heat, and the state of yet attempt to fix the time for closing the debate. the weather, the debate may close before the time It must be allowed by every gentleman, that it is suggested by the gentleman ; but at any rate a the one great remaining question-perhaps the motion of this kind tends rather to prolong the only one-before this Convention; and it must debate, than to curtail it. be felt by every one that it is an occasion of great I hope, therefore, the gentleman will consent importance, for the declaration of general princi- to allow his motion to lie over. ples, as well as for the maturing and perfecting in Mr. HOOPER, of Fall River. It strikes me detail of a wise and practical scheme.
that we can gain nothing by adopting this motion Those of us who hold a certain class of opinions at the present time; I think it is altogether too are very likely to be unsuccessful in endeavoring premature. It might as well have been made to carry out our views; it is quite probable that when the debate first commenced as at this we shall be vanquished. But, Sir, I think it time. As yet there has been no plan prewould be soothing and satisfying to recollect that sented to the Convention that will carry with it a we have been indulged by the liberality of the majority of the votes of the body, and until Convention with an opportunity of fully debating some such plan is proposed, I think it would be the question, and that the vote which is taken is very unwise, and improper, either to attempt to the result of the most careful deliberation. I think restrict the debate at all, or to force us to a vote it will be better for the Convention, and that it upon a question which a few may be disposed to will carry its decision, ultimately, with a great deal carry through. more weight to the people, to whom these ques I fear it is sometimes the case in the legislature tions are to be submitted.
-I will not say that is the case here—that when The gentleman from Natick, (Mr. Wilson,) the time has been fixed for closing the debate or reminds us that we can debate this subject in taking the question upon a subject, arrangeConvention, but by the time it is removed to the ments have been made by a few to occupy the Convention, every-body will have become impa- time, and they do so, and hold possession of the tient. It may be well, however, that the subject floor to the no small disappointment of those should be there considered in detail, but Sir, I gentlemen who may desire to speak upon the think the great principles which are involved can opposite side, until the time arrives and the and ought to be examined fully and freely on all question is taken. The subject of the House of sides while in Committee of the Whole. I do Representatives is the great question of the Connot think I should have said this much, however, vention, and I submit to the gentleman that we if I did not miss from his accustomed seat the had better spend one, two, or even three weeks in venerable face and form of a gentleman-and no its discussion in order to bring it to a successful doubt there are many others also absent—whom issue, rather than attempt to cut short the session I have observed to be making minutes and appar- merely for the sake of accommodating those genently engaged in laborious preparation for sub tlemen who may desire to return to their homes. mitting his views to the Committee, but who I Mr. STETSON, of Braintree. It is my opinbelieve is absent on account of ill health. Many ion that the limiting of the time for closing the other gentlemen I am sure are also anxious to debate upon this subject, will by no means have discuss the principles of this great question, and a tendency, as has been suggested, to shorten the would gladly seize upon the first favorable oppor- length of the session, and I trust that every tunity to do so. We shall probably not have member of the Convention who is desirous of another Convention of this character for a quarter expressing his views upon this question may have
WILSON - WHITNEY
an opportunity to do so. I therefore move that tlemen imagine, but notwithstanding this, I shall the motion of the gentleman from Natick, be laid for one be glad to hear all the remarks that upon the table.
gentlemen may desire to make upon it. And I Mr. WILSON. Will the gentleman withdraw am disposed to rely rather upon the previous his motion for a moment, as I am desirous of question for terminating debate than upon this modifying the motion that I made.
plan of assign ng a time for the taking of the Mr. STETSON withdrew his motion.
question. Mr. WILSON. I am as anxious as any gentle Mr. BRIGGS, of Pittsfield. If I understand man that we shall have a full and free discussion the mode of proceeding to be pursued when the upon this whole matter. And I will say to my time indicated by the motion of the gentleman friend from Fall River, (Mr. Hooper,) that so far from Natick shall have arrived, it is that any as my knowledge extends—and I have attended member of this Convention may introduce a prothe Convention almost every moment since it first position to amend in any and every material form assembled—I have not yet seen nor heard from the Report of the majority, before we shall be any quarter, either from the majority or the called upon to vote on the question of its adoption minority, the least disposition to stifle debate, or or rejection. I also understand that any amendto force through in a hasty or inconsiderate man ment may be proposed to the Report of the ner, any proposition that has been before the minority in order to make it more acceptable, Convention. As I remarked before, it seems to before the vote be taken upon its adoption or me that eight days spent in the consideration of rejection. this subject of the House of Representatives, is Then, Sir, suppose that between this time and sufficient time to have it perfectly understood in Friday morning, at eleven o'clock, some gentleall its aspects by every member of the body. I man should propose to strike out the entire Report do not wish to be understood, however, as having of the majority, after the first words, and insert any desire to drive gentlemen to a premature some other system of representation to be substivote upon any subject, and especially one of such tuted for it, what sort of condition should we be importance as this. I propose to modify my in under such circumstances ? The Convention motion so that the vote on the Report of the may order debate upon a certain question to cease Minority of the Committee, shall be taken on in Committee of the Whole at a particular hour, Friday morning next, at eleven o'clock. That, I but when that hour arrives, another question may believe, is the first question before the Conven be pending upon which you cannot take a vote. tion, and when it is disposed of, there may be What will you do thenThis subject being other propositions offered which can be considered open in that manner, it seems to me you cannot afterwards.
safely and consistently undertake to limit the Mr. WHITNEY, of Boylston. I have heard debate, especially upon this great radical question, it said by some gentleman that he thought people upon which is to rest the basis of the political from the country were very ignorant of the action of this government for all future time. I amount of labor performed by the legislature, and know, from the relations we bear to each other in therefore we were unable to judge correctly in this house, that any opinion of mine is worth but regard to such matters. But I must be permitted little to those who entertain different views from to say that very wise men here are entirely igno- myself, but allow me to say, in the most respectrant of the amount of speech-making, and the ful manner, that I have regretted that heretofore quality of the speeches which is necessary to con in our proceedings, almost every important quesvince people from the country in regard to the tion has been arrested by the ordering of the various questions which come up for the consider previous question, thus practically stopping all ation of this body. So far as myself and the debate before the subject has been fully considered. other gentlemen in the gallery are concerned we Because it is said, and always is said, that the have been decided upon the point at issue for the debate may be opened again in Convention. We last three days, and although we shall sit and go on for a little while in the consideration of a listen to the discussion which will take place subject when some gentleman, under the convicbefore this matter is decided, with a great deal of tion of the perfect propriety of such a course, pleasure, yet I think it will require stronger rises and moves the previous question ; the prearguments than we have yet heard to induce us vious question is ordered, and it is as fatal in its to change our minds upon this subject, or to operation as the drop of the axe. More than that, deviate in the slightest degree from the views that it prevents the consideration of all propositions we now entertain. I think we are nearer being except the pending amendment. Such a course ready to yote upon the question than many gen of proceeding operates extremely hard upon those