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BRIGGS - HALLETT – WHITNEY.
minutes after the hour to which the House stood on the House of Representatives, and thus save adjourned, on account of there not being a us all this trouble? Now we have got into Comquorum of sixty persons present. But as soon mittee, and I want to do something. I say we as sixty persons are present, the House is called can dispose of this whole subject to-night, and to order, the journal of the previous day read, not be troubled with it again. If the motion and then the morning hour is taken up in pre- prevails to send the matter to the Committee on senting petitions and reports, and by that time the the House of Representatives, what is to be done? House is as full as it generally will be during the You cannot get that Committee together as easily day. The only effect in my judgment—though I as you could fit out a clipper ship for California. may alter my opinion after hearing the arguments It will remain with them until they are ready to on both sides of increasing the number from report. When it comes in, it goes into the Orders sixty to one hundred, would be to delay the pub- of the Day, and when four or five days after you lic business. However, I am not going into the take it up, you are ready to discuss the whole discussion of that question now. I shall vote subject, and consume the time of the Convention for the motion of the gentleman from Lowell, that with unnecessary talk upon a matter in relation the Committee rise and report to the Convention to which there has been no difficulty for seventy a recommendation that the resolve be referred to years or more. the Committee on the House of Representatives. I suppose that sixty members is enough to
Mr. BRIGGS. I hope the motion of the gen- make a quorum. Gentlemen say this is a very tleman for Wilbraham will not prevail, and that important affair. What is its importance : It is the one from the gentleman from Lowell will. simply whether you will have sixty, one hunIt seems that this subject, which is one of im- dred, or one hundred and twenry, or any other portance, is in the hands of one of the standing number of members to form a quorum. Everycommittees of this body. My friend from Che-body knows that it would be impracticable to shire, (Mr. Cole,) some time ago introduced a have a large number. If you should require a resolution fixing the quorum at one half the large number, you would not be able to meet to members of the House, and it was referred, by do business one day out of six, because you mistake, to the Committee of the Whole, instead would not have a quorum present. If you atof the Committee on the House of Representatives, tempt to put the number higher than one hunso that no committee has acted upon it, and I do dred, or even over sixty, as I think, you increase not feel ready now to act upon a question of the danger of the House being unable to do its that kind. I think the proper mode is to dis- | business for want of a quorum, and instead of charge the Committee of the Whole from the far- limiting the sessions of the legislature to one ther consideration of it, and then refer it to the hundred days, you ought to increase it to two Committee on the House of Representatives, to hundred. Now I ask, as this is a simple propowhich it should have originally been referred, and sition, and as it is now before us, and we have have it come up again in the usual order of busi- the right to act upon it, why we cannot report to
the Convention whether we will have sixty or one Mr. HALLETT. I suppose I have been med- hundred for a quorum of the House : I say one dling with a subject which did not belong to me, hundred members, because the gentleman for and I do not think I shall try it again. But if Erving, (Mr. Griswold,) suggested it, though I there are any practical men in this Convention, prefer sixty. Yet perhaps it would be better to who desire to get through with it, I wish that compromise the matter by agreeing upon that they would sometimes listen to somebody except number. Now if we say to-night that we recomthose who assume to direct the whole affairs of mend to the Convention that they shall adopt the this Convention.
number one hundred” for a quorum of the The proposition before us is a very simple one. House of Representatives, that recommendation A resolution has been offered and referred to the will go into the Convention and be put upon the Committee of the Whole, and a gentleman de- Orders of the Day, and we can dispose of it there liberately rises and proposes to go into the Com- by adopting it, and passing an order to discharge mittee of the Whole, for what? Why to render the Committee on the House of Representatives, ourselves ridiculous, if we follow out his sugges- from the farther consideration of that matter. tion. What does the gentleman send us into the That will take but one-half an hour if you do it Committee of the Whole for? Is it merely to go to-night, but if you adopt the course suggested by out of it again? Why did not he move in Con- the gentleman from Lowell, it will consume two vention that the subject be taken from the Com
days. mittee of the Whole, and sent to the Committee Mr. WHITNEY, of Conway. I agree with
BUTLER — HALLETT - COLE.
the gentleman for Wilbraham, that we ought to Representation come together whenever they are dispose of this matter to-night, and I think the called, and he must not speak so of us, because motion he first made would have disposed of it, to he does not belong to us. If he chooses to enlist wit: to report back to the Convention that it is a crew for a California clipper, rather than underinexpedient to adopt this resolution. It seems take to get his Committee together, I am content. that this is a subject appropriate for the consider- I only mean to say that our Committee come toation of the Committee on the House of Repre- gether and work, and present the result of their sentatives. They have properly the whole matter labors to the Convention. before them, and this was referred to the Com- Mr. COLE, of Cheshire. Having had the mittee of the Whole, by mistake. They will honor of introducing this matter to the Convenconsider the whole subject, and report upon it, tion, I will simply say that I supposed it would and I therefore shall vote against the motion. be referred to the Committee on the House of The original motion of the gentleman for Wil- Representatives. It was referred to the Commitbraham was equivalent to the motion of the gen- tee of the Whole, through mistake, and I am of tleman from Lowell, and I think that one of those opinion, for various reasons, that it should go motions should prevail.
into the hands of the Committee on the House of Mr. BUTLER, of Lowell. I do not know Representatives, and I hope it will be sent there. whether it belongs to me, or to the gentleman The question was then taken on the amendfrom Boston, (Mr. Schouler,) or to the gentleman ment of Mr. Hallett, and there were, on a division, from Pittsfield, (Mr. Briggs,) to reply to the sug- ayes, 63; noes, 55. gestion which came from the gentleman for Wil- So the amendment was adopted. braham, (Mr. Hallett,) that somebody assumes Mr. HALLETT. I move that the Committee to direct the proceedings of this Convention, and do now rise, and report the resolution to the Conthat other people could not get listened to. I can vention, with the recommendation that it do pass. only say that if gentlemen are not listened to, Mr. BIRD, of Walpole. Is it in order, pendthey must not blame the Convention, but they ing that motion, to move that the resolve be remust talk decent sense. (Laughter.] That is the ported to the Committee with the recommendaonly recipe I can give. It is the only way I can tion that it be referred to the Committee on the get listened to, and gentlemen are perfectly at House of Representatives? liberty to use my recipe, as I do not claim a patent The CHAIRMAN. It is not in order at this upon it, though some may find it as difficult as
time. David did to wear Saul's armor. (Laughter.] The question was then put, and Mr. Hallett's
I do not wish it to be understood that I have motion was agreed to. assumed to take upon myself any direction of The Committee accordingly rose, and the Presaffairs. But one good result has arisen out of this ident having resumed the chair of discussion—the gentleman for Wilbraham (Mr. Hallett) has said he never will interfere in this
THE CONVENTION, way again. [Laughter.] Now if he will not we The chairman, (Mr. Giles, of Boston,) reportshall get on, and if I have done that good thing I ed that the Committee of the Whole had, accertainly shall take great credit to myself, because cording to order, had under consideration the if he had let us alone, we should have been resolve referred to them relating to a quorum in through with this subject, and upon something the House of Representatives, and had instructed else a long time since. I knew this matter would him to report it back to the Convention with an be discussed when it came up and
amendment. Mr. HALLETT. Why not discuss it now? Mr. ELY, of Westfield. I move that the re
Mr. BUTLER. Because we cannot finish it solve with the amendment be referred to the to-night at the usual hour of adjournment. standing committee having in charge the subject Another thing. I knew from various sources of the House of Representatives. that different gentlemen had various numbers in Mr. HALLETT. I rise to submit one or two their minds, which they desire to present, and I considerations to the Convention, and particularly think a great deal of discussion can be avoided by to my friend from Westfield, (Mr. Ely,) who has having the matter considered by the Committee. made this motion. I hope he will vary his mo
The Committee on Representation are always tion and allow the Report of the Committee of up to their duty. If the gentleman chooses to say the Whole to lie upon the table for the present. of the Committee on the Bill of Rights, of which we can thus discharge the Committee on the he is a member, that they can never be got to- House of Representatives from the farther congether, I am content; but the Committee on sideration of this subject, and have it finally disThursday,]
BRADBURY — COLE
posed of here in Convention. What do we want have the whole subject before us, and why another report from that Committee for? Why should they bring it before us again by a report? not discharge them from the farther consideration Why not discharge them from its consideration, of the subject? We may then have the subject and dispose of the matter at once. I hope this before us, and can dispose of it without consum- motion will prevail, and then we shall not be ing the time, which we must inevitably do, in troubled with another report of that Concmittee the consideration of another report, and have upon the subject. no more trouble about it. I therefore hope the Mr. COLE, of Cheshire. I desire that the motion of the gentleman from Westfield will members of the Convention shall understand not prevail. I move that the whole subject be that my only object in introducing this resolution laid upon the table. I believe that motion has was, that it might be referred to the Committee precedence of the motion of the gentleman from on the House of Representatives. I still desire Westfield, and I give notice that if my motion is that it should take that direction. I do not uncarried, I will follow it with a motion to dis- derstand that that Committee will have to meet charge the Committee having in charge the sub-again for this purpose alone. I understood, from ject of the House of Representatives, from the its chairman, (Mr. Griswold,) that they would farther consideration of this subject.
have another meeting, and I therefore introduced The motion was agreed to, and the whole sub- the resolve for the purpose of bringing the matject laid upon the table.
ter before them. I still desire that the resolve Mr. HALLETT. I now move that the Com- may be thus disposed of. It will not consume mittee on the House of Representatives be dis- any more of the time of the Committee. They charged from the farther consideration of the have the subject properly in their charge. They matter of a quorum in the House of Representa- can report to the Convention, and then we shall tives.
have the subject regularly before us. I hope the Mr. BRADBURY, of Newton. I would ask motion of the gentleman for Wilbraham will not whether any Committee of the Convention has prevail. anything connected with this subject in their The PRESIDENT. The Chair understands charge ?
that an order was sent to the Committee having Mr. HALLETT. The Committee on the in charge the subject of the House of RepresentaHouse of Representatives have it in their tives. The subject is, therefore, properly before charge.
that Committee, and the question is now upon Mr. BRADBURY. As I understand it, this the motion of the gentleman for Wilbraham, to subject has not been referred to that Com ttee discharge that Comm from the farther conat all. The resolution was introduced by the sideration of that subject. gentleman from Cheshire, (Mr. Cole,) and re- Mr. BATES, of Plymouth. I desire to say, ferred directly to the Committee of the Whole. that, according to my understanding, the motion It has been reported from the Committee of the just now stated by the Chair is the precise quesWhole, and now lies on your table in Convention. tion before the Convention. In the first place, I submit that neither that nor any other Commit- an order was referred to the Committee on the tee have the matter in charge, and that the mo- House of Representatives, embracing the subject tion of the gentleman for Wilbraham is not, of a quorum, and all other matters relating to therefore, necessary.
the House of Representatives. Subsequently, a Mr. HALLETT. Will the gentleman allow resolution was introduced by the gentleman from me to explain ? The Committee on the House Cheshire, (Mr. Cole,) upon this subject, and by of Representatives have undoubtedly the whole mistake was referred to the Committee of the matter connected with the House of Representa- Whole instead of to the standing committee, tives in their charge.
where it should properly have gone. There was This resolution, introduced by the gentleman no necessity for the resolution, inasmuch as an from Cheshire, was referred by mistake, as I un- order which had gone before it made it the duty derstand, to the Committee of the Whole, and of that Committee to consider the subject. Now upon that we have been acting, and it is that that Committee propose to have a meeting toresolution which now lies upon your table. The morrow morning, for the purpose of considering Committee on the House of Representatives still that among other subjects. I hope, therefore, have the subject before them, and it is to relieve that the resolution reported from the Committee them from its farther consideration that I have of the Whole will be allowed to lie upon the made the motion. Now, is there any necessity table until the Committee shall report what numof having a report from that Committee? We ber they think necessary to constitute a quorum, Thursday,]
and then let the whole matter be disposed of. The question was then taken, and the motion With a view, therefore, of giving that Committee agreed to. So it was an opportunity to report upon the subject, I Ordered, that the Committee on the House of move that the Convention do now adjourn. Representatives be discharged from the farther The motion was not agreed to.
consideration of so much of the subject referred Mr. BIRD, of Walpole. I move the previous to them as relates to a quorum in the House of question on the motion of the gentleman for Wil- Representatives. braham.
On motion of Mr. ELY, of Westfield, the ConThe previous question was seconded, and the vention then adjourned until to-morrow, at nine main question ordered to be now put.
o'clock, A. M.
END OF VOLUME II.