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any concealment in the matter? Did not every member of this House, know how his own colleagues intended to vote And would he not disclose that knowledge But to whom 2 To the persons in the gallery Could they discover, while the act of balloting was going forward, for whom those ballots were given Certainly not. He should not, for his part, denounce the arrangement made by the constitution on this subject. Viva Voce might be a very good mode of voting for President, but, whether good or bad, was not now the question. It was not the mode which the constitution had prescribed. He again repeated, that his object was not to effect any conceal. ment, for himself or for others. The course which each member would pursue, would be well known to this House, and it would be known to the country in time to correct it, if erroneous. But his object, Mr. M'L. said, was to prevent the exertion of an influence which, at some period hereafter, might operate to warp and swerve members from the conscientious discharge of their duty. It was wholly on the ground of precedent that Mr. M'L. was desirous to record his vote in favor of this rule. Surely, no gentleman who knew anything of history, could need any arguments to convince him how tremendous such influence as that which he deprecated, might easily become. Nor was it hard to say how it might be got up. A county meeting is held; votes are passed, approving or disapproving the anticipated conduct of a representative in this House, and directing him what course to pursue. And if the affair stopped here, there would be no danger. But it might go further; constituents may be brought to the scene of action, with the intent of intimidating and overawing the members of this House. The time might come when this would happen, though it may not now; and, if the gentleman from South Carolina shall then live, and cast his eyes on such a scene, Mr. M“L. was persuaded that he would do justice to himself and to his motives on this occasion. That gentleman says that the people have a right to know what is done in this House. Sir, said Mr. M'L. I agree with him that they have. He says further, that he cannot go with me in the doctrine that our constituents have no right to control us in the vote we are about to give for President. But, for myself, I am free to say, that, however I respect the opinions of my constituents in all cases of ordinary legislation, in this case I do not know them ; I act as a judge and an umpire. I know perfectly that great respect is due to public opinion, when fairly expressed. But even public opinion, if, in my conscientious belief, it has run wild or gone astray, shall not govern me. The Constitution has imposed it on us as a duty, to choose a President, when the election by the people fails. Now, if my constituents have a right to instruct me, in this respect, the constituents of the gentleman from South Carolina have an equal right to instruct him, and so have the constituents of each member of this House. And, if gentlemen are bound to obey, and the country remains divided, the result will be, that this House cannot choose a President, any more than the people can. The last remedy provided by the Constitution fails, and all those evils rush upon the country at once, which are the obvious result of such failure. It is expressly to guard against this, that the Constitution provides, in the resort to this House, a tribunal which shall be persectly independent, and above popular contral. when up before, Mr. M'L, said, he had referred to the precedent of 1801, as bearing upon the present case. in answer to the argument drawn from it, the gentleman from South Carolina had denied any weight to the precedent, because it was derived from the administra. tion of the Government by the federal party. Mr M“L. expressed his regret that any thing should have fallen from that gentleman, which might have a tendency to revive animosities which, for the happiness of the coun
try, ought never to be disturbed. But, he said, if this subject was to be introduced, he was willing to meet the gentleman from South Carolina. The precedent he had referred to, was a precedent set in party times, and of the federal party. But, said Mr. M'I.. it does not, because it is a precedent of the federal party, come to me with less title to respect. Is this the only precedent of that party It is the precedent of a party, says the gentleman, capable of enacting the alien and sedition laws. True, it is: and it is the precedent of a party which or. ganized this Government—which put it in motion, after building it up, and established the policy which, wisely cherished, had made this nation, at this day, prosperous at home, and respected abroad. It is the precedent of that administration, to the wisdom of which, time, which tries all things, was fixing its seal. It is a precedent of the same party that established the judiciary, built up the navy, created an army, and laid the foundations of the system of national defence, which has afforded to us security at home and protection abroad. . After copying from that party all these measures of national glory and prosperity, why will not the honorable gentleman receive from it also this precedent, which has the same motives, and the same great objects in view In all other cases, the federal party consulted the true interests of the country; and their measures were calculated to subserve them, or it has been folly to adopt them. In the case now brought into precedent, they had the same objects in view ; and the gentleman will find, if he adopt their policy in this respect also, he will reap the fruits of this, as he has done of other precedents set by them. Mr. FLOYD, of Virginia, said he had no disposition to say much on this subject; but, holding the opinion, which he did, of the most deliberate character, that, not only on this subject, but on all others, there should be no secrecy whatever in the proceedings of the Government, he was not disposed to vote on this question now, without saying a few words. He was not disposed to set a precedent now, to be governed by hereafter in a state of excitement. Is there any excitement now * The opinion of every member of the House, in regard to the Presidential Election, is made up decidedly and distinctly, and can be expressed in open sitting, as well, and no §§ as honestly, as if our doors were closed; and I was sorry to hear the gentleman from Delaware say, that the presence of persons in the galleries could have no effect on his vote: for I am sure there is not a man in the United States who would suppose such a declaration from him necessary. In reply to the argument that but a few persons, who were industrious enough to get up soon, would be able to obtain admission into the gallery—Mr. F. asked, if so, why should any gentleman wish to close the gallery Let them indulge their curiosity in this particular—he saw no objection to it. Nor could he agree with the gentleman from Ohio, that intriguers would be always up in the galleries—for that was not the place for them. The gentleman had also reference to a late occasion, not more than a year ago, growing out of this very election, in which there were some symptoms of dissatisfaction in the galleries. [Mr. F. here was going to remark on this illustration, supposing it had reference to the meeting at the Capitol on the night of the 14th February last, but Mr. WRight intimated that that was not the incident to which he referred.] Mr. F. continued. Poor King Caucus having been so much abused and spoken of, sir, I thought the gentleman might have referred to that occasion, where I was myself present—for, sir, I was one of that respectable body, and I am yet proud of it. If, however, he meant not to refer to that case, I will refer to a case, the excitement of which, probably in this House, and in the galleries, and out of the House, never was, and never can be, exceeded. I allude to the Missouri question—during the arduous and protracted discusions
of which, no disturbance proceeded from the galleries. I am not, therefore, for setting a precedent now, in anticipation of what has never yet happened. If, sir the Representatives of the People, in their capacity of individuals, or acting by states, are capable of being operated upon by disorders in the galleries, it is high time for us to go home. But I apprehend no disturbance. In all the trying circumstances of the Missouri question, as respectful conduct, at least, was exhibited by the galle. ries, as by the the House itself. A year or two ago, we were three or four days ballotting for a Speaker of this House. Was the election of President more important than the election of a Speaker of this House? For himself, since the amendment of the Constitution, he thought the office of Speaker second in the Government. If we can elect a Speaker without any trouble from the galleries, can we not also elect a President I would not suffer the belief to go abroad among the People, from our over-precautions, that we cannot. It had been sometimes said, in reference to the movements of this Government, that the eye of Europe is upon us. Now, Mr. F. said, he would not, in the eye of this People, or of Europe, have this House look like the Conclave of Cardinals, the Council of Ten at Venice, or even the Star Chamber of England. He would have the election of a President as public as possible, and let all the People, and all the world, see all that is done. There would not, perhaps, be much to see : the ballot-box would be placed on the Clerk's table, he presumed, and the States would deposite their votes in it as called over—that was the mode of proceeding in the Caucus last winter, and a more respectable and honorable body of men, he must say, he had never known, and he had no objection to the whole world being spectators of the ceremony. It seemed that it was what happened on a late occasion at New York, that the gentleman from Ohio had referred to. Of that State, Mr. F. said—for she was a great State—he would avoid saying anything; but, if what happened there had happened in Virginia, he should have said as little as possible of it : for the occurrence of the disturbance in the galleries of the Legislative body, argued as little in fa. vor of the body which did not suppress and punish the authors of it, as of those who disgraced themselves by making it. As he could not see any reason for secrecy, in conducting the affairs of Government generally, he was not willing to sanction it in this instance. If the Government was, as the gentleman from Delaware had suggested, strong enough for the purpose of security at home, and protection abroad, it had nothing to apprehend from disorder in the galleries of this House, its power being sufficient to enforce due respect to it. Mr. F. said he was rather sorry, for several reasons, that the gentleman from S. Carolina should have allud. ed to the old federal party. He had no doubt that,in every thing the federal party had done, not involving its construction of the Constitution, things were as well done as they are now. The error of that party was in not apportioning its legislation and expenditure to the true condition of the country. As to the elder John Adams and Timothy Pickering, he did not at all approve their constitutional opinions, and no one had been more decidedly opposed to them: but a state of things might oc. cur, and he did not know but it had occurred, in which he believed he would take the old ones in preference to it. If the doctrines of the old federal party were obnoxious, he did not see that those of the present day were any better. They undertook to do everything under the clause of the Constitution to provide for the general welfare; and so, said Mr. F. do we, at the present day. One thing, Mr. F. thought his friend from Delaware had overlooked. He had said that the federal party built a Navy. So they did, said Mr. F.—and they sold it, too-at least, they provided for the sale of it. The next administration carried the provision into effect, for
they were a law-abiding people. I cannot say as much for the present; for I read in the paper of to-day, that there is a seventy-four gun ship, built under an act expressly providing for such vessels, which is pierced to carry a hundred and two guns—the same which the President and a number of other persons have been lately on a trip of some seventy miles, to look at and admire. On another point, also, the gentleman from Delaware was somewhat defective in his statement: the federal administration did raise an army—but they also disbandedit. If that administration was to be reproached for any thing beyond an erroneous construction of the Constitution, it was merely for the extent of their expenditure, &c. and in that extent, the latter days of this haicyon administration were as far in advance of the federal administration, as that administration was in advance of public opinion. Mr. F. concluded by saying, that, as he was against secrecy of every description in the affairs of Government, he should vote in favor of this amendment. Mr. HAMILTON again rose, and said, that he felt it due to himself to make a very brief reply to the gentleman from Delaware, if it was merely for the purpose of assuring him that, in the allusion which he had made to the Alien and Sedition Law, that it was neither his intention or desire to arouse from their mouldering ashes those embers of party distractions which, he thanked God, had long since passed by. Much less was it his object to fling imputations on a party, (among whom had been embraced some of the most valued and cherished friends he had on earth,) which, on a variety of occasions, had rendered services of signal and inestimable value to the country. But he would put it to the candor of the gentleman himself, to say, when he urged a measure for our adoption, on the mere ground of onethority, whether it was not admissible for him to show, that the authority, according to the popular understanding of the country, came rather in a questionable shape. Mr. H. said, that he should not deny, (for it would be unjust for him to do so,) that the Federal party, (the very party which passed the Alien and Sedition Law,) had contributed to the formation of those great and valuable institutions to which the gentleman had referred. But he believed that they were, most of them, the work of joint counsels, and a confederate patriotism, when parties scarcely had a controlling influence on public measures; and whilst he admitted that several distinguished members of the Federal party had left a large debt on our gratitude, he could not be unmindful of what such men as Jefferson, Madison, and Gallatin, had done, in giving efficiency and popularity to the form of our Government, by fixing the principles of a wise, economical, and prudent administration. He thought it, however, not a little caustic and unkind in the gentleman from Delaware, to appropriate all that had been done for the country, as the trophies of his party; if, however, these were consolations furnished after the loss of power, he surely would not deprive his friend of their enjoyment. But, after all, he had risen merely and distinctly to disclaim any intention to wound the feelings of a single "gentleman on that floor, by an allusion which he thought had laid fairly in his view. Mr. MERCER, of Virginia, then observed, that he was very happy that the gentleman from South Carolina had made the explanation he had just given; and he expressed a hope that all party divisions and party feeling would be banished on the present occasion. He thought that the observations of the gentleman from Delaware, himself, had shown that no great injury was likely to result from the admission of spectators. If it was really true, that the sentiments of members were not concealed from each other, the mere closing of the gallery would not operate to conceal them from the public, or materially prevent any influence from out of doors-Members were not under any injunction of secrecy, and whatever was done within, would almost immediately be
known without. There was then no end to be accomplished by the rule, but solely the prevention of disor. der; and the only question to be settled was, whether the rule was necessary for this purpose. Mr. M. believed it was not : he could conceive no reason to apprehend the smallest danger of it. He thought that, under the protection which they enjoyed on all other days, the House would be as free from disturbance on this, as on
other occasions. As to the precedent which had been
referred to, Mr. M. made some remarks, which, from his position in the House, the reporter but imperfectly heard. Mr. WEBSTER said, he was afraid that an observation by the honorable member from Ohio, apparently made in allusion to his remarks, might lead to misapprehension. He had not intimated that the gallery might be filled by persons not entitled to consideration; no such thing. He only spoke of its size, and then only in consequence of the argument that the People of the United States might, from the galleries, superintend the votes of their Representatives. Superintend, he believed, was the word. His honorable friend from Virginia, (Mr. Floxi,) seemed, in like manner, to have misapprehended him in this particular. Even if the galleries should be cleared during the proceedings, at the request of a state, there would still be no propriety in speaking of the proceeding as done in conclave, or as kept secret from the people. The journal would be published daily, as usual. There would be no injunction of secrecy. It was a mere question about the orderly and decorous proceeding—the police, as it were—of the House. As to the supposition that any gentleman wished to conceal his vote, or to act secretly, there was no one who supposed such a wish to exist any where. He was willing, every member was willing, that his vote should be known to every body, He had known questions which he thought as important as this. He might again. The occasion, however, might attract a multitude, and the object was to secure order, and freedom from restraint. The gentleman from Virginia had objected to voting, on questions of adjournment, &c. by states. But it would be seen at once, that, as the election was to be made by states, every question fairly and really incident to the choice, ought to be decided also by states. . The constitution said the House should immediately elect a President. On the former occasion, the rule was, that the House should proceed, without interruption from other business, and without adjournment to choose a President. But the latter part of the rule was found impracticable, in fact, and avoided afterwards, by voting on one day, that the next balloting should not take place till the next day. So that all the members were, in fact, quietly sleeping in their beds, while the House, according to the journal and the rule, was all the time sitting. The vote to postpone the ballotting, from time to time, was, on that occasion, taken by states. The committee had thought proper, on this occasion, to recommend that the House might adjeurn on the vote of a majority of states. - he again hoped that too much importance might not be attached to this question. He had no fear of any great inconvenience either way. He saw no question of principle in it. It was a question of expediency; and he remained of opinion, that the rule prescribed a fit course, upon the whole, to be followed. He certainly was not likely to request the gallery to be cleared; but if any gentleman, or gentlemen, representing another state, should make such a request, he thought it ought to be granted. And, therefore, he approved the rule, in its present state. He would state again, and would particularly request the House to consider it, that there might be inconvenience and embarrassment, if this question were left to be decided, and should arise, after the house had commenced the proceeding, when it must
act by states and without debate. To prevent such possible inconvenience and embarrassment was one object of the rule. Mr. Wits GHT said, that, before the question was taken, he wished to correct the misapprehension of the gentleman from South Carolina, (Mr. HAMILtos,) as to the remarks he formerly made in relation to the kind of people that would crowd the galleries on occasions like the one contemplated. If I understood him right, (said Mr. W.) he supposed me to assert that none but the profligate and worthless people of this District would be found in the galleries, and that I considered none of them worthy a place there. Sir, I am not aware that I said anything of the people of this District or City; and if I did, I never could have uttered sentiments so ca
tirely foreign from my feelings as those imputed. I did say, however, that those who would crowd the galleries on such occasions, would be the unprincipled and
profligate politicians of the country, ready for the exertion of any influence, however improper and desperate, to effect their object. In this sir, the people of this city or District were in no way implicated, and I protest against the gentleman's carrying these declarations into any account against them. Among my acquaintance in the City and District, I am proud to rank many for whom I entertain a respect not surpassed by any felt by the gentleman himself, for them, or any other persons whatever. The gentleman from Virginia, (Mr. Floyn,) has said, in allusion to what fell from me, that the intriguers will not make the galleries the theatre of their operations. No, sir, not altogether. I concur with the gentleman in part; but when they have exerted their influence out of doors, and accomplished all within their power there, they will then take possession of the galleries, to ob. serve its effect and operation here. A word, sir, as to the motion. It is to take from the delegation of a state the power to clear the galleries. In ordinary cases, the Speaker, or any member of the House, can do it. When we assemble to ballot for President, we lose our individual character, and proceed as the representatives of states, acting only as states; and 1 can see no danger in giving to the representatives of one sovereignty the power to clear the galleries. It is but a mark of respect to him, and, in my opinion, it is peculiarly fit and proper that he should have the power to exercise, if the occasion called for it. Mr. M'DUFFIE, of S. C. observed, that as, in the course of the debate, principles had been advanced, against which he must protest, and against which he intended to vote, he was desirous of giving the subject some discussion, which the lateness of the hour would not, at present, admit him to do. He therefore moved that the committee rise. The question on rising was put accordingly, and carried, ayes 89–noes 71. So the committee rose, and obtained leave to sit again.
IN SENATE–Thumsday, Febnuany 3, 1825.
SUPPRESSION OF PIRACY.
The Senate resumed the consideration of the bill to suppress Piracy in the West Indies—the amendment proposed by Mr. SMITH (granting aid to merchantmen to arm) being still pending.
On this amendment, and various propositions to modify it, in regard to the kind and quantity of armament required, the amount of premium, &c. a discussion took place, which continued about two hours. In this discussion, Messrs. SMITH, HOLMES, of Maine, EATON, MILLS, LLOYD, of Mass., D’WOLF, LLOYD, of Md., HAYNE, VAN BUREN, and FINDLAY, took part.
Finally the Senate refused to fill the blank for the premium with $100, with $75, and with $50. On the latter sum, the question was decided by yeas and nays, as fol
YEAS–Messrs. Barbour, D'Wolf, Edwards, Hayne,
Johnston, of Lou., Kelly, Lloyd, of Mass., Lowrie, Mills,
on, he made himselfor the Executive responsible for the propriety of that course.
Mr. TAZEWELL having delivered his views on the fourth section, proceeded to say, that, before he sat down, he should offer a remark on the circumstances which had been stated by the gentleman from Massachusetts, (Mr. Mills.) When this bill was first introduced into the Senate, it was said to come under the patronage of the Executive: at that time some difficulties were started as to the question of public law, which become involved in it. One honorable gentleman whom he had in his eye, (Mr. Lloyd, of Massachusetts,) then very strongly argued before the Senate that, if there were doubts on that question, they ought to receive that bill, because it cam from the Executive. Those, it was said, who had consumed forty years in turning over the pages of Grotius, Puffendorf, and Vattel, by the midnight lamp, were far more capable of judging on this subject than the Senate could be. He noticed this circumstance now to express a hope, as an individual member, that, whensover any measure might be in discussion before the Senate, on any future occasion, that gentlemen would not introduce, by way of argument, in that House, an opinion of the Executive, as an authority and obligation. It was unparliamentary, and certainly wrong. The Senate, he said, was, under the Constitution, placed as a check on the Executive, with authority to revise the acts recommended by the President; and was this revising power, to be told, they should adopt any measure because it was recommended by the Executive It was language not known in the Constitution of the United States. If a case should ever occur, that the Executive might have a greater attachment to any particular measure than it had to this, he trusted it would stand on its own merits, and not upon the recommendation of the Executive. Mr. MILLS said he felt himself exonarated, in the remarks made by the gentleman from Virginia. He was yet, however, to learn that it was unparliamentary and improper for the Senate to make use of the advice of the Executive, after having condescended to ask it. If they did not intend it should have any effect, why did they ask it? The Senate, by a solemn vote, called on the President to know what had been done in relation to the suppression of piracy, and what he further recommended should be done? They themselves, had therefore, committed the first fault, in asking that advice; and it certainly was proper to refer to that information after having called for it. Mr. LLOYD, of Mass. then rose, and said, he was called, rather unexpectedly, before the bar of the Senate, to answer the charge made against him; but he could only throw himself on his country, and plead not guilty. He did refer to the opinion of the Executive to enforce the bill. There was not a member of the committee but understood that it had been submitted to the Executive consideration, and he thought it was as parliamentary to refer to those distinguished living authorities—those celebrated men who had spent forty years of their lives in studying public law, as to refer to the lex scripwit, the opinions of dead men, delivered ages ago. He thought so still, and were a similar case to occur, he should pursue a similar course. As far as any inference might be drawn of a blind devotion, on his part, to any man, or set of men under Heaven, he solemnly disclaimedit. He meant to refer to the high national authorities in support of his own opinion: he felt how feeble he was, unsupported by such authority, and he hoped the gentleman would pardon him for saying that, as long as he had the honor of a seat on that floor, he should, in similar circumstances, pursue a similar course. Mr. TAZEWELL said he should be very sorry to suffer the gentleman from Massachusetts, (Mr. Llorn,) to remain, for one instant, under the impression that he intended any thing personal or disrespectful to hin, or any one else: nothing could be farther from his idea than that; but, as a member of this Senate, he thought
it did not comport with the dignity of parliamentary pro-
had nothing to do with the bill—it was a mere individual
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES.—s AME in AY.
Mr. CALL, of Florida, submitted the following reso. lution: Resolved, That the Committee on the Judiciary be instructed to inquire whether either of the judges of the District Courts of Florida have received fees for
* Note: The day on which this debate appeared in the National Intelligencer, the following letter was addressed by Mr. Lloro, of Massachusetts, to the Fditors, which was also published, and which it is thought proper, in justice to Mr. L. to
append to the debate here.
February 4, 1825.
JMessrs. Gales & Seaton: Be pleased to insert the following in the next National Intelligencer, and oblige yours, res
GExTLEw Ex : §§ a condensed account, in your paper of this morning, of a discussion that took place in the Senate
* over the
YD, of Massachusetts, is represented as
...; said, “that those who had spent forty years in turning
of Grotius, Wattel, and Puffendorf, by the midnight lamp, were far more capable of judging on the subject,
“(the suppression of piracy, then under consideration,) than the Senate could be.”
his is erroneous. Mr.
Lord neither entertains that opinion, nor did he make so indecorous a comparison; and if a refer
ence be made to his remarks, he trusts they will not be found to contain any expression warranting an imputation which be would unwillingly have attached to him, however much he might have been misunderstood.
In the letter of the Secretary of the Navy, of December 1st, the Secretary expressed his opinion, that, unless the co-operation of the local governments in the
communicated to Congress with his m by the President, West ño. could be ob
tained, “additional means for the suppression of piracy ought to be entrusted to the Executive, to be used in such manner as
“experience may dictate.”
In accordance with this information, when the subject came up for consideration, a resolution passed the Senate, re uesting
the President to communicate to it information “as to the additional means necessary and expedient to be entruste
In reply to this, the President stated, that three expedients occurred
One by pursuit on shore,
These documents were all printed and promulgated, by being laid on the tables of the Senators, and published in the
newspapers, and, in the opinion of Mr. Liorp, furnished legitimate materials for the pending discussion, when the Committee of Foreign Relations brought forward a bill, authorizing, under certain, and very guarded circumstances, the imposition of a blockade of some of the ports on the Island of Cuba. - In advocating this principle of the bill, coinciding with information thus formally elicited and promulgated, Mr. Lord, thought it both correct and pertinent, to endeavor to fortify his own opinions, by a reference to the high authority from whence the advice had been received; and in availing of this support, he fest no reluctance, in characterising the source from whence it came, in the terms which he thought merited, nor in expressing his stronger reliance on the judgment of living authorities, thus distinguished by their experience and acquiremenis, rather than on the lex scripta (not scripsit) of past ages, given under circumstances having perhaps little analogy to the subject under debate, the suppression of piracy, or to the state of the world at the present .# This brief exposition, Mr. Lloxi, considers as due to those whom he has the honor to represent, o the fieest of the free, as well as to himself; for, while he will always delight to render honor to whom honor is due, he has in the course of a public life, now not a short one, never bowed the knee to any man in power, nor been an advocate of the slavish doctines of human infallibility, nor of passive obedience, or non-resistance; nor has he ever sought, or received, official favor or patronage for himself, or others; but, while making this declaration, he would be ungrateful were he not to acknowledge, that he has never failed to meet, as occasions for their manifestation presented, from every member of the General Government with whom he has been brought into contact since 1808—although sometimes at variance with them in political opinions—all the kind and gentlemanly attentions which he wished to receive, or was entitled to expect,