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ments to the Capitol; what cannot find an entrance through the House comes in by way of the Senate. "It is a favorite scheme," says Chairman Cannon, "for Executive officers, when they cannot get appropriations recommended under the jurisdiction of one committee, to shift around, and submit estimates so that they will come in under another committee.'
Where a party has been in possession of the Presidency and the House at the same time, the influence of the Executive in the choice of the Speaker, and consequently in the composition of the committees upon questions which divide the party into two wings, has often been direct and powerful. The contest of James K. Polk and John Bell for the Speakership in 1835 is a case in evidence. Earlier, John Quincy Adams found his administration handicapped in its beginning by the organization of all the committees of Congress in favor of his beaten rival, Andrew Jackson. "I rather think that the House will be organized by the election of a Speaker who will consult the President and Cabinet in the appointment of the committees," says a correspondent of the New York Herald in 1853. Stephen A. Douglas, according to Henry Wilson, was put down from his committee chairmanship in the Senate at the bidding of Buchanan's administration. One committee of the House stands on a peculiar footing as regards relations with the Executive; namely, the Foreign Affairs. The trickery of the chairman of the Ways and Means, John Randolph, in failing to report on Jefferson's message with reference to the conduct of European belligerents, and in delaying the appropriation bills so as to prevent the purchase of Florida, and his punishment therefor, are cited elsewhere. Later, in 1819, when this same purchase was under more successful negotiation, the chairman of the Foreign Affairs seems to have attended a meeting of the Cabinet and set forth his views. In a debate on the deposing of Edward Everett from the chairmanship of Foreign Affairs, one speaker urged that the chairmen of that committee especially, and of other important House committees generally, ought to be "men who were in confidential
relations with the government"; and another speaker, "that every committee of the House was the organ exclusively of the House, and as such it owed no duty elsewhere." Speaker Bell, defending himself against the charge of subserviency to Jackson on this occasion, declared that he had acted upon a principle which he had once heard enunciated by John Quincy Adams, to the effect that if ours is to be a practicable government, the several departments must be regarded not only as co-ordinate, but also as to a due degree co-operative. The same thought is expressed by The Nation in commenting upon the removal, after ten years of service, of Charles Sumner from the chairmanship of Foreign Affairs in the Senate, because of his opposition to General Grant's desire for the purchase of San Domingo. The newspapers of June, 1896, noted as to the Cuban Question, the fact that President Cleveland had met the Foreign Affairs of the House, and satisfied it concerning his attitude upon the recognition of belligerency.
46. SHOULD MEMBERS OF THE CABINET HAVE SEATS IN CONGRESS?
Since it is inevitable that there must be some kind of inter-communication and coöperation between the departmental heads and Congress, cannot some plan be devised by which this influence may be exerted more openly, publicly, and effectively than by the present method of communication between the secretaries and committees? In 1881 a report was submitted to the Senate by Senator Pendleton advocating the admission of the members of the Cabinet to seats in Congress. In the following selection Mr. Gamaliel Bradford upholds the principle of this report in answer to the objections made by Mr. Freeman Snow: .
The fundamental difference between the governments of Great Britain and the United States consists in this, that in the latter the Executive is a President, elected every four years by the majority of the whole nation. The intervention of presidential electors has become a mere form; and the election by States, though it differs somewhat, does not differ greatly from a popular vote. The Queen of Great Britain
reigns by hereditary descent, and is dependent for her position neither upon Parliament nor the people. As an offset to this the crown has been deprived of all but nominal power, though its influence is undoubtedly still considerable. The real executive, as Mr. Bagehot has clearly shown, is the ministry, which is in effect a committee of Parliament. When one ministry goes out, the leader of the opposition is invited by the Queen to form a new ministry. If he thinks he can command a majority, he invites certain other leading men to join him, which they will only do upon condition of his supporting them, so that if any one of them is defeated the whole ministry will resign. Every effort is therefore directed to maintaining the party majority, and how difficult this is, is shown by comparison of the groups and the constantlychanging ministries in France. It is a condition of unstable equilibrium. Our Cabinet officers, on the other hand, are the direct appointees of the President. So far from being irresponsible, they are jointly and severally, as well as absolutely, responsible to him. He can change one or all of them at his pleasure, subject only to the consent of the Senate, which has very rarely been, and under the circumstances herein proposed, never would be refused, unless in very extreme cases. But the President is himself responsible to the nation, and therefore his Cabinet is so also. In other words, he appoints its members, subject to his responsibility to the majority of the nation. The Cabinet is, therefore, irresponsible only as regards Congress. It has its own separate responsibility to the people precisely as Congress has, but with this difference, that the constituents of the Cabinet are the majority of the whole nation, acting through the President, while the constituents of each Congressman are only the majority of his own district, and of each Senator only the majority of his own State Legislature. This fact of the separate and direct responsibility of both executive and legislature to the common arbiter and sovereign, the people, is of immense importance, and like nothing else in the world. From their responsibility to the President alone it
follows that the members of the Cabinet need stand in no fear of Congress, or to resign in case of an adverse vote. If, indeed, the President felt that one or more members of the Cabinet had proved to be incompetent, he could, and probably would, change them at his pleasure. But, if otherwise, he could uphold them against any adverse majority in one or both Houses. The defeated member could either abandon the rejected measure under protest and appeal to the country, or could modify it, still under protest, till the majority would accept it, or could drop the subject, and, contenting himself with existing legislation, go on to something else till the verdict of the people was pronounced at the next election. But there would be no more necessity of his resigning than there is now. From the fact that both Congress and the Executive have a separate and independent responsibility to the people, as also from the much wider and more numerous constituency of the Executive, it would follow that Congress would be much less dominant and dictatorial in its relations to the Executive than it is at present, or than is the British House of Commons, or the French Chamber of Deputies. Nobody doubts that members of Congress are sensitive enough to any manifestation of the will of their constituents. The trouble is that with the present methods of government by the lobby and secret committees, there is no opportunity for the formation or the expression of public opinion. But if one of the President's lieutenants, felt by every part of the country to be the agent of the whole, were to stand up in open Congress to express his views and plans upon any public question, and these were discussed by the press of the whole country, itself anxious to conform to and express public opinion, members of Congress would be exceedingly careful about factious opposition in the face of such a power as that. So long as a secretary could maintain the conviction of his purity and elevation of character, even though his ability was not of the highest, he would be safe from bullying and sure of respectful treatment. It would be only trickery or dishonest
collusion with private interests, which ensure his speedy downfall.
Perhaps the best way to discuss Mr. Snow's argument will be to take a concrete case, and trace its probable working; and the tariff, at once by its complexity and its universal national interest, offers a good example. Suppose that when Congress meets, the Secretary of the Treasury, by invitation of the House of Representatives, in accordance with the Pendleton Bill, should appear and take his seat near the speaker's desk. The first thing to be noted is, that it is not at all necessary that he should be a member of the House. He is simply an agent of the administration, having no vote, but presenting the wants of the treasury, and the effect of the existing tariff upon the financial interests of the country. Observe, again, how different his position would be from that of appearing before a committee, say, of Ways and Means. The committee is not a place for debate. It does not care to argue with the secretary. With its inherent jealousy of the Executive, it does not care what he has to say. For form's sake, it listens to him, perhaps asks him a few questions, and then dismisses him and conducts its deliberations and forms its decision upon motives which the country never sees or understands at all. But the House is the place for debate. Every word that the secretary said. there would be reported, and his language and bearing discussed in almost every newspaper in the United States. Mr. Snow cannot see how the President represents the whole country any more than Congress. The simplest appeal to fact shows that the President excites equal interest in Maine and Louisiana, in Wisconsin and Florida, in Virginia and California. The speaker and the Chairman of Ways and Means are perhaps the most important members of the House. But they represent each precisely one three-hundredth and fifty-sixth part of the country, and the rest of it, except from the point of view of party politics, cares very little what either of them thinks or says.
But we have left the secretary waiting, and it is time for