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War ere the
partialities, and the tenure of their offices ena But there is a middle ground; and it is this bles them to pronounce the sound and correct circumstance of there being a middle ground opinions they may have formed, without fear, between slavish obedience to unconstitutional favor, or partiality.
laws, and an unauthorised resistance to them, that Resolved, that the solemn decision of the constitutes the great preservative principle of Supreme Court of the United States, upon ques- our government. The advocates of a Supreme tions of constitutional law, are binding upon the power in the federal government, deny the President of the United States, acting in his of power of a State to authorise resistance to an ficial capacity, as well as upon other Depart- unconstitutional law; we believe that the Slates ments of the Government.
possess this power by virtue of the rights reResolved, That the people of every State in the served in the constitution. If we are correct Union are bound by the laws of Congress which in this opinion, it follows that in a case where may have been passed in conformity to the con- a State authorises a resistance to a law, upon stitution of the United States that there is no the ground of its being unconstitutional
, it middle ground between obedience and revolu- brings up the question of the powers of the tion, and that the doctrine of nullification is a two Governments, which can only be decided dangerous political heresy.
by a convention of the States. This
, then, is The above resolutions were adopted at the a question of power. We are of opinion that late Staunton Convention. It was naturally to the States possess the power, and it follows, have been expected, that the rapid progress that if they do possess that power
, the act of which the republican principles of 1798 are mak. the State is as much authorised by the constitu. ing in the minds of the people south of the Poto- tion as the act of Congress, even if it be ad. 'mac, would have called forth some demonstra- mitted that the State be in error as to the lay tion of the latitudinarian principles of Mr. Clay in dispute. But the constitution, by empower and his party, at so favorable an opportunity for ing Congress to call a convention of the States
, so doing. The preceding resolutions we there has enabled that body to put an end to all con fore consider as containing the sum and sub. troversy, because it has expressly clothed such stance of the political sentiments of the friends convention with the power of amending the of Mr. Clay in Virginia, as far as regards those constiiution, and thus putting an end to all conpoints embraced in the resolution.
troversy about the disputed power. If the It is not our purpose to enter into any extend. power ie expedient, and proper to be exercised, ed examination of those resolutions. We have the convention will grant it, and certainly no one neither time nor room.' Nor, in making the few who values our Union, will hesitate to say, that no observations we shall make, are we prompted power ought to be exercised by the
General Go, to do so, by any fear that the true principles of vernment, wbicha convention ofthe States would our constitution will suffer much from the autho- refuse to grant. It is this that distinguishes rity attached to the opinions of the Young Men's our form of government from that of all other Convention of the friends of Mr. Clay. We nations, and to it we must bave recourse whenmean no disrespect to them when we say that ever oppression arises from a violation of the we think it will have but very little weight, constitution. It is to the reserved rights of the when put in the balance, opposed to the opin- States, to their respective sovereignties, that ions of Mason, Giles, Nicholas, Wythe, Roane the people are to look for defence against the Taylor, and Jefferson.
errors and oppression of the General Govern. in our remarks we shall reverse the order of ment. The people there find an organised the resolutions.
body, invested with power and authority, which The fifth resolution is, that the people are they have been accustomed to look on with re. bound by the laws of Congress passed in con- spect and affection. Under the guidance and formity to the constitution. If by the words, stimulus of that authority, they will feel a con"in conformity to the constitution," the Confidence of success in their resistance to oppres vention means laws which the constitution gives sion, which they would not feel while acting una Congress authority to pass, we presume the der irresponsible societies. And, above all, Convention will find no one to dispute their the very fact of such a power being inherent in opinion. It is a truism that might bave been the States, will either cause the oppressors to omitted without diminishing, in the least, the pause in their schemes of oppression, or force effect which may be produced by the other so them, reluctantly it may be, but still it will lemn declaration of the Convention.
force them, to retrace their footsteps. How But what would the Convention say in cases evidently this is shown by passing events. where laws are passed not “in conformity with On the 4th resolution we shall say nothing the constitution.” Surely it will not contend present. that the people are bound to obey them. The second resolution, relative to the judges
The resolution further declares that there is of the Supreme Court, contains not a little in it * no middle ground between obedience and re-of rather an extraordinary nature. Coming volution.” Were the General Government of from the source it does, we suppose it must be the States a consolidated one, there would be considered as serious. some truth in the odeclaratin. The disobe That in all cases of meum and luur, of law dience of individuals to an unconstitutional law and equity, the Judges would decide without might be termed revolutionary, but that would fear, favor, or partiality," we are not in the least not make it wrong
disposed to question. Thal, however, does
the ren pro by
not by any means render them proper persons find the sum and substance of the whole. It is to decide upon the political questions which the very marrow of the doctrine of the latitumay arise between the States and the General dinarian consolidationists. We are, we must Government; and none other of any moment is confess, struck with the novelty of the mode likely ever to arise. Any half dozen intelli- of its enunciation, or, to speak more correctly, gent individuals taken at random from the lite. with the novelty of the opinions developed in rati of London, Paris, Berlin or Dresden, would the resolution. be much better calculated to give a fair and “The tribunal provided by the Constitution impartial opinion.
to decide disputes between the States and FedBut, says the resolution, they would have eral Judiciary.” In perusing the Constitution no local prejudices or partialities." Is this we are unable to find any provision made for possible? Could the convention have really, such a case. There is nothing said by which believed this? To us it seems strange and un. we could infer the probability of the existence natural. There must surely be something ve- of such a case being in the contemplation of ry extraordinary connected with a seat on the the framers of the Constitution. bench, that as soon as an individual occupies it, It however would be of little service to the he becomes divested ex officio of “all local pre- latitudinarian constructors of the Constitution, judices and partialities." Apollo's tripod at if there had been a provision made to decide in Delphos had not a much more powerful effect " cases of disputes between the judiciary of a upon the Pythoness, when it enabled her to see State and the judiciary of the United States," into futurity.
unless there was also a tribunal to decide be. The reasons assigned for this caemption of tween the States and the General Government, the judges from the ordinary frailties of hu- in cases involving the constitutionality of the manity, are not much less singular than the ex- acts of the General Government. And it is this exemption itself. “They are selected from that the Convention means to assert when it
those who are most celebrated for virtue and declares that the Supreme Court is the tribunal legal learning.” Without calling in question to decide between the “States and Federa the truth of the declaration, that they are al Judiciary.” That is, the judiciary of the Unitways so selected, we need only observe, that ed States is to decide ail disputes between even that would not justify the assertion of itself and the judiciary of the States; and contheir exempion from local partialities and sequently to decide all disputes between itself prejudicies. Much less would the fact of and the States. In other words, one branch of their appointment being made by the concur- the General Government shall be the arbiter in rent wishes of the President and the Senate,' all disputes between said Government and the produce on them the transformation expected States. It requires no spirit of prophecy to by the convention. Experience, we think, foretell how such disputes will always be dehas shown lately, that individuals, every way cided. To suppose that such was the intenunworthy, may be appointed to office by the tion of the framers of the Constitution, is to con. President, and if not confirmed, be at least sider them equally destitute of a knowledge of warmly supported by a large party in the Sen- buman nature, and of political science. ate,
Let us suppose for a moment that this imBut who are the individuals most likely to plied power of the Supreme Court had been be selected to fill the responsible situation of expressed in the Constitution, and an article judges in the courts of the United States? Ex. had been introduced, declaring that “if any perience tells us. Men who have taken active dispute should arise between the States and the parts in the political concerns of the country, Government, as to the construction of the Conand who stand high in the estimation of the stitution, or the extent of the powers of said party, and perhaps also in that of the country. Government, all such disputes shall be decid. And yet these men are supposed to be ex officio ed by a tribunal to be organised by the Govern. divested of all local prejudices and partiali- ment, and the members of which shall be apties," and to be instanter, able to decide “with. pointed by the President and Senate. Can any out fear, favor, or partiality," all dispotes about intelligent man for a moment believe that one polítical rights that may occur between the single state would have agreed to the ConstituStates and the General Government.
tion? It was with difficulty that the States Let us suppose a practical exertion of this could be induced to give their assent to the power. We will take this very question, the Constitution as it is. And why? They dreadconstitutionality of the tariff, which has pro-ed the insidious encroachments of the General duced these resolutions. Let us suppose it to Government on the rights of the States and of be brought before the Chief Justice,and Judges the people. They had a presentiment of Baldwin, McLane, and Story. Who can doubt what has actually taken place, that the Goas to what would be their decision? We mean vernment would tend to consolidation through not the slightest disrespect to them, but we all legal technical constructions. And they saw know that they are committed upon this point, that in a country of such diversified moral and and to leave the decision to them would be just physical relations, that consolidation must be as pertinent and judicious as to leave the free- immediately followed or accompanied by, tydom of the Poles to the decision of the Empe- ranny or a separation of the States. The whole ror Nicholas.
proceedings of the Convention which formed It is, however, in the first resolution that we the Constitution, and of the State Conventions
FROM THE CHARLESTON EVENING POST.
more mode de Unit
which ratified it, show that the great object fthe resolution of Mr. Pendleton, relative to the was to preserve the rights of the States, and to Supreme Court. Will the Globe venture to give the General Government no more power deny the correctness of the principles advocate than was absolutely requisite to carry on the ed by the honorable representative from Geor, external relations of the country, and to attain gia? Oh, no! that would be impolitic. Hopes such specified general objects as could not be are still entertained of a vote in Georgia favora
, conveniently embraced within ithe powers of ble to Mr. Van Buren, and as long as that is the individual States. What then can be more the case, so long will Georgia nullification be unreasonable than to suppose that the Consti- the true principles of the Constitution
, and the tution contains, by implication, a power which decisions of the Supreme Court be subordinate annuls all the restraints imposed upon the Go to the sovereign power of the State. But cross vernment by specific grants of certain powers, the Savannah, and the Constitution becomes, and express reservations of all others. under Executive logic, quite a different thing,
and the Supreme Court may riot in the full in“The Richmond Enquirer speaking of the
dulgence of absolute power. So much for final disposition of the tariff in the Senate, says:
principles. “ Messrs. Webster and Clay were thankful that the bill recognized the protective princi
The Doctrine of Treason. ple! Mr. Hayne, (whom we yet hope to see But let us examine a little more particularly convicted of the mischiefs of nullification,) fell this idea of the commission of treason against into the same mistake!! It is, indeed, a strange the United States by the public authorities and mistake. The assertion called up other Sena- people of a State, and see how it will turn out tors, who disavowed it. And so do we. In in practice. An individual charged with the comtaking this bill as the lesser of two evils, as mission of an offence against the United States softening the tariff, and saving us from commo- must be tried in the State wbere the offence is tion, we do not recognize the protective prin- committed. When, then, the laws of the ciple. We take the bill with a protestando.” Union have become so oppressive as to deter
"A “protestando !” Well,' gentlemen, mine a State to resist; when the oppressions what signifies your protestando? What is to are such as to rouse the people to defend their be the consequence of it? You talk of the rights even at the hazard of a civil war
, do you « mischiefs of nullification:" if your protesta. think you would find among thul people a jury tions have not the desired effect, will ye also who would convict a fellow.citizen of treason become nullies! Suppose Congress adhere to for having acted on the authority, and in the the protective principle for twenty years, and defence of the sovereign rights of the State! you to your protestando: it will only turn out As a question of law, the federal judge might, that the country will advance to prosperity, in and probably would, determine that the act spite of your empty protests."
amounted to treason under the Constitution of The preceding is from the Columbian Centi- the United States; but would the jury, a part of nel of Boston. The friends of the tariff can this very State, this social community, duly im. scarcely conceal their contempt for those who pressed with the allegiance which ikey owed praise the new tariff bill, and hate it in reality, to that State--would this
jury retura a verdict and receive it with a protestando. Does the of guilty, under these circumstances! Never, Enquirer suppose that its praise of the bill is Sir, no, never. not perfectly understood by every intelligent But I may be told I am arguing from extreme individual. All know it is electioneering hy I have a right to do so. It is only a pocrisy. Let the election be over, and we extreme case that will justify a resort to such shall again see the Enquirer coming out and measures on the part of a state. No State will carrying into effect his protestando, unless the ever attempt to assume this attitude except in course of events should carry him over in reali- cases of " palpable and dangerous violations of ty to the tariff party. This tariff, however, the Constitution" by the Federal Government. will answer their purpose until another elec- The admission that this right exists in an extion is about to approach; when we shall have treme case, is quite enough for me. It is only another tariff similar to this, and another pro- extremity the State must judge.
in these cases that I contend for it; but of this teslando of the traffcing politicians. The question of the
Centinel are very ap. Security against the abuse of the right of Nullipropriate. "What signifies your protestando?"
fication. Very little indeed. Eight years of protestan. When I am asked then, what security there dos have done nothing. And if Mr. Speight, is against this resort of the States to their origi
. of North Carolina, knows any thing about the nal sovereign rights and their refusal to submit plans of the party, five years more are to be to the laws of Congress! I answer, it is in the employed in the same way. Thirteen years of responsibility of those who guide the councils protestandos, and then Mr. Ritchie and the col- of the States and on public opinion. Sir, this lar junto will think about what is to be done. is essentially a Government founded on, and A hopeful prospect indeed!
Supported by, public opinion; and whenever
this has ceased to operate, the Government is GEORGIA NULLIFICATION. at an end. Ifa State should resolve on resistThe extracts below are from the very able idg a law of the United States, or even secede remarks of Mr. Foster, of Georgia, made onling them from the Union, do you believe that
ing the giste PONE fro
SITE for pro 105 the du
the application of force would coerce her to decisions of the Supreme Court. It has been submission? No, Sir, whenever this resort is frequently said, that if a decision of this Court attempted the
days of the republic are number is resisted, the President is bound to call forth ed! Whenever the moral feeling of the coun- the military force of the Union. When we ask try has ceased to operate, it would be vain, nay, from whence this power is derived, we are it would be madness, to resort to physical force. pointed to the constitutional requisition that Alexander Hamilton's opinions of Reserved the President “shall take care that the laws Rights.
are faithfully executed." But this is a mere The speech, from which I am about to read, general expression-the manner in which the was delivered in the New York Convention, laws are to be executed, if not pointed out in while the ratification of the Constitution was the Constitution, must be provided for by law under discussion. Speaking of the concurrent--the means by which a law is to be carried jurisdiction of the united and individual States, into execution depends very much on the law
itself. In order to have the laws executed the in matters of taxation General Hamilton says, “ I maintain that the word supreme imports no courts must be held ; yet it will not be conmore than this that the Constitution and laws tended that the President should attend the made in pursuance thereof, cannot be controlled court. The President is not the ministerial of or defeated by any other law. The acts of the ficer of the court; the process and decrees of United States therefore will be absolutely obli- the court are executed by their marshal; and gatory, as to all the proper objects and
powers of if there be any resistance, he must summon the the General Government. The States, as well posse. To enable him to execute the process as individuals bound by these laws; but the laws of the court, the whole power of the country is of Congress are restricted to a certain sphere, and subject to his order. And, Sir, this power when they depart from this sphere, they are no has been wisely lodged where it is the aid of longer supreme or binding. In the same man. the people is a safe reliance for the execution ner, the states have certain independent powers And whenever a law or a judicial decision is of
of your laws or the decision of your courts. in which their laws are supreme. New York and Van Buren Nullification.
such a character that it does not receive the
sanction of the moral feeling of the country, it But, Mr. Speaker, we find also the great is vain to hope to enforce it. State of New York—the “ Empire State," (as
Sir, I may be permitted, without exhibiting it has been most appropriately called,) throw. ing itself into the same scale, and maintaining late decision of the Supreme Court, as como
an air of unbecoming triumph, to refer to the the same principles. In the year 1824 her le
pletely illustrative of these ideas. The State gislature, in passing some resolutions as to the of Georgia, through all the departments of its power of Congress, to demand tonnage duties from canal boats in that State, declare that should the court direct its marshal to execute
government, has refused obedience to it " such claim is so evidently unjust and oppres, it, does any one believe that he can command sive, that the interference of the State is called for in defence of its citizens,” and although they very certain that a sufficient force could not be
a posse sufficient to carry it into effect? I am proceeded no further than to pass resolutions raised in this republic. And why is this? Beinstructing their members in Congress to use their endeavors to prevent the exaction of these The people of this country will not consent to
cause public opinion is against the decision. duties, yet not only the right, but the duty of the State to interfere, is most explicitly assert. the States thus controlled. And, above all,
see the political, the sovereign rigbts of one of ed. And some of the most distinguished sons* they will not tolerate the idea of coercing a • of this great State declared, in another branch member of this Union at the point of the bayoof the Legislature, that if the General Govern, net. I have already said that this is a Government insisted on its pretensions, and attempted ment depending mainly on public opinion; and to enforce them," it would be an encroachment on the rights of the State, which she my word for it, a law or a decision of any Doought, and would resisl to the last exlremity." this public opinion, cannot be carried into exe
partment of this Government at variance with This language requires no interpretation.
cution. Sir, your main dependence, your only Power of the Supreme Court.
hope, is in the good sense of the community, Sir, whenever the people of this country and the attachment and devotion of your pece yield to the idea that the Supreme Court is the ple to the institutions of our country. final arbiter in all constitutional questions, then indeed, may we bid farewell, a lung fare.
SOUTH CAROLINA, well,” to the sovereignty of the Slates, and, as We have all along insisted on the great pro. a necessary and ultimate consequence, to the bability of a union of the two parties in the Union of the States.
south, in their resistance to the tariff. The fol Power to Coerce a State.
lowing from the Mercury at Charleston, shows I avail myself of this opportunity, Mr. Spea- the gradual progress of this union, arising from ker, to advert 10 some strange suggestions a mature consideration of the subject, and the which have been made with regard to the duty total failure of their expectations of redress from and power of the President in enforcing the the last Congress.
FROM THE CHARLESTON MERCORI.
Progress of the State Rights' Causc.-We pub
iar a cire Humu
lish with pleasure the following communica- triumphant. More than one of the five mil The tion, from a highly respectable source, giving tions proposed for this object, has been alresan account of the very patriotic conduct of the dy subscribed in that State, within a few days,
expre late Unionists of St. John's, and of the happy The spirit of home industry, and of true na
ginia harmony of feeling, and unity of sentiment, tional glory is now abroad, and promises for
TI wbich now exists among them and their former the efforts of the real patriots of that State, opponents, the State Rights party. Such news richer and more enduring fame than was ever ble! is cheering. We shall be glad to receive the yet enjoyed by the most distinguished and 12
pose official account alluded to : we trust, that the liant of our pot-house declaimers. We shall manly and magnanimous conduct of the Union continue to a ise our readers of the happy the i ists of St. John's, in declaring for the State, changes that are going on in the "Old Domi. will have a propitious effect both here and else. nion."-Charleston City Gazette. where.
The suggestion that we made some time
the s WADMALAW, St. John's Colleton, July 19. since, that the Richmond Enquirer, and those I take great pleasure in communicating to you whose organ it is, were preparing to desert al
bers the change of sentiment in this Parish. Å meet their former principles, is daily receiving evi
treach ing of the State Rights and Free Trade party dence of its truth. The above extract, from was held at Rockville yesterday, for the pur- the Charleston City Gazette, is taken from the pose of declaring their sentiments in relation to Enquirer, into which it is admitted without
de bt the late proceedings in Congress, and the der- comment, no doubt receiving the approbation nier resort of our State demanded by the crisis. of its editor. The remarks of the Gazette upWe were happy enough to command the ears on the sentiment of Mr. Speaker Stevenson of many of our opponents. The prospective are striking, and show that he considers the passage of Mr. Adams' bill, with the recorded entiment expressed by Mr. Stevenson as it votes of Messrs. Drayton, Mitchell, and Blair, volving an entire abandonment of what have in its favor, has entirely alienated them from the hitherto been empbatically styled Virginia Union party of Charleston, and the fine effect principles. This the Enquirer publishes with. produced by Mr. W. B. Seabrook's address, in out the disapprobation or denial of the truth of which, by the way, be surpassed himself-unite the conclusions drawn by the Gazette. It is the two parties in sentiment almost to a man. considered by the Gazette as the pledge of VirThe strongest toasts given on the occasion, ginia to cease its VAPOBINO against the" tyranwere those, who a week or two since, were nical exactions of a corrupt majority in Cone staunch for the Union.” The proceedings gress;" that is, to cease opposition to the tariff will be published, and are of the most gratify. and to internal improvement by the General ing character. À Convention—not Southern Government,
D Convention-for every body laughs at that up The sentiment of Mr. Stevenson is a virtual, here, but of the good people of South Carolina, we should rather say an avowed, abandonment was unanimously decided upon, as the most pro. of every principle that the republican and per and popular course now open to the legis. State Rights party have been contending for lative body.
ever since the bold stand taken in 1798 by Jef.
ferson, Giles, Madison, and Nicholas, in oppa. " At the citizens celebration of the Fourth, sition to the latitudinarian constructions of the at Washington City, Mr. Speaker Stevenson, Constitution, by which the rights of the States one of Virginia's most accomplished statesmen, are totally annihilated. is Virginia willing gave the following toast:
redeem this pledge made by “one of her most “Our holy Union! The charter of our ex- accomplished statesmen" Is she willing basta istence as a nation; the banner under which we ly to surrender her own rights and sovereignty must all rally; the flag which we must nail 10 to enable a few of her recreant sons to attain of
. the mast, and go down with the ship rather fice by an union with the friends of the tariffs than strike."
by an union with Mr. Van Buren,
, for presses, we have no question, the pledge of changes they are confessed to be, are produced Virginia to go for the "Union now and forev- wholly and solely by the hope of office. Noer, one and indivisible.” No reasonable doubt thing else has produced them., No conviccan be entertained of the determination of tha: tion of former error is even pretended to be
nursery of heroes and patriots," to cease its felt; but they gradually face about without it vaporing against the " tyrannical exactions of a being discovered except by those who watch corrupt majority in Congress," and instead the signs of the times, 'wben, and how, and thereof, to fall back upon those magnificent re- why, the change has taken place. sources which have been so unsparingly lavish The above article was unquestionably inserted on every part of its territories, by the boun- ed in the Enquirer as a pulse feeler, to see how teous hand of nature; but which the political the idea would take among its rcaders
. The jugglers of our era have sought to obscure, editor is unquestionably somewhat afraid as to with the mysticisms of quackery and false al- the probable termination of the course be is purlegiance.
suing. Every now and then he retraces his « Their system of Internal Improvement, is footsteps, but still be advances; and be has at receiving an impulse at this moment, which, if last become so committed that it is no longer persevered in for a sbort time, will render itlin his power to return to where he started.