« ForrigeFortsett »
on would be attended with the ruin of millions: on to endeavor to obtain an amelioration of its proo visions by compromise with their opponents, o and to postpone all efforts for its repeal to a so o tute and more auspicious period. Gen. Blair, o so far from conceiving that his vote was a reo cognition of the settled policy of the protecon tive system,” declared that he “did not vote for the hill as a compromise of the subject, or o as a quietus of the complaints of the south, but otoinciple of reduction " and Mr. Mitchell, who spoke at length against the bill, gave
to it his support, for reasons similar to those o which had been assigned by General Blair. o Had my conduct in relation to this bill been the o reverse of what it was had 1 voted against it,
and had this vote been cited to establish that I o had been inconsistent and treacherous to my
o o duty, I should have felt that I was incompejo on to defend myself against these grave accuto sations. I might have orged, as a subterfuge, | o the I would not suffer my name to be enrolled * in favor of any protective tariff, but would to not have been confounded and silenced by the on to reply, that if the law which I refused to vote for allo had been rejected, a law more grievous, and o which contained o oluties more oneo rous, would be inforce; and that, by declinin o * to exert myself to accomplish the passage o to the act of 1832, virtually contributed to rivet no so o my o the greater oppression ol. of the act of
o The compromise which I recommended in the - o House of Representatives, was declared to be ino oded to meet the existing crisis, which, in the | o opprehension of many wise and patriotic men, o o - o the destruction of the Union. To oo over this deep and dire calamity an immediate o remedy was necessary—that remedy could not
be administered without the co-operation of the
o friends and the adversaries of protection; that * co-operation, to the extent which has been mentioned, was obtained: it was unconnected
merly, to use all my exertions to erase it from our statute book; and I derive no little confidence in the repeal of protective tariffs, from the fact, that a diminution of the power of those who have hitherto, been regarded to be the veteran and uncompromising supporters of protection, was manifested, by the passage of the act of July last, inspite of their unremitting and strenuous opposition to it. aided by the cooperation of several of those who term themselves the friends of free trade, among whom
of Representatives. These Senators and Representatives might have been able to reconcile their conduct with what they conceived to be policy and duty: I could not imitate their example, nor shall I be prevailed upon to think that I ought to have done so, until I shall be
ties is increased, by reducing their rule and amount—and that where the choice is submitted to a representative of subjecting his constituents to a greater or a lesser evil, he ought to preferinflicting upon them the greater.
Ameliorations in the existing tariff have been achieved by the act of 1832, when that change shall take place in Congress, which will be produced by the election of new members, according to the Apportionment Bill of the last session, there is every reason to expect that still further advances will be made toward the fullfilment of what is desired by the friends of unrestricted industry. In the interim, what has been done cannot impede, but will rather accel. orale the progress of more just and liberal legis, Lition. Were I called upon to state what I firmly believe to be the cause of the tariff system which now convulses our state, 1 should conscientiously reply, that it is to be attributed to the act of the 27th of April, 1816, the passage of which was strenuously advocated by three-fourths of the delegation from south ca.
offording protection to the manufactures, to put to bound the reach of contingency from for reign competition.” The restrictive measures of the Government before the late war with Great Britain, and the interruption to our commerce, during that war, had virtually protected domestic manufactures; but when the act of April, 1816, was under discussion, the duties which were intended for protection were gene.
vation. In April, 1816, the principle of protection was openly avowed, and enforced in many instances by correspondent duties. Then was invented the mischievous and delusive contrivance of the minimums, which was first applied to that fabric, the raw material of which constitutes the great staples of the south. It is true, that a provision was inserted, that the rates of duty upon manufactures of goon and wool should be reduced within three years: but these were the only restrictions in that act. Its Proteoivosharacter, in other respects, was preserved. The minimum upon cottons, by the operation of which those of the East Indies were
driven from the market, ** to be retained at
were included both of our Senators and six of
persuaded—that theburthen of protective du
rolina; that they insisted upon “the necessity of
rally so light, as almost so have escaped obser
which it has been the baleful source.
them, by all the means in my power, which are of the Union.
“statement exhibiting the amount of duties according to the present rates, compared with
20 instead of 25 cents, without the annexation of any limitation as to time. High duties upon other commodities were imposed, without any reservation; and among them the duty upon salt, which is now 10 cents the bushel, was fixed at 20cents, and the duty upon brown sugar, which, under the act of 1832, will be 24 cents the Ib. was fixed at 3 cents. From the era of the passage of the act of April, 1815, the transfer of capital was invited and rapidly diverted from its natural channels, into investments in those employments of labor which were stimulated by legislative protection. These investments have been made upon so extensive a scale, that a withdrawal of them cannot be attempted, or therwise than slowly and gradually, without the
inevitable ruin of millions of our fellow citizens, a large proportion of whom were originally as hostile to a protective tariff, as are now the inhabitants of our State. The sin, or the error, of having aided in the passage of the act of 1816, cannot be imputed to me. I am neither responsible for †
These principles I have always resisted, and I shall continue to resist
consistent with the obligations of honesty, a respect for the letter and spirit of the Federal compact, and the preservation of the integrity Since the date of my letter to a Committee of the State Rights and Union party, I have re. ceived from the Register of the Treasury, a
the duties as modified by the act of 14th July, 1832, predicated upon the imports during the year ending 30th Sept. 1830,” which I have left with the editor of the Southern Patriot. Upon the assumption, that the dutiable articles will be the same in quantity and price, after the 3d of March next, as they were in the year 1830, this statement shows that, under the tariff act of July, 1832, there will be a reduction of $1,869,056° from the amount of duties on pro
law nor for the calamities of
ticles, it is asserted in an address
make an injurious impression upo
Reduction on *
By the existing tariff. As this so
it per annum,
not furnished us with any data to support the
duction of the duty upon India silks, I will submit the following communication which I have received from one of the most enlightened and experienced merchants in this city. “Nothing is more certain than that the southern States will be more than proportionably be: nefitted by an increased consumption of teas, and East India silks, that will take place in consequence of the reduction of the duties upon them; because the course of trade is now so changed, that, compared with former times, little or no specie is exported. The India merchant now either furnishes himself with bills drawn by the United States Bank on London, or at twelve months dates, (which pay in India at a premium,) for he purchases merchant bills at ordinary sights on London, and lodges his funds there, ordering his ship to touch at Gibraltar, where he can draw from his London funds at 10 or 15 percent advance, and he has dollars at par, or at most from 1 to 2 per cent. premium, these dollars being procured entirely from Spain, in payment of our rice, cotton, tobacco, &c., carried into that country by her own subjects clandestinely. If the bank furnishes the India bills, it covers them by merchants drafts on England. Thus, whether the India cargo be procured by bank bills or speocie, they are all raised by bills on England, which bills are almost altogether found by southern rice and cotton. Thus it plainly and incontrovertibly appears, that the south furnishes the principal part of the funds for India cargoes, and, consequently, must be greatly benefitted by the increased consumption of those articles; and who will deny, that, in the increased consumption of coffee, by being free of duty, that the south is benefitted in a double ratio, when they are told, that the Island of Cuba alone, takes about 30,000 casks of rice, with lumber, and other articles of its produce. No State in the Union furnishes more, if as much of West India cargoes, as South Carolina. The want of semblance of a foundation for the assertion in “the Address,” that “the positive burthens of the southern States are not diminished, and their relative burthens very greatly increased,” is plainly demonstrated by the facts which i have stated. As to those items exempted from the payment of duties by the act of 1832, to which I have not particularly adverted, I will only remark, that the south and the north are relieved by these exemptions, exactly in ratio proportionate to their consumption. It is alleged in all the newspapers in this State, which adopt the reasoning of “the Address,” that no spirit of compromise or conciliation entered into the composition of the late tarifact, and that its sole object was to confer additional bounties upon the tariff states, and to increase the io. upon the planting States: My opinion of that acts have already *Pressed; and it is not my intention to ascribe * to merits which I have hitherte denied to it. but I cannot refrain from
*ct of July, mitting, that the
1832, does coin some provisions
now be purchased abroad
eeded from a spirit of compromise yard, and pay
which is, actually, 48 per cent. Woollens costing 50 cents, and not more than $1, the square yard, are estimated at $1, and pay a duty of 45 per cent, which is, actually, 50-59 per cent. ad valorem. Woollens costing $1, and • not more than $2,50 the square yard, are estimated at $2,50, and pay a duty of 45 per cent. ad valorem, which is actually a duty of 54-82 per cent. ad valorem. Woollens costing $2,50 and not more than $4 the square yard, are esti
* mated at $4, and pay a duty of 45 per cent.
ad valorem, which is, actually, 61-59 per cent. ad valorem. All woollen cloths costing over • $4 the square yard, pay a duty of 50 per cent. ad valorem, which with the additional 10 per cent, under the tariff of 1828, is 55 per cent. ad valorem. The foregoing duties, which I have stated as actually paid, are taken from an official document of the Treasury Department. It is thus seen that the existing duties, in every item, exceeds those of the act of 1832, excepting upon woollen cloths costing between 334 cents, and 50 cents the square yard, and be. tween 60 cents and $1 the square yard, when they are less in a very small degree; but upon such as cost more than $1 the square yard, they are, considerably, higher. This difference in the rate of the duties is, by no means the principal benefit derived from the late act; for by the substitution of ad valorem for minimum duties, the manufacturers are deprived of what amounts almost to a monopoly, in the home market, as to all wollen cloths, the prices of which are between the minimum reductions. This fact was openly and repeatedly avowed in the House of Bepresentatives, during the pendency of the bill, in the last session of Con. gress, and it was owing to the abolition of the minimums upon woollens, that the leading advocates of “the American System” were so hostile to the passage of the law."
* Mr. EveRETT, of Vermont said, what in substance, was repeated by several other members who advocated protection, than “he considered that system (the minimums) as affording the most efficient protection, with the least burthen on the consumer. The operation of that system had been misrepresented. He had been surprised to hear gentlemen affirm that it levied duties of 100 and 150, and even of 225 Per cent. A yard of cloth costing $1, pays 45 cents, and a yard costing one dollar and one cent, it is true, if imported, would pay 11.2% cents, which would be at the rate of il2 per got ; so a yard costing 50 cents, would pay 223 cents, being at the rate of 90 per cent. But what was the fact? No cloths chargeable with these high duties were imported. The importations were confined to cloths valued at or a liftle under the minimums. The effect then, was Prohibition of the importation of most of the cloths between the minimums. Of those excludel, the cloths of the intermediate values, the *fican manufacturer will have the whole mar. Ket.”—[Extract fron Mr. Everett's speech on the tariff bill delivered 18th June, 1832, as Published in the National Intelligencer.
I have thus, fellow citizens, submitted to you my reasons for the vote which I gave upon the passage of the late tariff act, and my views of that act, both in its immediate effects, and as compared with the existing tariff. I feel confident that my vote will be approved of by all of you, who prefer conciliation and compromise to a rupture with the members of our confederacy. When a system has long been established, which extensively controls the national capital and labor, however unwisely it may have been introduced, it cannot, suddenly be abolished, without spreading desolution and ruin among millions, and communicating a perilous shock to our tranquillity and security. However we may deprecate a protective tarist, in its principle and in its details; however indigdantly we may arraign the motives in which it originated, and the consequences resulting from it, the majority of the people are, nevertheless, convinced, that it is warranted by the Constitution, and recommended by the soundest policy. From the prevalence of these sentiments among the majority, and the legislative encouragement of them by high and stimulating protective duties, immense capitals have been invested in numerous and complicated branches of human industry, which, it must be obvious, ought not to be interfered with, excepting with the utmost caution, deliberation, and forbearance. Thus impressed with the importance, the intricacy, and the delicacy of this subject, when the consideration of the tariff was brought up, during the last session of Congress,my anticipations of its improvement were limited to such alterations as would lighten some of its burthens, obliterate some of its most obnoxious enactments, and manifest a temper and disposition indicative of still further amelioration. When the foundations of the system should be thus uudermined, the cheering prospect would be presentel, that Congress would gradually act, upon the principles which ought never to be lost sight of —that domestic industry should only be incidentally protected by duties upon foreign importations. Although the tariff act of 1832 is, in my opinoin, imperfect, although it still retains, no small portion of its ancient defect, although it still requires great and radical improvements, yet it does appear to me that it makes such approaches to what it ought to be, us to render it worthy of acceptance, at this time, to every patriotic and reflecting statesman, who seeks to obtain the recognition of the principles of free trade, by temperate and practicable means. To what extent the duties and the revenue will be reduced by the late tariff act, I have already shown. Surely, a diminution in the protecting duties of $1,869,056, and in the aggregate of the revenue from the customs of $5,187,078, is a relief, in the gross and in the detail. Surely a diminution in taxes, which reduces their nett receipts from $17,288,645 to $12,101,567, is a general benefit. These atne. liorations, combined with some concessions of the south, and the repeal of the minimums upon
woollens, ought to be hailed, with some satio