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Naturally there was some disturbance in this Democratic ward when the majority found out the purpose of Mr. Kennedy, and they were so demonstrative in their disapprobation of this attempt to secure purity in the primaries and an honest ballot that after ten o'clock Mr. Kennedy desisted, not, however, until his commendable work was substantially completed.
We have thus briefly touched upon all the allegations of fact found by the majority from the great mass of testimony taken by the commit. tee. Without occupying far more space and time than we are at liberty to appropriate, it is impossible to properly analyze the testimony and exhibit the utter failure of this partisan attempt to defame the people of two of the most renowned of American commonwealths. If the suffrage is free and pure anywhere on the face of the earth, it is free and pure in Massachusetts and Rhode Island. Religious toleration arose in the one and American liberty was born in the other. In both the independent virtues of the sires survive in their sons, and whoever attempts to institute a parallel between them and the terrible condition which has well nigh exterminated republican government in some less fortunate portions of our common country from which condition the eternal principles of liberty and justice, as they exist and are practiced in Massachusetts and Rhode Island alone can rescue them—commits an act of futile hostility to the cause of good government throughout the land.
The whole country is interested in preserving unsullied the reputation of our institutions everywhere. We have no right to proclaim to the world the failure of our form of government in any State unless compelled by the truth. It will not do for the son to defame his mother and expect to avoid the execration of mankind, even when there is truth in his charges of dishonor. What, then, shall we say of those who by falsification assail the sacred renown either of the mother who bore them or of the State whose just laws, uprightly administered, and whose institutions, impregnably fortressed in the hearts of a proud, free, and virtuous veomanry, have, by their impartial protection of the ingrate as well as of the most illustrious citizen, enabled them to defame her with impunity, without whose cherishing love they would have never been reared in a liberty which they do not deserve, and whose protection these lying outcasts should no longer enjoy.
That the false affidavits which led to this investigation were before the committee was not its fault, nor does any one seem to know their paternity, or how they reached their destination. The work, both of the majority and minority, has been patiently and thoroughly done. Contrary as have been their conclusions, it only remains for us to commend to all who may feel an interest in this investigation an impartial examination of the evidence by which those conclusions, respectively, must stand or fall.
The minority has no mud to fling at either parts in the States of Mas. sachusetts and Rhode Island. In regard to purity and freedom of elections, as in other respects, they are models deserving the imitation of other States.
Republicans or Democrats who are too pure or too timid to live in either would do well to seek some better world than this prior to any election they are likely to see in this generation. Doubtless we shall all grow wiser and better as time wears away, but the people of these States are as likely to have all the latest improvements and reforms in the working of the republican form of government as any in the land. We believe there is as fair a chance for a man to be good and do his political duty and enjoy his political rights there as anywhere else on the earth.
Finding, as we do, no evidence whatever of intimidation at elections either in Massachusetts or Rhode Island, we concur with the committee, although for an opposite reason, that there is no call for national legislation upon that subject so far as those States are concerned. But we cannot admit the impotent doctrine of the committee, that if their conclusions of fact were true, to wit, that improper practices exist in the States visited, so far as the election of national officers is concerned,
and the freedom of choice by voters has been interfered with, and persons practically threatened with dismissal from employment if they voted in opposition to the wishes of their employers," that it is not " within the competency of Congress to correct this wrong by additional or any legislation,” provided the State fails to remedy so profound an evil.
Suffrage is not under the final control of the States, so far as national elections are concerned. A duty is devolved by the Constitution upon the States which, by adopting the Constitution, they have agreed to perform. If they fail to perform that duty they do not destroy the Constitution, but simply violate their duty and compel the interference of Congress to preserve the government by establishing and enforcing the necessary laws.
Government and sovereignty are convertible terms. In a republican form of government the vote is sovereignty. Without a voter there can be no vote. If the national government has no voter it is not a sovereignty. It is subordinate to that power which controls the ballot. If State action, or the want of it, is supreme, then the right to vote at a national election does not exist at all and the doctrine of national sovereignty is a myth.
If the doctrine is true that even if an evil is found which destroys the right of suffrage Congress cannot legislate to remove it, why then has this investigation thus impudently been prosecuted by the committee ? Was the purpose of the majority only to do a little advisory missionary work among the watering places during hot weather?
It cannot be. The nation has jurisdiction of its own life. In every vital emergency it always will instinctively assert and assume it. No power exists which can prevent the assertion and ultimate vindication of that jurisdiction. The suffrage is national life. The elections are its pulsations, and all the blood of this great people will be expended, if need be, to make and preserve them pure and free.
HENRY M. TELLER. S. J. KIRKWOOD. GEORGE F. HOAR. HENRY W. BLAIR.
SELECT COMMITTEE TO INQUIRE INTO ALLEGED FRAUDS
IN THE LATE ELECTIONS.
SENATORS WALLACE, CHAIRMAN,
INTIMIDATION AND FRAUDS.
Boston, August 13, 1879. HENRY L. HALLETT sworn and examined.
By the CHAIRMAN: Question. Are you the chief supervisor of elections for the district of Massachusetts !-Answer. I am.
Q. When were you appointed !-A. On March 23, 1872, by Judge Shepley, of the circuit court.
Q. Did you act as such at the Congressional election of 1878 1–A. I did.
Q. Had you the coutrol of the appointment of the supervisors of elections in the different wards and divisions of the district ?-A. Tbe law vests the appointment in the judge of the circuit court.
Q. Were the appointees recommended by you ?-1. They were recommended by me.
Q. Was the control of the election of November, 1878, under your direction generally ?-A. In compliance with the regulations of the law I acted as chief supervisor.
Q. Have you prepared for presentation to the committee certain papers which you were notified to produce ?-A. Of the two papers which I was asked to produce—a list of the supervisors appointed at the election of November, 1878, and the election returns made by them-I have now here only the list of supervisors; having been unable in the limited time afforded me since being called upon by the committee to prepare the other paper.
(The list of supervisors was here submitted and is as follows:
List of superrisors of election appointed for the different roting precincts in the city of Bos.
ton, for the election held on the day of November, A. D. 1878.
Ward 1.- Republican supervisors.
Precinct 1. Richard C. O'Kief, Paris near Brook street.
WARD 1.-Democratic superrisors.
Precinct 1. Thomas F. McCarty, 54 Brooks street.