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H. OF R.]
The Tarif Bill.
(Jan. 29, 1833.
Southern independence, with a recital, in substance, of nearly fifty protected articles, which enter more or less the causes set forth in the preamble to the declaration into the consumption of the South, evince no disposition of 1776?
to listen to its complaints? But let us consider, a little more particularly, the pro- It is true that law did not surrender the principle of babilities of a Southern Union to resist the laws and protection. But is Virginia prepared to demand that suroverturn the Government.
render at the point of the bayonet? Impossible! She I am not aware that any one has ever undertaken to cannot become so infatuated as to forget the origin and place the right of secession, or nullification, upon slighter history of the protective policy. She cannot, if she ground than that of a “deliberute, palpable, and danger- would, obliterate from the records of that history the votes ous violation of the constitution;" not an infraction which and opinions of her most distinguished statesmen. I will is to be proved by bair-splitting, but one that is delibe- not repeat the abundant evidence which has been brought rate, palpable, and dangerous. Now, sir, what is the forward on this point. But I will ask the indulgence of pretended violation of the constitution in the present the committee while I advert to one piece of testimony, case? The exercise of a power to regulate commerce, which has not, I believe, been alluded to in this discusso as to give encouragement and protection to domestic sion. On the 7th of June, 1809, the following resoluindustry; a power which, as I have before observed, was tion was adopted by the House of Representatives of the distinctly claimed and exercised by the first Congress, United States: and which has received the explicit sanction of every “Resolved, that the Secretary of the Treasury be diPresident, and of almost every Congress, from that time rected to prepare and report to this House, at their next to this; a power, whose existence has not, in fact, been session, a plan for the application of such means as are so much as questioned until within the last ten years. within the power of Congress, for the purpose of proSuch is the power whose exercise is now to be treated as tecting and fostering the manufactures of the United a violation of the constitution, so palpable and dangerous States; together with a statement of the several manufacas to justify nullification and secession; in fact, revolu- turing establishments which have been commenced; the tion. What a severe reproach is this upon the illustrious progress which has been made in them, and the success men who passed from the convention, that formed the with which they have been attended;
and such other inconstitution, into the first Congress; upon all our chief formation as, in the opinion of the Secretary, may be magistrates, and upon the whole country, including its material in exhibiting a general view of the manufactures most distinguished statesmen, of every political faith. It of the United States." is against this overwhelming current of authority that Upon this resolution for “protecting and fostering the South Carolina stands up, buckles on her armor, and manufactures of the United States," the votes of the four calls upon the whole South to sustain her! Will she, can Southern Atlantic States, in this body, stood as follows: she, be sustained?
Virginia, yeas 12, nay 9; North Carolina, yeas 8, nays 3; But there will, we are told, be a strong sympathy in South Carolina, yeas 6, nay 1; Georgia, yea 1, nays 3. the cause of South Carolina, oppressed South Carolina. Total, yeas 27, nays 16. How is that sympathy to be excited? By what means is This resolution, I need hardly say, is in perfect accordthe flame, which has been kindled in that State, to be ance with the general current of public opinion at the spread throughout the Southern section of the Union? Is South during the first thirty years of this Government; it expected that the theory that exports pay the duties, is with the recommendation of protecting duties and proto bewilder the whole South, as it has a majority of the hibitions,” by Mr. Jefferson; and the subsequent recompeople in Carolina? Sir, this delusion has had its day, mendation of manufactures by Mr. Madison, to “the and met with the fate of thousands which have gone be- prompt and constant guardianship
of Congress;" and let fore it. It has, indeed, done its work in South Carolina; me add, has been, since, most fully and unequivocally but that it is capable of so perverting the judgment, and sustained by a distinguished son of South Carolina, who exciting the passions of the great mass of the Southern is, at this moment, pressing opposition to the protecting population, as to bring them up to the point of revolu- system, to the fearful alternative of its total abandonment, tion, I am not prepared to believe.
or a dissolution of the Union. Permit me, sir, to trouble If, sir, we will dismiss unmanly apprehension, and look the committee with a few extracts from his recorded at this subject coolly, I think we shall be slow in coming opinions on this subject. In his speech on the tariff bill to the conclusion to which some alarmists would carry us. of 1816, Mr. Calhoun said: By what process, let me ask, are the Southern States to “What is more necessary to the defence of a country arrive at the fatal point of dissolving this Union? By than its currency and finance? Circumstanced as our none, certainly, which will not include the agency of country is, can these stand the shock of war? Bebold State conventions. Now, let me suppose a convention the effect of the late war on them. When our manufacto be called, for example, in Virginia. I am not at liber-tures are grown to a certain perfection, as they soon will, ty to suppose that it will come to the resolution of seced- under the fostering care of Government, we will no longer ing, without ample discussion and patient deliberation. experience these evils. The farmer will find à ready And how may we suppose the friends of Union would market for his surplus produce; and, what is almost of meet the proposition to unite with South Carolina in re- equal consequence, a certain and cheap supply of all his sisting the laws and dissolving the Union? Would they wants.” not press, with irresistible force, the fact, that South Ca- "To this distressing state of things there are two rerolina had unnecessarily precipitated this crisis? that she medies, and only two; one in our power, immediately, had assumed an attitude of armed resistance at the mo. the other requiring much time and exertion, but both ment of relief from a considerable portion of her alleged constituting, in his opinion, the essential policy of this burdens? Sir, do you believe that Virginia is going to country; he meant the navy and domestic manufactures. join in rebellion at the moment of experiencing the bene- By the former, we could open the way to our markets; fils of the law of last July, which abolishes the minimum by the latter, we bring them from beyond the ocean, and valuation of woollens, of which she has complained, and naturalize them in our own soil.” admits nearly the entire consumption of her negro popu- “ Manufactures produce an interest strictly American, f lation almost free of duty? Did the law which, besides as much so as agriculture. In this it had the decided adembracing these provisions, made large reductions* on vantage of commerce and navigation; and the country
will, from it, derive much advantage. It is calculated to "Averaging about 50 per cent.
I bind together more closely our widely spread republic.
Jas. 29, 1833.]
The Tarif Bill.
(H. OF R
It will greatly increase our mutual dependence and inter- may well make the stoutest hearts tremble? Is the power course, and will, as a necessary consequence, excite an of our arms the only power to be feared? increased attention to internal improvement, a subject But, sir, there are other reasons why this Union will every way so intimately connected with the ultimate at not be dissolved. There is, after all, every where, a deep tainment of national strength, and the perfection of our and pervading conviction of its inestimable value. There political institutions. He regarded the fact that it would may be moments of madness, indeed, when this convicmake the parts adhere more closely, and that it would tion may almost cease to exert its power. The surface form a new and most powerful cement, as far outweigh- of the waters may be, for a while, disturbed by the tem. ing any political objections that might be urged against pests of passion. But the fountains of the great deep the system.”
are not so easily broken up. There exists beneath the “In regard to the question how far manufactures ought troubled surface a strong and steady current of patriotic to be fostered, Mr. C. said that it was the duty of this feeling—of attachment to the Union: an attachment country, as a means of defence, to encourage the domes- strengthened by a recollection of common dangers and tic industry of the country; more especially that part of sufferings, and a conscious enjoyment of common blessit which provides the necessary materials for clothing and ings, too precious to be lightly put at hazard.. I do not, defence.
The question relating to manufac- for I need not dwell upon the power of this Governtures must not depend on the abstract principle that in- ment to overcome resistance to its laws. That power dustry, left to pursue its own course, will find, in its own exists. It can, and must, and will be exerted, in the last interest, all the encouragement that is necessary; resort. Its existence or its capacity need not, however,
I might multiply extracts of the same import, but I for- be vaunted in this argument. But there is a moral power bear. Suffer me, however, to advert for a moment to in the sound intelligence and sober judgment of this great the opinions of another distinguished statesman of South community, which is more formidable than an army with Carolina, now on this floor, * in regard to the right of banners. It finds no place, indeed, in the battle field, nullification. They are embraced in a series of numbers amid the strife of arms, and the fiercer strife of human published in 1821, and accompanied by the explicit re- passions. But it enters the abodes of peace. Its whiscomrnendation of another distinguished individual, who pers are heard upon the midnight pillow. It penetrates is now President of the nullifying convention.f I will the secret chambers of the soul. It takes hold of the condetain the committee with but two or three extracts: science--moulds the judgment--subdues the heart. And
“ The General Government is truly the Government of may we not hope that Carolina, even Carolina, will yet the whole people, as a State Government is of a part of be redeemed, regenerated, and disenthralled, by its rethe people. Its constitution, in the language of its pre- sistless power? amble, was ordained and established by the people of the A few words, Mr. Chairman, upon the consequences United States."
of yielding to the menaces of Souih Carolina. "A man who will contend that our Government is a In the first place, sir, it is surrendering the protecting confederacy of independent States, whose independent system; and this, not altogether by the reductions of dusovereignty was never, in any degree, renounced, and ties for which this bill provides, but by the power which that it may be controlled or annulled at the will of the the act of submission gives to nullification to control all several independent States or sovereignties, can scarcely future legislation on this subject. be regarded as belonging to the present generation. The But the protecting system is not the only sacrifice. We several independent sovereign States control the General yield something of more value than the tariff. We, in Government! This is anarchy itself.”
effect, sanction a principle, whose inevitable tendency “ The States, as political bodies, have no original inhe is to work an entire change in the character of this Gorent rights. That they have such rights, is a false, dan-vernment, to subvert its very foundations, and prostrate gerous, and anti-republican assumption, which lurks at it at the feet of unlimited state sovereignty. I will not, the bottom of all the reasoning in favor of State rights." on this occasion, and especially at this late hour, detain
“If, after the National Judiciary have solemnly affirmed the committee with an attempt to go over the broad field the constitutionality of a law, it is still to be resisted by of discussion which this subject presents. But with your the State rulers, the constitution is, literally, at an end; permission, sir, I will suggest, very briefly, one or two a revolution of the Government is already accomplished; views connected with it. and anarchy waves its horrid sceptre over the broken The great principle which lies at the foundation of all altars of this happy Union.”
our political institutions is, that the people are sovereign Now, Mr. Chairman, permit me to return to the sup- --that is, that they possess, individually, the right of selfposed Virginia convention, and ask if it be possible that government. Now, it is contended that the constitution il can breast this current of Southern acts and Southern of the United States is the creature of this original, indiopinions, and solemoly decide that the laws shall be re-vidual sovereignty, and not of State sovereignty. What, sisted, and the Union dissolved, upon the assumption that sir, is State sovereignty? It consists, essentially, in the a protecting tariff is palpably unconstitutional.' Sir, the right of a community, associated for the purposes of gothing is impossible. Justice, honor, consistency--all for- vernment, to make laws which shall bind every member bid it. Should Virginia do it, the very marble which of that community. This right has no existence, antecebears the images of her illustrious dead, would break dently to the act of association. It is a corporate right, furth in indignant rebuke of her madness. Such mad- derived through, and entirely dependent upon, the conness, I know, exists in Virginia as well as Carolina. But stitution. Without the existence of such constitution, in that it can ever take possession of a majority of her states- some form, there can, indeed, be no such thing as a State, men, or her people, I will not admit to be possible. or State sovereignty; and no act can be regarded as ema
But suppose I am mistaken; and that Virginia, disre- nating from that source, which is not done under, or in garding the opinions of those she has been accustomed virtue of such constitution. to reverence, and reckless of her own consistency,
Now, no State constitution conferred, either on the should seem ready to take the fatal step. Is there no Government, or the people of any State, the right of or. other obstacle? Are there not peculiar bazards to be en- daining and establishing the constitution of the United countered in Virginia, as well as in all the South, which | States. The act of doing this was, from its nature, an
act of primary sovereignty--the same as that by which
the people originally formed the State constitutions, and Mr. McDuffie. t Gov. Hamilton,
constituted the state sovereignties. Instead of being VOL. IX.-93
H. OF R.)
The Tariff Bill.
[Jan. 29, 1833.
done under the State constitutions, it was in defiance of exercise of its appropriate functions, decide upon the vathem; being a resumption, by the people, of a portion lidity of the questioned enactment, then must it, of neof the powers which, in virtue of those constitutions, had cessity, stand as law, until they decide that it exceeds the entered into, and made part of the State sovereignties. powers conferred by them. Such tribunal, however, It was, therefore, in the highest sense, the act of “the they have provided. The constitution vests “the judipeople.” And in performing it, moreover, the minority cial power of the United States in one Supreme Court, were not, as in the case of an act done for State purposes, and in such inferior courts as Congress may, from time in pursuance of a State constitution, necessarily bound by to time, ordain and establish.” Now is it not an essential the decision of the majority. There was no existing ob. attribute of judicial power, that its decisions are final, and ligation to that effect. In reference to this investment conclusive to the full extent of its jurisdiction? Does it of power, their assent--the basis of free Government--not cease to be a judicial power the moment it ceases to had been neither expressed in the State constitutions, nor possess the right of determining and setting what the law implied in their acquiescence in them, because those con- lis? Is it credible that, if the framers of the constitution stitutions contemplated no such investment.
had intended that this ordinary judicial prerogative should Looking, then, at the origin, only, of the constitution be restricted, they would not have perceived the necessity of the United States, it would seem to be, in the high- of expressly imposing such restriction? Having failed to est sense, a popular Government, and not a league of do this, by what authority can we define judicial power to sovereign States. But the correctness of this position, mean one thing in the constitution of the United States, it seems to me, is rendered still more apparent, by a and another and a very different thing in the State conreference to the nature of the powers conferred by that stitutions? constitution. The “people of the United States,” by Such, then, being the nature of the judicial power in that instrument, vested legislative power in a Senate and question, and the constitution having provided that it House of Representatives; executive power in a Presi- ' shall extend to all cascs in law and equity, arising dent; and judicial power in a Supreme Court. Now, do under the constitution, the laws of the United States, not these powers appropriately, and exclusively, belong and treaties made under their authority,” the question to any Government, in the popular acceptation of that arises-does the same constitution either confer upon, term? Who ever heard of a league between sovereign or admit to exist in, every State in the Union, the same States, which made provision for the exercise of such power? If it does, then are we involved in the absurdity powers in such terms? The constitution is, moreover, of having cotemporaneous and authoritative decisions of in respect to the distribution of these powers, and the a precisely opposite character; and which, instead of terms in which they are described, in precise analogy sustaining, or nullifying the law, would only nullify each to the State constitutions; and, to the extent of the ob- other. jects in regard to which it is provided they shall be exer. The truth is, the judiciary is, in this Government, wbat cised, are of precisely the same nature, and bear to each it is in State Governments-a constituent branch of the other the same relation.
supreme power. There may be a league, but there can Without examining further the question whether these be no Government, acting as does this, upon individuals, powers were conferred by the people in their original without it, existing either in a separate department, or sovereign capacity, or by the States, it is sufficient to say, united with some other. If, then, a State may nollify the that if the constitution, which provides for their exercise, laws, it may nullify the decisions of the judiciary upon has any binding force, and the grant of them any intelli- them, and, by necessary consequence, the judiciary itself gible meaning, they must, of necessity, be supreme. The --and, of course, the Government. The supreme power, constitution expressly provides that “this constitution, instead of being in the United States, will be in each and and the laws made in pursuance thereof, shall be the sui- every one of the twenty-four States; while the nullifying preme law of the land, any thing in the laws of any State ordinance of a single state will become the supreme to the contrary notwithstanding." To maintain that the law of the land,” instead of the constitution of the Unitlaws of the United States are supreme, the laws of any ed States, and the laws enacted by its Legislature, and State to the contrary notwithstanding, and yet that they expounded luy its judiciary. If this is not what I have may be controlled and nullified by any State,” is a pal- asserted nullification to be, a subversion of the Governpable absurdity. They are, in fact, supreme, the laws of ment, then bas revolution no meaning and no power. all the States to the contrary notwithstanding.
The con- Mr. Chairman, will you sanction a doctrine fraught current enactments of every Legislature in the Union with such consequences? Better, far better, yield to the cannot make them void. The power that made them can power of an ordinary insurrection. In that case, indeed, alone unmake them.
you submit to force; but in this, you add to that submisIt is assumed, however, that certain pretended laws are sion the sanction of a principle which will, henceforth, not laws, because not made in pursuance of the constitu- form a fixed rallying point for revolutionary efforts. You, tion; and that, therefore, a State may declare them void in fact, legalize rebellion, under the deceptive and dangerand resist them. But who is to give to that assumption ous guise of State authority, and incorporate in your very the force of authority? In other words, how is it to be constitution the absurd and impracticable principle that rendered legally or constitutionally certain that what is a minority shall govern. assumed to be true is true! Until that certainty is pro- Such, sir, must be the consequences of the passage of duced, it remains a mere assumption, to which no more this bill, or of any bill, under circumstances which will importance is to be attached, when made by a State, than compel the judgment of the world to pronounce it an act when made by an individual. Whose decision, then, is of submission to South Carolina. If the protecting policy to give authoritative certainty to the assumption? Obvi- is, indeed, wrong, abandon it. If your laws are so framed ously, the right to make such decision can exist-except as to make its operations unequal, alter them. If your upon the ground of revolution-nowhere but with the revenue must be reduced, reduce it. And if that reducpower, wherever it be, which gave existence to the con- tion must necessarily impair protection, impair it. But stitution. The supremacy of the laws made under it, yield to no nullifying threats, unless you intend to arm would be but a mere sbadow, if either a single individual nullification with tenfold energy; unless you are prepared or a single State possessed the right to deny their autho. to change the whole structure and action of this Governrity, and obstruct their execution. If "the people of the ment, to see it divested of its moral power, and become United States," who ordained and established the consti- the scorn and derision of the world. tution, had provided no tribunal which could, in the But, Mr. Chairman, will our yielding to the menace of
Jas. 30, 1833.)
New York Convention Memorial. — The Turiff Bill.
[H. OF R.
South Carolina, and passing this bill, settle this vexed cut, [Mr. Huntington,) to strike the whole duties on tea question. We may, indeed, procure by it a temporary and coffee from the bill, he regarded as testing the prepeace. South Carolina will, of course, be quiet, if we servation of the protective policy--a question of the yield to her demands. But is this such an adjustment of utmost consequence, on which, notwithstanding the inthe question of protection as will permanently satisfy the firm state of his health, he should feel bound to offer great body of the people of the United States? Gentle- some suggestions. men talk of the passage of this bill as a compromise, The question was then stated, on the motion of Mr. which is to settle the question and give quiet to the coun- VERPLANCK, to strike out ten cents per pound on green try. Now, sir, who ever heard of a compromise when teas, five on Souchong and other black, and three on Boone of the parties was mute? And what do we hear from hea, and insert five cents on green teas, three on SouSouth Carolina? Who has spoken for her on this foor? (chong and other black, and one and a half on Bohea; Who of her delegation here has condescended to tell us which was agreed to without a division. that this bill will satisfy her?—that she will not, in fact, Mr. BATES then moved that the committee rise, which make its passage the occasion of urging demands of a still was carried: Yeas 64, nays 60. more humiliating character? She nullifies our laws; ar- The House then, at half past 8 o'clock, adjourned. rays her whole military strength to resist them; demands the entire and unqualified abandonment of the protecting system; and, in a tone of proud and insulting defiance,
WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 30. says that if we will comply with her demands, “in due time," and with a “becoming spirit,”-she will be satisfied. sundry resolutions from the Legislature of Massachusetts,
Mr. ADAMS presented to the House a memorial and Beyond this, she is silent! being called by its right name—a surrender at discretion strongly expressive of its dissent to the passage of the bill
before the House to reduce the tariff. -is denominated a compromise! But, sir, if South Carolina should consent to accept of of the whole House on the state of the Union.
The memorial was read, and referred to a Committee this, and make it a compromise, would it settle the ques. tion? Do gentlemen believe that an arrangement forced NEW YORK CONVENTION MEMORIAL, upon us, extorted by insulting menace, can be permapent? Does not all history admonish us that it will be received a memorial addressed to the House by the tariff
Mr. ADAMS inquired of the Speaker whether he had come the prolific parent of future contentions? Sir, nothing but a free expression of the public sentiment, convention of New York, with a request to present it. resulting from a deliberate examination by the people of
The SPEAKER replying in the affirmative, the protecting policy, can really settle this question. It
Mr. ADAMS asked the consent of the House that it is utterly inconsistent with the genius of our Government might be presented. that it should. "The carrying, by a ruse de guerre, a mea
The House having assented, sure affecting, so vitally as this does, the interests of the
The SPEAKER laid before the House a memorial from great body of the people, though it may serve a momen- a permanent committee appointed by the New York Tatary purpose, cannot, will not satisfy them, unless they are
riff Convention in opposition to the same bill. prepared to abandon their high prerogative of governing,
Mr. ADAMS called for the reading of the memorial. and submit to be governed. No, sir; if we really desire
This was objected to by Mr. WILDE and Mr. CLAYto have this question settled, we shall at once dismiss the TON, of Georgia; but the CHAIR decided it to be right, consideration of this bill, and submit the whole to the and the memorial was read accordingly, at the Clerk's judgment of the people. There will be ample time for table. them to deliberate, and full opportunity to exert their in.
The reading having proceeded some time, the further Auence upon the councils of our successors.
I am not reading was, on motion of Mr. ADAMS, dispensed with; afraid of their decision. Various causes may, indeed, and the memorial was referred to a Committee of the contribute to make it what I should not altogether desire? Whole on the state of the Union, and ordered to be But the decision, whatever it may be, will be their deci- printed. sion. They have a right to make it. Their interests are
At a subsequent point of the morning business, to be affected by it, either for good or for evil; and with
Mr. WILDE moved to reconsider this vote of referit, if we will give them an opportunity of deliberating ence, so far as it included not only the resolutions adoptand acting like freemen, they will be satisfied.
ed by the Massachusetts Legislature, but also the report Mr. s., after the expiration of the first hour of his of the convention who had draughted those resolutions. speech, gave way to a motion by Mr. Peance that the He perceived that, in that report, the Committee of Ways committee rise: Yeas 40, nays 53.
and Means were charged with having reported a bill as There being no quorum, the committee rose, and re. one thing, which they knew perfectly to be, in reality, ported that fact to the House.
another thing, and a very different thing. The SPEAKER, having counted the members present,
The further discussion of this motion was cut off, for announced that a quorum was then in attendance, when to-day, by the expiration of the hour assigned to resoluMr. Warse resumed the chair in committee.
tions. Mr. PEARCE now renewed the motion that the com
The House then proceeded to the orders of the day, mittee rise, which was negatived: Yeas 46, nays 68.
and resumed the consideration of the Mr. SLADE then resumed his reinarks, and, after
TARIFF BILL. speaking an hour and a quarter, he gave way to a motion by Mr. Hiester that the committee rise, which was ne- Mr. BATES, of Massachusetts, who had the floor, gave tived: Yeas 45, nays 72.
way, for a moment, to Mr. SLADE then continued and concluded his remarks Mr. ADAMS, who gave notice that, after his friends a quarter before 8 o'clock, having occupied the floor had had opportunity to express their views respecting the nearly five hours.
bill, and to offer their respective amendments, he should Mr. I. C. BATES then rose, and said: The question move to strike out the enacting clause. immediately before the committee, the policy of reducing Mr. BATES, of Massachusetts, then rose, and address the duties on tea in the manner proposed by the chairman ed the committee in opposition to the bill, as follows: of the Committee of Ways and Means, he did not intend to I observed last evening, said Mr B., that I consider the debate; but the motion of the gentleman from Connecti- question arising upon the motion of my friend from Con
H. or R.]
The Tariff Bill.
(Jax. 30, 1833.
necticut, (Mr. HUNTINGTON,) as a test question, decisive policy of the Government should have a reach someof the protective system, and of more importance, con- what longer than a man's arm, and that the great interests sequently, than any question that has come before the of the country are not nimble, and cannot change their House, or is likely to come before it, a question of peace position oftener than the sun crosses the line. And if the or war not excepted. It was on this account I was desi- honorable chairman of that committee complains that his rous of addressing the committee, at this stage, in the pro- bill fares worse at our hands than the weather did at the gress of the bill. And while I am up, I shall take the hands of Dean Swift, it is because his bill is more changeliberty to make a few remarks upon one or two measures able than the weather, if not, in itself, more charging in connected with the bill, upon the general tendency and its effect, and more chilling, malign, and deadly in its inbearing of the bill, and its purpose and object. The lit-Auence. If we are to bave a new system oftener than tle health and strength which I bring into this debate, twice a year, or at the commencement of every presidenwill be a sufficient guaranty that I shall not detain the tial term, we shall have systems enough, and we shall committee long.
have nothing but systems. In this same paragraph the When, during the last session, we were encountering committee very justly remark again, " that uncertainty is the cholera, and neglecting our own affairs and families worse than error in legislation. What a commentary to midsummer, 1 little thought that our attention would be this upon their bill!-the commentary of the committee so soon recalled to this angry and disturbing subject. 1 upon their own act! It was only six months from the should have thought that, in the transition from one con time this bill was reported, nay, not so much, not six, that dition of things to another, in our financial affairs, by you passed the act of 1832. How many voyages have which great national interests are to be affected, any been projected, and are in progress of execution, how Government, deserving the name of a paternal Govern- much capital has been invested under the faith of that act, ment, would have been content to feel its way, carefully or how capital has been modified to accommodate itself to and cautiously, to see what those interests can bear, and that act, no man can tell. And now, as has been well re. not, by one audacious leap, put them all in jeopardy. marked, before the ink is dry upon the parchment of that The Committee of Ways and Means, bowever, have pre- act, “before the funeral bake-mea's are cold," I will not sented this bill to us, and we must meet it as well as we say you have committed murder and matrimony, or that can. I am opposed to it in all its forms. I was opposed you have committed the one that you might commit the to the bill of 1832, because I thought it was not so good Other, or contract any unnatural or unhallowed alliance, as it ought to have been. I am opposed to this, because but you have reported this bill, which, if it has not the it is incomparably worse than that. This, it seems to turpitude of murder in it, has death enough-death me, is ground broad enough, and firm enough, and open enough to satisfy the grave. You cannot produce an inenough, for a man to stand erect upon, without being stance in the history of the deliberate legislation of the subject to any injurious imputation. And while my friend world to parallel this. In other countries, whatever comfrom Maryland (Mr. HOWARD) reverses by his vote to: motions arise, and however stormy they are, the great in. day his decision of yesterday, nothing is more natural terests of the people are held steadily to one course, and than that the idea of inconsistency should be the first idea are comparatively but little affected by them. A British that should occur to bim, he will permit me to express minister, who should present himself to the House of my surprise that it is not the last he should wish to talk Commons in the attitude of the Committee of Ways and about.
Means to this House, would be found in the minority upon The Committee of Ways and Means, when they pre- the first vote, unless the men of Lancashire should hapsented their bill, accompanied it with a report upon pen to be in the field, and then I suppose Parliament which it is founded, in which they sensibly and justly re- would have to give up. mark, that “it is vitally important to all engaged in any I desire to ask the chairman of the Committee of Wars of those numerous commercial, manufacturing, or agri- and Means whether he does not call this “uncertainty in cultural enterprises, which are affected by changes in the legislation. And if he does not, I will thank him, with rates of impost, now to know the intention and policy of his philological knowledge, to tell me what uncertainty this Government in regard to their several interests.” stands for in his report. Sir, it is uncertainty with a vesNow, sir, if there be any one point of policy upon which geance, and error too. the intention of this Government had been indicated, more I have said that there is death enongh in this billdistinctly than upon any other, and upon every other, death to the great interests of the country--and I will profrom the foundation of the Government down to the close ceed to show it. But it is not incumbent on the opposiof the war, it is this, that the agricultural, manufacturing, tion to the bill to show this. The committee who pro and navigating interests of the country are to be protect- pose the bill ought to show that it is consistent with, and ed against the rivalry and competition of foreign nations. promotive of, these interests, or it should bave no friends The last war put the country upon its resources, and de- here. Have they shown it? No, sir, nor attempted it: veloped them, and was followed by the act of 1816, which for what they have done does not deserve to be dignified was for the purpose of protecting the new creation of the with the name of an attempt. If they allege that their war, and of the measures antecedent to it. That again commission is financial, why, then, bas not this bill been was followed by the act of 1818; then came the act of sent to the Committee on Manufactures for their exam1824, then the act of 1828, and, finally, the act of 1832. ination, report, and judgment upon it? Or why has not By this act of 1832, it was established that the reve. the progress of it been arrested until the evidence which nue of the Government was to be reduced to the wants was taken at the last session, at much expense, could be of the Government; that it was to be derived from the du- printed, that we might have the benefit of it? Why was ties imposed for protection, so far as those duties should the bill urged on to its passage without even notice to those be required for that purpose, and, therefore, you struck interested in it, and to be affected by it, of its pendency? from that bill the duty upon tea and coffee. Many who I have many a constituent, who had rather be scourged hear me, will recollect that the chief difficulty, if not the at the post, or put in a pillory, or shut up in a jail, than only one we had, was in the apportionment of the duties that you should pass this bill, because, in the one case, he The policy of the Government was not only thus establish- alone would suffer, and, in the other, he and his family ed by that act, but the intention of the Government was will be involved in a common ruin. It is no answer to indicated in all the forms of legal enactment, sanctioned, say that the people now have notice of the pendency of of course, by the President himself. The Committee of the bill. The time that has been allowed them has been Ways and Means seem to forget that it is necessary thelextorted from the committee, and not conceded by them.