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objection to striking out "brooms and woodenware," and I make that motion. The great expense of the articles of wooden-ware, tubs, and pails, consists of iron hoops and wires and various articles which pay a tax of five per
June, 1867, were taken from the Speaker's table and referred to the Committee on Appropriations.
Mr. MORRILL. I hope that will not be stricken out.
The question was taken upon the amendment; and on a division, there were-ayes 35, noes 33; no quorum voting.
Tellers were ordered; and Mr. Washburn, of Massachusetts, and Mr. Ross, were appointed.
Mr. MORRILL. As there is evidently not a quorum present, I move that the committee rise.
The motion was agreed to.
So the committee rose; and the Speaker having resumed the chair, Mr. DAWES reported that the Committee of the Whole on the state of the Union had had under consideration the Union generally, and particularly the special order, being bill of the House No. 513, to amend an act entitled "An act to provide internal revenue to support the Government, to pay interest on the public debt, and for other purposes," approved June 30, 1864, and acts amendatory thereof, and had come to no resolution thereon.
By Mr. MARVIN: The petition of 128 citizens of Saratoga county, New York, asking an increase and an ad valorem duty on foreign wool.
By Mr. MORRIS: The petition of F. D. Mason, Esq., and others, of Geneva, New York, asking for a law in relation to inter-State insurance companies. Also, the petition of Joseph Hershey, jr., of Goshen, New York, and others, asking for an increased duty on imported wool.
By Mr. O'NEILL: The memorial of the officers of the Entomological Society of Philadelphia, asking for an appropriation of $3,000 per annum to be expended in the publication and circulation of the monthly periodical called the Practical Entomologist.
By Mr. ROLLINS: The petition of A. J. Prescott, and 19 others, citizens of Concord, New Hampshire, James Dean, and 22 others, citizens of Lowell, Massachusetts, A. G. Durfer, and 32 others, citizens of Providence, Rhode Island, severally praying for the passage of an act regulating inter-State insurances of all kinds.
By Mr. SITGREAVES: The petition of glass manufacturers, praying a reduction of duties on glass
By Mr. STILWELL: The petition of Governor Morton, and others, trustees of the Indiana Agricultural College, praying for an amendment to the act granting lands to the States to institute agricultural colleges.
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES.
The House met at twelve o'clock m. Prayer by the Chaplain, Rev. C. B. BOYNTON. The Journal of yesterday was read and approved.
tary of the Navy, the Secretary of the Interior, and the Postmaster General. ANDREW JOHNSON. WASHINGTON, D. C., May 17, 1866. The message, with the accompanying documents, was laid upon the table and ordered to be printed.
CLERKS IN THE DEPARTMENTS. The SPEAKER laid before the House the following message from the President of the United States:
To the House of Representatives:
In further response to the resolution of the House of Representatives of the 7th instant, calling for information in regard to clerks employed in the various Executive Departments, I transmit herewith reports from the Secre
LEAVE OF ABSENCE.
Mr. BENJAMIN. I desire to ask leave of absence for myself on account of sickness in my family. I cannot tell how long I may be absent.
No objection was made, and indefinite leave of absence was granted.
MESSAGE FROM THE SENATE.
A message from the Senate, by Mr. McDoxALD, its Chief Clerk, informed the House that the Senate had passed, with amendments, bills of the following titles, in which he was directed to ask the concurrence of the House:
An act (H. R. No. 345) for the relief of Christina Elder; and
An act (H. R. No. 363) supplementary to the several acts relating to pensions.
The message further announced that the Senate had passed, without amendment, the following bill:
An act (H. R. No. 386) for the relief of Francis A. Gibbons.
The message further announced that the Senate had passed the following bills, in which the concurrence of the House was requested:
An act (S. No. 251) for the relief of Commodore Thomas Turner;
An act (S. No. 261) for the relief of Mrs. Anna G. Gaston;
An act (S. No. 275) for the relief of Cornelius Crowley;
An act (S. No. 291) granting a pension to Mrs. Rebecca Irwin;
An act (S. No. 298) granting a pension to Jane D. Brent;
An act (S. No. 299) granting a pension to Jane E. Miles;
An act (S. No. 309) to authorize Samuel Stevens, a Stockbridge Indian, to enter and purchase a certain tract of land in the Stockbridge reservation of Wisconsin;
An act (S. No. 314) for the relief of Sarah J. Purcell;
By Mr. VAN AERNAM: Resolutions of the Legislature of New York, in favor of equalizing bounties to soldiers and sailors who enlisted in 1861 and 1862.
Mr. BLAINE. I wish to enter a motion to By Mr. WARD: The petition of 125 citizens of Bath, reconsider the vote by which House bill No. 602,
New York, in favor of increasing the tariff on wool.
to equalize the bounties of soldiers, sailors, and marines who served in the late war for the Union, was referred to the Committee of the Whole on the state of the Union.
An act (S. No. 321) for the relief of Maria Syphax;
An act (S. No. 326) granting a pension to Mrs. Harriet B. Crocker;
An act (S. No. 327) granting a pension to Mrs. Katharine F. Winslow; and
An act (S. No. 329) for the relief of Mrs. Margaret Kaetzel.
These authors define sovereign and indeWe have none such in our
Mr. MORRIS. Mr. Speaker, if ambition begat treason; and if treason begat the rebel-pendent States. lion; and if the rebellion begat reconstruc- Government. tion; and if reconstruction begat the amendment of the Constitution of the United States and the measures which accompany it, now pending in Congress, it may well be that the joint committee on reconstruction is only one of the several instruments rendered essential in perfecting, rather than the originator of, this series of acts in the great drama of events made necessary to save the nation and to restore it to homogeneous concord. It may well be, also, that these schemes are severally indispensable to check the growth of the poisonous shoots which are likely to spring from the remaining roots of the so recently felled tree of treasonable planting. Be this as it may, they are fitting themes for the historian, and perhaps for the legislator; but in what Í have to say I shall allude to these subjects and the incidents connected with them so far only as in my judgment they may be pertinent in establishing the following affirmations:
1. The incidents connected with the revolt of the southern States have, in no respect, abridged the powers or the jurisdiction of the Government of the United States.
2. These incidents have changed the relations of these States toward the General Government and they have affected some of their rights.
3. The relations thus changed and the rights thus affected can be restored to these States only by the legislative branch of the Government.
4. These relations and these rights should be restored as speedily as the interests of all the parties concerned will permit.
What are the facts?
Eleven of the United States passed ordinances of secession. They insisted that the mere act of their passage absolved them from all allegiance to and effectually severed their relations with the General Government, and that thereby they were rendered sovereign and independent. This pretense was denied by the General Government, and their ordinances were pronounced utterly void. An appeal to arms was taken, a remorseless war was waged, in the prosecution of which these States were overpowered and disarmed. They now propose to resume their former position under the Government they sought to destroy. Hence the question which now divides Congress and the country. In the discussion of this, I inquire:
1. Did the passage of those ordinances, or the waging of this war, abridge any of the powers or the jurisdiction of the national Government over these States?
I aver that at the passage of these acts of secession and at the commencement of this war for all national purposes the General Government had unquestioned jurisdiction over the entire territory and the inhabitants of these States severally. This jurisdiction grew out of a covenant, by virtue of which the covenantees instituted the Government of the United States. Under this covenant were vested rights of nearly a century's growth; by its very terms was plighted faith as sacred as oaths can make; here also were obligations as imperative as is Christian duty. Nothing less, therefore, than mutual consent or successful revolution could annul its binding force. Neither of these is pretended. Necessarily, therefore, the powers and the jurisdiction of the General Government have been, and now are, as absolute and unbroken over every foot of the soil and over every person within the boundaries of these States as it was at the hour it was first established by our fathers.
I here leave my first and preliminary to my second affirmation I inquire
What is a State?
In the language of Bouvier, it is "a body of persons unitel in one community for the defense of their rights." Or, as defined by Halleck, it is "a body-politic, a society of men united togethe: for mutual advantage and safety."
39TH CONG. 1ST SESS.-No. 169.
The original thirteen colonies, after severing their relations with Great Britain, entered into a "perpetual Union." This Union not meeting their expectations, afterward, and for the purpose of "a more perfect Union," the people of these colonies, then States, framed and adopted the Constitution of the United States. Thus the people, of their own volition, carved out of the then existing States and created the General Government. By this voluntary act each State passed under and became a subordinate part of a new Government, established expressly for national purposes. This new Government being clothed with certain definite powers, which were taken from, thereby of necessity lessened the powers of, these States. For national purposes this new Government is sovereign; for municipal purposes, the States are each sovereign; in all else they are subjects. Aggregated, the national and the State Governments make a unit. It requires this aggregation to constitute complete sovereignty. They are a compound, in which the original and the new elements are clearly discernible, and yet, as chemical affinities, they intermix, neutralize, and unite.
"As the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body being many, are one body," so it is in our Government. It must be obvious, then, that whosoever attributes absolute sovereignty to any State, or who in his reasoning applies the definitions I have cited, without restriction, when speaking of these States, will mislead himself as well as those who listen to him. But as far as the municipal organism of our States is involved, these definitions do apply; but in their relations to the General Government it must be evident they do not. Failing to discriminate in this, has led to much confusion. Some have supposed that the mere derangement of the organic relations of a State with the General Government destroyed it. Whereas, in truth, these relations may not only be deranged, but even suspended, and yet the State remain as perfect and as actually in the Union as if they were wholly undisturbed. But of this hereafter.
2. Have the incidents of the revolt of the southern States or has the consequent war changed the relations of these States toward the General Government or affected any of their rights?
A State sustains the same relation to the entire members of the Union that one man does to the aggregate individuals of a State. One is a corporate the other a natural being. Either of them, entirely alone, were independent. Connected with others, neither can claim this prerogative. As individuals, they each have duties to perform, obligations they cannot ignore, and rights which they may forfeit. The man Adam had a right to the tree of life. The man Payne had a right to natural life. The State of South Carolina had a right to be represented in the councils of the nation. By disobedience these rights were severally forfeited. Will any one question this as to the individuals I have named? Why, then, is it not true of South Carolina? No loyal man will pretend that this State, during her armed hostilities against the General Government, was entitled to a place in its councils. Why? Clearly by reason of her armed hostility. But this armed hostility grew out of an enmity which antedated it. These overt acts were an incident, not the cause, of this enmity. It is true these hostilities are at an end; but did they cease from choice or from necessity? If from necessity, it may well be that the enmity which prompted these acts still remains; in which event only her weapons, her mode of warfare, may be changed and not her animus. My point is, this hostility was only an outgrowth of a settled enmity. If, then, this enmity remains, what hinders a similar outbreak at any moment? May a State violate its com. pact with the General Government and again
resume it at will? South Carolina, of her own act, withdrew her Representatives from this Hall and then made war upon the Government. May this Government exercise the priv ilege accorded the humblest citizen, of holding an enemy in duress till he make some reparation or give sureties to keep the peace? Selfpreservation, if not self-respect, requires this much. No prudent family permits its enemies to share in its councils or in its confidence. No properly organized Government intrusts its administration to those who purpose its overthrow. The alarming feature in our national affairs at this time, in my judgment, is that any one dare entertain the proposition to admit traitors upon this floor. The man who stops to reason when tempted to sin is half consenting. The legislator who permits himself to negotiate with crime stands on quicksand-a step may ingulf him. But I am anticipating; I therefore resume my subject.
Take either of the authorities I have cited defining a State, and whether we contemplate South Carolina before, during, or since her revolt, as far as municipal organism is concerned, she comes within its spirit and letter. There never has been a time when she was not "a body of persons united together in one community for the defense of their rights." It has ever been, and now is, "a body-politic, or a society of men united together for mutual advantage and safety."
Territory is essential; this remains as it ever has. Persons are requisite; these exist now as they have at all times. Their union is an ingredient; that these persons are united for a common intent is painfully apparent. Why, then, is not South Carolina a State? She is. She lacks nothing as far as municipal organism is involved; but as far as her relations with the national Government are concerned she lacks much. She is without a connecting link. This has been severed. She and her joint wrongdoers are off the track and badly damaged; they need repairs, readjusting upon the rail, and connecting links. They belong to the cor poration; they are subject to its control, and they may be coupled on immediately or they may be held for further repairs. These repairs should be thorough. Defects which are known to have produced their present wreck should be remedied, and great precaution should be taken for future safety and security. A mistake in this may imperil all. I go further, and as an illustration aver: Adam and Payne were as really men, but bad ones, after as they were before their disobedience. So South Carolina was as actually a State, but a rebellious one, after as she was before her rebellious acts. Adam still owed fealty and was as subject to the laws of his Maker as though he had never transgressed. Similar is the position of South Carolina.
This is a pertinent and a practical question. The honorable gentleman from Ohio, [Mr. SHELLABARGER,] whose logic and eloquence are irresistible, repeated the same interrogatory, and in reply to it, says:
"In respectfully answering him, [Mr. RAYMOND,] let me ask and answer some questions of similar legal aspect. What in civil war is the specific act and time which changes in law an 'insurrectionary party' into a 'belligerent?" I answer in the language of the Supreme Court, when in fact the regular course of justice is interrupted by revolt, rebellion, or insurrection, so that the courts of justice cannot be kept open.'"
I do not perceive the force of this answer, for
ligerents before its commencement. On the contrary, the continuance of these "ties" is absolutely indispensable to its existence. The moment these are severed civil war must expire. In this event the war necessarily becomes public. But no one claims that we have had a public war. And no one disputes but that we have had civil war-bloody, wicked, remorseless. Every fireside attests it; every household mourns its cruelty. No one denies that this war assumed such proportions that the insurgents were recognized as belligerents. But this by no means changes the status of these States. Their relations only are affected. In the first relation, the insurgents are traitors, amenable to civil law, the penalty of which is death. In the second relation, as belligerents they escape the rigor of the civil code. The fact that the insurgents in civil war are recognized as belligerents is equivalent to saying, you are so swollen by numbers that from motives of humanity belligerent rights must be accorded to you.
Why, sir, the circumstance that these malcontents were recognized as belligerents only, is proof conclusive that in the estimation of the nations of the earth these States are and ever have been in the Union and subject to its control; otherwise, with the strong and known desire on the part of many of them to do so, instead of recognizing them as belligerents merely, they would have acknowledged their independence. Wheaton alleges that—
surely the honorable gentleman does not mean to affirm that the condition of things he describes carries a State out of the Union. If it does, secession is easy indeed. Insecurity to this alarming extent would paralyze every arm, destroy all confidence, and render Governments little else than nurseries of anarchy and bloodshed.
The state of things so graphically described by the honorable gentleman should, as it did, constrain the Executive of the nation to exercise the duty devolving upon him under article four, section four, of the Constitution-this is all. Under this provision of the Constitution the President of the United States did invoke the military arm of the nation. This arm, as wielded by General Grant and his brave comrades, suppressed the "revolt," dispersed the "insurgents," and these "insurrectionary States," with suspended rights, still remain in the Union subject to its control and amenable to its laws.
The honorable gentleman, in further reply to my colleague, says:
"I answer him [Mr. RAYMOND] that it was that specific act which turned her citizens into traitors, took from her the loyal courts, statutes, constitution, tribunals, offices, and Legislature, and which filled them with traitors and kept them there. And if the gentleman still desires the specific time when it happened, it will answer all the purposes of my argument to reply, that it happened about four years before the time when he has told us it did, to wit, before she surrendered.'
With an emphasis peculiar and very becoming the cloquent gentleman, he exclaimed:
"The destruction and supersedure of all loyal government and law in South Carolina was a fact, not a law."
Does this meet the point of the interrogatory of my colleague?
These incidents, announced with so much force by the honorable gentleman, are evidences of crime, nothing more, and nothing less. Crime does not change the status, only the relations of a State. The fact that the inhabitants of a State are guilty of treason and of usurpation cannot carry it out of the Union; the fact does not absolve from, but it actually
renders the actors amenable to law. The honorable gentleman well says, "The destruction and supersedure of all loyal government and law in South Carolina was a fact, not a law." The argument proves too much. An alien cannot commit treason against the Government of the United States; a State cannot become alien by ordinance, by treason, nor yet by rebellion. Nothing less than successful revolution and the ability on the part of the malcontents to maintain their independence, in spite of the Government against which they have rebelled, can invest them with alien rights; this only will justify any nation in recognizing the independence of such revolutionists, and nothing less than this can carry a State out of the Union. It is the power, the might of the rebellious subject which the sovereign cannot overcome, that severs all the ties which bound
them, and clothes it with national robes. If a State is out of the Union, it is alien; if alien, then is it independent. One view preserves, the other destroys the Union.
"When the parties in rebellion occupy and hold in a hostile manner a certain portion of territory; have declared their independence; have cast off their allegiance; have organized armies; have commenced hostilities against their former sovereign; the world acknowledges them as belligerents, and the contest is war."
"Until the revolution is consummated, while the civil war involving the contest for the government continues, other States [foreign Powers] may remain indifferent spectators of the controversy, still continuing to treat the ancient Government as sovereign the rights of war against its enemy." and the Government de facto as a society entitled to
From this authority there can be no doubt that these "rights of war" apply to the party resisting the "ancient Government" only during the contest for the supremacy. This being determined by a surrender of the malcontents, the reason for the application of these rights no longer existing, their application must cease also, and the contestants are necessarily remanded to the position of an offended sovereign and of an offending subject.
I insist this is the true relation which now exists between the national Government and these rebellious States.
Upon a careful examination I find no authorities in conflict with the views I have now expressed. True, the very able and distinguished chairman of the Committee on Appro- cessarily extinguish the being of a State, although it
"The habitual obedience of the members of any political society to a superior authority must have once existed in order to constitute a State; but a temporary suspension of that obedience and of that authority, in consequence of civil war, does not ne
may affect for a time its ordinary relations with other States."
priations [Mr. STEVENS] holds a counter-view, but he founds it, as I understand him, upon authorities he cited in a recent speech. I have examined these authorities, and as I construe them, not even one of them sustains his peculiar view. For illustration, take the first citation from Vattel:
It seems to me this authority is in point, and that my second affirmation is established.
3. The relations of these States thus changed and the rights thus forfeited can be restored only by the legislative branch of the Government.
This is all true. But what kind of war? I answer, it is civil war, the existence of which does not, as alleged by the honorable gentleman, "break all the ties that bound" the bel
I further insist that to restore these States to their normal relations without any restrictions is to make no distinction between virtue and vice. To restore them without prescribing any conditions is contrary to precedent, in conflict with analogy, repugnant to justice, in opposition to the spirit of the Baltimore platform, the repeated and well-known views of the present Executive of the nation, his immediate predecessor, and both branches of Congress. The differences, therefore, which now exist among the loyal men of this country are only as to the detail. They are no more variant than were the views which divided the patriots who finally harmonized in establishing our present form of government after the rev olutionary war. I cite one further authority. Wheaton, at page 40, says:
Provisions are or may be made for the restoration of the relations and the rights of which I have spoken. By whom? Is it by the trespasser? No; but it is by the being or the power against which the trespass was committed. These provisions are as old as they are universal. Adam could not restore himself, neither could Payne, nor can South Carolina. In no instance is this restoration a matter of right, but purely of grace. There
are conditions-precedent. Repentance is the door and good works the evidence of its sincerity. But who is to judge of this?
In our Government sovereignty or the power of which I have spoken is in the people. Its exercise is intrusted to agents. The first of these enacts, the second interprets, and the third executes the law. They are three, yet oue. They are one, yet three. They each have an orbit. The departure of either from this imperils each as certainly as a like departure in any celestial body from its orbit imperils itself and others. They are counter-checks, breaks upon the gov ernmental engine. If the legislative branch of the Government is hasty or unwise, the Executive stays its action, and enables it to take a "second sober thought.' If the Executive errs, the legislature may by the concur rence of two thirds of its members correct the error. If the legislative and the executive branches unite in error, the judicial branch may remedy their joint mistake. These provisions are wise, and though they may be inconvenient or even abused in some instances, yet we cannot afford to abrogate them.
If, therefore, the insurrectionary States have forfeited, or if any of their rights are suspended, the sovereign power of the Government alone can grant relief. But to which of its agents must they apply? Not to the judicial, for she only interprets; not to the Executive, for he only executes the law. There is but one remaining. Practically, therefore, it is of but little moment whether we regard the govern ments of these States as dead, suspended, or only deranged. As a precedent, it may be otherwise. Equally unimportant is it whether we treat these States as in or as out of the interposition to reconstruct, restore, or to resUnion; for in either view it requires the same urrect them. But we have authority in point.
article four, section four, of the Constitution The powers and the duties of Congress under of the United States were examined and de
fined by the Supreme Court of the United States in a controversy involving analogous principles in a case reported in 7 Howard, 42. The mooted question grew out of the fact that within the State of Rhode Island two several State governments were organized. The real point to be determined was as to which of these was the true government. This question Congress had decided incidentally prior to its being raised in court. The court say:
"Under this article of the Constitution it rests with Congress to decide what government is the established one in a State. For, as the United States guaranties to each a republican government. Congress must necessarily decide what government is established in a State before it can determine whether it is republican or not."
The power being unquestioned, the propriety of its exercise is all that remains.
Mr. Speaker, if men were indifferent to the future political control of this Government; if the position of Executive of this nation were unsought; if the patronage within its gift were of no value; if selfishness had no place in political parties, the business of reconstruction were easy. There are so many standpoints, the lust of power is so seductive, that patriots even need the prayers of the good. I invite gentlemen to the stand-point where the controlling thought, the central idea, the settled purpose is, that loyal men, and they only, shall rule this nation; that loyal men, and they only, shall fill its places of honor and of trust. If this is the President's stand-point I am with him. If this is the congressional stand-point, I am with it. If in this the Executive and Congress agree, they should act in concert. I most cordially concur with the President, that
"If there be five thousand men in Tennessee loyal to the Constitution, loyal to freedom, loyal to justice, these true and faithful men should control the work of reorganization and reformation absolutely."
The mere detail of reorganization is of but little consequence. But the crowning fact, the cardinal doctrine, that loyal men must and shall rule this nation, like the stone cut out of the mountain, shall increase until it fills the entire land.
Sir, the inquiry as to what governments now exist in these States, is a matter wholly for Congress. It is not a usurpation, it is not coveted by Congress, but it devolves upon this branch of the Government. The exercise of this prerogative is not to prevent the restoration of these States, but to promote this object. Congress is only an agent. From the murmurings of some, one might well infer that Congress were the offending party, and that these traitors are innocent and persecuted patriots.
has drenched our land in blood and filled it with sorrow.
Sir, it is claimed that the inhabitants of these States recently in armed rebellion are repentant. Where is the evidence? Do they manifest it by murdering Union men, by electing traitors to offices of trust, or are we to believe it from their arrogance of manner and the assumptions of their press?
The prodigal made no attempt to destroy, he only abandoned his father's house; and after wasting his substance he proposed to return. What was his language? "Father, I have sinned against heaven and before thee, and am no more worthy to be called thy || son; make me as one of thy hired servants. There was evidence of contrition. Let these more than prodigal States manifest this spirit, and evidence their sincerity by appropriate acts, and the "fatted calf" will be cheerfully slain.
4. The relations and the rights of these States should be restored as speedily as the interests of the parties concerned will permit. Reconstruction is the natural fruit of the rebellion. If this fruit is bitter, attribute it to its wicked planting and more pernicious culture. The process of reconstruction involves such weighty interests that no desire, be it ever so worthy, for a speedy restoration of these States will justify a sacrifice of these interests. The question, in my judgment, is not may, but to what extent shall, Congress interfere with the municipal affairs of these States? My reply is, to any extent that the common good may require. When these States were threatening the life of the nation no one doubted the right of the Government to defend itself. To this end it raised armies, fought battles, captured and disarmed their forces. This was not that they were alien enemies, but for the reason they were rebellious subjects. Our Government did this for the same reason and by the same authority that the ministers of the law arrest criminals or suppress a riot. The right to do this exists at all times. Crime only gives occasion for its exercise. But for the rebellion the exercise of this right would have remained inoperative. The exercise of this power is incident to sovereignty. It was to secure these and kindred rights that the General Government was established. Vattel says:
"A nation or a State has a right to everything that can help to ward off imminent danger and to keep at a distance whatever is capable of causing its ruin. And this from the very same reason that establishes its right to the things necessary to its preservation."
More particularly, allow me to say, the ThirtyNinth Congress of the United States is not acting for the present only, but also for coming ages. The General Government, the government of each State, no matter what its status, the citizens of each and their successors are interested in the business of reconstructing these States. Four million human beings just emerging into the sunlight of freedom; the millions to whom the perpetuity of our Government has ever been a cherished object; the vast numbers enervated and corrupted by a system that degraded and then sought to destroy our Government, and especially the loyal men of the rebellious States, are looking to this Congress in hope. Shall we disappoint or fail to protect them? Vattel asserts:
"The body of a nation cannot abandon a province, a town, or even a single individual who is a part of it, unless compelled to by necessity."
Sir, there is a sublimity, yet a simplicity in truth. There is a conception so pure that all men do it reverence. There is a stand-point so elevated that no one fails to perceive the truth who occupies it. It is just where "justice and mercy meet and embrace." The enforcement of law is not inhuman; the Government that chastens its erring is not an enemy of its subjects; the parent who enforces obedience is not unmerciful to his child; these are evidences of the faithful discharge of Christian duty. Mr. Speaker, there is, there never has been, any opposition to, no hatred of, the South. The opposition is to traitors, the hatred is of treason; the object, to reform the first and to prevent a recurrence of the last. Is this exceedingly wicked?
Ours is not a Government for the white, nor is it a Government for the black, but it is a Government for man. To legislate for any class, irrespective of another, is equally unjust and ruinous to both. The attempt to do this
Suppose we were the conquered, and they the conquerors. What would they exact? Sir, should we receive these men, these conspirators, whose unwashed hands yet drip with the blood of our slain; they as well as their descendants, our constituents, and our posterity the universe of man would pronounce the Thirty-Ninth Congress of the United States of America as infamous as imbecile.
Look at it. Our soldiers sacrificed home and all of its joys, turned their wives and their children over to the charities of the nation, and then they offered themselves upon the altar of their country. By this patriotic devotion they saved our Government from its enemies. In memory of this heroism, in reward of this love of country, it is proposed to admit their unrepentant enemies into these sacred Halls to enact laws, and to make provisions for the protection and the subsistence of their widows and their orphans. In their agony, may not these insulted ones exclaim:
"Had it pleas'd Heaven To try me with affliction; had he rained All kinds of sores, and shames, on my bare head; Steeped me in poverty to the very lips; Given to captivity me and my utmost hopes; I should have found in some part of my soul A drop of patience: but (alas!) to make [my country] A fixed figure, for the time of scorn To point his slow unmoving finger at,
Maddens my brain."
Sir, I can never, I will never consent to admit any man as a peer upon this floor whose garments are crimsoned in patriot blood. I should fear the avenging thunderbolts of an offended God. What! Shall we voluntarily surrender to traitors the citadel the defense of which has cost so much? Has victory reduced our Government to the alarming condition that it must be administered by its enemies? If it has, then is victory disaster, patriotism a crime, and devotion to country calamitous indeed. These traitors could not take our capital by force; we therefore yield it to them, that they may yet triumph.
villain into my house and allow him to share in its control?
I would compel the rebellious inhabitants of these States to protect the loyal men within their borders. I would require them to send loyal men to these Halls as representatives. I would have them understand, now and forever, that by reason of their criminal acts, no leader in this rebellion, no man who has been educated at the expense of the Government or who has ever held an office under it and then sought its overthrow, can ever hope to fill any position of trust, or exercise the elective franchise. I would impress upon each of these men the sentiments so well and so truthfully expressed by President Johnson, "That the traitor has ceased to be a citizen; and in joining the rebellion has become a public enemy. He forfeited his right to vote with loyal men when he renounced his citizenship, and sought to destroy our Government." I would enforce these doctrins if it took an army of two million men. This being done, in my judgment, these traitors should still thank Almighty God and an indulgent Republic that their conditions are made so easy. What! When I have repulsed and disarmed the assassin, must I take the
There should be some discrimination between innocence and guilt, between loyalty and disloyalty. Is the punishment I suggest too severe? Listen to the President of the United States. On the 22d day of February, 1866, he declared, "I came into power under the Constitution of the country and by the approbation of the people. And what did I find? I found eight million people who were in fact condemned under the law, and the penalty was death." I inquire, how can they escape? By submitting to the situation;" by simply recognizing the rights of others.
Mr. Speaker, there are others than these criminals who are entitled to a hearing. Ages of privation, centuries of wrong and oppression have rendered them weak. They, as well as the eight million people now under the penalty of death, are asking to be heard. Are they entitled to a hearing? Let us examine the position of each. The condition of one is self-imposed; the sorrows of the other were wantonly inflicted. The first are trespassers; the last have been trespassed against. One is the dispoiler; the other the dispoiled. One class were made strong and powerful by a beneficent Government; they used this power for its overthrow. The other class have been enfeebled and impoverished by that same Government, and yet they sustained it in its hour of trial. One has been guilty of inexcusable ingratitude, the other has been a living exemplification of that more than human prayer,
Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do." One has been and now is a bitter, implacable enemy; the other has been friendly under almost irresistible provocation to hate. Which, then, has the highest claim? The first committed treason against the Government of their own choice; a Government under which they had acquired wealth and power. The last have been loyal to that same Government, yet in its counsels they have never been heard, and under it they have been degraded and beggared. One has fared sumptuously and been clothed in purple and linen; the other has lain at his gate wounded and sick and fed upon crumbs. I will not say one shall be comforted" and the other "tormented." I only refer to an ancient record supposed to be authoritative.
But it is alleged the black man is ignorant, unfit for citzenship. Grant it. But who made him so? Who robbed him of his earnings and then barred the school-house? Unfitted for citizenship! He is guilty of no crime. He is not under the "penalty of death." His rights have been unjustly withheld-the others were forfeited by law. He solicits the rights for which he has patiently waited and prayed for centuries. Yet, being denied them, he has obeyed the law, served his oppressors, and waited and prayed, and prayed and waited. The other imperiously demands the rights he forfeited under a law in the enactment of which he participated, and he now insists he is cruelly wronged because these rights are not restored to him contrary to law. And what is more deplorable still, these criminals, "these people under the penalty of death," claim superiority, and with an impudence peculiar to unmixed wickedness, with an arrogance begotten of slavery, not only claim the right to play the tyrant over these ignorant, enfeebled and helpless black men, but with an effrontery unparalleled in history, they ask that they may participate in the duties and powers of administering the Government of the United States of America with honest and loyal white men.
"I charge thee, fling away ambition;
By that sin fell angels; how can man, then, The image of his Maker, hope to win by 't.' Mr. Speaker, if I have succeeded in my purpose I have shown
1. That neither the acts of secession nor the war have in any way abridged the powers or the jurisdiction of the General Government over the insurrectionary States.
2. That these States are still in the Union,
put liberty to sleep upon any Procrustean bed made by the fathers, much less strangle it in the cast-off garments of its own childhood.
but by reason of their criminal acts, they have forfeited the right of being represented in our national councils.
3. That the legislative branch of our Government only can restore this right and relieve these States from their present disabilities.
4. That these disabilities should be removed and these States should be restored as speedily as the safety and the interests of the several parties concerned will permit.
In conclusion, I remark, men die, principles never. The individual who orders his life and shapes his course for no purpose other than to secure the popular applause of to-day; the party. that is actuated by no loftier impulses than expediency; the Government that ignores the cardinal principles of justice and truth, must expect an ignominious grave. Statesmen and philosophers pass away and they are forgotten. But principles live on. In the ages when inscriptions which chronicle the fame of the wisest, no matter how deeply engraven, shall have been entirely effaced, these principles, radiant as were they when the stars hymned their first song of praise, shall speed on, shall prosecute their work until the "will" of the Sovereign of all shall "be done in earth as it is in heaven."
Mr. PATTERSON. Mr. Speaker, the able and protracted debate on this floor and in the Senate upon the subject of reconstruction has been of an extraordinary character. It has involved largely first truths in political philosophy, and reminded one rather of the solemn and earnest discussions in the Convention of 1787 than of the forensic encounters of an ordinary Congress.
Nor has the interest been confined to these Halls. The people of the whole country have followed these debates from day to day with a profound sense of the reach and magnitude of the principles involved in the issue. No graver or more difficult questions ever perplexed a legislative assembly.
The prudent hand of free labor has given the products of three generations and pledged the wealth of the children to maintain the integrity of the Government; the blood of half a million victims, innocent of the crime of oppression, has redeemed four millions of a despised race from a debasing servitude, and thrown them, poor, ignorant, and helpless, upon our charity and justice.
These precious results of popular sacrifices and sufferings must be made secure against the subtile craft and embittered hate of an experienced and powerful foe by the statesmanship of this Congress, upon whom Providence has devolved the task of perpetuating the Republic and of insuring the liberty and welfare of its entire population in this and the generations
Posterity will hold us accountable for the improvement of this splendid opportunity of civil liberty. It is the offspring of the ages, and has been brought to the birth in our time, amid the shock and agony of revolution, for the realization of grand and beneficent purposes in the divine economy. The Machiavellian dogma, that it matters not whether we act or how we act in these unsettled and pregnant times, is dangerous teaching.
In this transition period, when a mistake might be fatal to liberty, the people will not be lulled into security by any Circean form of speech. Nor will they long submit in patience to the narrow ambition and unthinking zeal which attributes to a question of temporary policy the importance of essential principles, and stakes the permanent welfare of the country upon a personal triumph. They demand wise but decisive action, and hold in healthy contempt subtile dialectics and musty precedents which there is no power to enforce, and which each nation accepts or rejects as will best subserve its interests. Justice and public safety are to them the natural and supreme law, and by them they will test our work. They demand that these shall be realized in the set
ting up and readjustment of the disorganized States. They will never consent that we should
American liberty is equality before the law, and the protection of person and property. No emancipation is complete which does not secure these primary rights to the freedman. Nothing less will satisfy public opinion or accord with the spirit of the amended Constitution. Political heresy must be excluded from places of power, and never again permitted to scatter its poison into the fountains of legislation. It is the simplest dictate of legal justice and political prudence that the leaders of the rebellion, who have been foiled in their attempt to destroy the Government, but not purged of their purpose or their hate, should be banished forever from the halls of legislation, the courts of justice, and the seats of administration. It is equally clear that time should be allowed to remove the prejudices and soften the asperities of a hostile population, ere they are permitted to exercise the elective franchise and sway the forces of political power. Can these grand results of the revolution be fixed by permanent guarantees in the present discordant state of public sentiment? I answer unhesitatingly, they can and will be. The common sense and common patriotism of the pecple, which have baffled the force and the machinations of treason, which have brought the latest and mightiest conflict for civil liberty to the most splendid triumph of history, will not in these first days of restored peace be cheated of the fruits of victory by the craft of politics or the passion of parties. With such a past, our faith may repose upon the people and the God of nations for the future. Differences of opinion and strong language are to be expected and tolerated upon great and abiding questions of national polity. A party which can boast of an undisturbed unity of sentiment in a formative epoch like this, has either become too corrupt or too imbecile to be of service to the State.
We are reminded that leading Republicans in Congress and out of Congress are in conflict; so were Hamilton and Madison in the Constitutional Convention, but they stood together in the production of the Federalist, that immortal argument for the adoption of our organic law so largely the result of their combined wisdom and forbearance. We should invoke upon our deliberations the spirit that blended firmness and moderation, and harmonized without the sacrifice of principle, conflicting views and interests in the councils of our fathers. Some among us would have universal suffrage, while others would exclude in perpetuo all who have participated in rebellion from the political rights which attach to citizenship. These things may be right. Are they possible? Can abstract justice be realized in any form of human institutions? Men are not made for Governments, but Governments for men, and must be adapted to their circumstances and
Self-government is not possible for savages, nor absolutism for an educated and virtuous people. Between these extremes there must be political gradations to meet the varying conditions of society. So in the restoration of the
States to their Federal relations, we cannot ignore the past or blink out of sight the numbers who have been in arms against us. Vattel, in defining the conduct due to insurgents, says it should be "such conduct as shall at the same time be most consonant to justice and the most salutary to the State. Subjects who rise against their princes without cause deserve severe punishment; yet even in this case, on account of the number of delinquents, clemency becomes a duty in the sovereign."
Neither can we shut our eyes to the general ignorance, inexperience, and subserviency of the emancipated. I do not counsel, and would not allow any concessions which would jeopardize the safety of the Government or the wel
fare of the freedmen; but we cannot wholly disregard, in laying down our platform of recon
struction, the opinions, or the prejudices even, of the thirty thousand men of Tennessee who fought with us, and of the other thousands of other States who, standing in the very path of the terrible tempest, never wavered in their loyalty as it swept away their all, and brought to their hearth-stones unutterable forms of woe and death.
But, sir, while I am anxious for harmony among the friends of the Government, I spurn with a righteous scorn the arrogant claims and insulting advice of the State criminals who have been put upon the stand to testify in respect to the amiable deportiment and loyal attitude of a population which the Government has not yet dared to let slip from its mailed hand, and to signify upon what conditions these squelched rebels will deign to resume their functions in the Union. The impudent and unblushing assurance with which these rebel leaders, after their utter overthrow and humiliation, rehearse their defunct dogma of State sovereignty, and plead their constitutional right to an exemp tion from all disabilities, and a resumption of all privileges, is such a burlesque and mockery of the stern realities of the time as the genius of Aristophanes never reached. Guilty of every political crime, and deserving a thousand fold the taints and forfeitures of treason, they assert their innocence in the face of an insulted but magnanimous people. Standing above the graves of three hundred thousand victims of their wrath, these men who have made the very air hot as the shirt of Nessus with their poisoned words of malediction and denunciation against the Government, insist upon being propitated, and demand admission to the forum of legislation, the halls of justice, and the seats of administration. Are we not turning this bloody tragedy of revolution into a comedy of errors? Why, sir, the culprit at the har pleads the magnitude of his crime as a ground of acquittal! Nay, he even claims the right to ascend the judgment seat and pass judgment upon his accuser, and threatens ere long to assume the place of the executioner.
"O, judgment, thon art fled to brutish beasts, And men have lost their reason."
With all deference to the opinion of others, I think these men have no business here but to plead for pardon. The court which takes testimony from the criminal sits upon a rotten throne. The Government which seeks counsel and support from its enemies is both weak and treacherous. Sir, it is the right of those whose political tenets are universal liberty and universal justice, and who have hallowed their creed with their blood, to make conditions of return and to rebuild the shattered fabrics of obviate future antagonisms and conflicts in the State governments on principles which will sisterhood of States. I would pay to these fallen chiefs the tribute due to men who were brave in a hau cause, and would give them the privilege to live and die in unmolested obscurity. All is not lost," even to them. They invoked war upon the land, and in the bloody carnival the slaves have done what their fathers did, asserted their inalienable right and made themselves free. The Nemesis of national justice has swept away the opulence which prived them of the power to dispense an elethey had wrung from unrequited toil, has degant and magnificent hospitality in the sweat of other men's brows; but Providence has kindly left them the consolation of their hounds and fighting cocks. As they sit amid the ruins and desolations of their great plantations, their chastened spirits may still find fit utterance in the sweet lyric of Cowper:
"I am monarch of all I survey,
My right there is none to dispute: From the center all round to the sea. I am lord of the fowl and the brute." When we look simply at the future peace and safety of the Republic, the work of reconstruction seems simple and unperplexed.
That the governments of the insurgent States hands of men sincerely loyal, is too nearly selfshould be reorganized by and maintained in the evident to admit of argument. It is equally