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proportionate distribution. And now, I as uniformly as the gentleman himself. suffer me to remind you, Mr. President, He seems to claim the exclusive merit of a that it is this very same power, thus sanc- disposition to reduce the public charge; I tioned, in every form, by the gentleman's do not allow it to him. As a debt, I was, own opinion, that is so plain and manifest I am, for paying it; because it is a charge a usurpation, that the state of South Caro- on our finances, and on the industry of the lina is supposed to be justified in refusing country. But I observed that I thought I submission to any laws carrying the power perceived a morbid fervor on that subject; into effect. Truly, sir, is not this a little an excessive anxiety to pay off the debt; too hard? May we not crave some mercy, not so much because it is a debt simply, as under favor and protection of the gentle because, while it lasts, it furnishes one obman's own authority ? Admitting that a jection to disunion. It is a tie of common inroad or a canal must be written down flat terest while it lasts. I did not impute such usurpation as ever was committed, may we motive to the honorable member himseli; find no mitigation in our respect for his but that there is such a feeling in existence place, and his vote, as one that knows the I have not a particle of doubt. The most law ?
I said was, that if one effect of the debt was The tariff which South Carolina had an to strengthen our Union, that effect itself efficient hand in establishing in 1816, and was not regretted by me, however much this asserted power of internal improve others might regret it. The gentleman has ment-advanced by her in the same year, not seen how to reply to this otherwise and, as we have seen, approved and sanc. than by supposing me to have advanced tioned by her representatives in 1824, – the doctrine that a national debt is a pathese two measures are the great grounds tional blessing. Others, I must hope, will on which she is now thought to be justified find less difficulty in understanding me. I in breaking up the Union, if she sees fit to distinctly and pointedly cautioned the break it up.
honorable member not to understand me I may now safely say, I think, that we as expressing an opinion favorable to the have had the authority of leading and dis- continuance of the debt. I repeated this tinguished gentlemen from South Carolina caution, and repeated it more than oncein support of the doctrine of internal im- but it was thrown away. provement. I repeat that, up to 1824, I, On yet another point I was still more for one, followed South Carolina; but when unaccountably misunderstood. The gentlethat star in its ascension veered off in an man had harangued against “consolidaunexpected direction, I relied on its light tion.". I told him, in reply, that there was no longer. [Here the Vice-President said, one kind of consolidation to which I was Does the Chair understand the gentleman attached, and that was, the consOLIDAfrom Massachusetts to say that the person TION OF OUR UNION; and that this was now occupying the chair of the Senate has precisely that consolidation to which I changed his opinion on the subject of in- feared others were not attached ; that such ternal improvement?] From nothing ever consolidation was the very end of the said to me, sir, have I had reason to know constitution—the leading object, as they of any change in the opinions of the per- had informed us themselves, which its son filling the chair of the Senate. If framers had kept in view. I turned to such change has taken place, I regret it; I their communication, and read their very speak generally of the state of South Car- words,—“the consolidation of the Union," olina. Individuals we know there are who —and expressed my devotion to this sort hold opinions favorable to the power. An of consolidation. I said in terms that I application for its exercise in behalf of a wished not, in the slightest degree, to aug. public work in South Carolina itself is ment the powers of this government; that now pending, I believe, in the other house, my object was to preserve, not to enlarge; presented by members from that state. and tħat, by consolidating the Union, I
I have thus, sir, perhaps not without understood no more than the strengthening some tediousness of detail, shown that, if I of the Union and perpetuating it. Having am in error on the subject of internal im- been thus explicit; having thus read, from provements, how and in what company I the printed book, the precise words which fell into that error. If I am wrong, it is I adopted, as expressing my own sentiapparent who misled me.
ments, it passes comprehension, how any I go to other remarks of the honorable man could understand me as contending member-and I have to complain of an en- for an extension of the powers of the gove tire misapprehension of what I said on the ernment, or for consolidation in the odious subject of the national debt-though I can sense in which it means an accumulation, hardly perceive how any one could mis- in the federal government, of the powers understand me. What I said was, not that properly belonging to the states. I wished to put off the payment of the debt, I repeat, sir, that, in adopting the sentibut, on the contrary, that I had always ments of the framers of the constitution, I oted for every measure for its reduction, I read their language audibly, and word
word; and I pointed out the distinction, | face of the constitution itself, it had been just as fully as I have now done, between assumed and asserted in the first revenue the consolidation of the Union and that law ever passed under the same constituother obnoxious consolidation which I dis-tion; and, on this ground, as a matter setclaimed; and yet the honorable gentle- tled by contemporaneous practice, I had man misunderstood me. The gentleman refrained from expressing the opinion that had said that he wished for no fixed reve- the tariff laws transcended constitutional nue-not a shilling. If, by a word, he limits, as the gentleman supposes. What could convert the Capitol into gold, he I did say at Faneuil Hall, as far as I now would not do it. Why all this fear of remember, was, that this was originally revenue? Why, sir, because, as the matter of doubtful construction. The gentleman told us, it tends to consolida-gentleman himself, I suppose, thinks there tiön. Now, this can mean neither more is no doubt about it, and that the laws are or less than that a common revenue is a plainly against the constitution. Mr. common interest, and that all common in- Madison's letters, already referred to, corterests tend to hold the union of the states tain, in my judgment, by far the most able together. I confess I like that tendency; exposition extant of this part of the constiif the gentleman dislikes it, he is right in tution. He has satisfied me, so far as the deprecating a shilling's fixed revenue. So practice of the government had left it an much, sir, for consolidation.
open question. As well as I recollect the course of his With a great majority of the repreremarks, the honorable gentleman next re- sentatives of Massachusetts, I voted against curred to the subject of the tariff, He did the tariff of 1824. My reasons were then not doubt the word must be of unpleasant given, and I will not now repeat them, sound to me, and proceeded, with an effort But notwithstanding our dissent, the great neither new nor attended with new success, states of New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, to involve me and my votes in inconsist- ) and Kentucky went for the bill, in almost ency and contradiction. I am happy the unbroken column, and it passed. Congress honorable gentleman has furnished me an and the president'sanctioned it, and it beopportunity of a timely remark or two on came the law of the land. What, then, that subject
. I was glad he approached were we to do? Our only option was eithit , for it is a question I enter upon without er to fall in with this settled course of pubfear from any body. The strenuous toil of lic policy, and to accommodate ourselves the gentleman has been to raise an incon- to it as well as we could, or to embrace the sistency between my dissent to the tariff, South Carolina doctrine, and talk of nulliin 1824 and my vote in 1828. It is labor fying the statute by state interference. lost. He pays undeserved compliment to The last alternative did not suit our my speech in 1824; but this is to raise me principles, and, of course, we adopted the bigh, that my fall, as he would have it, in former. In 1827, the subject came again 1828 may be the more signal. Sir, there before Congress, on a proposition favorable was no fall at all. Between the ground I to wool and woolens.
We looked upon stood on in 1824 and that I took in 1828, the system of protection as being fixed and there was not only no precipice, but no de- settled. The law of 1824 remained. It clivity. It was å change of position, to had gone into full operation, and in regard meet new circumstances, but on the same to some objects intended by it, perhaps level
. A plain tale explains the whole most of them had produced all its expectmatter. In 1816, I had not acquiesced in ed effects. No man proposed to repeal it the tariff
, then supported by South Caro --no man attempted to renew the general ling. Toʻsome parts of it, especially, I felt contest on its principle. But, owing to and expressed great repugnance. "I held subsequent and unforeseen occurrences, the same opinions in 1821, at the meeting the benefit intended by it to wool and in Faneuil Hall, to which the gentleman woolen fabrics had not been realized. has alluded. I said then, and say now, Events, not known here when the law that, as an original question, the authority passed, had taken place, which defeatof Congress to exercise the revenue power, (ed its object in that particular respect. A with direct reference to the protection of measure was accordingly brought forward manufactures, is a questionable authority, to meet this precise deficiency, to remedy far more questionable in my judgment, this particular defect. It was limited to than the power of internal improvements. wool and woolens. Was ever any thing I must confess, sir, that, in one respect, more reasonable? If the policy of the some impression has been made on my tariff laws had become established in prin. opinions lately. Mr. Madison's publica- ciple as the permanent policy of the gove tion has put the power in a very strong ernment, should they not be revised and light . He has placed it
, I must acknow- amended, and made equal, like other laws, ledge, upon grounds of construction and as exigencies should arise, or justice reargument which seem impregnable. But quire? Because we had 'doubted about even if the power were doubted, on the adopting the system, were we to refuse to
cure its manifest defects after it became with a tariff policy beyond all endurance, adopted, and when no one attempted its while on the other side of the Alleghany, repeal?' And this, sir, is the inconsistency even the act of 1828 itself-the very subso much bruited. I had voted against the limated essence of oppression, according tariff of 1824but it passed ; and in 1827 to southern opinions—was pronounced to and 1828, I voted to amend it in a point be one of those blessings for which the west essential to the interest of my constituents. was indebted to the "generous south." Where is the inconsistency ? Could I do With large investments in manufacturotherwise ?
ing establishments, and various interests Sir, does political consistency consist in connected with and dependent on them, always giving negative votes ? Does it re- it is not to be expected that New England, quire of a public man to refuse to concur any more than other portions of the counin amending laws because they passed try, will now consent to any measures de against his consent? Having voted against structive or highly dangerous. The duty the tariff originally, does consistency de- of the government, at the present moment, mand that I should do all in my power to would seem to be to preserve, not to de maintain an unequal tariff, burdensome to stroy; to maintain the position which it my own constituents, in many respects,- has assumed; and for one, I shall feel it favorable in none? To consistency of that an indispensable obligation to hold it sort I lay no claim; and there is another steady, as far as in my power, to that desort to which I lay as little--and that is, gree of protection which it has undertaken a kind of consistency by which persons to bestow. No more of the tariff. feel themselves as much bound to oppose Professing to be provoked by what he a proposition after it has become the law chose to consider a charge made by me of the land as before.
against South Carolina, the honorable The bill of 1827, limited, as I have said, member, Mr. President, has taken up a new to the single object in which the tariff of crusade against New England. Leaving 1824 had manifestly failed in its effects, altogether the subject of the public lands, passed the House of Representatives, but in which his success, perbaps, had been was lost here. We had then the act of neither distinguished nor satisfactory, and 1828. I need not recur to the history of a letting go, also, of the topic of the tariff, measure so recent. Its enemies spiced it he salied forth in a general assault on the with whatsoever they thought would render opinions, politics, and parties of New Engit distasteful; its friends took it, drugged land, as they have been exhibited in the as it was. Vast amounts of property, many last thirty years. This is natural. The millions, had been invested in manufac- “ narrow policy” of the public lands had tures, under the inducements of the act of proved a legal settlement in South Car1824. Events called loudly, I thought for Olina, and was not to be removed. The further regulations to secure the degree of " accursed policy” of the tariff, also, had protection intended by that act. I was established the fact of its birth and pa. disposed to vote for such regulations and rentage in the same state. No wonder, desired nothing more; but certainly was therefore, the gentleman wished to carry not to be bantered out of my purpose by a the war, as he expressed it into the enemy's threatened augmentation of duty on mo- country. Prudently willing to quit these lasses, put into the bill for the avowed subjects, he was doubtless desirous of fastpurpose of making it obnoxious. The voteening others, which could not be transferred may have been right or wrong, wise or un- south of Mason and Dixon's line. The wise;
but it is a little less than absurd to politics of New England became his allege against it an inconsistency with op- theme; and it was in this part of his position to the former law.
speech, I think, that he menaced me with Sir, as to the general subject of the tariff, such sore discomfiture. I have little now to say. Another oppor Discomfiture! why, sir, when he attacks tunity may be presented. I remarked, the anything which I maintain, and overother day, that this policy did not begin throws it; when he turns the right or left with us in New England; and yet, sir, New of any position which I take up; when he England is charged with vehemence as drives me from any ground I choose to oce being favorable, or charged with equal cupy, he may then talk of discomfiture, vehemence as being unfavorable, to the but not till that distant day. What has he tariff policy, just as best suits the time, done? Has he maintained his own charges? place, and occasion for making some Has he proved what he alleged? Has he charge against her. The credulity of the sustained himself in his attack on the gov. public has been put to its extreme capacity ernment, and on the history of the north, of false impression relative to her conduct in the matter of the public lands? Has in this particular. Through all the south, he disproved a fact, refuted a proposition, during the late contest, it was New Eng- weakened an argument maintained by me land policy, and a New England adminis- Has he come within beat of drum of any tration, that was inflicting the country position of mine? 0, 90; but he has "car
ried the war into the enemy's country!" | parties. There was enough in each, as Carried the war into the enemy's country! must always be expected in popular govYes, sir, and what sort of a war has he ernments. With a great deal of proper made of it? Why, sir, he has stretched and decorous discussion there was mingled a dragnet over the whole surface of per- a great deal, also, of declamation, viruished pamphlets, indiscreet sermons, frothy lence, crimination, and abuse. paragraphs, and fuming popular addresses ; In regard to any party, probably, at one of over whatever the pulpit in its moments of the leading epochs in the history of parties, alarm, the
press in its heats, and parties in enough may be found to inake out another their extravagances, have severally thrown equally inflamed exhibition as that with off, in times of general excitement and which the honorable member has edified violence. He has thus swept together a us. For myself, sir, I shall not rake among mass of such things, as, but they are not the rubbish of by-gone times to see what now old, the public health would have re- I can find or whether I cannot find somequired him rather to leave in their state of thing by which I can fix a blot on the escutdispersion.
cheon of any state, any party, or any part of For a good long hour or two, we had the the country. General Washington's adminunbroken pleasure of listening to the hon- istration was steadily and zealously mainorable member, while he recited, with his tained, as we all know, by New England. It usual grace and spirit, and with evident was violently opposed elsewhere. We know high gusto, speeches, pamphlets, addresses, in what quarter he had the most earnest, and all that et ceteras of the political press, constant and persevering support, in all such as warm heads produce in warm his great and leading measures. We know times, and such as it would be "discomfi- where his private and personal character ture" indeed for any one, whose taste did was held in the highest degree of attachnot delight in that sort of reading, to be ment and veneration; and we know, too, obliged to peruse. This is his war. This where his measures were opposed, his seris to carry the war into the enemy's coun- vices slighted, and his character vilified. try. It is in an invasion of this sort that We know, or we might know, if we turn he flatters himself with the expectation of to the journals, who expressed respect, gaining laurels fit to adorn a senator's gratitude, and regret, when he retired from
the chief magistracy; and who refused to Mr. President, I shall not, it will, 1 express either respect, gratitude or regret. I trust, not be expected that I should, either shall not open those journals. Publicanow or at any time, separate this farrago tions more abusive or scurrilous never saw into parts, and answer and examine its the light than were sent forth against components. I shall hardly bestow upon Washington, and all his leading measures, it all a general remark or two. In the run from presses south of New England; but I of forty years, sir, under this constitution, shall not look them up. I employ no we have experienced sundry successive scavengers-no one is in attendance on yiolent party contests. Party arose, in- me, tendering such means of retaliation ; deed, with the constitution itself, and in and if there were, with an ass's load of some form or other has attended through them, with a bulk as huge as that which the greater part of its history.
the gentleman himself has produced, I Whether any other constitution than the would not touch one of them. I see enough old articles of confederation was desirable, of the violence of our own times to be no was itself, a question on which parties di- way anxious to rescue from forgetfulness vided ; if a new constitution was framed, the extravagances of times past. Besides, What powers should be given to it was what is all this to the present purpose ? another question; and when it had been It has nothing to do with the public lands, formed, what was, in fact, the just extent in regard to which the attack was begun of the powers actually conferred way a and it has nothing to do with those sentithird. Parties, as we know, existed under ments and opinions, which I have thought the first administration,
as distinctly tend to disunion, and all of which the marked as those which manifested them- honorable member seems to have adopted selves at any subsequent period.
himself, and undertaken to defend. New The contést immediately preceding the England has, at times-so argues the genpolitical change in 1801, and that, again, tleman,-held opinions as dangerous as which existed at the commencement of the those which he now holds. Be it so.
But late war, are other instances of party ex- why, therefore, does he abuse New Engcitement, of something more than usual land? If he finds himself countenanced strength and intensity. In all these con- by acts of hers, how is it that, while he reflicts there was, no doubt, much of vio- lies on these acts, he covers, or seeks to lence on both and all sides. It would be cover, their authors with reproach? impossible, if one had a fancy for such But, sir, if, in the course of forty years, employment, to adjust the relative quantum there have been undue effervescences of of violence between these two contending party in New England, has the same thing
happened no where else? Party animosi- | then, sir, I give them all up to the honorty and party outrage, not in New Eng- able gentleman's unrestrained rebuke; e1land, but elsewhere, denounced President pecting, however, that he will extend his Washington, not only as a federalist, but buffetings, in like manner, to all similar as a tory, a British agent, a man who, in proceedings, wherever else found. his high office, sanctioned corruption. But The gentleman, sir, has spoken at large does the honorable membersuppose that, if of former parties, now no longer in being, I had a tender here, who should put such by their received appellations, and has unan effusion of wickedness and folly in my dertaken to instruct us, not only in the hand, that I would stand up and read it knowledge of their principles, but of their against the south? Parties ran into great respective pedigrees also. He has as heats, again, in 1799. What was said, sir, cended to their origin and run out their or rather what was not said, in those years, genealogies. With most exemplary modesty, against John Adams, one of the signers of he speaks of the party to which he professes the Declaration of Independence, and its to have belonged himself, as the true, pure, admitted ablest defender on the floor of the only honest, patriotic party, derived by Congress? If the gentleman wants to in- regular descent, from father to son, from crease his stores of party abuse and frothy the time of the virtuous Romans! Spreadviolence, if he has a determined proclivi- ing before us the family tree of political ty to such pursuits, there are treasures of parties, he takes especial care to show him. that sort south of the Potomac, much to self snugly perched on a popular bough! his taste, yet untouched. I shall not He is wakeful to the expediency of adopt. touch them.
ing such rules of descent, for political parThe parties which divided the country, ties, as shall bring him in, in exclusion of at the commencement of the late war, were others, as an heir to the inheritance of all violent. But, then, there was violence on public virtue, and all true political princiboth sides, and violence in every state. ples. His doxy is always orthodoxy. Minorities and majorities were equally vio- Heterodoxy is confined to his opponents. lent. There was no more violence against He spoke, sir, of the federalists, and I the war in New England than in other thought I saw some eyes begin to open and states; nor any more appearance of vio- stare a little, when he ventured on that lence, except that, owing to a dense popu- ground. I expected he would draw his lation, greater facility for assembling, and sketches rather lightly, when he looked on more presses, there may have been more, the circle round him, and especially if he in quantity, spoken and printed there than should cast his thoughts to the high places in some other places. In the article of out of the Senate. Nevertheless, he went sermons, too, New England is somewhat back to Rome, ad annum urbs condita, and more abundant than South Carolina: and found the fathers of the federalists in the for that reason, the chance of finding here primeval aristocrats of that renowned em. and there an exceptionable one may be pire! He traced the flow of federal blood greater. I hope, too, there are more good down through successive ages and centu. ones. Opposition may have been more ries, till he got into the veins of the Ameriformidable in New England, as it embraced can'tories, (of whom, by the way, there a larger portion of the whole population : were twenty in the Carolinas for one in but it was no more unrestrained in its Massachusetts.) From the tories, he folprinciple, or violent in manner. The lowed it to the federalists; and as the minorities dealt quite as harshly with their federal party was broken up, and there was own state governments as the majorities no possibility of transmitting it farther on dealt with the administration here. There this side of the Atlantic, he seems to have were presses on both sides, popular meet- discovered that it has gone off, collaterally, ings on both sides, ay, and pulpits on both though against all the canons of descent, sides, also. The gentleman's purveyors into the ultras of France, and finally behave only catered for him among the pro- came extinguished, like exploded gas, ductions of one side. I certainly shall not among the adherents of Don Miguel. supply the deficiency by furnishing sam This, sir, is an abstract of the gentleples of the other. I leave to him, and to man's history of federalism. I am not then, the whole concern.
about to controvert it. It is not, at preIt is enough for me to say, that if, in sent, worth the pains of refutation, because, any part of this, their grateful occupation sir, if at this day one feels the sin of --if in all their researches—they find any- federalism lying heavily on his conscience, thing in the history of Massachusetts, or he can easily obtain remission. He may New England, or in the proceedings of any even have an indulgence, if he is desirous legislative or other public body, disloyal to of repeating, the transgression. It is an the Union, speaking slightly of its value, affair of no difficulty to get into this same proposing to break it up, or recommending right line of patriotic descent. A man, non-intercourse with neighboring states, on nowadays, is at liberty to choose his politiaccount of difference of political opinion, I cal parentage. He may elect his own fa.