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SPEECI,

In the House of Representative, March 17, 1840—-On the Resolu

tion reported from the Committee of Elections by Mr. CAMPBELL, their chairman, proposing to print all the testimony con. nected with the New Jersey contested election, and the amendment of Mr. GARLAND, of Louisiana, to print other testimony referred to that committee, subsequent to its report :

on.

Mr. Brown desired that the resolution might be read, on which this exciting and extraordinary debate had been going

He desired it, that the House might be brought back to the precise character of the proposition before it—not one touching the merits of the controversey; not one'involving the truth of the facts set forth in the report, nor the action of the House, in admitting five of these gentlemen to temporary membership on this floor. All these things have passed bythe report has been made—it has been sanctioned by the House, and the five gentlemen are now here present in their seats. All the testimony on which these proceedings have taken place, has been reported to the House, and the committee now stand here desiring and insisting that it should be printed. But these papers, now desired to be also printed, were not considered by the committee, because they were never before them in the form of evidence. Not one solitary member ever saw the inside of that package until after the report was made. It was sealed up from all inspection, and therefore constituted no part of the foundation of this report. Why then should it be printed with it, as a part of it, when in truth and fact it was never opened here, nor referred to the committee, until after its report had been made? We desire all the testimony before the committee, and on which the report was founded, to be printed and sent out with it, in order that the people of this country may be able to see and determine whether the committee and this House have done right in the New Jersey case. To print these depositions, which came in after the report, can shed no light on the propriety of what has been done. They are now before the committee, and should continue there until the remaining depositions shall arrive, and the whole case come on for final hearing on the ultimate rights of the party. They will then be printed in connection with the others, and go to the world as a part of the New Jersey case, and receive that attention which they may be found to deserve.

But it is useless to dwell on this point ; for it is evident to every one that the proposition is submitted only for the purpose of furnishing an occasion to assail the conduct of the majority of the committee who made the report, and of the House by whom it was confirmed. Sir, it is now notoriously a question of crimination. Having failed to get in the five claimants commissioned by the Governor, and having further failed in excluding the five who actually received the majority of the votes, gentlemen turn round, in the rage and fury of their disappointment, and seek to criminate the conduct of all those by whom their purposes have been frustrated. Proud in the consciousness of having done right, as one member of the committee, I stood ready to meet any and every charge that might be preferred against me, or any of the honorable gentlemen who had concurred in making this report. I expected those charges, if made at all, would surely be preferred by members of the committee-by those whose situation enabled them to form an opinion worth submitting to the American people. Judge, then, Mr. Speaker, my surprise, when I saw the gentleman from Maryland suddenly thrust himself into this controversy, which I had considered as a sort of “family affair,” and gravely prefer a long list of charges against the majority of the committee. I do not deny the gentleman's right to do so, nor do I question the sincerity of his declaration, that, in his opinion, there had been something wrong in the action of the committee. But, sir, I now admonish him in advance not to be too precipate in his conclusions—his situation has not been favorable to a correct knowledge of the facts; and I pledge myself now here, to the House, and the nation, that he has not preferred one solitary charge that cannot be triumphantly refuted.

The gentleman told us that he had looked into our journals, but was constrained to admit that he had only done so slightly. Now, sir, this very admission ought to have suggested to him to have been more sparing in his denunciations. What did the gentleman think he could examine the contents of this huge volume in a single night? That he could comprehend the profound legal learning of the gentleman from New York, the skillful special pleading of the gentleman from Alabama, and the willy tact of him from Virginia, on so slight and so hasty an inspection ? The gentleman can have no sort of idea of the profound mysteries of this new and interesting work.

With no better opportunity than this to obtain correct information, the gentleman selected one portion of the journal here, and another there-a fragment from one place, and a scrap from another, and drawing his conclusions from such disjointed premises, proclaims to the country " that there was something wrong in the committee room.” Sir, I expect there was something wrong in that committee room—something wrong in this House-something wrong before the Governor and Privy Council of New Jersey. But I stand here to say, after a full examination of this case, that that wrong is not on the side of those who have maintained the rights of the people of New Jersey against its Governor and Council.

Let it be remembered that no gentleman has ventured to dispute the great and controlling fact which constitutes the sum and substance of this report, to wit: who received the greatest number of votes cast in the New Jersey election. No man has, because no man could deny it. The parties holding the Governor's commission, so far from denying that their competitors did receive the majority of votes, in their written pleadings have substantially admitted it. They have so plainly admitted it, that the committee need not have called a single witness in the case; they need not have taken a solitary deposition ; but, walking into this hall, might have laid that written admission on your table, and said to you; “Behold the fact which you required us to ascertain !" In one hour after the pleadings of the parties were closed, the committee might have made the report which they have made, and the House have taken the very action they have taken, on the parties' own admission: If it be asked why such a report was not made sooner, under such circumstances, my answer is, that those who are now so much abused as an unjust and overbearing majority, never became a majority until the orders of this House had been given, commanding this report to be made. Until then we were in a minority, incapable of controlling anything. Our propositions were voted down or stricken out, or so altered and amended as to make us finally repudiate them ourselves. This was effected by the chairman generally voting and acting with the other party on all questions involving a report on the state and condition of the poll-books. At length, however, the instructions of the House were given the chairman yielded obedience to them, and we stood released from that thraldom to which we had been so long subjected.

[Here the morning hour having expired, the House went into Committee of the Whole on the Treasury Note bill.]

MARCH 18TH. Mr. Brown of Tennessee resumed. I will now proceed, in continuation of the remarks began on yesterday. I then complained, and yet think I had a right to complain, that the proceedings of the committee had been so harshly and unjustly condemned by the honorable gentleman from Maryland. It did seem to me, that when this controversy had been narrowed down to the mere crimination of the majority whilst in the committee room, that the gentleman should have left it to be settled by the members of the committee. I advert to this topic again, in order to assure the gentleman that I refer the injustice he has done, which I know he has done to the majority, more to the want of personal information than to any disposition to send forth to the world a groundless imputation of our motives and conduct. But I may be mistaken as to the extent of the gentleman's information. He may have learned from others, in whom he confides, much more than he could find out from his necessarily slight and superficial inspection of our journals. However this may be, the gentleman day after day, indulged in a freedom and boldness of crimination, that demands a prompt and decisive refutation. Scattered, as they were, through a very long speech, I feared at one time, that I should not be able to collect and arrange them. But he was kind enough yesterday to recapitulate, and to condense them into a small compass.

His first charge was, that the committee had failed to discharge its duties, as pointed out by the standing rules of the House giving existence to the committee. The rule declares:

" That it shall be the duty of the Committee of Elections to examine and report upon the certificates of election, or other credentials, of members returned to serve in this House.”

Now I desire to know whether the gentleman from Maryland did mean to make the impression on this House, that the committee had not performed that portion of its duty; that we had not examined the commissions, and decided on them. If these were the gentleman's objections to our proceedings, it was easy to show that he was mistaken.

[Mr. Jenifer here explained.]

If I understand the gentleman's explanations, I have not misapprehended his meaning. I refer him to the resolution under which this case was referred to the committee. That goes beyond the standing rules, and requires us to ascertain and report who were entitled to occupy the five vacant seats from the State of New Jersey. This opened up the whole question: the commissions, the returns, the poll books; in fact every thing on which the right of membership depended. Now, sir, it has been asserted here, and the public press has spread it all over this country that the committee paid but lit

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