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so as to compel me to vote against my own motion. Therefore I ask the unanimous consent of the delegations here that I be privileged to withdraw the motion.
The PRESIDENT. Strictly speaking, the honorable gentleman could not do so after one name had been called upon the roll. The honorable delegate asks the unanimous consent to withdraw his motion to reconsider. Is there objection?
Mr. ZEGARRA. I object.
The PRESIDENT. As there is objection, the roll-call will proceed.
The roll-call was continued, but was interrupted by
Mr. QUINTANA, who spoke as follows: Mr. President, before proceeding with the vote, I would rise to a question of order, and ask whether or not a delegate can, against the majority of his delegation, make a proposition?
As General Henderson declares that the majority of the United States delegation does not support his motion it ceases to exist, and in consequence there is nothing to be voted upon.
The PRESIDENT. That is a point of metaphysics upon
which the Chair himself declines to rule. The roll-call will proceed.
The roll-call resulted in the defeat of the motion to reconsider by a vote of 11 negative to 4 affirmative.
AFFIRMATIVE 4. Argentine Republic, Bolivia,
Chili. Costa Rica,
NEGATIVE 11. Nicaragua,
Uhited States, Gautemala,
The PRESIDENT. The motion to reconsider is lost. The Conference declines to re-open the question in order that the minority may move the amendment, and therefore the amendment is removed from the cognizance of the Conference. The motion to reconsider is very often made, the Chair would remark, for the
purpose of defeating it. It is the constant practice in the Congress of the United States to make the motion to reconsider for the
of defeating it and closing the matter.
Mr. SAENZ PEÑA. The vote upon the proposition offered by General Henderson has nothing to do with my motion, upon which I desired the vote of the Conference.
The PRESIDENT. The honorable delegate from the Argentine Republic moves again that the Conference permit the vote to be taken upon the minority report. The Chair directs that the roll be called, and as many as are in favor of a vote being taken upon
the minority report will answer aye.
Mr. ARAGON. I said that I had taken the floor because it was, perhaps, the last opportunity which I would have to rectify some ideas expressed by Messrs. Henderson and Estee with regard to whether or not the vote ought to be taken on the minority report. These reports are entirely different; the minority declares that Customs Union is impracticable, whilst the majority, though it does not decide this question in the affirmative, it tends to that opinion. Now, then, as what the minority says in its report is a fact, viz, that a Customs Union is impracticable, and as, on the other hand, the proposition of the majority report is perfectly acceptable, I can not see any conflict whatever between one and the other of these reports, because, in my opinion, they are not contradictory.
For this reason, therefore, I believe that, without detriment to the vote already taken upon this subject, the minority report may be taken into consideration.
The PRESIDENT. Is the Conference ready for the question?
Those in favor of ordering that a vote be taken on the minority report will answer aye as the roll is called. Those opposed will answer no.
The roll-call resulted in a defeat of the motion to vote upon the minority report by a vote of 11 to 5.
AFFIRMATIVE 5. Argentine, Paraguay,
Chili. Costa Rica,
NEGATIVE 11. Nicaragua,
The PRESIDENT. The Conference declines to vote upon the minority report. The subject is disposed of. What further order will the Conference take ?
SESSION OF APRIL 12, 1890. The FIRST VICE-PRESIDENT. The honorable deleegate from Guatemala has presented his views upon the report of the Committee on Customs Union.
At the request of Mr. Romero, a delegate from Mexico, the written statement of Mr. Cruz was read, as follows:
THE VOTE OF MR. CRUZ, DELEGATE FROM GUATEMALA, ON
CUSTOMS UNION. Owing to the circumstance that there is a division of opinion among the members of the committee charged to study and report on the subject of Customs Union, and taking into consideration what has been said by both parties during the long and enlightened debate just ended, I am led to think that it would be convenient to leave a statement explaining the meaning and reasons of the vote I gave on this subject. Wishing this declaration to be spread on the minutes, I shall make it as brief as possible.
In giving my assent to the report of the majority, whose direct recommendation to the Governments is limited to the celebration of reciprocity treaties with one or more of the American nations with whom it should be convenient to make them, and on bases that in each case could be considered acceptable, I have understood that rather than being at present practicable, the establishment of a Customs Union has been clearly stated to be the opposite. Otherwise the recommendation would have been made to enter into a Customs Union, and not to do something that is a great deal less than that, as would be the case if treaties of reciprocity were only made; but even this is so mildly recommended that it does not in the least compromise the liberty of action of the nations to whom it is sent, and who are to decide upon it in the manner and under such circumstances or opportunities as they may see fit.
The actual condition of the United States and the Latin American Republics, as the report of the majority so well expresses it, is not such as would permit the establishment of a Customs Union, and for that reason, and as a consequence thereof, the committee, who could not recommend it, limited itself to suggest only that which it considered practicable at present. In the same way that I believe that the committee would have clearly and expressly proposed the adoption of a Customs Union if it had been found practicable, I do not understand why said committee, just because it is impracticable now, should declare it impossible. The Conference has been convened to study all matters of general interest to the Nations of America, and with the view of recommending to their respective Governments for final adoption, the matters that will tend to bring said nations closer together, to prevent war between them, to establish close and friendly relations, to develop commerce and reciprocal exchange, and do away with those differences which constitute the main obstacles to their more cordial, free, and frequent communications. In addition to the fact that the declaration that a Customs Union is impracticable is something more than a recommendation, and is not limited to the present time, the said declaration could not respond, in my opinion, to the spirit of the act of Congress. By merely not recommending the Customs Union, and recommending instead the negotiation of reciprocity treaties, the purposes of the act of Congress are fully accomplished. No undue obligation is imposed upon the countries represented by us, nor is a declaration made which if conducive to something could certainly be to something different from the purposes of the invitation.
I believe that a committee called upon to act in this matter, especially in an assembly which is purely consultative, has a greater amplitude of action than a judge to whom a case is submitted and whose decision must embrace all the essential points of the controversy. The idea of the Conference is without any doubt to do everything possible in order to respond to the great purposes had in view, and if in any matter the whole thing can not be done, it is lawful and proper to do something at least. This without taking into consideration that the act of the Congress of the United States which authorized the President to call this Conference together states the matter herein referred to with sufficient clearness.
True it is that the difficulties for the establishment of a Customs Union are at present great, and probably insurmountable; but the advantages which treaties of reciprocity, limited to certain articles and concluded upon especial bases to be established in each case, could afford are manifest.
The foregoing considerations explain well the reason why I had not the pleasure to accede to the proposition that the minority report should be voted upon. The recommendation of the majority acknowledges the present impracticability of the Customs Union, and besides this I