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land, Bundy, Reader W. Clarke, Sidney Clarke, | Cobb, Colfax, Conkling, Cook, Cullom, Darling, Davis, Dawes, Defrees, Delano, Deming, Dixon, Dodge, Donnelly, Eckley, Eggleston, Eliot, Farnsworth, Farquhar, Ferry, Garfield, Grinnell, Griswold, Hale, Abner C. Harding, Hart, Hayes, Henderson, Higby, Hill, Holmes, Hooper, Hotchkiss, Asahel W. Hubbard, Chester D. Hub bard, John H. Hubbard, James R. Hubbell, Hulburd, James Humphrey, Ingersoll, Jenckes, Kasson, Kelley, Kelso, Ketcham, Laflin, George V. Lawrence, William Lawrence, Loan, Longyear, Lynch, Marston, Marvin, McClurg, McIndoe, McKee, McRuer, Mercur, Miller, Moorhead, Morrill, Morris, Moulton, Myers, Newell, O'Neill, Orth, Paine, Patterson, Perham, Pike, Plants, Pomeroy, Price, Alexander H. Rice, John H. Rice, Rollins, Sawyer, Schenck, Scofield, Shellabarger, Spalding, Starr, Stevens, Thayer, Francis Thomas, John L. Thomas, jr.,
Trowbridge, Upson, Van Aernam, Burt Van Horn, Robert T. Van Horn, Ward, Elihu B. Washburne, Henry D. Washburn, William B. Washburn, Welker, Wentworth, James F. Wilson, Stephen F. Wilson, Windom, Woodbridge122, all Republicans.
NAYS-Messrs. Ancona, Bergen, Boyer, Coffroth, Dawson, Denison, Eldridge, Finck, Glossbrenner, Aaron Harding, Harris, Hogan, Edwin N. Hubbell, James M. Humphrey, Latham, Le Blond, Marshall, McCul lough, Niblack, Nicholson, Noell, Phelps, Radford, Samuel J. Randall, William H. Randall, Raymond, Ritter, Rogers, Ross, Rousseau, Shanklin, Sitgreaves, Smith, Strouse, Taber, Taylor, Thornton, Trimble, Whaley, Winfield, Wright-41, Democrats (in Italics), 84; Republicans and Unionists (in Roman), 7. Whereupon the Speaker of the House declared the bill a law.
THE FREEDMEN'S BUREAU BILL,
THE FIRST BILL.
The first "Freedmen's Bureau Bill," providing that "the act to establish a bureau for the relief of freedmen and refugees, approved March 3, 1865, shall continue in force until otherwise provided by law, and shall extend to refugees and freedmen in all parts of the United States," passed the Senate on Jan. 25, 1866, by 37 yeas against 10 nays, a strict party vote. The House passed the bill on Feb. 6, yeas 137 (all Republicans), nays 33 (Noell and Rousseau voting with the Democrats).
THE PRESIDENT'S VETO.
This bill was vetoed by the President in a message dated Feb. 19. The President thinks that there is no immediate necessity for the proposed measure, as the act of March 3, 1865, has not yet expired. He further objects to the bill, that the trials under the origin of this bill are to take place without the intervention of a jury, and without any fixed rules of law or evidence, and should it become a law, it "will have no limitation in point of time, but will form a part of the permanent legislation of the country," a feature which he cannot reconcile with the words of the Constitution granting to the accused in all criminal prosecutions the right to a speedy and public trial by an impartial jury. Against the 3d section of the bill, authorizing "a general and unlimited grant of support to the destitute and suffering refugees and freedmen, their wives and children," and against the succeeding sections making provision for the rent or purchase of landed estates for freedmen, and for the erection for their benefit of suitable buildings for asylums and schools, the President urges that "the Congress of the United States has never heretofore thought itself empowered to establish asylums beyond the limits of the District of Columbia, except for the benefit of our disabled soldiers and sailors ;" that "the appointment of an agent for every county and parish will create an immense patronage; and the expense of the numerous officers and their clerks, to be appointed by the President, will be great in the beginning, with a
tendency steadily to increase;" and that "large appropriations would, therefore, be required to sustain and enforce military jurisdiction in every county or parish from the Potomac to the Rio Grande."
In addition to the objections already stated, the fifth section of the bill, the President thinks, proposes to take away land from its former owners without any legal proceedings being first had, contrary to that provision of the Constituprived of life, liberty, or property without due tion which declares that no person shall "be de
process of law."
It is further urged that the bill will "tend to keep the mind of the freedman in a state of uncertain expectation and restlessness, while to those among whom he lives it will be a source of constant and vague apprehension."
The system proposed by the bill would, in the opinion of the President, "inevitably tend to a concentration of power in the Executive, which would enable him, if so disposed, to control the action of this numerous class (of the agents of the Freedmen's Bureau), and use them for the advancement of his own political ends.
Finally, the President regards the fact that eleven States were not represented in Congress at the time when the bill was passed as opposed to "the principle firmly fixed in the minds of the American people, that there should be no taxation without representation." The unquestionable right of Congress to judge, each house for itself," of the elections, returns, and qualifications of its own members," cannot be construed, the President says, as "including the right to shut out, in time of peace, any State from the representation to which it is entitled by the Constitution."
THE BILL FAILS IN THE SENATE. On Feb. 21, a vote was taken in the Senate on passing the bill, notwithstanding the objections of the President, with the following result:
Yeas 30 (all Republicans); Nays 18 (10 Democrats and 8 Republicans, namely, Cowan, Dixon, Doolittle, Morgan, Norton, Stewart, Van Winkle, Willey). Two-thirds of the Senate not having voted therefor, the bill failed.
THE (SECOND) "FREEDMEN'S BUREAU
The Bill continues in force the act of March 3, 1865, for two years after the passage of this Sec. 2. Extends the supervision of the Bureau to all loyal refugees and freedmen, as far as shall be necessary to enable them to become self-supporting. Sec. 3. Authorizes the appointment of two Assistant Commissioners; each Assistant Commissioner shall have charge of one district, and may appoint all necessary clerks, agents, &c., at salaries of $1,200. Military officers or enlisted men may be detailed for duty under this act. All persons appointed under this act are entitled to the military protection of the United States. Sec. 4. Allows volunteer officers, or officers of the Veteran Reserve Corps now on duty in the Bureau, whose regiments shall have been mustered out, to be retained. Sec. 5. The Secretary of War may issue medical stores, and other supplies and transportation. No person shall be regarded as "destitute" who can find employment, and might by proper exertion avoid such destitution. Sec. 6. Confirms to the "heads of families of the African race" the lands purchased of the United States Tax Commissioners in the parishes of St. Helena and St. Luke. Sec. 7. Authorizes the Tax Commissioners to sell, with certain exceptions, all the land bid in at tax sales by the United States, being about 88,000 acres in the parishes of St. Helena and St. Luke, in parcels of 20 acres, at $1.50 per acre, to such persons only as have acquired and are now occupying lands under the provisions of Gen. Sherman's special field order, dated at Savannah, Georgia, Jan. 16, 1865, and the remaining lands shall be disposed of in like manner to such persons as had acquired land under said order of Gen. Sherman, but who have been dispossessed by the restoration of the same to their former owners. Purchasers under this Act cannot alienate their lands within six years after the passage of this Act. Sec. 8. Provides that the school farms" and certain lots in Port Royal and Beaufort shall be sold at auction and the proceeds invested in United States bonds for the support of schools, without distinction of race or color, in those parishes. Sec. 9. Assistant Commissioners in Georgia and South Carolina may give persons having valid claim to land under Gen. Sherman's special field order, a warrant upon the direct Tax Commissioners for South Carolina for 20 acres of land; and said Tax Commissioners shall issue to any such person a lease of 20 acres of land for six years, and such person may, at any time thereafter, by the payment of $1.50 per acre, obtain a certificate of sale of the same. Sec. 10. Provides for the survey of the land. Sec. 11. Restoration of lands occupied by freedmen, under Gen. Sherman's special field order, and not sold for taxes, shall not be made until the crops for the present year have been gathered, and fair compensation rendered by the former owners for any improvements. Sec. 12. The Commissioner may devote the property of the so-called Confederate States, not heretofore disposed of, to the education of the freedmen; and whenever the Bureau shall cease to exist, those of the so-called Confederate States which may have made provision for the education of their citizens, without distinction of race or color, shall receive
the sum unexpended of the sale of such property. Sec. 13. The Commissioner shall co-operate with benevolent associations, &c., educating the freedmen, and afford their schools due protection. Sec. 14. Provides that the freedmen shall have and be protected in all the immunities and rights which belong to the whites, and the President, through the officers of the Bureau, shall extend military protection and have military jurisdiction over all cases concerning the free enjoyment of such immunities and rights, in all States where the ordinary course of Judicial proceedings has been interrupted by the Rebellion, until such State shall be fully restored in its constitutional relations to the Government.
THE VETO OF THE SECOND BILL BY THE PRESIDENT.
The second bill was again vetoed by the President in a message, dated July 16. The President refers to the objections which his message of Feb. 19 made to the first bill, and states that he adheres "to the principles set forth in that message, " and now reaffirms "them, and the line of policy therein indicated." The President insists that "by means of the civil tribunals ample redress is afforded for all private wrongs, whether to the person or the property of the citizen, without denial or unnecessary delay. They are open to all, without regard to color or race. I feel well assured that it will be better to trust the rights, privileges and immunities f the citizens to tribunals thus established, and presided over by competent and impartial judges, bound by fixed rules of law and evidence, and where the right of trial by jury is guaranteed and secured, than to the caprice or judgment of an officer of the Bureau, who, it is possible, may be entirely ignorant of the principles that underlie the just administration of the law. There is danger, too, that the confliet of jurisdiction will frequently arise between the civil courts and these military tribunals, each having concurrent jurisdiction over the person and the cause of action; the one jurisdiction administered and controlled by civil law, the other by military.
He also urges upon the consideration of Congress as an additional reason that "recent developments in regard to the practical operations of the Bureau in many of the States show that in numerous instances it is used by its agents as a means of promoting their individual advantage, and that the freedmen are employed for the advancement of the personal ends of the officers, instead of their own improvement and welfare, thus confirming the fears originally entertained by many that the continuation of such a Bureau for any unnecessary length of time would inevitably result in fraud, corruption and oppression. It is proper to state that in cases of this character investigations have been promptly ordered, and the offender punished whenever his guilt has been satisfactorily established."
"As another reason (continues the message) against the necessity of the legislation contemplated by this measure, reference may be had to the Civil Rights Bill, now a law of the land, and which will be faithfully executed so long as it shall remain unrepealed, and not be declared unconstitutional by courts of competent juris
diction. By that act full protection is afforded through the District Courts of the United States to all persons injured, and whose privileges as thus declared are in any way impaired, and very heavy penalties are denounced against the person who wilfully violates the law. I need not state that that law did not receive my approval, yet its remedies are far more preferable than those proposed in the present bill, the one being civil and the other military."
With regard to the sixth section of the bill, which confirms and ratifies certain proceedings by which the lands in the parishes of St. Helena and St. Luke, South Carolina, were sold and bid in, and afterward disposed of by the Tax Commissioners, and with regard to the seventh, eighth, ninth, tenth and eleventh sections, which make provisions for the disposal of the lands thus acquired to a particular class of citizens, the President says: "While the quieting of titles is deemed very important and desirable, the discrimination made in the bill seems objec-rence of Ohio, Loan, Longyear, Lynch, Marston, tionable, as does also the attempt to confer upon the Commissioners judicial powers by which citizens of the United States are to be deprived of their property in a mode contrary to that provision of the Constitution which declares that no person shall be deprived of life, liberty or property without due process of law. As a general principle such legislation is unsafe, unwise, partial and unconstitutional."
PASSAGE OF THE BILL OVER THE VETO.
On the same day, July 16th, a vote was taken both in the Senate and in the House on the question, Shall the bill be passed, the President's objections notwithstanding? The vote in the Senate resulted as follows:
YEAS-Anthony, Brown, Chandler, Clark, Conness, Cragin, Cresswell, Edmunds, Fessenden, Foster, Grimes, Harris, Henderson, Howard, Howe, Kirkwood, Lane, Morgan, Morrill, Nye, Poland, Pomeroy, Ramsey, Sherman, Sprague,
In the House the vote was as follows:
NAYS Messrs. Ancona, Boyer, Dawson, Eldridge, Finck, Glossbrenner, Grider, Harding, Hogan, Humphrey, Johnson, Kerr, Kuykendall, Le Blond, Marshall, Niblack, Nicholson, Noell, Phelps, Randall of Pa., Raymond, Ritter, Rogers, Ross, Rousseau, Shanklin, Sitgreaves, Taber, Taylor, Thornton, Trimble, Washburn of Ind., and Wright-33, (27 Democrats, 6 Repubs.)
Thus the Bill was passed over the President's veto.
THE CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT.
The following is the text of the Constitutional Amendment now awaiting the action of the Legislatures of the several States: JOINT RESOLUTION proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the United States. Be it enacted, by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled (two-thirds of both Houses concurring). That the following article be proposed to the Legislatures of the several States as an amendment to the Constitution of the United States, which, when ratified by three-fourths of said Legislatures, shall be valid as part of the Constitution, namely:
ARTICLE XIV.-SECTION 1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or
property, without due process of law, nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.
SEC. 2. Representatives shall be apportioned among the several States according to their respective numbers, counting the whole number of persons in each State, excluding Indians not taxed. But when the right to vote at any election for the choice of Electors for President and Vice-President of the United States, Representatives in Congress, the executive and judicial officers of a State, or the members of the Legislature thereof is denied to any of the male inhabitants of such State, being twenty-one years of age and citizens of the United States, or in any way abridged, except for participation in rebellion or other crime, the basis of representation therein shall be reduced in proportion which the number of such male citizens shall bear to the whole number of male citizens twenty-one years of age in such State.
SEC. 8. No person shall be a Senator or Repre
sentative in Congress, or elector of President and Vice-President, or hold any office, civil or military, under the United States or under any State, who, having previously taken an oath, as a member of Congress, or as an officer of the United States, or as a member of any State Legislature, or as an executive or judicial officer of any State, to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid and comfort to the enemies thereof. But Congress may, by a vote of two-thirds of each House, remove such disability.
SEC. 4. The validity of the public debt of the United States authorized by law, including debts incurred for payment of pensions and bounties for services in suppressing insurrection and rebellion, shall not be questioned. But neither the United States nor any State shall assume or pay any debt or obligation incurred in aid of insurrection or rebellion against the United States, or any claim for the loss or emancipation of any slave; but all such debts, obligations or claims shall be held illegal and void.
SEC. 5. The Congress shall have power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article.
VOTES ON THE AMENDMENT. The first draft of the above Constitutional Amendment was reported in the House, on April 30th, by Mr. Stevens, from the Joint Select Committee on Reconstruction.
On May 10, Mr. Stevens demanded the pre
(vious question, which was seconded on a count, 85 to 57; and the main question was orderedyeas 84, nays 79. The joint resolution then passed-yeas 128 (all Republicans), nays 87 (Democrats 82, and Latham, Phelps, Rousseau, Smith and Whaley, Unionists).
The proposition was amended in the Senate, and brought to a vote on June 8, when it passed by a vote of yeas 33 (all Republicans) nays 11 (Democrats 7, and Cowan, Doolittle, Norton, and Van Winkle, Unionists). In the House the Amendment as amended by the Senate passed on June 18-yeas 188 (all Republicans) nays 36 (all Democrats).
On June 16th, the Amendment was deposited in the State Department, and on the same day a certified copy sent by the Secretary of State to the Governors of the States. On June 18th, both Houses passed a resolution to request the President to submit the adopted Amendment. On June 20th, the Secretary of State notified the President of his having received the bill and transmitted a copy to the Governors. On June 22d, the President submitted the report of the Secretary of State to Congress, expressing at the same time his disapproval of the Amendment.
ACTION OF STATE LEGISLATURES.
The Amendment, up to Dec. 30th, had been ratified by the Legislatures of Tennessee, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Oregon, New Jersey, Vermont.
It had on the other hand been rejected by the Legislatures of Texas, Georgia, Alabama, North Carolina, South Carolina and Florida.
ADDRESS OF THE NATIONAL UNION COMMITTEE.
A majority of the members of the National Executive Union Committee which was elected by the Nominating National Convention of the Union Party in 1864 held a meeting in Philadelphia, at which the places of Henry J. Raymond, of New York, the Chairman of the Committee, N. D. Sperry, of Connecticut, and George R. Senter, of Ohio, were declared vacant, "by reason of their abandonment of the principles of the National Union Party and affiliation with its enemies." Governor Ward, of New Jersey, was elected Chairman. The Committee published an address to the American People, of which the following are the most important portions:
FELLOW-CITIZENS: Very grave differences having arisen between your immediate Representatives in Congress and the President who owes his position to your votes, we are impelled to ask your attention thereto, and to suggest the duties to your country which they render imperative.
The claim of the insurgents that they either now reacquired or had never forfeited their constitutional rights in the Union, including that of representation in Congress, stands in pointed antagonism alike to the requirements of Congress and to those of the acting President. It was the Executive alone who, after the Rebellion was no more, appointed Provisional Governors for the now submissive, unarmed Southern States, on the assumption that the Rebellion had been revolutionary," and had deprived the
people under its sway of all civil government, and who required the assembling of a "Convention, composed of delegates to be chosen by that portion of the people of said State who are loyal to the United States, and no others, for the purpose of altering and amending the Constitution of said State. It was President Johnson who, so late as October last-when all shadow of overt resistance to the Union had long since disappeared-insisted that it was not enough that a State which had revolted must recognize her Ordinance of Secession as null and void from the beginning, and ratify the Constitutional Amendment prohibiting Slavery evermore, but she must also repudiate "every dollar of indebtedness created to aid in carrying on the Rebellion." It was he who ordered the dispersion by military force of any legislature chosen under the Rebellion which should assume power to make laws after the Rebellion had fallen. It
was he who referred to Congress all inquirers as to the probability of Representatives from the States lately in revolt being admitted to seats in either House, and suggested that they should present their credentials, not at the organization of Congress, but afterward. And finally, it was he, and not Congress, who suggested to his Gov. Sharkey of Mississippi, that
"If you could extend the elective franchise to all persons of color who can read the Constitution of the United States in English and write their names, and to all persons of color who own real estate valued at not less than $250, and pay
taxes thereon, you would completely disarm the adversary, and set an example that other States will follow."
If, then, there be any controversy as to the right of the loyal States to exact conditions and require guaranties of those which plunged madly into Secession and Rebellion, the supporters respectively of Andrew Johnson and of Congress cannot be antagonist parties to that contest since their record places them on the same side. It being thus agreed that conditions of restoration and guaranties against future rebellion may be exacted of the States lately in revolt, the right of Congress to a voice in prescribing those conditions and in shaping those guaranties is plainly incontestible. Whether it takes the shape of law or of a constitutional amendment, the action of Congress is vital. Even if they were to be settled by a treaty, the ratification of the Senate, by a two-thirds vote, would be indispensable. There is nothing in the Federal Constitution, nor in the nature of the case, that countenances an Executive monopoly of this power. What, then, is the ground of complaint against Congress?
tion, which prescribes in substance that political power in the Union shall henceforth be based only on that portion of the people of each State who are deemed by its constitution fit depositories of such power. In other words: A State which chooses to hold part of its population in ignorance and vassalage-powerless, uneducated, unfranchised-shall not count that portion to balance the educated, intelligent, enfranchised citizens of other States.
We do not propse to argue the justice of this provision. As well argue the shape of a cube or the correctness of the Multiplication Table. He who does not feel that this is simply and mildly just, would not be persuaded though one rose from the dead to convince him. That there are those among us who would not have it ratified, sadly demonstrates that the good work of Emancipation is not yet complete.
"But," say some, "this action is designed to coerce the South into according Suffrage to her Blacks." Not so, we reply; but only to notify her ruling caste that we will no longer bribe them to keep their Blacks in serfdom. An aristocracy rarely surrenders its privileges, no matIs it charged that the action of the two Houses ter how oppressive, from abstract devotion to was tardy and hesitating? Consider how mo-justice and right. It must have cogent, palpamentous were the questions involved, the issues ble reasons for so doing. We say, therefore, to depending. Consider how novel and extraordi- South Carolina, "If you persistently restrict all nary was the situation. Consider how utterly power to your 300,000 Whites, we must insist silent and blank is the Federal Constitution that these no longer balance, in Congress and touching the treatment of insurgent States, the choice of President, 700,000 Northern White whether during their flagrant hostility to the freeman, but only 300,000. If you keep your Union or after their discomfiture. Consider Blacks evermore in serfdom, it must not be bewith how many embarrassments and difficulties cause we tempted you so to do and rewarded the problem is beset, and you will not wonder you for so doing." that months were required to devise, perfect and pass, by a two-thirds vote in either House, a just and safe plan of reconstruction.
Yet that plan has been matured. It has passed the Senate by 33 to 11, and the House by 138 to 36. It is now fairly before the country, having already been ratified by the Legislatures of severa States and rejected by none. Under it, the State of Tennessee has been formally restored to all the privileges she forfeited by Rebellion, including representation in either House of Congress. And the door thus passed through stands invitingly open to all who still linger without.
What is intended by the third section is simply to give Loyalty a fair start in the reconstructed States. Under the Johnson policy, the Rebels monopolize power and place even in communities where they are decidedly outnumbered. Their Generals are Governors and Members elect of Congress; their Colonels and Majors fill the Legislatures, and officiate as Sheriffs. Not only are the steadfastly loyal proscribed, but even stay-at-home Rebels have little chance in competition with those who fought to subvert the Union. When this Rebel monopoly of office shall have been broken up, and loyalty to the Union shall have become general and hearty, Congress may remove the disability, and will doubtless make haste to do so. We do not perceive that the justice or fitness of the fourth section-prescribing that the Union Public Debt shall be promptly met, but that of the Rebel Confederacy never-is seriously con
There remains, then, but the second sec
Fellow citizens of every State, but especially of those soon to hold elections! we entreat your earnest, constant heed to the grave questions now at issue. If those who so wantonly plunged the Union into Civil War shall be allowed by you to dictate the terms of Reconstruction, you will have heedlessly sown the bitter seeds of future rebellions and bloody strife. Already, you are threatened with a recognition by the President of a sham Congress made up of the factions which recently coalesced at Philadelphia on a platform of Johnsonism-a Congress constituted by nullifying and overriding a plain law of the land-a Congress wholly inspired from the White House, and appealing to the sword alone for support. So glaring an attempt at usurpation would be even more criminal than absurd. Happily, the People, by electing an overwhelming majority of thoroughly loyal representatives, are rendering its initiation impossible.
Marcus L. Ward, New Jersey, Chairman; John D. Defrees, Indiana, Secretary;_ Horace Greeley, New York; S. A. Purviance, Pennsylvania; William Claflin, Massachusetts; N. B. Smithers, Delaware; H. W. Hoffman, Maryland; H. H. Starkweather, Connecticut; R. B. Cowen, Ohio; John B. Clarke, New Hampshire; Samuel F. Hussey, Maine; Abraham B. Gardiner, Vermont; J. S. Fowler, Tennessee; Burton C. Cook, Illinois; Marsh Giddings, Michigan; D. P. Stubbs, Iowa; A. W. Campbell, West Virginia; S. Judd, Wisconsin; D. R. Goodloe, North Car olina; S. H. Boyd, Missouri; W. J. Corning, Virginia; Thos. Simpson, Minnesota; C. L. Robinson, Florida; Newton Edmunds, Dakota.