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can he reconcile the admission of members in the one case, while he denies it so obstinately and scornfully in the other? It is true this provision is temporary; but the effect of it while it lasts must be to plant seeds of discontent and dissension in the southern States which will survive by scores of years the immediate cause out of which they grew.

The gentleman from Maine [Mr. BLAINE] yesterday made what seemed to me to be a very strong point-that this disfranchisement of the large body of the southern people would run counter to the terms of the amnesty proclamation of President Lincoln, which restored all but certain classes to their former rights. I think there is great force in that objection. But however this may be as a point of technical construction-and I shall not canvass it in that light-there is certainly great force in this objection, that this provision would be a departure, a retraction from the assurances given all through this war, by acts and resolutions of Congress and by proclamations of the President. Every declaration from any department of the Government conveyed to the South and to the whole country the assurance that the war was waged for the sole purpose of suppressing the rebellion, and that when it was over all the States would be restored to the Union in full possession of all their rights and on a footing of equality with the other States. I know it may be said that we were there in perplexity and in peril, and that it was essential to the harmony of public sentiment and to the vigorous prosecution of the war that these declarations and pledges should be made. I know, too, how general is the truth that " will retract vows made in pain." But it is not a pleasing spectacle to see a great nation like this shrinking from the fulfillment of pledges under which it carried on the war, shrinking from the assurances it has given to the whole country, that upon the termination of the war the authority of the Constitution and the rights of the States should be restored. We should be at least as jealous of our honor now as we were of our safety then.


There is another objection which perhaps may not be entitled to much weight, but is worth consideration. This proposition to exclude the mass of the southern people from voting until 1870 exposes those who advocate and press it, it exposes the Union party to the suspicion, renders that party obnoxious to the charge of seeking to amend the Constitution for the purpose of influencing and controlling the presidential election of 1868. I make no such charge, but I know it will be made. Our vigilant opponents will not omit so tempting an opportunity to trace our action to motives of partisanship rather than patriotism. And I would not like to be put in a position where I shall be compelled to concede the charge, or where facts can be brought forward that would even seem to sustain it. It is quite true that the gentleman from Pennsylvania [Mr. STEVENS] accepted what he took to be a suggestion on my part the other day, that General Grant might be the candidate of the Union party for the Presidency in 1868, with great alacrity; and the eagerness with which he responded to that suggestion gave me the most comforting assurance that we shall have no dissensions upon that subject when the time shall come. I do not think it necessary, therefore, to insert such an amendment as this in the Constitution in order to secure the election of General Grant, if he should be presented as the Union candidate or by the country at large, without regard to party, as is by no means impossible. For wherever you find men who appreciate courage, skill, and patriotism in the field, magnanimity in the hour of victory, and wise moderation in political councils, there you will find men who will appreciate that illustrious commander as a candidate for any office which the American people may have to bestow. But upon these points I will not dwell.

I now come to another objection, which to my mind seems fatal to this amendment. This section seems to me to have been inserted for the express purpose of preventing the adoption

by the southern States of any of the amend-
ments proposed to the Constitution. I will not
say that this was the motive of the committee
in reporting it, but that, I think, is the result
which its adoption by Congress will secure.
The adoption of all the proposed amendments,
this one included, by each of the southern States,
is made in the bill reported by the committee
a condition essential to their admission to rep-
resentation in Congress. Now, the amendments
are to be adopted by the Legislatures of the
several States. The Legislatures are elected
by all the people-those who have voluntarily
adhered to the insurrection as well as those who
have not-for the gentleman from Pennsylvania
[Mr. BROOMALL] laid special stress upon the
fact that the people are still allowed full control
of their State governments.

possibly profit by it. But they are not children. They are men, men tenacious of their rights, jealous of their position, brave, and proud of their bravery, of hot and rebellious tempers, and not at all likely to be subdued in spirit or won to our love by such discipline as the gentleman from Ohio proposes to inflict. We have chastised them already. We have defeated their hostility against the Government. And now what remains? They are to be our fellow-citizens. They must form part of the people of our country. They are to take part, sooner or later, in our Government unless we intend to discard the fundamental principle of that Government, the right of the people to govern themselves. And we cannot afford to have them, or to make them, sullen, discontented, rebellious in temper and in purpose, even if they are submissive in act.

We have nothing to do with the sickly sentimentality referred to by the gentleman from Pennsylvania [Mr. STEVENS] yesterday. Our object is not to deal in mercy toward them. We are to deal wisely-for their good and for our own. We are to make them friends, because we cannot afford to make or to keep them enemies. How shall we do this best? By what

These Legislatures, thus elected, are expected to ratify all these amendments, to concede an equality of civil rights, to concede a great reduction of their political power in changing the basis of representation, to concede the repudiation of their debts and the denial of compensation for their slaves; and for what consideration? What do we offer them in return for all these concessions? The right to be represented on this floor, pro-policy can it be best effected? By exclusion, by vided they will also consent not to vote for the men who are to represent them! Nay more, that they shall accept as the Representatives whom they thus get the right of having here men elected by a small minority of their people who are supposed and conceded to be hostile to them in political sentiment, and against whom they have been waging a bitter war! We offer them, in exchange for all these renunciations of political power and of material advantage, the privilege of being misrep resented in Congress by men in whose election they had no voice or vote, and with whose past political action and present political sentiments they have no sympathy whatever.

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Why, sir, this not only "breaks the word of promise to the hope," it does not even "keep it to the ear." It is not merely a sham, it is a mockery. The very price by which we seek to induce their assent to these amendments, we snatch away from their hands the moment that assent is secured. Is there any man here who can so far delude himself as to suppose for a moment that the people of the southern States will accede to any such scheme as this? There is not one chance in ten thousand of their doing it.

Representation ceases to be of the slightest value to them under such conditions. They will not seek it or ask for it. They will infinitely prefer to take the chances of change in the political councils of the nation, to await the election of a Congress more propitious to their claims, especially under the comforting assurance which the gentleman from Pennsylvania [Mr. STEVENS] gave them some two months ago, when he said frankly that "it is of no importance by whom or when or how reconstruction is effected, for in three short years this whole Government will be in the hands of the late rebels and their northern allies.' They will readily wait "three short years" for representation rather than purchase the mockery of it we offer them at such a price.

The gentleman from Ohio, [Mr. SCHENCK,] in vindicating the policy of this exclusion of the southern people from the right of suffrage, insisted that it was necessary as a means of discipline; that they are not yet in a proper frame of mind to take part in the affairs of government; that they are at heart still unfriendly and hostile to our authority and institutions; and that we must treat them as parents do unruly children, that we must flog them for their offenses and then exclude them from the family table or shut them up in a closet until they come to a better and more submissive mood. Well, sir, this might answer if the eight million people with whom we are dealing would consent to be treated as children, and to regard us here in Congress as standing in loco parentis toward them. They might in that case submit tamely to the chastisement we propose, and

coercion, by hostile distrust? Can we coerce friendly feeling on the part of a hostile people? Has it ever been done? I would like the reader of history on this floor to point me to an instance in the records of any nation where great communities once disaffected have been brought back to friendly relations and feelings of kindly regard by such measures as are here proposed. Has Ireland been thus appeased? Has Poland? Has Hungary? Has Venice?

Why, sir, if history teaches anything, if any principle is established by the concurrent annals of all nations and all ages, it is that sentiment cannot be coerced; that opinions, even, cannot be controlled by force; and that with any people fit to be free or to be the countrymen of men who are free, all such efforts defeat themselves and intensify and perpetuate the hostilities sought to be overcome. Ireland offers us a signal example of this, and I am amazed that members upon this floor can shut their eyes or close their minds to the lessons which her sad history teaches. England, for her harsh dealings with that unhappy land hundreds of years ago, is paying the penalty to-day and will for all time to come. By mistakes in policy precisely such in kind as we are making now, England, hundreds of years ago, planted in Ireland the seeds of that disaffection which, in spite of all her attempts to undo the wrong, in spite of abundant legislation in redress of grievances, and for the good of Ireland, from time to time bursts out into feeble but bitter insurrection, and which today blooms into that shadowy phenomenon of Fenianism, which terrifies one continent and puzzles and poisons the other.

No, sir, this is not the way to deal with disaffected States. I have no sympathy with those in the southern States who have just emerged from rebellion. Never for an instant have I felt or shown the slightest toleration for their crime. From the first moment their purpose of rebellion was made apparent until the hour they laid down their arms, within my humble sphere and by the feeble means which were all I could command, I have demanded, urged, and waged the most vigorous and determined war that could be made upon them. That war has proved successful. The rebellion has been suppressed. Our mission now is of a different kind and must be fulfilled by agencies of another sort.

These, sir, are my objections to the third of these five amendments. The other four commend themselves to my judgment and will receive my support.


Mr. LAFLIN. I am directed by the Committee on Printing to report to the House a resolution that there be printed for the use of the House one thousand extra copies of the

modified internal revenue bill. I wish to announce that this number of bills has been printed and are in the hands of the superintendent of the folding-room. It will give five copies to each member.

The resolution was adopted.


Mr. McKEE. Mr. Speaker, in the short time allotted for this discussion it is not my purpose to go over the propositions embraced in the pending amendment to the Constitution. Nor do I regard it as necessary, at least so far as my own position is concerned, having already in this House voted for at least three of the propositions in substantially the same shape in which they are now presented. I desire more particularly to discuss the third section of this proposed amendment, as there seems to have been generated more opposition to this than any other, and it being a proposition I regard as one of the most vital of all.

It is, sir, perhaps as well to go back a little to look at the opposition and to examine into the record of this House. On the 14th of December last, after the meeting of the two Houses, a resolution was introduced into this House by the gentleman from Oregon [Mr. HENDERSON] in these words:

"Resolved, That treason is a crime and ought to be punished."

And on calling the yeas and nays not a solitary Representative in this House who answered to that call but voted in the affirmative, including every Democratic member, with the exception of four who were absent. What did that mean? Did this House then vote their sentiments, or did they not? Since that time, sir, from the Democratic side of the House I have not heard a word that would tend in the least to induce the country to believe they would carry out the resolution for which they then voted. On the contrary, the whole drift of their argument is that these men, having submitted, are now as loyal as those who fought on the side of the Government, and entitled to the same rights. this the manner in which they propose to punish treason? Is this the proposition for which we voted? It would have been better had the resolution read in this manner:


Resolved, That treason is a crime, and that traitors should be rewarded for its commission.

The course of this whole Democratic side of the House since the vote on the 14th of December has been in strict accordance with the proposition as I have read it; and I regret to say that even on the Republican side I find men to-day who are willing, aye pleading that these men having laid down their arms are now entitled to all the rights which we who stood by the flag of our country during the late strug gle for our existence possess. They have set aside their own work, abandoned their own record. It is very fashionable in these days, I believe, to do that.

Perhaps we can gain nothing by going back to men's records, but I would ask gentlemen this question. They are well aware that by our laws treason is declared a crime, and a high penalty is affixed upon it. Now, sir, the simple question comes to us to-day, have we, the Representatives of the people of this great nation, moral courage enough to carry out that law, or will we turn our back upon those who sustained our country in the great struggle for its existence and say to the eighteen hundred thousand men who waged this war, "All your efforts to crush out treason amount to nothing; these traitors to-day are entitled to all the rights that you possess?' Sir, for one, I am tired of that sickly sentimentality.

It appears to me that in order to uphold the loyal people of this land something must be done by a law ingrafted into the Constitution to protect them in their loyalty. Look, if you please, at the States of Maryland, of West Virginia, of Tennessee, of Missouri, of Arkansas. Each one of these States during this struggle, or since its close, has passed laws by which they disfranchise forever those men

who gave aid and encouragement to the rebel-

Now, sir, the question comes up to-day.
The committee on reconstruction report a basis
for settlement. They report to this House a
proposition which disfranchises these men who
have gone into rebellion even for the short
space of a little more than four years, and we
find it opposed by men who have always been
against treason.

That is the proposition. And if it is voted down, how do we go out to the country? The representatives of the nation here assembled say to those five States which have adopted a disfranchising qualification in regard to their citizens, "Your action is wrong. You should not pass such an act. These men who waged war against the Government and against you have as much right to vote as you who have been true to your flag." It is not encouraging loyalty; it is crushing out those men who alone were true during the war, and putting the control of the State governments in their hands. For this cause alone, if for no other, I should say, do not strike out the proposition.

But, sir, it is perhaps true that the carrying out of this law might meet with some difficulty. But we find, in the disturbed state of our country which has resulted from the effects of this great war, that we must meet difficulty in all our efforts to restore peace, harmony, and quiet throughout the whole land. We are told that it is not fair nor just that the great mass should be disfranchised. Now, sir, in doing this we are but following the principles laid down by the lamented President Lincoln. His idea in regard to reconstruction was, if there were only one tenth of the people in any State who were loyal, as in Louisiana, that one tenth should reconstruct, rule, and control. And the idea was announced over and over again by his successor who to-day occupies the presidential chair.

Following out that great principle the people of Tennessee, one of the States declared to be in rebellion, organized a State government under the direction of President Lincoln and under the sanction of Andrew Johnson, then military governor of that State, and they have succeeded in enacting a law by which those who engaged in the rebellion are disfranchised and prohibited from exercising any of the rights of electors in the State which of right belong only to the loyal.

Now, sir, how do we hear this proposed amendment responded to by those who oppose it? We hear one of the gentlemen on this side of the House, from Ohio, [Mr. FINCK,] calling upon the people of the South to have independence of spirit enough to rise up and reject it with scorn. And, as has been said by the gentleman from New York to-day, no matter what may be said of these people we may say this for them, that they are not fools, and they are not going to accept it. The inference, then, may be that we are fools in proposing it.

Well, sir, if we are to judge by their actions for the last five years, I think we should not make up our opinion very rapidly that they have not acted very foolishly in some things at least. It appears to me that they exhibited very little wisdom in going into the rebellion; it appears to me that they exhibited very little wisdom in its conduct; it appears to me that they exhibited no wisdom whatever in bringing on a great war; for if they had looked into the subject at all, they might have been satisfied that they could not destroy this Government. And they still show a want of wisdom, when, at the end of the war, having been crushed and having agreed to accept the issues of the war, to submit to the propositions by which we propose to reconstruct the Government, under the influence of the powers at Washington they have come to the conclusion that they are to be again trusted with the management of the affairs of this nation and are to be the rulers here. The sequel will show that they are misled and deceived.

Listen to what the Memphis Avalanche, one of the reconstructed organs of the South, says in reference to a recent law passed by the Le

gislature of Tennessee, and then you will be prepared to judge whether these people are ready to accept our terms or not. I read from the Memphis Avalanche of the 5th of the present month:

"The despotic, infamous, and cowardly franchise bill has become what the régime at Nashville call a law. That is, it has passed a so-called Senate and a so-called House at Nashville, or, in other words, it has received the sanction of a gang of legislative loafers who exist at the public expense at the capital of the State, and call themselves the Legislature of Tennessee."

Such is the language used by the copperhead press all over the country in regard to the Congress which sits here to-day. But I quote further:

"It becomes the good people of Tennessee”—

I want the House to bear in mind that when this writer refers to the "good people of Tennessee," he refers to men who have been engaged in this wicked and infamous attempt to destroy our Government. He goes on:

"It becomes the good people of Tennessee to prepare at once to dispute the further encroachment upon their rights by the wretched despotism now in power at Nashville. Let the State have restored to it the constitution which existed before the war, and which has not, up to this time, been properly, legally, or constitutionally supplanted by any other organic system. What now professes to be the constitution of Tennessee is but an assumption, the creature of a mere mob, a dirty thing, having a dirty emanation, to which a brave and chivalric people have, because of their misfortunes, been compelled to submit, but which they loathe and despise from the utmost recesses of their noble but broken hearts."

This is the class of men to whom we are called upon to-day to extend our sympathies, and to place upon an equal footing with those who have never faltered in their devotion to the Union. But I read on:

"The time has now come when further endurance will entail upon the people additional and more humiliating oppressions."

Hear the language of these men, who to-day we are called upon to enfranchise, and to place upon an equal footing with ourselves. I de sire to make one other quotation to show the spirit which animates these reconstructed rebels. I read from the Louisville Journal--a paper published in the interests of the "Conservative-Johnson-Union party"—on the 2d day of May, 1866, describing the convention of reconstructed rebels and Democrats for the State of Kentucky, held in the city of Louisville the preceding day. That paper uses this language:

harmony, and safety of the State are more seriously "We assure the people of Kentucky that the peace, imperiled now than they have been since the ruthless hordes of Buckner and Bragg were trampling down our soil. The same men whose treachery to the Commonwealth and the nation involved the country in civil war five years ago; the same men who robbed and encouraged the robbing of our banks, the destroying our railroad bridges, the firing of the dwellings of our citizens, and sought to establish rebel provisional governments over our people, by which to coerce them into the whirlpool of treason, are perfecting a political organization in the State for the purpose of placing her political power exclusively in the hands of men who, having been whipped at their own game of powder and ball, are now seeking to use the ballot for the achievement of their revengeful political schemes."

I ask the Representatives of the people today if they are willing to turn over the loyal men in these States, who have passed these laws, to the tender mercies of men like these? That is the question we have to meet now on this proposition. There may be some objec tions to it; but if we can get nothing better it is a good thing to go before the people of the country with; and the people will answer in tones that will be gratifying to the heart of every loyal man who votes for it here.

But, sir, in order to obviate the objections that are made to this third section, I propose to amend the motion made yesterday by the gentleman from Ohio, [Mr. GARFIELD,] to recommit the joint resolution with instructions to the committee to strike out the third section, by substituting therefor the following:

Recommit with instructions to strike out the third section, and insert in lieu thereof the following: All persons who voluntarily adhered to the late insurrection, giving aid and comfort to the so-called southern confederacy, are forever excluded from holding any office of trust or profit under the Government of the United States.

That will obviate the objection that it would


be impracticable to enforce the provision depriving the men who were engaged in the rebellion of the right of voting. It will provide that they shall vote for none but those who have been loyal. The loyal men will be encouraged, because the nation will say to them, "You alone, who have remained true, shall hold office," following out the resolution of the House that "treason is a crime, and ought to be punished.” As nobody expects now that any traitors will be hanged (which is the punishment provided by law) let us cut off their heads politically, and say to them, you can never hold office under this Government.

By this means we will affix the brand of treason upon the traitor's brow; and there I would have it remain until the snows of winter covered their graves.

In my opinion, we are compelled to do one of three things: we are compelled to adopt something of this kind to prohibit these men, who with treacherous hearts sought the very life of the nation, from again seizing the offices of the Federal Government, by excluding them forever from office; or we are to turn the loyal men in all the border States as well as throughout the whole South over into the hands of the traitors, with the probability that the nation itself will follow in the same wake. The second follows from the refusal to do the first; the first, in my opinion, being the only salvation for the Union and protection of Union men. There is one other course which might have the effect of saving the nation with the Union men of the South. That is, if you will enfranchise these traitors, then enfranchise all men; and in that way the vote of the loyal man may counteract the vote of the traitor. Now, so far as I am concerned, I have not arrived at the point yet when I can believe that all men should be enfranchised. But if I am asked which I would the sooner trust, I would answer that I prefer to trust the meanest black man with a loyal heart who ever wore the chains of slavery to the most intelligent traitor who has waged war against my country.

But this House is not prepared to enfranchise all men; the nation, perhaps, is not prepared for it to-day; the colored race are not prepared for it, probably, and I am sure the rebels are unfit for it; and as Congress has not the moral courage to vote for it, then put in this provision which cuts off the traitor from all political power in the nation, and then we have secured to the loyal men that control which they so richly deserve. We will then have rewarded them for their devotion, and punished treason as it deserves to be punished.

Let me ask gentlemen here, why do you want these men to vote? Why are you clamorous for the support of men who have been engaged in treason, and whose hands are yet reeking with the blood of more than three hundred thousand loyal slain? Simply that you may turn out of power the great Union party who alone haye upheld the Government in this grand and glorious struggle for liberty; simply that you may hand the reins of Government over to the hands of that sickly, pale, copperhead party, which was only the left wing of Jeff. Davis's army during the late war. That is why you want to have them vote, and such would be the result of the policy if adopted. You do not want to have traitors punished. Why? Because you want their aid; you desire that they shall help you, just as you were willing to help them during the war which has just closed.

You talk about this question of State rights. We thought the war had killed that dogma. But you are now attempting to bring it to life again. And if you have power enough to do it with the aid of the votes of traitors you are willing to summon them here to these Halls and give them a share in our deliberations. Now, for one, I want none of it. I desire that the loyal alone shall rule the country which they alone have saved. I desire that the brave and war-worn veteran shall be rewarded for his toil and privation. I desire that the widows and orphans of the slain soldiers of the Republic shall be spared the insult of having traitors

make laws for them. I desire that the loyal heart of the nation shall continue in the power great party which sustained our armies in the field, and I desire that that party shall not be prevented from rewarding the heroes who survive with broken and maimed limbs and feeble bodies; shall not be prevented from dealing out pensions and bounties to the orphans of the slain soldiers of the Republic.

Permit these men to come back and assume their places here again, and I tell you to-day that having obtained equality for themselves you must go a little further and place their widows and their orphans upon our pension list, or they will not vote for any pension to yours. I want to prevent all that. And when the charge comes to me that I desire these propositions carried out in order to perpetuate the strength of a political party, I reply I do desire that party still to rule this land, because they alone having been loyal, they alone should rule.

Now, in regard to the section which forbids the payment of the rebel debt or compensation for slaves that have been emancipated, I most heartily support it. Having already put myself upon the record in favor of such a proposition, it is not necessary I should now say anything in regard to it. In order to secure the payment| of the national debt, in order to prevent the payment of compensation for slaves who have become freemen, and the assumption of the rebel debt, the control of this Government must be by the loyal men of the land.

Mr. Speaker, I now yield to the gentleman from Iowa, [Mr. WILSON,] if he desires to occupy the few minutes I have remaining.

The SPEAKER. The time of the gentleman from Kentucky [Mr. McKEE] will expire in four minutes.

Mr. WILSON, of Iowa. Mr. Speaker, I desired, when the gentleman from New York [Mr. RAYMOND] was speaking, to interrupt him, in order that I might understand fully the position in which he placed himself concerning his vote on the civil rights bill. I understood him to say that he voted against that bill because, as he believed, Congress had not the power, under the Constitution, to pass the bill, and that it would require such an amendment as is now proposed to clothe us with the power to pass such a measure. I could not at the time harmonize that in my mind with the record of the gentleman during this Congress relative to the principle involved in the civil rights bill.

The first section of that bill embodies its essential and vital principle. All the other sections provide merely for the enforcement of the principle embraced in the first section, which was simply a declaration that all persons without distinction of race or color should enjoy in all of the States and Territories civil rights and immunities. Now, sir, the gentleman himself introduced early in the session a bill, the second section of which provides as follows:

"That all persons born, or hereafter to be born, within the limits and under the jurisdiction of the United States, shall be deemed and considered, and are hereby declared, to be citizens of the United States, and entitled to all rights and privileges as such.'

The first section proposes to amend our naturalization laws by striking out the word 'white;" and the bill itself is intended to confer upon negroes and all other persons born within the United States, without distinction of color, the rights of citizens of the United States.

After that bill had been introduced by the gentleman from New York he made a speech, in which I find one of the propositions which he laid down as proper to be enforced by this Congress against the people of the southern States was in this language:

"I think, in the third place, we should provide by law for giving to the freedmen of the South all the rights of citizens, in courts of law and elsewhere."

Now, he did not mean that such provision should be made by a constitutional amendment; for in his fifth proposition he goes on to say:

"Fifth, I would make such amendments to the

Constitution as may seem wise to Congress and the States, acting freely and without coercion."

So that his third proposition had no reference to this. And in fact he precludes any such construction by using the term "law." He says:

"We should provide by law for giving to the freedmen of the South all the rights of citizens, in courts of law and elsewhere."

Now, sir, that proposition of the gentleman is broader than the provision of the civil rights bill. It involves the entire principle; and if we give a reasonable construction to the term "elsewhere," we may include in that the jurybox and the ballot-box.

It does seem to me, sir, that the explanation given by the gentleman for his vote against the civil rights bill cannot be supported upon this record. If the gentleman will say that he voted against that bill because of the sections following the first, that may raise a different question

The SPEAKER. The half hour of the gentleman from Kentucky [Mr. McKEE] has expired.

Mr. ELDRIDGE obtained the floor. Mr. RAYMOND. I will inquire of the gentleman from Wisconsin [Mr. ELDRIDGE] whether he will not allow the gentleman from Iowa to finish what he has to say and allow me to reply. It need not come out of the gentleman's time. Let it be regarded as an independent portion of the debate.

Mr. ELDRIDGE. I will consent to that if the House will.

The SPEAKER. If the gentleman from Wisconsin does not claim the floor now, the Chair will recognize the gentleman from Iowa.

Mr. ROGERS. My information is that this bill is to be brought to a vote to-morrow. There are a number of gentlemen who wish to speak; and I suppose it is desirable to give as many an opportunity as possible.

The SPEAKER. The Chair understands that the bill is to be brought to a vote to-mor row; and there are some thirty gentlemen who desire to speak.

Mr. ROGERS. I do not think it fair that time should be taken in this way. I do not object myself; but I think as many members as possible should be allowed an opportunity to speak.

Mr. RAYMOND. I think that when one gentleman makes a personal point against another an opportunity should be allowed for a reply.

Mr. ELDRIDGE. I have no objection to yielding to the gentlemen if I can have the floor as soon as this personal question is disposed of. But I do not wish the time to come out of my thirty minutes.

Mr. HIGBY. I believe that we adopted, a day or two ago, a stringent rule as to the allotment of time in this debate; and I shall object to any departure from that rule.

Mr. WILSON, of Iowa. I have said nearly all I intended to say.

Mr. HIGBY. I do not withdraw my objection. Gentlemen will have an opportunity to be heard before this debate is closed. I have no idea of closing this debate to-morrow. I do not believe in it.

Mr. ROGERS. Nor do I.

The SPEAKER. The gentleman from Wisconsin will proceed.


Mr. ELDRIDGE. Mr. Speaker, I do not intend to make an argument on the merits of this joint resolution on the present occasion. On the 25th of January last I gave my views and made such arguments as occurred to me against a similar proposition to one of these then reported from the joint committee of fifteen as an amendment to the Constitution. have not had occasion to change the views I then expressed. I still believe, as I did then, that we ought not to amend the Constitution so as to provide a fundamental law for a people not represented in the action on that amendment. I believe now as I did then, that all the States formerly composing the Union were then and are now States of the Union. I do not believe the rebellion was successful in any manner to accomplish seces

sion. I do not believe it had the effect to take away any of the rights of the loyal citizens of any of the confederate States, but that our success was the preservation of all their rights under the Constitution in the Union.

But, Mr. Speaker, I am opposed to the recommittal of this joint resolution, and I believe that is the pending question before the House. I do not wish to express any sentiment of disrespect for the individuals composing that committee. I entertain for them entire respect as individuals, but I do aver that that committee has utterly and entirely failed to perform its duty, and has disappointed the country in the action it has taken. That committee to-day stands, in my judgment, between the representatives of the late so-called confederate States and the resumption of their proper duties and functions in the Union and in this Congress.

That committee, sir, was raised and organized in the spirit of party. The resolution by which it was raised did not originate in the House of Representatives, but in a party caucus outside of this Hall, and for party purposes. And the committee in what it has done has acted in the interest of party. It has done perhaps what that caucus and those composing it expected.

What has it done? It has deliberated for five months. It was by the resolution creating it organized for a special and specific purpose, distinctly and clearly expressed in the resolu tion, and I allege that after having performed that duty as required by the resolution, it ought to have reported and then been discharged.

The resolution organizing the committee is as follows:

"Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives in Congress assembled, That a joint committee of fifteen members shall be appointed, nine of whom shall be members of the House and six of the Senate, who shall inquire into the condition of the States which formed the so-called confederate States of America, and report whether they or any of them are entitled to be represented in either House of Congress, with leave to report at any time by bill or otherwise; and until such report shall have been made and finally acted upon by Congress, no member shall be received into either House from any of the said so-called confederate States; and all papers relating to the representatives of the said States shall be referred to the said committee without debate."

Mr. Speaker, it appears that the duties of that committee were simply to inquire "whether the so-called confederate States of America are entitled to be represented in the two Houses of Congress." I ask, how have they discharged that duty? Have they reported to the House upon the subject referred to them, that any one of those States is or is not entitled to representation? Have they inquired, and if they have inquired, what information have they given us on that subject? Nothing, absolutely nothing. Their sessions have been secret; their acts and doings have been kept from the public and from this House. And when they have reported, it has been only a mass of testimony I presume no Representative upon this floor has had time or patience or opportunity to read, if he has had the inclination. It has not yet been printed. It has not been laid before the House yet for any available purpose. There is no opportunity for us to judge what is the nature and character of that testimony. The Public Printer has not been able to print it before we are called upon to act upon measures said to be shown to be a necessity by it.

The committee report no facts whatever and give us no conclusion. They simple report amendments to the Constitution. Was that the purpose for which the committee was organized? Was it to change the fundamental law of the land under which we of the loyal States assembled here? Was that the duty with which the committee was charged? Were they to inquire and report an entire change of the fundamental law of the nation which would destroy the States and create an empire? I say they were charged with no such duty. The resolution cannot fairly be construed as giving to the committee any such power, any such jurisdiction.

What, then, has been accomplished? Do we understand from the committee to-day any better the situation of these States than we did at the beginning of this Congress? Have they enlightened us upon the question whether those States are entitled to representation in Congress? I say, as I said before, the committee have not only stood in the way of the representation of those States in this Congress, but they have stood in the way of proper information to this House. If the members from the southern States applying for admission at the beginning of the session had been admitted to seats on the floor of Congress, we should have gained some information. They would have been able to give us official information of the wants and necessities of those States in their character as Representatives, upon their honor as such. But this committee has not deigned to give us a single fact, not even their conclusion upon the facts, if perchance there are facts, as I suppose there are, in that testimony which they have taken.

I ask, then, and I ask sincerely, has the committee entitled itself to have this matter recommitted to it for further action, and for what purpose, what action, is the recommitment to be made? Is it that the committee may go on ad infinitum to take testimony of such persons as they may see fit to be used in the coming election, without giving us the benefit of their conclusions, of their consultations, and of their examinations? When this committee was at first raised it was professedly for the purpose of aiding in the restoration of the Union, and providing for the representation of the absent States, but it has become only a partisan machine in the interest of the Republican party. Its effort and purpose, if we may judge from the reports which it has made, have been, not to furnish a way of restoration, not to ascertain if they were entitled to representation, but to prevent or delay indefinitely both representation and restoration. Every report that has been made has shown upon its face the evidence of a determination to delay, if not to destroy. And the chairman of the committee, in his speech of yesterday at the opening of this debate, said that the southern representatives must not be permitted to come in until we will it.

The committee stands, therefore, resisting the restoration of this Union, and I hope that no further business will be referred to it. It has rendered itself unworthy of the high duty with which it was charged by the resolution which I have read. It has not sought to give us information. It has not sought to furnish us with the evidence whether these States were fit for or entitled to representation. But it is reporting measure after measure that must cause not only delay during the present session of Congress, but delay even beyond this Congress. To adopt the remark of the gentleman from Pennsylvania [Mr. BOYER] the committee has been seeking how not to restore rather than to restore the Union. Every obstruction, every obstacle which they could contrive, they have placed in the way of restoration.

Now, is it proposed to restore the Union by adopting this amendment to the Constitution? I do not believe that the proposition looks to any such purpose; it has no such object. But the committee, seeing the hand-writing on the wall, seeing the public sentiment of the country in favor of restoration, seeing the disrepute into which it was falling, seeing the character which it had attained before the country, sought to appease and allay that popular sentiment by compromise in regard to these questions of difference among themselves.


Why is it that the gentleman from Pennsylvania [Mr. STEVENS] gives up universal suffrage? Why is it that he and other gentlemen give up universal confiscation? Why is it that other gentlemen give up universal butchery of that people? It is a compromise of what they call principle for the purpose of saving their party in the next fall election.

The gentleman from Ohio [Mr. GARFIELD] said yesterday that they must strike out the

third section or the people would be suspicious that this thing was done in the interest of party. Suspicious! Does not the proposed amendment carry on its face the evidence that it originated in the interest of party? It is reported and speeches are made upon it in the interest of party and for party purposes.

The chairman of the committee [Mr. STEVENS] tells us that these States are not necessary to be counted in the submission of this constitutional amendment. He scouts and scorns the idea that they are entitled to the right of rejecting or approving it. And here is another inconsistency on the face of the resolution itself, which in the preamble reads, "that the following article be proposed to the Legislatures of the several States as an amendment to the Constitution." These States are recognized in the resolution itself; every section, line, and sentence recognizes them as States in the Union. The word "State" is used in the first section, which says, "nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property without due process of law." That has reference only to the southern States, for there was never any necessity to apply it to the northern States.

So in the second section the word "State" is used in the same sense, and also in the third section, admitted on all hands to apply not to the northern but to the southern States exclusively. And yet the gentleman from Pennsylvania [Mr. STEVENS] tells us that the southern States are not to be counted in adopting or rejecting this proposed amendment.

The second section of the joint resolution is also inconsistent with the action of the committee. They reported the bill known as the "civil rights bill," which has become a law. What necessity is there, then, for this amendment to the Constitution if that bill was constitutional at the time of its passage? Is it not an admission that it was not? Ay, but the gentleman from Pennsylvania gives us here another party reason. He tells us that the time may come when the Democrats will get possession of Congress, and if you depend upon a mere act of Congress, that it will be repealed; and he seeks to evade the popular will and to thwart the popular desire by placing in the Constitution now, while a portion of the States are unrepresented, an amendment to the Constitution, so that the people cannot have their way about it. This is of itself an admission that the whole scheme is in the interest of party alone, to preserve and perpetuate the party idea of this Republican disunion party;

But there is one thing about this resolution which is most remarkable if those eleven States are out of this Union, and it is this: that notwithstanding the proposition here to amend the Constitution in three particulars there is not yet any plan or proposition whatever reported by this committee for the restoration of this Union, or for those States to be represented in Congress. If the gentleman froin Pennsylvania is right, and these eleven States are still out of the Union, adopt this amendment without their voice being heard, if you please, adopt it by the vote of nineteen States, and still these States, according to the gentleman's theory, will be out of the Union. Where, then, is your reconstruction, where your restoration in this joint resolution? Where has the committee shown any disposition, any desire for a restoration of the Union? Have they up till to-day reported any measure whereby a resto ration of the Union is to be accomplished, whereby these States are ever to be restored and recognized as in the Union? How, under the theory of the gentleman that they are not to be counted or considered, because out of the Union, are they ever under this measure to become members of this Union? If they are not now members will the adoption of this amendment to the Constitution make them members of this Union? Certainly not. They are no more in the Union then or entitled to representation in Congress then than now.

Here, then, is another gross inconsistency, showing the purpose and the object of this


The third section is admitted even by the friends of the other two to carry upon its face the purpose of disfranchising the people of these eleven States and preventing them from taking part in the representation of this country. It is said by the gentleman from Ohio that if that section is not stricken out the people will come to the conclusion that this is a party measure. Sir, I have said no one can doubt it in the light of the history of this committee. It was organized in a party caucus. The resolution authorizing it was brought into the House by the man selected to do it by that cancus. It was presented to the House and supported solely by the caucus party; and immediately everything brought into the House having relation to the representation of the southern States in this Congress was consigned without debate to this vortex of ruin, of destruction, and of disunion. We have therefore been able to gain no information from any source on the subject of reconstruction or restoration or representation of those States.

The resolution may have been differently intended; but from its face no one can come to the conclusion that it intended anything more than that the committee should be authorized to inquire into the fact as to whether these States were legally and constitutionally entitled to be represented in either House of Congress; and yet the committee, arrogating to themselves all power upon this subject, have repeatedly reported amendments to the Constitution without giving us one fact or one reason for it, or any information as to when our troubles will be ended and the Union restored.

The people of this country, as I remarked in the beginning, are dissatisfied with that committee. It has disappointed the country. Go to-day, if you dare, and submit to the people of the United States the question whether that committee should longer be intrusted with this subject, and what do you think the vote would be? I tell you that it would be ten to one that the committee had disappointed the expectations of the country; that it should be discharged; that its duties were ended; that it had been a failure; that it had stood in the way of restoration and peace.

I tell you further that the people of this country demand the present, immediate restoration of this Union. And you will find, when the elections come around again, that they will speak in thunder tones to you politicians. You cannot compromise with them by surrendering principle for mere expediency, for mere party purposes. You will have to face the music, for the people will demand it of you. They have struggled long and ardently for the Union; they have sacrificed lives and treasure for the Union; they have been ardently devoted to the Union, and they will not surrender it for party purposes; they will not consent to keep the people of the southern States in bondage, such as Ireland has suffered so long, for the mere purpose of retaining a party in power. I do not wonder that the gentleman from Pennsylvania [Mr. STEVENS] prophesied the time as not being more than three or four years distant when the people will place in power men who will respect the Constitution, who will respect the Union and the sacrifices that have been made for it, and who are willing to restore, preserve, and perpetuate that Union. Mr. WINDOM. Will the gentleman from Wisconsin [Mr. ELDRIDGE] yield to me a moment, for a question?

Mr. ELDRIDGE. Certainly, for a question.

Mr. WINDOM. I desire to ask the gentleman, as he has spoken of the Democracy of his district, whether his home organ, the Fonddu-Lac Press, represents the Democracy of the State of Wisconsin.

Mr. ELDRIDGE. It does not. There is no paper on earth which represents the Democracy of this country.

Mr. WINDOM. Will the gentleman allow me to send to the Clerk's desk, to have read, an extract from that paper?

Mr. ELDRIDGE. No, sir.

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Mr. WINDOM. Will the gentleman allow me to read half a dozen lines from his home organ?

Mr. ELDRIDGE. No, sir, because I have already said that we do not recognize it or any other paper as the representative of the Democratic party. We recognize no one person as authorized to speak for the Democracy. We speak by our acts; we are for the Union and always have been, and do not propose to let you prevent a restoration of the Union if we can help it.

Mr. WINDOM. I will ask the gentleman if he himself considers Jeff. Davis a traitor. His home organ says he is not.

Mr. ELDRIDGE. You work it in in that way, do you? [Laughter.] Well, I will say that I think he is. So you see the organ, as you call it, and I do not always agree.

Mr. WINDOM. I did not know how that


Mr. ELDRIDGE. Now will the gentleman tell me whether he thinks that any one who seeks to prevent a restoration of the Union is a traitor?

Mr. WINDOM. In some certain circumstances I think he is.

Mr. ELDRIDGE. Well, "in some certain circumstances" I think he is, too. [Laughter.] Mr. WINDOM. Will the gentleman allow me to read something from the papers in his own district?

Mr. ELDRIDGE. No, sir.

tleman from Wisconsin [Mr. ELDRIDGE] has made some remarks in derogation of the joint committee on reconstruction. I do not purpose to reply at length to those remarks. He has said that the action of the committee is a failure. We knew very well from the beginning that so far as he and his friends were concerned the labors of the committee would be a failure. He puts, however, in behalf, I suppose, of himself and his Democratic friends, one question which I feel bound to answer. He says, "The committee have not told us when our troubles"-meaning, I suppose, the troubles of himself and his Democratic friends -"will cease."

Mr. ELDRIDGE. Oh, no; the gentleman certainly misunderstood me." I meant the troubles which the Republicans themselves were making.

Mr. BOUTWELL. The troubles of the gentleman and his friends are very likely to


But, Mr. Speaker, the chief object which I have now in view-and I trust that in seeking to attain that object I shall not go beyond the line of parliamentary debate into the domain of partisan controversy-is to show how the proposition now before us from that committee traverses the policy of the Democratic party with reference to the reconstruction of the Government.

I admit that the policy of the Democratic body is a simple policy. It is a policy easily comprehended. It is a policy in which for ten years, within my observation, they have been consistent. It is a policy which they laid down as early as 1856, in the platform made at Cincinnati, wherein they declared substantially -for I cannot recite the precise language of the declaration as it is many years since I read those resolutions-that it was the right of a Territory to be admitted into this Union with such institutions as it chose to establish, not even by implication admitting that the representatives of the existing Government had any right to canvass those institutions, or to consider the right of the Territory to be recognized as a State.

I believe, Mr. Speaker, I have said pretty much all I desired to say. Much is said for the purpose of prejudicing the public mind about the readmission of red-handed traitors into the councils of the nation, and the question often suggested as to whether we can become reconciled to them. Sir, the war is ended; peace has been agreed upon; and men who have been in arms have laid them down. There is an agreement that we will forgive them, and if the fraternal union of our fathers is ever restored we must. Do you expect that those people will ever become reconciled to you if you do not become reconciled to them? And can that ever take place if you talk as the gentleman from Kentucky [Mr. McKEE] has talked this afternoon? If you would hang them all; if you would crush them all; if you would hate them forever, do you think they can shake hands with you, and live upon terms of amity and friendship with you? You wonder that they are not instantly reconciled to you; you wonder that they do not at once forgive and forget the past. But who here of the prominent politi-existing Government to compel a State to cians of the Republican party has ever been able to forgive? You are the conquerors; you have triumphed. You can afford to be magnanimous. You can forgive without mortification. But can they do the same? Consider what they must suffer. I expect that it will be long years before these bloody days will be forgotten either in the North or in the South. But we must live together as one nation, as one people, and the sooner we can forget and forgive the better; the happier, the more prosperous and happy shall we be as a nation.

I did hope that a better and a kindlier feeling was growing up in the North; but when I hear men talking about branding traitors and making them wear the brand upon their foreheads until the snows of winter shall lie upon their graves, such hatred, such malignity, it seems to me, will not only keep alive, but perpetuate forever, sentiments of alienation and hostility. The Union of our fathers was a Union of fraternal feeling and mutual interest, and we must restore that Union, or the duty resting upon us will not be performed. If you are unable to forgive and forget the past you cannot expect the people of the South to forget and become reconciled to you. They may have been wrong; they were wrong; but this fact does not change the nature of men. Human nature is the same everywhere. I am prepared to forgive, in the interest of country and Union. Upon no other condition are we promised forgiveness by divine authority.

Mr. BOUTWELL. Mr. Speaker, the gen

Now, sir, from that doctrine, which probably had its origin in the resolutions of 1798, the whole of their policy to this day has legiti mately followed. First, we saw its results in the doctrine of Mr. Buchanan, announced in 1860, that, while the Constitution did not pro

vide for or authorize the secession of a State

from this Union, there was no power in the

remain in the Union against its own judgment. Following that doctrine they come legitimately to the conclusion of to-day, in which they are supported, as I understand, by the President of the United States upon the one side, and, as I know, by the testimony of Alexander H. Stephens, late vice president of the so-called confederacy, upon the other. That doctrine is that these eleven States have to-day, each for itself, an existing and unquestionable right of representation in the Government of this country, and that it is a continuous right which has not been interrupted by any of the events of the war.

This is a simple policy. It is a direct policy. It is a policy which can be comprehended. It is the policy of the Democratic party. Now, whether the President of the United States or the humblest citizen of the country accepts or avows it, he has no right whatever to call it his policy. It is the policy of the Democratic party.

I wish to lay before the House a proposition, and I beg the attention of Democratic gentlemen to it. I have written out the proposition with some care, and I think that I state exactly, and I hope not unfavorably, the posi tion of the Democratic party on this question. The proposition is this:

1. The Democratic party maintains that a State of the American Union cannot by its own acts separate itself from its associates.

2. That the events of this war, including the individual, organized, and public acts of the

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