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nature proper to engage their attention. It was presumed that the House of Representatives would never institute an inquiry into such a species of evidence. It was extremely difficult for a man to swear that he had positively voted by ballot for a particular candidate, since it is well known that persons had, on such occasions, frequently put in a ballot for the person he had not intended to vote for. In the hurry and confusion which often take place, the ballots get shifted, and one is put in in lieu of another. To the objection to the law of the State of New York, drawn from the Constitution of the United States, it was replied, that the regulating the "time, place, and manner" of holding elections is expressly vested in the State Legislatures. These necessarily include a great variety of incidental circumstances, which must also be left to their discretion. Congress cannot enter into a consideration of the minutiae of the elections. The different customs of the several
States will not admit of one uniform system. With respect to the box which contained part of the votes having been deposited in the house of the sitting member, it was observed that no imputation was conveyed against him in the petition on that account. It did not appear that the number of votes it contained had been either increased or diminished: nor was there any charge against him of being accessory to any unfair practices in the election. The Committee had taken cognizance of every fact that had come into their possession, and the result was before the Committee of the Whole.
It was further stated by one of the Committee of Elections, that the only question to be determined was, whether the irregularity of the votes in two towns, in a district consisting of ten towns, in case the votes of those two towns do not amount to a majority of the whole number of votes in the district, such irregularity shall vitiate the election of such district?
Some observations were made by several gentlemen on the different modes of voting by ballot and viva voce.
Mr. WATTS explained the process under the election law of New York, and stated the principles on which votes particularly circumstanced were rejected, and the accidents by which they were sometimes omitted in the general canvass.
The Committee, on the whole, did not appear to be ripe for a decision. They, therefore, rose and reported progress, and, after rejecting a motion that the Committee of Elections should be instructed to report a state of the facts in their possession, (which several of the committee said they had already done,) the House adjourned, without coming to a vote on the report.
MONDAY, December 23.
ALEXANDER D. ORR, from Kentucky, appeared, produced his credentials, and took his seat in the House.
The SPEAKER laid before the House a Letter from the Secretary of the Treasury, accompanied with estimates of the sums necessary to be appro
priated for the service of the year one thousand seven hundred and ninety-four; which were read and ordered to lie on the table.
The House resumed the reading of the communications from the Secretary of War, respecting the Southwestern frontiers, as connected with the Creeks and the State of Georgia, and the Southwestern Territory of the United States, and made a further progress therein.
TUESDAY, December 24.
The House resumed the consideration of the report from the Standing Committee of Elections, to whom was referred the petition of Henry K. Van Rensselaer, of the State of New York, complaining of an undue election and return of John E. Van Allen, to serve as a member of this House, for the said State. Whereupon,
The motion made on Friday last, to recommit the said report to the same committee, being revived, and the question put thereupon, it passed in the negative.
And then the said report being again read, as follows:
"That your committee have received from Lewis A. Scott, Secretary of the State of New York, a list of the number of votes given in each town in the counties of Rensselaer and Clinton, for John E. Van Allen and Henry K. Van Rensselaer, which list has been admitted by the said sitting member and petitioner to be a true and correct state of the ballots, estimated and canvass
ed at the said election.
in regard to Stephentown, viz: That the petitioner had "It appears to your committee, that the allegations greater number in the said town than was returned to be estimated and canvassed,' even if proved, would not, consistently with the law of the State of New York, be sufficient to set aside the votes given at the election in the said town.
"That even should the irregularities complained of, with respect to the elections of the towns of Hoosack and Rensselaerwyck, be sufficient to set aside the votes given in the said towns, still it appears that the said John E. Van Allen has a majority of the remaining votes of the district, composed of the county of Rensselaer and Clinton."
Resolved, That the allegations of the petition do not state corruption, nor irregularities of sufficient magnitude, under the law of New York, to invalide the election and return of John E. Van Allen to serve as a member in this House, and that, therefore, the said John E. Van Allen is duly elected.
The following Message was received from the
of the House of Representatives:
on the affairs of the United States with Spain, and on the Since the communications which were made to you truce between Portugal and Algiers, some other papers subjects, are now communicated for your information. have been received, which, making a part of the same G. WASHINGTON.
UNITED STATES, December 23, 1793.
Treaty with Morocco.
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The said Message and papers were read, andness would be kept up without shutting the gal-ordered to be committed to the Committee of the leries; for the turn which the discussion took yes Whole House, to whom are committed the confi-terday, he said, it must appear to every member, dential communications from the PRESIDENT, re- that excluding the citizens from the gallery was specting the measures which have been pursued unnecessary.
for obtaining a recognition of the Treaty between Mr. BOUDINOT was of opinion, that the public the United States and Morocco, and for the ran-business on the present occasion might be essen→→ som of prisoners, and establishment of peace with tially injured by a public discussion. the Algerines.
The rule of the House relative to the discussion The House resolved itself into a Committee of of confidential communications was called for, the Whole House on the confidential communica- and read. This rule provides that the House shall tions from the PRESIDENT, respecting the measures be cleared of all persons but the members and which have been pursued for obtaining a recogni-clerk on such occasions. tion of the Treaty between the United States and Morocco, and for the ransom of prisoners, and establishment of peace with the Algerines; and, after some time spent therein, the Committee rose and asked leave to sit again.
Resolved, That the PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES be requested to cause to be laid before this House the substance of all such laws, decrees, or ordinances, respecting commerce, in any of the Kingdoms or Countries with which the United States have commercial intercourse, and which have been received by the Secretary of State, and not already stated to this House, in his report of the sixteenth instant.
Ordered, That Mr. WINGATE, Mr. New, and Mr. ARMSTRONG, be a committee to wait on the PRESIDENT, with the foregoing resolution.
THURSDAY, December 26.
A petition of Abram Trigg, of the State of Virginia, was presented to the House and read, complaining of an undue election and return of Francis Preston, to serve as a member of this House for the said State.
Ordered, That the said petition be referred to the Committee of Elections; that they do examine the matter thereof, and report the same, with their opinion thereon to the House.
The House again resolved itself into a Committee of the Whole House on the confidential communications from the PRESIDENT, respecting the measures which have been pursued for obtaining a recognition of the Treaty between the United States and Morocco, and for the ransom of prisoners, and establishment of peace with the gerines; and, after some time spent therein, the Committee rose and had leave to sit again.
FRIDAY, December 27.
Several members spoke in terms of great dis approbation of this rule.
Mr. BOUDINOT observed, that the rule had been adopted after mature consideration, and he did not doubt that, when the reasons on which it was founded were fully known, it would appear to be a wise regulation.
The question recurring for going into a Committee,
Mr. MADISON said if the House voted to go into Committee of the Whole, he supposed it would be moved in the first place, to rescind the above rule. He then stated sundry objections to it; he differed from Mr. BOUDINOT, as to its origin; he said it was passed on a particular occasion, and stated sundry circumstances of that occasion; he concluded by moving for a reconsideration of the rule.
The debate was continued on the subject of the rule; in the course of which it was said, that se crecy in a Republican Government wounds the majesty of the sovereign people; that this Government is in the hands of the people; and that they have a right to know all the transactions re be infringed incautiously, for such secrecy tends lative to their own affairs; this right ought not to to injure the confidence of the people in their own Government.
In reply to these remarks, it was said, that be cause this Government is Republican, it will not PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES is the deposi be pretended that it can have no secrets. The tory of secret transactions; his duty may lead him House, and the success, safety, and energy of the to delegate those secrets to the members of the Al-Government may depend on keeping those secrets inviolably. The people have a right to be well governed; they have interests as well as rights; and it is the duty of the Legislature to take every possible measure to promote those interests. To discuss the secret transactions of the Government publicly, was the ready way to sacrifice the public interest, and to deprive the Government of all foreign information, &c.
Daniel HeisteR, from Pennsylvania, appeared, produced his credentials, and took his seat in
Mr. LEE, from the committee appointed, presented a bill providing for destroyed certificates of certain descriptions; which was read the first
TREATY WITH MOROCCO.
A motion being made for going into a Committee of the Whole on the subject which was under consideration yesterday
Mr. NICHOLAS observed, that he hoped the busi
The motion for going into a Committee of the Whole on the Algerine business being put, was carried; and the galleries were thereupon cleared.
MONDAY, December 30.
Mr. NICHOLAS moved for a reconsideration of the rule of the House, which provides for closing
the galleries during the discussion of confidential communications from the PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES.
the matter communicated requires secrecy, or not, and take order accordingly."
Ordered, That the Committee of the Whole House to whom were referred the confidential communications from the PRESIDENT, respecting the transactions of the Government of the United States with Spain, be discharged from further proceeding on the same.
The House again resolved itself into a Committee of the Whole House on the confidential communications from the PRESIDEET, respecting the measures which have been pursued for obtaining a recognition of the Treaty between the United States and Morocco, and for the ransom of prisoners, and establishment of peace with the Algerines; and, after some time spent therein, the Committee rose, and had leave to sit again.
TUESDAY, December 31.
A petition of the Chief Clerks in several of the Executive Departments of the Government of the United States, was presented to the House and read, stating the insufficiency of the salaries allowed them by law, and praying that the same may be increased, and rendered more adequate to their
services. Laid on the table.
Some debate ensued on this motion. It was urged, in its support, that the rule bore oppressively on the House; that it left no option with them to determine whether it was proper to close the doors on a particular occasion, or not. Every communication denominated "confidential" imposed a necessity on the House for closing the doors. It had been said that the Committee on the Rules might report an alteration in this particular rule. In answer to this, it was urged that the committee might not be ready to report for some time; in the interim, that no necessity existed for the House having their deliberations hampered by this rule, which might be rescinded by a vote of the House. With respect to foreign connexions, it was observed, these are of a commercial nature, and, therefore, communications relative thereto ought to be made as public as possible, for the people at large are generally and immediately concerned. Against the motion, it was said, no inconvenience had resulted from the operation of the rule; that, until the House experienced such inconvenience, to repeal a rule on the spur of a particular occasion, which, in the nature of things, is evidently founded on propriety, betrays a versatility in the public councils that may be productive of pernicious consequences. The utility of the rule was expatiated on, in a reference to various objects of a secret and confidential nature. It was observed, that so far as respects the United States, independent of all connexion with other countries, the rule was nugatory; but when it is considered that the United States are one of the nations of the earth, and have very important interests to consult in relation to their connexion with foreign countries, it follows, of course, that very import-State, of such laws, decrees, and ordinances, or their I now transmit you a Report, by the Secretary of ant secrets may exist, and the Government may substance, respecting commerce in the countries with be deprived of the most essential information from which the United States have commercial intercourse, their foreign agents, should all security be removed for the safe-keeping of confidential commu- the 16th instant. as he has received, and had not stated in his Report of G. WASHINGTON. nications. It was observed, that the connexion of UNITED STATES, December 30, 1793. this country with foreign nations, involved other considerations than those of a commercial nature. The said Message and Report were read, and The motion, after some further remarks, was ordered to lie on the table. varied so as to amount to an amendment only of the rule. The purport of this amendment is, that the rule should leave the House at liberty to discuss confidential communications publicly, if they see proper, after they have been privately read. The amendment was agreed to, in the following
"Resolved, That it be a standing order of this House, that, whenever confidential communications are received from the President of the United States, the House shall be cleared of all persons except the members and the Clerk, and so continue during the reading of such communications, and (unless otherwise directed by the House) during all debates and proceedings to be had thereon; and that when the Speaker, or any other member, shall inform the House that he has communications to make which he conceives ought to be kept secret, the House shall, in like manner, be cleared, till the communication be made; the House shall then determine whether
A message from the Senate informed the House that the Senate have passed the bill, entitled "An act making an alteration in the Flag of the United States;" to which they desire the concurrence of the House.
The said bill was read twice and committed.
The House again resolved itself into a Committee of the Whole House, on the confidential communications from the PRESIDENT, respecting the measures which have been pursued for obtain ing a recognition of the Treaty between the United States and Morocco, and for the ransom of prisoners, and establishment of peace with the Algerines; and, after some time spent therein, the Committee rose, and had leave to sit again. PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The following Message was received from the Gentlemen of the Senate, and
of the House of Representatives:
I lay before you, for your consideration, a Letter from the Secretary of State, informing me of certain impediments which have arisen to the coinage of the precious metals at the Mint.
As also, a Letter from the same officer, relative to certain advances of money, which have been made on
public account. Should you think proper to sanction what has been done, or be of opinion that anything more shall be done in the same way, you will judge whether there are not circumstances which would render secrecy expedient.
UNITED STATES, December 30, 1793.
The said Message and Letters being read, Ordered, That so much thereof as relates to the impediments which have arisen to the coinage of the precious metals at the Mint, be referred to Mr. WILLIAM SMITH, Mr. AMES, and Mr. NILES; that they do examine the matter thereof, and report the same, with their opinion thereupon, to the House. Ordered, That such other parts of the said Message and Letters, as relate to certain advances of money, which have been made on public account, be committed to a Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union.
WEDNESDAY, January 1, 1794. URIAH FORREST and THOMAS SPRIGG, from Maryland, appeared, produced their credentials, and
took their seats in the House.
[H. OF R
duced their credentials, and took their seats in the House.
The House proceeded to consider the resolutions reported yesterday from the Committee of the Whole House on the confidential communications from the PRESIDENT, respecting the measures which have been pursued for obtaining a recognition of the Treaty between the United States and Morocco, and for the ransom of prisoners, and establishment of peace with the Algerines. Whereupon, the first and second of the said resolutions being severally twice read, were, on the question put thereupon, agreed to by the House, as follow: Resolved, That a sum not exceeding lars, be appropriated, in addition to the provision heretofore made, to defray any expense which may be incurred in relation to the intercourse between the United States and foreign nations.
Resolved, That a naval force, adequate to the protection of the commerce of the United States against the Algerine corsairs, ought to be provided.
The third resolution being read in the words following:
Resolved, That a committee be appointed to report to this House the naval force necessary for the purposes aforesaid, together with an estimate of the expense
Ordered, That the Message received yesterday from the PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, accompanying a Report from the Secretary of State, of the substance of such laws, decrees, and ordinances, respecting commerce in the countries with which the United States have commercial inter- A motion was made and seconded to amend the course, as he has received since his Report of the same, by adding to the end thereof, the words 16th instant, be committed to the Committee of the "and the ways and means for defraying the same:" Whole House, to whom are committed the confi- And the question being put thereupon, it was dential communications from the PRESIDENT, re-resolved in the affirmative yeas 46, nays 44, as follows: specting the measures which have been pursued for obtaining a recognition of the Treaty between the United States and Morocco, and for the ransom of prisoners, and establishment of peace with the Algerines.
A memorial of William Patterson, Samuel Sterrit, and Gustavus Scott, the committee appointed by the Legislature of Maryland to draw for, and distribute the moneys granted by that State for the relief of the French emigrants from the island of St. Domingo, was presented to the House and read, stating that their funds are nearly exhausted, and praying the relief and aid of Congress in the premises.
YEAS.-Theodorus Bailey, Abraham Baldwin, John Beatty, Thomas Blount, Thomas P. Carnes, Gabriel Christie, Abraham Clark, Isaac Coles, William J. Dawson, Henry Dearborn, George Dent, William Findley, William B. Giles, Christopher Greenup, Andrew Gregg, William B. Grove, Carter B. Harrison, John Heath, Daniel Heister, William Irvine, Richard Bland Lee, Matthew Locke, Nathaniel Macon, James Madison, Joseph McDowell, Alexander Mebane, William Montgomery, Andrew Moore, Joseph Neville, Anthony New, John Nicholas, Alexander D. Orr, Josiah Parker, Andrew Pickens, Francis Preston, Robert Rutherford, John
S. Sherburne, John Smilie, Israel Smith, Thomas Tredwell, Philip Van Cortlandt, Abraham Venable, Francis Walker, Benjamin Williams, Paine Wingate, and
dinot, Shearjashub Bourne, Benjamin Bourne, Lam
NAYS.-Fisher Ames, James Armstrong, Elias Bou
Ordered, That the said memorial be referred to Mr. SAMUEL SMITH, Mr. RUTHERFORD, and Mr. SMILIE; that they do examine the matter thereof, and report the same, with their opinion thereupon, to the House. The House again resolved itself into a Commit-bert Cadwalader, David Cobb, Peleg Coffin, Joshua tee of the Whole House on the confidential com- simons, Uriah Forrest, Dwight Foster, Ezekiel Gilbert, Coit, Jonathan Dayton, Samuel Dexter, Thomas Fitzmunications from the PRESIDENT, respecting the Nicholas Gilman, Henry Glenn, Benjamin Goodhue, measures which have been pursued for obtaining Samuel Griffin, Thomas Hartley, James Hillhouse, Saa recognition of the Treaty between the United muel Holten, John Wilkes Kittera, Amasa Learned, States and Morocco, and for the ransom of prison-William Lyman, Francis Malbone, Peter Muhlenberg, ers, and the establishment of peace with the Algerines; and, after some time spent therein, the Committee rose, and had leave to sit again.
THURSDAY, January 2.
ISAAC COLES, from Virginia, and WILLIAM BARBY GROVE, from North Carolina, appeared, pro
William Vans Murray, Nathaniel Niles, Thomas Scott, Jeremiah Smith, William Smith, Thomas Sprigg, Zephaniah Swift, Silas Talbot, George Thatcher, Uriah Tracy, Jonathan Trumbull, John E. Van Allen, Peter Van Gaasbeck, Peleg Wadsworth, Jeremiah Wadsworth, Artemas Ward, and John Watts.
And then the main question being put, that the
H. OF R.]
Commerce of the United States
House do agree to the said resolution, amended torial of chief value, an additional duty of per centum read as follows:
ad valorem; on all articles of which cotton is the ma"Resolved, That a committee be appointed to report terial of chief value, an additional duty of to this House the naval force necessary for the pur- centum ad valorem; on all cloths of which wool is the poses aforesaid, together with an estimate of the ex- material of chief value, where the estimated value on pense, and the ways and means for defraying the same:" which the duty is payable, is above, an additional duty of per centum ad valorem; where such value It was resolved in the affirmative. is below, an additional duty of Ordered, That Mr. FITZSIMONS, Mr. GOODHUE, ad valorem; on all cloths of which hemp or flax is the Mr. JEREMIAH WADSWORTH, Mr. FORREST, Mr. material of chief value, and of which the estimated value MALBONE, Mr. BOUDINOT, Mr. PARKER, Mr. MA-on which the duty is payable, is below ——, an addiCON, and Mr. WINN, be appointed a committee pursuant to the last resolution.
FRIDAY, January 3.
tional duty of per centum ad valorem; on all manufactures of which silk is the material of chief value, an additional duty of per centum ad valorem.
"2. Resolved, as the opinion of this committee, That an additional duty of - per ton, ought to be laid on the vessels belonging to the nations having no commercial treaty with the United States.
the duty on vessels belonging to the nations having "3. Resolved, as the opinion of this committee, That commercial treaties with the United States, ought to be
“4. Resolved, as the opinion of this committee, That where any nation may refuse to consider as vessels of the United States, any vessels not built within the United States, the foreign built vessels of such nation ought to be subjected to a like refusal, unless built within the United States.
COMMERCE OF THE UNITED STATES. The House resolved itself into a Committee of the Whole House on the Report of the Secretary of State on the privileges and restrictions on the commerce of the United States in foreign countries. Mr. MADISON, after some general observations on the Report, entered into a more particular consideration of the subject. He remarked, that the commerce of the United States is not, at this day, on that respectable footing to which, from its nature and importance, it is entitled. He recurred to its situation previous to the adoption of the "5. Resolved, as the opinion of this committee, That, Constitution, when conflicting systems prevailed where any nation may refuse to admit the produce or in the different States. The then existing state of manufactures of the United States, unless in vessels be things gave rise to that Convention of Delegates longing to the United States, or to admit them in vesfrom the different parts of the Union, who met to sels of the United States, if last imported from any place deliberate on some general principles for the regu- not within the United States, a like restriction ought, lation of commerce, which might be conducive, in after the day of, to be extended to the protheir operation, to the general welfare, and that duce and manufactures of such nation, and that, in the such measures should be adopted as would concili-mean time, a duty of per ton extraordinary ought ate the friendship and good faith of those countries to be imposed on vessels so importing any such produce who were disposed to enter into the nearest commercial connexions with us. But what has been the result of the system which has been pursued ever since? What is the present situation of our commerce? From the situation in which we find ourselves after four years' experiment, he observed, that it appeared incumbent on the United States to see whether they could not now take measures promotive of those objects for which the Government was in a great degree instituted. Measures of moderation, firmness, and decision, he was persuaded, were now necessary to be adopted, in order to narrow the sphere of our commerce with those nations who see proper not to meet us on terms of reciprocity.
Mr. M. then read the following resolutions: "Resolved, as the opinion of this committee, That the interest of the United States would be promoted by further restrictions and higher duties, in certain cases, on the manufactures and navigation of foreign nations employed in the commerce of the United States, than those now imposed.
1. Resolved, as the opinion of this committee, That an additional duty ought to be laid on the following articles, manufactured by European nations having no commercial treaty with the United States: On all articles of which leather is the material of chief value, an additional duty of per centum ad valorem; on all manufactured iron, steel, tin, pewter, copper, brass, or articles of which either of these metals is the mate
"6. Resolved, as the opinion of this committee, That, where ed States a carriage of the produce or manufactures any nation may refuse to the vessels of the Unitthereof, whilst such produce or manufactures are admitted by it in its own vessels, it would be just to make the restriction reciprocal; but, inasmuch as such a measure, if suddenly adopted, might be particularly distressing in cases which merit the benevolent attention of the United States, it is expedient, for the present, that a tonnage extraordinary only of be imposed on the vessels so employed; and that all distilled spirits imported therein shall be subject to an additional duty of one- part of the existing duty.
"7. Resolved, as the opinion of this committee, That provision ought to be made for liquidating and ascertaining the losses sustained by citizens of the United States, from the operation of particular regulations of such losses be reimbursed, in the first instance, out of any country contravening the Law of Nations, and that the additional duties on the manufactures, productions, and vessels of the nation establishing such unlawful regulations."
ble effects which the adoption of something like Mr. M. took a general view of the probathe resolutions he had proposed, would produce. They would produce, respecting many articles imported, a competition which would enable countries who do not now supply us with those articles, to do it, and would increase the encouragement on such as we can produce within ourselves. We