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impressed with the necessity of expediting our action as any one can be, and should be among the last to protract our sessions. But this resolution looks too much like suppressing discussion— like cutting off debate. I desire at the proper time to be heard upon the report which I have submitted. It will be impossible to discuss the grave questions involved in it in the space of a brief half hour. Mr. CHASE:-I hope Governor WICKLIFFE will consent to a postponement of his resolution for the present. It is anticipating a necessity that may not arise. As yet no one has abused the privileges of debate. It is not well to assume in advance that any one will do so. Mr. WICKLIFFE:—I have no wish to press this resolution upon the Convention, and it may be as well to postpone it for the present. I will move its postponement until Tuesday morning Inext. The motion to postpone was unanimously agreed to. Mr. CRISFIELD:—I move that the hour of meeting hereaf. ter be ten o’clock in the morning. Mr. JOHNSON, of Maryland:—I am sure that we shall all agree that this hour is quite too early. I wish to make all reasonable progress, but I think we shall find it difficult to secure a quorum at that hour. I move to amend by inserting eleven o'clock. Mr. EWING:—I think we had better let the hour of meeting remain where our rules leave it. We shall find our labors severe enough if we commence at twelve o'clock. Mr. CRISFIELD:—I will accept the amendment of my colleague. Let the time of meeting be eleven o'clock. The motion of Mr. CRISFIELD as amended was agreed to without a division. Mr. CHASE:-I have a motion which I desire to make, and as I do not wish to press it to a vote at the present time, I will move to lay it on the table. But I wish to have it before the Conference. It is apparent to me that we ought to pass it at some time, in order to give members who may belong to delegations in which differences of opinion exist, an opportunity of appearing on the record as they personally wish to vote. I move to amend the first rule by inserting after the word “representing,” the words, “The yeas and nays of the delegates from each State, on any question, shall be entered on the Journal when it is desired by any delegate.” On motion of Mr CHASE, the amendment was laid upon the table. The PRESIDENT:-The Conference will now proceed to the order of the day, the question being upon the several reports presented by the General Committee of one from each State. The chair was taken, at the request of the PRESIDENT, by Mr. ALEXANDER, of New Jersey. Mr. BALDWIN:—I move to substitute the report presented by myself for the report of the majority of the Committee. I will consent to strike out that part of it which relates to— Mr TURNER:-Before the gentleman from Connecticut proceeds with his argument I trust he will give way for the introduction of a resolution. I am sure the time has come when we ought to pass such a resolution as I now offer. I am unwilling to sit here longer unless some means are taken to secure a report of our proceedings. The PRESIDENT:—A resolution is not now in order. Mr. TURNER:-I ask that the resolution may be read for the information of the Conference, and also ask the leave of the Conference for its introduction. The resolution was read. It provided for the appointment of a stenographer. The question was taken, and upon a division the leave to introduce it was refused. Mr. BALDWIN:—I rise for the purpose of supporting my motion to substitute the report presented by myself for that presented by the majority of the committee. As I was about to remark, when the resolution just disposed of was introduced, I will consent to strike out all that portion of my report which precedes the words “whereas unhappy differences,” &c., in order that the substitute offered may conform more nearly in substance to the proposition of the majority. It seems desirable on all hands that whatever we adopt here should be presented to Congress; and if
it receives the sanction of that body, should be by it presented to the States for their approval. My report when thus amended will be in a proper form for such a disposition. My report, it will be noticed, is based mainly upon the action of the Legislature of Kentucky. I have adopted those resolutions of Kentucky as the basis of my recommendation, on account of the short time which remains for any action at all, and because it appears to me that the kind of proceeding indicated in them is best calculated to meet with favor in the States which must approve any action taken here before it can be made effectual. The resolutions of Virginia, under which this Convention is called, were adopted on the 19th of January last. The resolutions of Kentucky to which I have referred were adopted on the 25th of the same month. It is not only the necessary presumption that the latter were passed with a full knowledge of the action of Virginia, but I understand from their reading that they were adopted in consequence of the proposition of the latter State. I am disposed to favor the line of policy initiated in the resolutions of the State of Kentucky. There are two ways of presenting amendments to the Constitution provided in that instrument. By the first, by Congress whenever two-thirds of both Houses shall deem such amendments necessary: or by the second, the same body, upon the application of the Legislatures of two-thirds of the States, may call a convention for the purpose of proposing amendments. These two are the only modes in which, under that instrument, amendments can be proposed to the Constitution. Either of these is adequate, and it was the manifest intention of its framers to secure due consideration of any changes which might be proposed to the fundamental law of our Government. It is conceded on all hands that our action here will amount to nothing, unless it meets the approval of Congress, and such proposals of amendment as we shall agree upon are recommended by that body to the States for adoption. The session of the present Congress is drawing to a close. There remain only fifteen or sixteen days during which it can transact business. Can any one suppose that in the present state of the country, with the large number of important measures before Congress and awaiting its action, any proposition of real importance emanating from this Conference could be properly considered by either House in this short time? I am assuming just now that this is a Convention which has the right, under the Constitution or by precedent, to make such propositions. But if we do not remember, most certainly Congress will, that however respectable this body may be, however large may be the constituency which it represents, it is, after all, one which has no existence under, and is not recognized by the Constitution. In a recent speech in the Senate, Judge CollAMER, of Vermont, one of the ablest lawyers in that body, has more than intimated a doubt whether Congress could, under the Constitution, entertain proposals of amendment presented to it by such a body as this. But, waving all technicalities, the substantial objection which influences my mind is, that the course of action proposed by the majority of the committee is contrary to the spirit of the Constitution. When the people adopted that instrument and subjected themselves to its operation, they intended and had a right to understand that it should be amended only in the manner provided by the Constitution itself. They did not intend that amendments should be proposed under, or the existence of the Constitution endangered by any extraneous pressure whatever. They wisely provided a way in which amendments might be proposed, or rather two ways. Under either of them, due examination and consideration was secured. They would not have consented to any other way of proposing amendments. The General Government, on the adoption of the Constitution, for all national purposes, took the place of the State Governments. The people of the United States from that time, in the language of a distinguished Senator from Kentucky, owed a paramount allegiance to the General Government, and a subordinate allegiance only to the State Governments. Changes in the Constitution, then, can only be properly made in the manner provided by the Constitution. Propositions for changes in it must come from the people, or their representatives in Congress. Any attempt to coerce Congress, or to influence its action in a manner not provided by the Constitution, is a disregard of the rights of the people. Why are we assembled here to urge these amendments upon Congress? to induce Congress to recommend them to the people for adoption? Are we the representatives of the people of the United States? Are we acting for them, and as their authorized agents, in this endeavor to press amendments upon the attention of Congress' Because, if our action is to have any effect at all, it must be to induce Congress to conform to our wishes—to propose the very amendments which we prepare. The members of the House of Representatives were elected by the people. They were selected to perform, and they do perform, their duties and functions under the obligations of their official oaths. There is no question about their agency, or their right to act in the premises. The Constitution makes them the agents of the people. The Legislature of the State of Kentucky, well understanding and appreciating the only true method in which constitutional amendments should be proposed, with all the formality of a legislative act approved by the Executive of that State, has applied to Congress for the call of a convention for proposing amendments to the Constitution of the United States, and has requested the President to lay those resolutions immediately before Congress. She wishes other States to unite with her in the preparing and proposing of amendments to the Constitution. This is the correct, the legal, the patriotic course. This was what Kentucky had the right to ask, and this is all she has asked. Mr. BALDw1N here read the Kentucky resolutions, as follows:
Resolutions recommending a call for a Convention of the United States.
Whereas, The people of some of the States feel themselves deeply aggrieved by the policy and measures which have been adopted by some of the people of the other States; and whereas an amendment of the Constitution of the United States is deemed indispensably necessary to secure them against similar grievances in the future: Therefore,
Resolved, by the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, that application to Congress to call a Convention for proposing amendments to the Constitution of the United States, pursuant to the fifth article thereof, be, and the same is hereby, now made by this General Assembly of Kentucky; and we hereby invite our sister States to unite with us, without delay, in a similar application to Congress.
Resolved, That the Governor of this State forthwith communicate the foregoing resolution to the President of the United States, with the request