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general nature of executive duties. Consuls are not diplomatic but commercial agents.

§ 22. The reception of ambassadors and other public ministers is a recognition of the national character and standing of the countries which they represent. Their reception may, therefore, become a very nice and delicate question with the Executive. The Executive is not obliged to receive an ambassador or public minister, even though he comes clothed with proper authority from a nation with whom we are at peace, and which is recognized among the great family of nations. A refusal is not a just cause of war, nor even of offense in the national sense ; though it might be deemed an unfriendly act were it not accompanied by friendly explanations.

§ 23. A refusal is sometimes made on the ground of the bad character of the minister, or his former offensive conduct, or of the subject of the embassy not being proper, or convenient for discussion. But a much more delicate occasion is when a civil war breaks out in a nation, each party claiming the sovereignty of the whole, and the contest has not yet been settled between the contending parties. In such a case, a neutral nation may very properly withhold its recognition of the supremacy of either party, and refuse to receive a minister from either. Suppose Great Britain had recognized the seceded States during the Great Rebellion as an independent nation, the United States would probably have called home their own minister from that country, and war might have been the result.

9th. EXECUTION OF THE LAWS.

He shall take care that the laws are faithfully exe

cuted. 63. $ 24. This refers to the laws of the United States, and not to the laws of the several States. When a law has once been passed by all the formalities of the Constitution, it is the solemn duty of the President of the United States to enforce its execution, until it is either repealed, or declared by competent authority to be unconstitutional. He has no discretion, but must not only render obedience to the law himself, but must enforce its execution on all others

1 Kent's Com., Lect. 2.

Were he to refuse, he would be guilty of a bigh misdemeanor, and might be removed from office by impeachment, and otherwise punished according to law.

§ 25. He has ample power to execute the laws, as, for this purpose, the whole

army
and

navy are placed at bis command, and under his control ; and, if need be, he can call forth the militia of the several States to crush any armed resistance to the laws of the land.

10th. COMMISSIONS.

He shall commission all officers of the United States.

63. § 26. A commission is a formal certificate of appointment issued by the proper authority. In this case, it is signed by the President of the United States, and sealed by the Secretary of State with the great seal of the United States. The commission recites the powers conferred, with definite certainty; and it is usually delivered to the person whose appointment is made by it, though delivery is not necessary to the validity of the appointment.

CHAPTER XIII.

VICE-PRESIDENT.

ARTICLE I.

ELIGIBILITY. No person constitutionally ineligible to the office of President shall be eligible to that of Vice-President of the United States. 96.

§ 1. This clause is in the twelfth Article of Amendments. It was not in the original instrument; and there was no necessity for it, the qualifications of the President being defined therein. There was no such thing as a candidate for the Vice-Presidency ; but both candidates were for the Presidency.

§ 2. As the Vice-President may be called upon to act as President, the former should have the same qualifications as the latter. Four times since the adoption of the Constitution, the Vice-President has become acting President on account of the death of the President. John Tyler succeeded to the Presidency in 1841, by

the death of President Harrison ; Millard Fillmore in 1850, by the death of President Taylor; Andrew Johnson in 1865, by the death of President Lincoln ; and Chester A. Arthur in 1881, by the death of President Garfield.

ART. II.- ELECTION.

1. In CONGRESS.

The person having the greatest number of votes for

Vice-President shall be the Vice-President if such

number be a majority of all the electors appointed. 95. 2. IN SENATE. 1st. If no person have a majority as Vice-President,

then, from the two highest numbers on the list of persons voted for as such, the Senate shall choose

a Vice-President. 2d. A quorum for this purpose shall consist of two

thirds of the whole number of senators. 3d. A majority of the whole number of senators shall

be necessary to a choice. 95. $ 1. The first part of this article refers to the proceedings in Congress on opening and counting the electoral votes for President and Vice-President of the United States. It will be remembered, that, if no person receives a majority of all the electoral votes for President, the election of that officer devolves on the House of Representatives. But the house does not elect the Vice-President if there is a failure to elect that officer by the majority of the electoral votes. In such case, the Senate elects the Vice-President. The only instance of this kind in our history was the election of Richard M. Johnson in 1837.

§ 2. As just stated, the Senate chooses the Vice-President if no candidate for that office receives a majority of all the electoral votes. The Vice-President is not now, as formerly, a competitor for the office of President. There is scarcely a possibility that the Senate can fail to elect the Vice-President, as they must confine their votes to the two highest candidates on the list of persons voted for as such by the electors. The only chance is, that possibly the Senate might õe equally divided, and that there might be no Vice-President in

the chair to give the casting vote ; but such a contingency is quite too improbable to merit serious discussion, especially as the Senate would be at liberty to repeat the trial to elect until they should be successful.

§ 3. As the Vice-President is the President of the Senate, it seems proper

that the Senate should elect this officer in case of failure to elect by the electors. The proceeding is judiciously guarded in requiring two-thirds of all the members of the Senate to be present, and in still further requiring a majority of all the senators to secure an election.

ART. III.- OATH OF OFFICE.

He shall be bound by oath or affirmation to support the Constitution of the United States. 81.

The same reasons apply for requiring the Vice-President to act under the solemn obligations of an oath or affirmation that apply to all other Federal officers and to the members of the National Council.

ART. IV. - TERM.

He shall hold his office during the term of four years. 53.

The same reasons that governed in fixing the Presidential term at four years apply with equal force to the term of the Vice-President. (See Chap. XII., Art. II., Part II.)

ART. V. - POWERS AND DUTIES.

1. He shall be President of the Senate, but have no vote un

less they be equally divided. 11. 2. In case of the removal of the President from office, or of

his death, resignation, or inability to discharge the powers and duties of said office, the same shall devolve

on the Vice-President. 57.' 3. If the House of Representatives shall not choose a Pres

ident, whenever the right of choice shall devolve on them, before the fourth day of March next following, the

Vice-President shall act as President. 94. § 1. The duties of the Vice-President as President of the Senato

are such as usually devolve on the presiding officer of legislative bodies. He is to preside over the deliberations of the Senate, enforce the rules of order, maintain due decorum among the members, and decide all questions of parliamentary practice. He submits all motions duly made to the Senate, puts to vote all questions brought forward for discussion and decision, and makes known the result. He does not, however, like the Speaker of the House, appoint the sanding committees. For the Vice-President is not a member of the Senate; but is president ex officio only.

§ 2. Whenever the Vice-President succeeds to the Presidency, or becomes acting President, he performs all the duties of that officer as though he were originally elected to that office. Doubts have been entertained by persons entitled to great confidence, that the acting President who reaches that office through the Vice-Presidency is in fact President. But Congress has uniformly recognized the Executive, in such cases, as President to all intents and purposes; making no distinction whatever between him and a President originally elected as such by the people. In the articles of impeachment presented against Andrew Johnson, he was described as President of the United States ; and the committee expressly stated that they had thoroughly and critically discussed the propriety of description of his official title. So it may be regarded as settled by the highest authority, that a Vice-President becoming acting President is President in fact.

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The judicial power of the United States shall be vested, 1. In one Supreme Court ; and, 2. In such inferior courts as Congress may from time to

time ordain and establish. 65. $ 1. “To establish justice” was one of the principal objects to be attained by the formation of the Constitution. This has no ref

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