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come on such short notice. I do have a letter from the junior Senator from Virginia, Hon. A. Willis Robertson, that I ask permission to insert in the record.
(The statement of Senator Robertson is as follows:) STATEMENT OF Hon. A. Willis ROBERTSON, A UNITED STATES Senator FROM
THE STATE OF VIRGINIA
UNITED STATES SENATE,
June 15, 1957.
United States Senate, Washington, D. C. DEAR COLLEAGUES: Thank you for your letter of the 14th in which you offer to me the privilege of appearing before your special subcommittee of the Committee on Rules and Administration next Monday to make a statement, if I am so inclined, concerning proposals to change rule 22 of the Standing Rules of the Senate.
I regret that an important meeting of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Public Works on Monday will prevent me from appearing before your committee. All that I would like for your record to show is that, in my opinion, there is no good and sufficient reason to change rule 22. Since neither of you were Members of the Congress when the agitation first started in the Senate for changing rule 22, I wish to remind you the change was sponsored by those who were sponsoring so-called civil rights bills and who believed that prompter action could be secured in the Senate if debate on any bill could be limited by a simple majority of those present and voting. But such a proposal overlooks the rights which minorities should have, as explained by Thomas Jefferson who prepared the first Senate manual, as well as the fact that the proponents of the change have been unable to show that the right of extended debate given to minorities under rule 22, has ever in the long run prevented the passage of any legislation which had the support of a clear majority of the American people. With best wishes, I am, Sincerely yours,
A. Willis ROBERTSON. Senator TALMADGE. I have a letter from Senator Olin D. Johnston of South Carolina which will be inserted in the record immediately after the other Senators' statements.
(The statement of Senator Johnston is as follows:)
STATEMENT OF HON. OLIN D. JOHNSTON, A UNITED STATES SENATOR FROM THE
STATE OF SOUTH CAROLINA
UNITED STATES SENATE,
June 17, 1957.
Senate Office Building, Washington, D. C. DEAR HERMAN: This morning you are holding a special hearing on proposed changes in Senate rule XXII (cloture rule) to hear from members of the Senate. Unfortunately I will be tied up in the Senate Judiciary Committee on civil rights legislation which I feel is of great importance to all of us, and therefore it is impossible for me to attend your committee hearing as much as I would like to do so.
For purposes of brevity may I refer you to volume 94, part 4 (1948), pages 5219–5239 and 5283–5294, and volume 95, part II (1949), pages 2490-2724, of the Congressional Record. In this you will find prolonged debate regarding a similar proposal for changing this rule in the Senate back in 1948, at which time I opposed this change at length, as did a majority of the Senate. In my opinion we were most fortunate in preserving this rule of unlimited debate.
Nowhere else in the entire world is there a deliberative body dealing with such important affairs as our security, peace for future generations, atomic power, etc., wherein the members representing their constituents have totally free and unlimited debate. In my opinion it would be a terrible blow to the free world's morale for us to censure ourselves with proposals now before the Senate.
During World War I the late Senator Bob LaFollette of Wisconsin, one of the great liberals and progressives of his age, said the following when an attempt was made to impose cloture in the Senate at that time:
“I realize how the hysteria of the moment may be driving Senators to acquiesce here in this procedure which at another time they would resist with all their force. But so far as I am concerned I will never by my voice or vote consent to a rule which will put an end to freedom of debate in the Senate. The adoption of this rule marks a decline in the influence of the Senate in the Government. I know that the majority are determined. I believe that a majority of that majority are in this matter yielding their judgments, and that the time will come when the men who are now clamoring for this change and who by their votes are imposing cloture upon the Senate will see that rule invoked to deprive them and their States of what they deem their rights. I cannot prevent the adoption of this rule, so I am content at this time to protest and vote against it.”
I believe the foregoing words are just as timely and stand up just as well today as they did then.
In January of this year, when we were debating whether or not the Senate was a continuing body, I stated that the Senate of the United States is the last citadel of man's freedom. This right of free discussion affords me and every other Member of the Senate the opportunity to fight in defense of some fundamental principle or to prevent the destruction of some basic right. Without such a rule of unlimited debate in the United States Senate, we would all become the prey of hysteria and minority rights could exist only in theory and not in fact. It is ironic that those who favor abolishing unlimited and unrestricted debate exercise such a right more freely and more often than do a great deal of us who sometimes are referred to as being reactionary or conservative for opposing changes in rule XXII.
I sincerely hope that your committee will recommend no such change and will put into your report the basic principles upon which this rule was founded and why it should remain untampered in ages to come and will perhaps end forever recurrence of attacks upon it.
If I may be of any further assistance to your committee, please do not hesitate to call upon me, and may I ask you to include this letter as a part of your official report.
With kind regards, I am
Senator TALMADGE. I also have a statement from a former Vice President of the United States which is a right interesting one.
On May 10 I wrote former Vice President John Nance Garner. In keeping with his well-known ability for getting right to the point he penciled at the bottom of the letter:
DEAR SENATOR TALMADGE: I favor free and unlimited debate in the Senate. Sincerely,
May 15, 1957.
I ask unanimous consent to insert that in the record. (The letter to Mr. Garner and his reply may be found in the appendix as part of exhibit 3, p. 360.) Senator TALMADGE. Are there any more statements of Senators? Do you have any insertions at this time? Senator JAVITs. Mr. Chairman, I was just going to make the suggestion that we confine the opportunity to our colleagues to testify to one succeeding hearing, inviting those who can’t appear to submit written statements so we can get on with the other witnesses who desire to be heard. I think having extended the opportunity for two hearings, I know our colleagues will all have a chance to speak to this on the floor, and I would say this to the Senator: If any others of our colleagues desire to be heard after we have concluded that phase of the hearings, which I suggest be Friday, why
John N. GARNER.
we will of course hear them, but I thought that we would begin on Monday next, that is a week from today, to hear witnesses other than Senators.
I make that suggestion.
Senator TALMADGE. With the proviso that any Senator may be heard at any time.
Senator JAVITs. Thereafter, exactly.
Senator TALMADGE. I certainly would not want to close the door to Members of the Senate wishing to testify as to a rule they will be operating under, and I know there is considerable interest in the Senate, both in support of one or the other of these amendments as well as in opposition thereto.
In fact, several have personally told me they want to be heard. I would certainly be very strongly in favor of giving them that opportunity.
Now, are there any witnesses present who desire to testify?
Senator JAVITS. Mr. Chairman, I had one other suggestion and that is the next week we have three hearings, and I would suggest Monday, Tuesday, and Friday, Wednesday being a Rules Committee day.
Senator TALMADGE. There is no objection on my part at all. I think we ought to bear this in mind: Last week for the first time we started working night and day in the Senate. It is likely that the pace is going to get even faster than that in the future, and at our hearings it sometimes may be absolutely impossible for you, me, or any other Senator to be present to hold these hearings. For that reason I think the situation is going to have to remain quite flexible for the time being.
I think we will have to hold hearings whenever we can do so, and I for one would share the Senator's view.
I would be perfectly willing to attend hearings at any time that my duties in the Senate will permit.
Is Mr. Harold L. Putnam here?
He is executive secretary of the National Society of Sons of the American Revolution.
If he is not here or any other witnesses who desire to be heard personally, I have several statements that I would like to insert in the record at this time.
A letter from Mrs. Edgar S. Block, secretary of the American Flag Association of the United States.
Letter from J. D. Henderson, of the American Association of Small Business.
Letter from Mark Fakkema, educational director of the National Association of Christian Schools.
Letter from H. B. Franklin and R. M. Dickinson, of the American Legion, Sauls-Bridges Post, No. 13, Tallahassee, Fla.
Letter from Sherman A. Patterson, general manager of the Christian Citizens Crusade, Inc.
Letter from Willis Carto, executive director of Liberty and Property, San Francisco, Calif.
Letter from W. R. Beatty, of Citizens United, Inc., Los Ángeles, Calif.
Letter from Leslie E. Gehres, of the San Diego Constitutional Foundation.
Letter from Walter S. Steele, editor and manager of the National Republic.
Letter from Mrs. Gerald O. Inman, director of national defense, Iowa Chapter, National Society of Huguenots. Letter from Mrs. Gerald O. Inman, American Constitution Party of Iowa. Letter from Mrs. Gerald O. Inman, director general, National Society of New England Woman. Letter from Mrs. Gerald O. Inman, national historian of the National Society of Children of the American Colonists. Letter from Mrs. Gerald O. Inman, Iowa State president of the National Society United States Daughters of 1812. Letter from Mrs. Mary D. Cain, national chairman, of Individuals for Freedom. Letter from Verne P. Kaub, president of American Council of Christian Laymen. Letter from Mrs. J. J. McLaughlin, chairman of the Defenders of American Education. Letter from Mrs. Helen P. Lasell, national chairman of the United States Flag Committee. Letter from William D. McCain, of the Sons of Confederate Veterans. Letter from Mrs. Gwen M. Schofield, of the Committee for America. Letter from Ross K. Cook, commander general of the Military Order of the Crusades. Letter from Percy Hamilton Goodsell, Jr., president-general of the Descendants of the Signers of the Declaration of Independence. Letter from Mrs. Leigh F. Birkeland, acting chairman, California chapter of the Minute Women of the United States of America, Inc. Letter from F. A. Lydy, president of United Neighbors, Inc. Letter from Donald MacLean of Hollywood, Calif. Mrs. James J. O'Connor, of Granada Hills, Calif. Letter from Dr. Harvey B. Stone, of Baltimore, Md. Letter from Mrs. John S. Inman, of Jacksonville, Fla. Letter from Mrs. Edith H. Moore, Crozet, Va. Letter from Mrs. Betty E. Covey, Crozet, Va. Letter from Julius F. Prufer, associate professor of political science and alumni director of Roanoke College. Letter from Mrs. John W. Daniel, of Houston, Tex. Statement from P. C. King, Jr., president, Georgia State Society of the Sons of the American Revolution. Letter and resolution of the Small Property Owners' Association. Resolution from Florida States Rights, Inc., of Miami, Fla. Resolution from United Mothers of America, Inc. Resolution from the executive committee of the Western Tax Council, Inc. Resolution from the Alabama Council of the National Society of Patriotic Women of America, Inc. Resolution from the National Society of New England Women. Senator JAVITs. May I suggest the Chair insert in the record preceding the letters submitted from citizens and organizations the text of the letter which was sent to these citizens and organizations? Senator TALMADGE. No objection at all on my part. Senator JAVITs. That ioli go in because they say “In answer to: your letter of so-and-so,” practically all of them. Senator TALMADGE. You just want the text? Senator JAVITs. Whatever text went to them all.
Senator TALMADGE. We can insert Mr. Garner's letter first and his reply and then the following letters received.
Mr. HARRISON. I suggested the use of the Garner letter because he sent the letter back with the handwriting at the bottom.
(The letter received from former Vice President Garner may be found in the appendix as part of exhibit 3, p. 360.)
Senator TALMADGE. And I have also a petition signed by a number of citizens of the State of Florida.
Senator JAVITS. Mr. Chairman, I ask unanimous consent that the text of the petition be printed together with the first name.
Is that the normal practice, Mr. West?
Senator TALMADGE. No objection if you state a name and the number of other signatures affixed.
(The petition referred to may be found in the appendix as part of exhibit 4, p. 363.)
Senator TALMADGE. We have just been notified that Mr. Harold L. Putnam will be here at 11 a. m. While I do not know of any authority that has been granted to this committee to sit at that time, I have no objections.
Senator JAVITS. I have none, Mr. Chairman.
Senator Javits. Mr. Chairman, about this 11 o'clock we have to get consent. I am happy to seek it.
Senator TalMADGE. There is no objection at all on my part.
Mr. West, will you call the Majority Leader's office and tell him that Senator Javits and I would like permission to sit at 11 o'clock to hear one witness?
Senator TALMADGE. Mr. Putnam, will you have a seat, please? Sit anywhere that you are most comfortable.
This is Senator Javits from New York. I am Senator Talmadge of Georgia. This is the subcommittee which is taking testimony relating to amending Senate rule XXII. We will be happy to hear from you at this time if you are ready, sir.
Whom do you represent?
STATEMENT OF HAROLD L. PUTNAM, EXECUTIVE SECRETARY,
NATIONAL SOCIETY OF THE SONS OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION
Mr. PUTNAM. My name is Harold L. Putnam, executive secretary of the National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution.
Senator TALMADGE. Proceed. Mr. PUTNAM. Our interest in this particular matter is based on our overall policy, being very sure that we do everything possible to safeguard the constitutional rights of every individual.
Our interpretation of any proposal which would limit the debate in the Senate is we believe in a broad sense a certain infringement on the rights of free speech as set forth in the first amendment.
I have just returned from the 67th Annual Congress of our society, which was held in Salt Lake City, and on the 29th day of May we adopted a resolution of which I have 1 or 2 copies here which I will be glad to turn over to the committee.