« 이전계속 »
And while the highly organized left-wing groups are working on Congress, directly or indirectly, those conservative groups that wish to retain the more stable factors in our form of government are inadequately organized and financed. Many indeed of the left-wing internationalist-socialist groups have secured deductibility before taxes for their individual contributors, while hardly a single conservative group has secured such deductibility. In fact, such deductibility has been specifically denied many of them.
So rule XXII, which permits continued and unlimited debate, is an absolute necessity if we are to prevent a bare majority from wiping out all those minority rights guaranteed by the Bill of Rights.
Many efforts have, of course, been made in the past to change rule XXII. Presumably in each of these cases the reason for the effort to change it has been some pending legislation of very great importance on which feeling on both sides has run high.
The legislation which has apparently stimulated the present drastic effort to amend rule XXII is, of course, the demand for so-called civil rights. The present civil-rights bills would bring about:
1. A grant of power to the Department of Justice to intervene directly by employing Federal injunctions and contempt proceedings in cases of alleged violation of civil rights.
2. The establishment of a Federal Civil Rights Commission with subpena powers.
3. Creation within the Justice Department of a special Civil Rights Division.
All of these provisions are an invasion and preemption of States rights.
Federal intervention in these State and local rights would deprive the citizens of the right of trial by jury, one of the most important rights guaranteed by the Bill of Rights.
Now what is back of all this is, of course, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, an organization formed at the instance of the Communist Party for the very purpose of stirring up friction and discord. I am advised that there was only one Negro member of the original committee, and throughout its history its main motivation has come from white members.
The Supreme Court of the United States in the school segregation case turned its back completely upon long-accepted principles of American constitutional law and of American custom, and instead adopted the views of sociologists as experts. One, at least, of these, who was of foreign birth, had expressed contempt for the Constitution of the United States. The Court has likewise turned its back on established law and custom in such cases as the Steve Nelson case, the New York Slochower case, the Michigan so-called "dirty book” case, the bus segregation case, the Girard College case, and many others could be mentioned.
Hence, there is reason to believe that any of these civil rights bills that are pending would, if passed, be sustained by the present Supreme Court, even though it meant the attempted repeal by the Supreme Court of vital provisions of the Bill of Rights.
For the Senate to modify rule XXII, thus rejecting unlimited debate, would assuredly lead sooner or later to the passage of some one or other of these objectionable civil rights bills. Then the Supreme Court, having usurped, as would be likely, the role of the Congress and
the legislatures of the 48 States, would arrogate to itself the power to amend the Constitution and wo’ld remove the last bar to the destruction of the American Republic. And the Senate, if it weakened rule XXII, by such action would literally abdicate in favor of the Communist-Socialist influences that are abroad in the land.
It will be asked by some, Do we not all believe in rule by the majority?
The answer is, on all ordinary day-to-day matters, “yes.” But under the great underlying principles of the Constitution there are some questions so grave and involving rights so vital to the people as a whole that experience shows it is not safe for all the people to leave these to the decision by majority vote. In the past we have prospered as a Nation because we have held these rights sacred and above and beyond all other rights.
The idea underlying this thought is one of the fundamental ideas in the Constitution-in fact, in the idea of even having a written Constitution. The Constitution gives vast powers to both the legislative and executive branches, and implied powers, at least, to the Supreme Court, which powers incidentally the Supreme Court is now trying to expand and augment.
But in certain provisions of the Bill of Rights, notably amendments IX and X, and in the terms of article V of the Constitution providing ways in which the Constitution can be amended, it is perfectly clear that the framers of the Constitution intended to make it difficult for the Constitution to be amended. These safeguards have been observed practically throughout our history, until very lately.
Now, since the obvious purpose of the efforts to amend rule XXII is to clear the way for the passage of pending civil rights legislation, and since the civil rights legislation would to a large extent throw amendments IX and X down the drain, there is all the greater reason why rule XXII should not be tampered with.
Human experience has taught that speedy action on ordinary matters is often required and is reasonably safe. But there are certain fundamental matters of the kind dealt with in the Constitution itself and in the bill of rights, which according to the theory on which we have always gone should not be changed except after a long lapse of time in order to give plenty of time to the people and to the people's representatives in Congress and in the States to weigh them carefully.
This is why we have had only 22 amendments to the Constitution in 168 years.
If this rule XII should be amended and if the present objective of those who wish to amend it were obtained—namely, the passage of the proposed civil rights legislation—then some of the most vital rights of the American people as a whole would be destroyed.
Therefore, we of the National Economic Council respectfully ask the Senate, but with all possible emphasis, not to amend rule XXII but to leave its present wording intact.
Senator TALMADGE. Any questions?
Senator TALMADGE. Mr. Hart, thank you very much. We appreciate your appearing before us and giving us your views.
The next witness is Mr. J. D. Henderson, national managing director, American Association of Small Business, New Orleans, La. You may proceed at will, Mr. Henderson.
STATEMENT OF J. D. HENDERSON, NATIONAL MANAGING DIRECTOR,
AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF SMALL BUSINESS, NEW ORLEANS,
UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN LIBRARIES
Mr. HENDERSON. My name is Joseph D. Henderson. I am the national managing director of the American Association of Small Business, Inc., a national organization which had its inception during 1941 and received its charter February 20, 1942. We were organized in New Orleans, La., and our membership has spread throughout the country. At this time, we are working in all 48 States of the Union, including the District of Columbia, in opposition to any legislation which would withdraw the constitutional rights of freedom of speech from any individual Member of the Senate and the right to unlimited debate in the Senate of the United States of America.
We send our material to newspapers throughout the country, each United States Senator and Members of the House of Representatives in Washington. We also contact State legislatures, municipal councils, and other public bodies. We have made statements in testifying before committees of the Congress, State legislatures, city councils, and boards.
We support legislation beneficial to all small businesses and our members in particular, and we oppose legislation which is detrimental. We render services to small businesses and individuals, helping them to go into business, stay in business, secure sources of supplies and material, funds to operate the business and for expansion purposes. There is no service too large or small for the American Association of Small Business, Inc., to undertake for one of its members. All a member has to do is tell us about his problem and we do our utmost to help solve it.
We are a service organization and we endeavor to encourage small businesses to patronize each other, work together so that they may expand and become as big as their initiative, ability, and energy wil permit.
Various organizations are working in a rather limited field, but the American Association of Small Business, Inc., in the conduct of our public relations program dedicated to keeping small business in business, is working in a field of over 125 different business and professional categories, because small business is the grassroots and backbone of the American way of life.
This information has been presented to you so that the members of your committee may have a better understanding of the scope and sincerity of the services performed by the American Association of Small Business, Inc.
At least seven bills have been introduced in the Senate during the 1st session of the 85th Congress affecting freedom of speech and Senate rule No. XXII.
The members of the American Association of Small Business, Inc., are in favor of the great freedom of the individual Senators to participate in the discussion on the floor of the Chamber, because it has provided minorities with one of their most potent weapons, the filibuster.
Small business is a minority which is having great difficulty in staying in business in many instances because of excessive taxation, ertravagance in Government spending, regulations, regimentation, and the unrewarding responsibility of being forced to serve as a tax col
lector. In addition, the small-business man runs the risk of violating some law or bureaucratic regulation and becomes subject to fine and imprisonment because he had unintentionally failed to properly serve as a forced tax collector.
Over the years, small-business men have watched with much interest the so-called filibustering on the floor of the Senate because in most instances the individual Senator doing the talking is either for or against legislation which will either be detrimental or favorable to small businesses.
Judging from the language used in the various bills introduced for the purpose of regulating freedom of speech on the floor of the Senate, the objective of those sponsoring these bills is to do away with the timehonored practice of filibustering.
The Senate of the United States of America is the greatest legislative body in the world, and in all probability in the entire history of mankind. While legislatures are of modern origin, the Greeks and Romans enacted legislation by the popular assembly. Representative lawmaking bodies in the modern sense never existed among the Romans. The ancient world trampled on the very verge of representative government without actually crossing the boundary.
The beginnings of the modern representative systems of government are found in the early English history, out of which the English Parliament, the first representative legislature known to history, was destined ultimately to evolve. And so we in this great Nation today owe much to the ancestor of the Anglo-Saxon people who came to this land and established a republican form of government which has stood without interruption since July 4, 1776.
The Founders of our Nation did not provide for limiting the debates on any subject by an individual Senator in the United States Senate chambers. They evidently realized that the time might come in the history of our Nation when it would be necessary for a number of our Senators to stand up and debate for or against national legislation for many long hours. The privilege of filibustering has been exercised by many Members of the Senate and a long list of filibusters from 1841 to 1951 may be found in the Congressional Record, 83d Congress, 1st session, January 7, 1953, pages 216-217.
Many statesmen in the United States Senate have successfully filibustered over the years, and it is interesting to note that a number of advocates of changing the rule to limit debates have taken advantage of their senatorial rights of freedom of speech and set new records. So, it would seem that it depends upon whose ox is being gored as to whether the ox should be dehorned.
For instance, Senator Morse, of Oregon, was formerly a Republican and a stanch opponent of freedom of speech on the floor of the Senate, also changing his attitude about the right to filibuster, when in 1953 hé talked for 22 hours on legislation being considered by the Senate covering the confiscation by the Federal Government of tidelands belonging to the various States of the Union.
Our Founding Fathers realized the wisdom of permitting the honorable gentlemen of the Senate the right to talk as long as they wanted on any matter they have a mind to discuss. Realizing the Members of the Senate might talk a long time about important legislation and, possibly in the heat of debate, say something which might be disturb
UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN LIBRARIES
ing, the founders of our Republic granted immunity to them for anything they may say on the floor of the Senate.
Freedom of speech is one of the most cherished rights granted to the citizens of the Nation by our Constitution and Bill of Rights. Certain elements in the country would like to see our constitutional guaranties taken away from us. In fact, the forces of infiltration of communistic thinking is becoming more evident as time goes on. Now, it just might be that the proposals to limit the debate on the floor of the Senate could be the beginning of the end of freedom of speech in the Nation.
The judicial legislation now being enacted by the Supreme Court of the United States of America is far reaching and without control br Congress. It seems to me a great error could be committed by the Senate in changing rule XXII to limit freedom of speech in debate on the floor of the Senate, because the Supreme Court could interpret such legislation as being authority to reverse one of its decisions and rule against freedom to debate in the churches, lodge halls, union halls, and all public places where three or more are gathered.
In closing, I wish to thank the members of this committee for inviting me to present a statement here today. You are earnestly implored not to enact any legislation which would bring about a limit of debate on the floor of the Senate. During these uncertain days, when judicial legislation is being forced upon the people and the Congress is being bypassed, the last hope of a great, free people rests on the integrity of the Members of the Senate of the United States of America.
Senator TALMADGE. Any questions?
Senator Javits. Mr. Henderson, I gather that the persons whose names are printed on your letterhead are all the officers of your organization?
Mr. HENDERSON. No. They are the regional vice presidents. We have directors in various areas of the country.
Senator Javits. These regional vice presidents cover the areas in which the organization operates!
Mr. HENDERSON. That is right. We have members from Maine to California. Where we have a larger number of members, then there is a regional vice president.
Senator JAVITS. Well, Mr. Chairman, I ask that the list of officers of this organization be made part of the record of Mr. Henderson's testimony.
Senator TALMADGE. Without objection, it is so ordered.
Senator TALMADGE. Mr. Henderson, we appreciate very much your appearing before us and giving your views and your statement.
(The list of officers referred to is as follows:)
AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF SMALL BUSINESS
Incorporated in 1942
New Orleans, La.
New Orleans, La.