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to utter extremes to protect the freedom of speech of those who hate the United States and would destroy this Nation in any manner available, while on the other hand we find others doing all within their power to stifle the voices of those who have always loved America, and who want to keep her free.
We are convinced that the Constitution of the United States intended for free debate to be one of the liberties guaranteed. The Constitution of the United States was freely debated through unlimited debate before it was ratified by the States. Free debate in the Senate is a part of the American system that should not be thrown aside because certain liberal groups desire certain legislation at this time.
If this committee will reflect back over the years, as I am sure you have, you will find that no good legislation was defeated because of unlimited debate, although I am aware of the differences of opinion present on this committee regarding certain legislation. However, the only bills not passed because of unrestricted debate were the force bill, 1890–91; the armed ship bill, 1917; antilynch bills, 1922, 1935, and 1937; antipoll-tax bills, 1942, 1944, 1946, and 1948; and FEPC, 1946. These bills, with the exception of one, the armed ship bill, was aimed at one section of the Nation, the South. The passage of any of these bills, aimed at the South, would have brought an end to constitutional government in the country, because the Congress does not have the right to exceed the powers delegated to it by the Constitution.
Unlimited debate is the greatest protection minority groups have in this country; yet the great political impetus given to this movement to amend the Senate rules comes from certain minority groups in this country who would use any means in order to acquire their full aims. Orderly government, practiced by set rules and law, is the greatest protection the minority groups in this country have. If orderly constitutional government comes to an end in this country through changing the rules of the game in the middle of the game, these same minority groups will rue the day they ever instituted the rules change movement. Therefore, I feel that I can safely say, for I am thoroughly convinced in my mind, that the fight that southerners are leading against the Senate rules change is in reality a fight in favor of minority groups in this country. Change the rules of this United States Senate where just a majority may impose its will upon the minority, and we will find some day some of these minority groups clamoring for these changes crushed under the heel of the majority. Our system of government protects minority groups instead of crushing them. We in the South are a minority group, and I feel that some day the majority of the American people will thank with open hearts the fight that this militant minority is making to restore sanity and normalcy to the American governmental scene, and against changing the unlimited debate rule that has made the American Senate the greatest deliberative body in the world.
Although I am fully aware that the question before this committee is a procedural one, or we might say, in layman's language, a technical question, however, I think it proper and befitting to say briefly what the attitude of the people of Alabama is toward the proposed rules change. In my considered opinion and judgment, the overwhelmingly majority of our people is seething with indignation at the time the Congress is spending upon legislation and proposals aimed at the South. Now, regardless of what some members of the committee might say as to whether or not the rules change is aimed at the South, there is no way that I can be convinced, nor any other Alabamian, that the rules change proposal is not for the purpose of passing punitive and spite legislation against white southerners. You say that this legislation, the so-called civil-rights bill, should pass because you want to help minority groups obtain their rightful privileges under the law, and you say further, but that I dispute, that they are not getting due process and equal protection of the laws. The people of Alabama consider this proposed rule change as a punitive measure, and when you change the rules of the Senate you will be taking another step in the direction toward the point of no return for the minority groups you seek to help. The point of no return will be reached with the southern Negro loses the good will of the southern white man. Thank God this has not happened yet, for the southern white man is patient and he is hopeful that the majority of the southern Negroes will realize, before it is too late, that many who pose as their friends are really interested only in their votes. Should the Senate change the rules of this body, if by so doing it will agitate a whole section of the Nation to the point of endangering the peaceable and friendly relations of the two races, or is that the subtle purpose behind the whole movement? I do not mean to say that any Member of the United States Senate is aware that such is the purpose of he movement, but I believe that there are sinister forces in this country that desire to see the peace and tranquillity now prevailing in the South to be no more.
I am glad that I as a circuit judge, have a reputation among the Negro people of my circuit as being fair and honest in my dealings with them. I hold my office by vote of the people; I have never made public utterance derogatory against Negro people, nor any of God's children, and I do not ever intend to do so. I am glad to report to you that it is politically inexpedient in my section to make a political speech inciting racial hatreds and enmities, and I pray that it will always be the case. If the time comes when this is not the case it will be because the "do-gooders" and politicians from other sections have meddled until the patience of our people is exhausted. A change in the rules of the Senate will be looked upon by our people as being continued warfare against southern people. Our feelings alternate between that of anger, hurt, and disgust at the invective heaped upon us regarding our relations with the minority group. This we do know: That we have extended the hand of compassion to the Negro people more than the people of any other section have. Our relations have been good; we have lived together in peace and harmony. We, together, have worked through our leadership in political life to throw off the shackles of economic discriminations shackled upon us for the past 100 years, by the very sections of the Nation that cry "discriminations." We know that discriminatory freight rates, Pittsburgh plus, and other artificial restrictions imposed upon us by the East and Midwest relegated our people to an agricultural economy with not the proper balance of industry. As a result, our people did not have the income or the industrial-job opportunities of other sections, and as a further result, our white and Negro people did not have their fair share of educational opportunities, health advantages, and material comforts, all because of northern and midwestern discrimination. Is it any wonder we decry the hypocrisy in the matter? We at least know that we preach and practice the same system, while in other sections of the Nation one system is preached and another system is practiced. The change in the rules of the Senate, the civil-rights organization say, will destroy the sinful, immoral, and irreligious system of separation of the races. Our system is not sinful, immoral, or irreligious, because our system is not based upon hatred, ill will, or malice, but based upon what we believe in our hearts to be for the best interest of both the Negro and the white man, and although I am not a student of theology, I know that there is nothing irreligious about any system, whether it be political, social, or economic, based upon the firm foundation of best interest.
The present Senate rules have preserved constitutional government. Should they now be changed because of pressure groups, in order to pass legislation that will
. 1. Abolish trial by jury in civil rights cases, the most fundamental of civil rights.
2. Take over law enforcement of local government. 3. Destroy local government in this country. 4. Take over the electoral processes of the States by the Federal Government.
5. Empower the Civil Rights Commission with blanket jurisdiction over the everyday lives of American citizens.
6. Destroy the laudable rule of comity heretofore recognized in American jurisprudence.
7. Make all Americans fear a knock on the door at night.
In conclusion let me say that I desire to see peaceful relations among our people. I do not desire to see the southern white man and Negro drift apart be cause of the actions now being taken by all branches of the Federal Government. We have the problem-you always have the solution, so you say. We are sincere in our desire to live in peace and harmony. Do not compound our problem. You will do this if you at this time vote to change the rules of the United States Sepate.
PRIDE OF BOONTON COUNCIL No. 103,
Boonton, N. J., July 31, 1957. Senator HERMAN E. TALMADGE,
Senate Committee on Rules and Administration. DEAR SIR: As a patriotic group of American citizens, may we ask you to use your influence in defeating the bills limiting debate in the Senate, namely, Senate Resolution 17, Senate Resolution 19, Senate Resolution 21, Senate Resolution 28, Senate Resolution 29, Senate Resolution 30, and Senate Resolution 32. We are all interested in these bills and should like to see the Senate have the power to debate on legislation, and we are so writing our Senators. Thanking you for any action favorable to our views, we remain
Very truly yours, [SEAL]
Mrs. ETHEL M. BAKER, SECRETARY.
LIST OF OTHER INDIVIDUALS EXPRESSING OPINION ON PROPOSED
CHANGES IN RULE XXII IN LETTERS AND TELEGRAMS TO THE SUBCOMMITTEE
Following is a letter dated May 10, 1957, from Senator Herman E. Talmadge to former Vice President John Nance Garner, together with Mr. Garner's reply:
UNITED STATES SENATE,
May 10, 1957. Hon. John NANCE GARNER,
Uvalde, Tex. DEAR MR. GARNER: The Senate Committee on Rules and Administration has named a special subcommittee to take testimony on seven proposals pending before it to change Senate rule XXII relating to limitation of debate.
I have been named to that subcommittee and, because I consider the question of free debate in the Senate to be a matter of fundamental importance to the maintenance of constitutional government in this country, I have insisted that the hearings be thorough and that the views of the “grassroots" citizens of this Nation be determined. Toward that end, I have served notice that I intend to see that all patriotic, non-Communist organizations with national memberships and a number of men in public life such as yourself who are conversant with this and related issues are invited to express their views.
While no date has been set for the beginning of these hearings, the subcommittee has agreed that they will be continued until all interested parties have the opportunity to be heard. It is my hope that you will wish and be able to participate and I shall look forward to hearing from you at your earliest convenience. With every good wish, I am Sincerely,
HERMAN E. TALMADGE.
DEAR SENATOR TALMADGE: I favor free and unlimited debate in the Senate. Sincerely,
JOHN N. GARNER. May 15, 1957.
The following persons, either spontaneously or in response to letters from the subcommittee (similar to the above), have expressed opposition to the proposed change in rule XXII: Miss Isabel L. Adams, 875 San Ysidro Edward Bates, 1035 West 51st Street, Road, Santa Barbara, Calif.
Los Angeles, Calif. Mr. and Mrs. Nye Adams, 4018 Bell Mrs. Carl H. Baumgarten, 4613 Cass Street, Kansas City, Mo.
Street, Omaha, Nebr. Mrs. Florence Bassler, Chicago, Ill. Mrs. Elldora W. Belmond, 1836 Cren(postmarked).
shaw Boulevard, Los Angeles, Calif.
Miss Catherine A. Berchem, 401 Fuller- Bertl Clement Dietrich, 336 Central ton Parkway, Chicago, Ill.
Avenue, Wilmette, Ill. The Grover Bissen family, 216 Poplar Mrs. Richard M. Dilworth, 730 South Street, Onalaska, Wis.
County Line Road, Hinsdale, Ill. Mr. and Mrs. F. W. Black, Kansas City, Mrs. R. Downing, 2974 Foothill BouleMo. (postmarked).
vard, Grants Pass, Oreg. Mrs. Elizabeth Bollhaner, 1827 Meyer Miss May Dunleavy, 1019 East 40th Avenue, Norwood, Ohio
Street, Brooklyn, N. Y. T. J. Boner, 605 East Water Street, Mrs. Inez Elliott, 1299 East WashingPontiac, Il.
ton, Pasadena, Calif. Mrs. J. Breen, 7 Derby Road, Hicks- Mrs. B. G. Fout, 2424 West 34th Place, ville, N. Y.
Chicago, Ill. Mrs. Katherine Bryan, 2434 West Felix A. Gielicz, 8205 Second Avenue, Greenleaf Ave., Chicago, Ill.
Inglewood, Calif. Joseph Bryne, 20 West 45th Street, Mrs. Edward A. Gilbert, 1405 School New York, N. Y.
House Road, Santa Barbara, Calif. Brian Brown, P. E. Devine, Norbert Mr. and Mrs. John Gleeson, 14 Metro
Kusch, Sebastian Sollecito, Mrs. politan Oval, New York, N. Y. Anna Edlund, Mrs. Emma Gustaf- E. H. Gora, 3779 East Pulaski Avenue, son, Mrs. Dorothea Salto, 4903 Cudahy, Wis.
North Ravenswood, Chicago, Ill. Mrs. J. Robert Griffin, Fort Worth, Tex. Mrs. Edna S. Brown, Rural Route No. (postmarked) 2, Box 36, Elgin, Ill.
Mr. and Mrs. John B. Hackler, 1109 Mrs. J. W. Brown, Jr., 512 Mesita Park Avenue, Pekin, Ill. Avenue, El Paso, Tex.
Mrs. Verna J. Harris, 1338 North Walter L. Brown, Big Sandy, Mont. Edgemont, Los Angeles, Calif. Paul S. Bruckner, 151 Candler Avenue, Mrs. Edward Hawkins, 145 Idabelle Highland Park, Mich.
Avenue, Wheeling, W. Va. Miss Alma Bump, 436 Russell Street, Mrs. Phoebe J. Heavy, 6255 North Baraboo, Wis.
Leona, Chicago, Ill. Mrs. Ethel Bussong, Chicago, Ill. (No Charles A. Herfurth, 322 Melrose Place, address; telegram.)
Centralia, Ill. Mrs. Keith Campbell
, 221 East Walton Miss Jo Hindman, 8920 Second Avenue, Place, Chicago, Ill.
Inglewood, Calif. Joseph W. Carman, Canajoharie, N. Y. Mrs. A. C. Hobble, 600 Blacker, El Paso, Mr. and Mrs. Archie Cartright, Route Tex. No. 3, Wisconsin Dells, Wis.
Mrs. Daisy A. Horstmann, Morristown, Mr. and Mrs. George E. Clarke, 5324 N. J. (postmarked).
Ferdinand Street, Chicago, Ill. Mr. and Mrs. J. H. Hummel, Box 25, Mrs. Mary C. Clausn, 6234 North Ci Flora, Ind. cero Avenue, Chicago, Ill.
Mrs. John S. Inman, 2660 Forest Kenneth Clinton, Mrs.'Romaine Clin Boulevard, Jacksonville, Fla.
ton, Charles Grosvenor, Mrs. Louise Mr. and Mrs. Merrell C. Jasper, 526 Grosvenor, 850 Park Avenue, New East Ellis Avenue, Inglewood, Calif. York, N. Y.
Miss Lucretia Jenkins, Miss Mary Roger C. Colburn, 1336 East Valley Dalton, Miss Lucile Farry, MargueRoad, Santa Barbara, Calif.
rite Bennett, Washington, D. C. Mrs. Florence Reed Cook, 156 Elkay (postmarked) Drive, Eugene, Oreg.
Mrs. Helen B. Jones, Chicago, Ill. (No Claude S. Corson, i7 Grant Street, address; telegram.) Mount Holly, N. J.
Miss Gertrude M. Kapust, 2457 North Mrs. Betty E. Covey, Box 43, Crozet, Va.
Nordica Avenue, Chicago, Ill. Miss Ruth E. Croft, 1006 Asbury Avenue, Evanston, Ill.
Mrs. Charles Kimmell, 304 South Mrs. John W. Daniel, 2630 Centenary, Mrs. Ralph W. Kolkmeyer, 2552 Madi
Washington, Butte, Mont.
son Road, Cincinnati, Ohio
Ohio C. T. Davis, 2806 Boyer Avenue, Seat- Mrs. Harvey S. Lawrence, 205 South
Clinton Street, Mulberry, Ind.
Evanston, Ili. nue, Evanston, Ill.
Miss Loris L. Lewis, Huntington-SheraMrs. Ronda Devlyn, 6147 South Moni ton Hotel, Pasadena, Calif. tor Avenue, Chicago, Ill.
Joseph H. Ley, Plainview, Minn.
Mrs. Eleanor Jewett Lundburg, Ripple Samuel Robbins, 176 West 81st Street,
Lodge, Long Lake, R. F. D. No. 2, New York, N. Y,
Mrs. Dell S. Roberts, 1441 North Miro
E. Harland Rose, 1012 Main Street, Mrs. E. McKenna, 975 Tyrus Court, Wheeling, W. Va. East Meadow, N. Y.
Miss Mary Rutledge, 2167 33d Street, Col. Garfield L. McKinney, United Astoria, N. Y.
States Army (Retired), Lake Ariel, Ben F. Schafer, 309 Columbia Building, Pa.
Louisville, Ky. Miss Imogen McMurtry, 329 Seventh Mr. and Mrs. William H. Scheel, Sr., Street, Marysville, Calif.
5801 Mangrove Street North, St. Charles A. Macauley, 1150 Griswold Petersburg, Fla Street, Detroit, Mich.
E. J. Schrieber, Sr., Route 6, Box 248, Miss Lucille H. Macauley, 1415 Parker North Main Road, Rockford, Ill. Avenue, Detroit, Mich.
Louis H. Schroeder, 412 Sixth Avenue, Dr. and Mrs. Howard Marks, 1433 La Grange, Ill.
Cherry Street, Huntington, Ind. Mrs. Josephine W. Schuman, Box 202,
Miss Clara H. Searle, 4131 Dry Creek Mrs. Otto W. G. Marquard, 15 Burn Road, Napa, Calif.
ham Avenue, Roslyn Heights, N. Y. Mrs. Helen L. Smith, Rural Route 18, Member, Abraham Lincoln Club, 605 Box 458, Indianapolis, Ind.
East Water Street, Pontiac, Ill. Sherry Smith, Ramapo Street, Monroe, Mrs. J. A. Miller, 4029 the Paseo, N. Y. Kansas City, Mo.
Mrs. Mary Staples, 6232 North Cicero Mrs. L. B. Monasmith, 1910 Harvard Avenue, Chicago, Ill. Avenue, Rockford, Ill.
Miss Margaret Steele, 1442 East 59th Mrs. Ella Monreal, 2465 Demington Street, Chicago, Ill.
Drive, Cleveland Heights, Ohio Harvey B. Stone, 203 Westway, Balti-. Mrs. Edith H. Moore, Crozet, Va.
more, Md. Miss Jeannette P. Moran, Patton, Calif. Mrs. R. _Straub, 130 Independence Mrs. Mary F. Moriarity, 325 West 82d South, Freeport, N. Y. Street, New York, N. Y.
Mrs. Camilla E. Tillman, 552 Duane Mr. and Mrs. Quintin Neal, 1516 Cleve Street, Glen Ellyn, Ill. land, Chicago, Ill.
Fred C. Trace, Post Office Box 855, Mrs. Arthur Nordquist, 117 North Oshkosh, Wis.
Rockford Avenue, Rockford, Ill. Mr. and Mrs. Jerome F. Tucheek,
Joe Vallore, 3813 Wilburne Street, Mrs. James J. O'Connor, 10915 White Seaford, N. Y.
Oak Avenue, Granada Hills, Calif. Mr. and Mrs. Walter L. Van Brocklin, R. C. Olson, 5906 West Ohio Street, 741 South 22d Street, Milwaukee, Chicago, Iủ.
Shore Club of Chicago, 850 Lake Mrs. Rita Van Wees, 843 Wilcox Ave-
nue, Bronx 65, N. Ý. Mrs. Robert E. Osth, 126 South Church Weston Vernon, 1435 Eldorado Drive, Street, Berryville, Va.
Billings, Mont. Mrs. Bertha Rachel Palmer, 814 College Mrs. Edwin P. Vogel, R. F. D. No. 1,
Avenue, Wheaton, Ill.
Antonio, Tex. (postmarked)
Miss Marian L. White, Box 954, CatheMiss Hazel Lucille Phillips, Argenta, Ill.
dral City, Calif. Mrs. Mabel Poders, 4646 North Ken- Mrs. Ira E. Westbrook, 207 Lake Street, more Avenue, Chicago, Ill.
Evanston, Ill. Mr. and Mrs. R. V. Prendagast, 7939 Ira E. Westbrook, Peabody, Westbrook, Drexel Avenue, Chicago, Ill.
Watson & Stephenson, 10 South La Mrs. J. H. Reininga, 700 Hastings Salle Street, Chicago, Ill.
Street, Park Ridge, Isl.
Mrs. Ruth A. Wilber, Oreana, Ill.
Julian E. Williams, 1709 Edgewood Mrs. John F. Riordan, 121 South
Road, Towson, Md. Humphrey Avenue, Oak Park, Ill. J. E. Willis, Big Sandy, Mont.