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Committees-Commerce, Manufactures, Roads and Canals.
Mr. HAYNE, of South Carolina, said, it was easy to perceive that the gentleman from New Jersey looked to Manufactures as a separate and distinct interest. If it had been otherwise, he would have accepted the amendment proposed by the gentleman from Pennsylvania. Mr. H. said he protested against such a doctrine. Experience had proved that much benefit had been derived from committing to one committee the subjects of commerce and manufactures, and he would advocate any motion to add the subject of agriculture-willing that those three great national interests should be inseparably connected. Mr. II. thought, if they were to legislate with a view to have separate and individual interests on those subjects, great misery to the country at large would be the result. It would be impossible for them to legislate wisely on manufactures, if they had not, at the same time, a distinct view of the effect on the commerce of the country. To illustrate the advantage of combining the two subjects in one committee, on which gentlemen conversant with each would be appointed, Mr. H. adverted to the great benefit which the Committee of Commerce and Manufactures had, at the last session, in its deliberations on the tariff bill, derived from the counsels of the honorable gentleman from Massachusetts, (Mr. LLOYD.) This fact was well known for the value of his knowledge and experience on that Committee was the subject of remark at the time. What, said Mr. H. was the object of legislating on manufactures? Was it to provide articles for the domestic use of the country? No-it was to make them a subject of commerce, by exporting what was manufactured, or effecting the impor tation of the produce of other nations, and it would be impossible for them to pass a law which would affect the manufactures of the country, which would not have a direct operation on its commerce. He hoped these great objects would go on together, and that the proposition to separate them would not prevail.
Mr. SMITH said nothing was more common than to introduce innovations in legislation; the subjects of manufactures and commerce had been for a series of years connected in one committee, and there was then no complaint, because these two great objects are so similar, that, in attempting to do much good to one, there is danger of injuring the other. A similar innovation took place in the other House; a Committee of Manufactures was instituted, and they went on for the promotion of that particular object without regard to the other; and, if the Senate followed the example of the other House, they must expect the same result. Commerce and Manufactures ought ever to go hand in hand, so as not to destroy or distress each other; and in the Committee there should be gentlemen who were favorable to manufactures, and others who were favorable to commerce, so as to check any motion or attempt to injure either the one or the other.
Mr. ROWAN observed that are Agricultural Society might be necessary for the ten miles square, as the soil was decidedly capable of great improvement. He thought they had better leave agriculture as it is-it was not within the scope of the powers of this body. The power to regulate commerce was expressly given, and the connexion between that and manufactures led to the establishment of a Committee of Commerce and Manufactures-but he should always vote against any proposition tending to regulate Agriculture.
[DEC. 9, 1825.
committee as well defined as those of any of the Standing Committees.
The question was then taken on Mr. FINDLAY's amendment, and lost.
The question was then taken on Mr. DICKERSON's motion to create two committees, and carried; Yeas 20, Nays 9. Mr. JOHNSON, of Kentucky, submitted the following resolution:
Resolved, That a committee be appointed to inquire into the expediency of abolishing imprisonment for debt.
Mr. J. moved the immediate consideration of this resolution; but, some opposition being made to this course, he withdrew the motion.
The Senate adjourned to Friday.
FRIDAY, DECEMBER 9, 1825.
obtained leave, introduced a bill for the relief of Clark Agreeably to notice, Mr. NOBLE asked, and, having
Mr. N. stated that Clark McPherrin was a soldier on the Peace Establishment, stationed at Fort Howard, who became deranged and left the post, and was found eighteen days afterwards, half a mile from the Fort, under a haystack, frostbitten to such a degree as to require the ampuWar Department, but there was no law in existence to aftation of both feet. His case had been represented to the ford him relief; this had induced Mr. N. to introduce the
The bill was read and passed to a second reading. Mr. N. moved a second reading of the bill to-day, but the motion was objected to, and lost of course.
Mr. HAYNE submitted the following resolution: Resolved, That uniform laws throughout the United States, on the subject of Bankruptcy, ought to be estab
ROADS AND CANALS.
The Senate then proceeded to the consideration of the following resolution, submitted by Mr. RUGGLES on Wednesday last:
Resolved, That there be added to the thirtieth rule for conducting the business of the Senate, the following:
"And a committee, to consist of five members, on Roads and Canals."
Mr. RUGGLES said he was not aware it was necessary to offer any remarks on the proposed amendment to the rule. The subject of Roads and Canals had been before Congress every session for a considerable time, and this session it formed a part of the President's Message, and it was necessary that a Standing Committee should be appointed as well for the reference of that portion of the Message, as to inquire into the matters relating to the subject, which would come before them from other quarters. A few days ago, the duties of the Committee on Commerce and Manufactures had been divided: those of a Committee on Roads and Canals would be equally laborious, and it was of importance that a committee should be appointed.
Mr. HOLMES, of Maine, said, the Senate would not probably be aware of the extent to which they would go in establishing a rule of this kind. They had heretofore been satisfied with appointing a committee from session to session; but if they were all agreed on the subject of Roads
Mr. HOLMES, of Maine, said the duties of the Com-and Canals, it would be proper to have a Standing Committee on Commerce and Manufactures were well under-mittee; that is, if the Senate agreed not only that the Gestood, because they had been defined by practice, but, as neral Government had the power to construct Roads and regarded the duties of a Committee on Agriculture, he Canals, but that it would always be expedient to do so. If, could not imagine what they could be, and he thought that however, the Members of the Senate were not all of opithey ought to be defined before such a committee was nion that they possessed the power, it would be better to established. go on as they had done heretofore, and refer the subject to a Select Committee.
Mr. FINDLAY said there were several cases in which such a committee could act; it was impossible to tell what The question was then taken on the resolution, and business might arise, and he thought the duties of that lost-yeas 14, nays 19.
Dec. 9, 1825.
Committee on Agriculture.
drawn by some of inconsistency between the two voter.
specting it beyond the District of Columbia. Mr. F. said,
The Senate then proceeded to the consideration of the following resolution, submitted by Mr. FINDLAY: "Resolved, That the 30th rule of the Senate be amended, by adding thereto a Committee on Agriculture.' Mr. FINDLAY said, that, when he brought forward the subject on a former day, it was urged in opposition, that the subject of Agriculture was not within the scope of that body, and that they could not, therefore, legislate re-mittee, and an inexpediency as great as to continue to refer commerce and manufactures to the same committee. All the arguments, so eloquently urged on that day by the gentlemen from Massachusetts and New Jersey, for a separate committee on each of the two last subjects, appli ed in equal vigor for a separate committee on agriculture. Not that he believed the interests of all these cardinal branches of industry were not inseparably connected-for he cordially united with the gentleman from South Carolina in that particular; but it was a connection in their importance to society, and in favor due from the Governinent; nor that he believed they were not sisters, as happily expressed by the gentleman from Maryland-but sisters, chiefly, in the affections of this House. They could be received separately; and, like those sciences having one common bond, must be examined in detail-peculiar ta lents could, in distinct committees, be brought to bear on the investigation of each; and, by a proper analysis and scrutiny of subjects of legislation, the same utility is attained as by a proper division of labor in the common affairs of life. That there was no employment for such a committee, had been again pressed by the ingenious gentleman from Maine: but, in addition to the answer given by the mover of the resolution, he would suggest, that all questions of direct taxes on land; all internal duties and excises; and all imposts, no less than questions of often, an immediate influence on the interests of agriculforeign and internal commerce, have a powerful, and, Mr. HOLMES, of Maine, wished very much that the ture. And, in a territory like ours, of between two and gentleman from Pennsylvania had informed them what three millions of square miles; with two-thirds of its poCould any of them pulation exclusively engaged in agriculture; with annual such a committee would have to do. know what its duties would consist in? Could he point exports from agriculture of about forty millions; and with, out any one thing it could report upon; any thing relating probably, fifteen millions of our duties paid, in the end, to the raising of cotton or of cattle? What power would by the tillers of the soil, who consume, and not by the the committee have? Was it to afford information to the merchants, who import-it is impossible not to find subpeople on the subject of agriculture, or to bring in re-jects peculiarly proper, in some stage of their progress ports on which Congress was to act? Mr. H. said he was through this House, to be referred to such a committee. opposed to the appointment of a committee of informa- True it is, that the subject, as heretofore, might be retion; but, if the gentleman would point out any one thing ferred to other committees; and it is equally true, that which properly belonged to such a committee, or shew all subjects, whatever, might be referred to a Committee how the committee was to act, he did not know but he of the whole House. True it is, also, that the duties of should be disposed to indulge him with his vote; but he such a committee are not specifically defined; nor are the confessed he could, himself, think of no one thing: it was duties of any other committee; but depend on the express perhaps, owing to his want of understanding on the sub-object of the committee, and the nature of subjects comject, but he could not see what the committee would ing before Congress. If those concerning agriculture are have to do. If he were one of that committee, and that gen- now small, he hoped the prosperity of it would long keep tleman were the chairman, and could give no further in- them small. But, that her interests were daily touched, formation on the subject than he had now done to the Se- directly or indirectly, and might be considered by reports nate, he should, certainly, be greatly at a loss what to do. of other committees being referred to the committee beMr. FINDLAY, in reply, referred to the article of spi- fore any final measures are taken, will be manifest, Ly rits-foreign spirits might come in competition with do- adverting, not only to the effect of the tariff, as before mestic ones, and affect the agriculturist in the grain-grow-named, on some kinds of produce, but to the duties on ing States: a prohibition of foreign potatoes might be pro- sugar, as affecting the agriculture of that section suited posed, which would also interest the agricultural interest; to the cane; on hemp, as affecting another section; on and many other questions might be mentioned which it woollen and cotton goods, as affecting the produce of would be proper to refer to a committee on the subject. other sections; tobacco, another. As a strong illustration But, supposing the committee had nothing to do, then the how agriculture may be affected by duties on articles conhalf a million in value of salt is annually imported, paying gentleman certainly could not imagine that any thing of sumed merely, and not grown here, something more than consequence could result from the appointment of it. a duty of twenty cents per bushel, and a large proportion of it being consumed by the farmers of the North, this duty is a tax on them. The hardy yeomanry of the country may ask, in time, to be heard on these, and simi
Mr. WOODBURY, of New Hampshire, observed, that he should vote for the resolution now before the Senate, notwithstanding the strong opposition to it which had been manifested. Yet he would not have risen to offer any remarks upon its passage, but for the circumstance, that, lar topics: and, though groaning under no such tithes and on Wednesday, y, he had voted against the amendment poor-rates as to require for relief the cumbrous system of proposed to the Committee on Manufactures, and, con-British Corn Laws; though not wont to be so clamorous
Imprisonment for Debt.
[DEC. 9, 1825.
as those engaged in some other pursuits; though not the United States, the subject embraced by this resoluthundering at your doors so often with petitions, memo- tion would come before that committee. He hoped, rials, and remonstrances; yet they have the same consti- therefore, the gentleman would permit his resolution to tutional right to notice, are as deeply interested in all the lie on the table till the Standing Committees of that legitimate objects of national legislation; and, as Lords House were appointed, and it would then be referred to of the Soil, were known, by every hearer, to yield in no one of them, under whose examination it would more human excellence to the Lords of the Spindle. The other immediately come. House had a similar committee, and he trusted, this would be deemed an additional argument for one here.
Mr. HOLMES, of Maine, said that the gentleman had endeavored to define the duties of a Committee on Agriculture; but every one that he had mentioned, properly belonged to, and was always considered by, the Committee on Finance. As regarded the tariff, or a tax affecting any article of commerce, the Committee of Finance was properly the Committee of Agriculture for the Senate. Mr. H. did not mean to disregard the interests of agriculture-on the contrary, he thought it the great interest on which all the other interests rested. The present question was merely the proper mode of transacting the business of the Senate; but, as far as the agriculture of the country was concerned, having a bearing on taxes, and on the manufactures of the country, the Committee of Finance was the true committee to which its interests ought to be referred.
Mr. JOHNSON said, it was the good fortune of his friend from Massachusetts, to have a Presidential recommendation in behalf of his favorite measure to satisfy his mind. But, for himself, Mr. J. said, he was obliged to bring forward his favorite project in the same manner, and ask for it the same course that it had taken the two preceding sessions. He had not opposed the proposi tion for a bankrupt law; but, if he had that subject not so much at heart as the measure he had now, for the third time, presented to the Senate, he hoped he should be pardoned for asking an opportunity of bringing it forward. He said this was the third time he had introduced this proposition. The first session, the bill for abolishing imprisonment for debt, passed this body, but unfortunately it was at the close of the session, and, like every thing which at that period goes from one house to the other, it was swallowed up and engulphed, for want of time, with the other unfinished business of both Houses. That was The question was then taken on the resolution of Mr. the fate of the bill the Senate acted on; and, last session, FINDLAY, and decided by Yeas and Nays, as follows: when he again introduced the subject, he was unsuccessYEAS-Messrs. Barton, Bell, Benton, Chase, Dicker-ful. Mr. J. said, there was not a member of the commuson, Edwards, Findlay, Hayne, Hendricks, Johnson, of nity who would deny the isolated proposition for which Ken. Johnston of Lou. Kane, Knight, Marks, Noble, Rob- he contended, that imprisonment for debt ought to be bins, Ruggles, Seymour, Smith, Thomas, Willey, Wood-abolished; yet for want of perfection in the details, it was, bury-22. last session, lost by the casting vote of the presiding officer. He denied, most unequivocally, that this subject was embraced in that of an uniform system of bankruptcy; he denied that it had ever been embraced in any system here or in Great Britain, or in any other proposition made here by a standing committee, and, if his life were spared, he should submit it annually as long as he had the honor of a seat on that floor, although, out of respect to his associates, he should never complain of the result, if he failed, but content himself with having discharged his duty to God, his country, and his conscience. He had stated emphatically, and he should repeat with the same emphasis, that no individual in that House, or the other Branch of the Government, had been known to raise his voice against the propriety of the proposition to abolish They had only differed on the details of the measure. Imprisonment for debt was a stain on us as a Christian nation, and he thought that the wisdom of Congress, whilst it sanctioned the object of a bill for its abolishment, would be capable of communicating to it a vivifying principle. He was not so fortunate as to have his proposition recommended in the President's Message, but he hoped, though it was only sanctioned by a humble member of this body, it would have as good an opportunity for investigation as that which came with the sanction of the Chief Magistrate.
IMPRISONMENT FOR DEBT.
The Senate then proceeded to consider the following resolution, submitted on Wednesday last, by Mr. JonssON, of Kentucky:
Resolved, That a Committee be appointed to inqire into the expediency of abolishing Imprisonment for Debt. Mr. MILLS, of Massachusetts, said this was a subject which had occupied much of the time and attention of the Senate, and he should be glad to have it thoroughly examined, that some course might be adopted, some pro-imprisonment for debt. position made, which should meet with the approbation of a majority of the Senate. But he was opposed to the appointment of a Select Committee at the present time for that purpose. Amongst the great variety of subjects in the President's Message, Mr. M. said, there was one he had recommended and he thanked him for it-the establishment of an uniform system of bankruptcy in the United States, in pursuance of the express delegation of that power to Congress by the Constitution; and it was easy to see that it was a subject connected with the proposition now brought forward; and, whenever they exercised that power, all the evils, of which there was so much complaint, would be effectually remedied. As soon as the Standing Committees were appointed, that part of the Message which related to the subject of bankruptcy would be referred to one of them, probably the Committee on the Judiciary, and, when it was so referred, that committee would then have before it the very subject to which the gentlemen now wished to call the attention of the Senate, and for which he wished the appointment of a Select Committee. Mr. M. was of opinion that, where two subjects were so intimately blended together, that they could not legislate on one without involving the other, both ought to be referred to the same committee. In digesting and preparing an act to establish an uniform system of bankruptcy throughout
Mr. NOBLE, of Indiana, could not vote for referring the subject to a Select Committee. It had been before the Senate three years; had been most amply discussed; and, as far as he knew, there was no one in favor of the abstract proposition of imprisonment for debt; but all were willing to abolish it. He would say now, that whenever the subject should be brought before that body, he should vote for the bill if it proposed giving to the honest creditor a right to compel a cession of property, but not otherwise. The Committee on the Judiciary would consist of men of talents and experience, and a subject which would vitally affect millions of persons within the United States, certainly would not be passed over.
Mr. MILLS said he should be sorry to be misunderstood by the gentleman from Kentucky, or by any other his only wish, in the few remarks he offered, was to in
NAYS-Messrs. Branch, Chandler, Clayton, Cobb,
OF DEBATES IN CONGRESS.
DEC. 12, 13, 1825.]
Imprisonment for Debt.
duce the gentleman from Kentucky, to permit his reso- object of such a system was merely to benefit the debtor One object certainly was to secure relution to lie on the table till the Standing Committees and, in consequence, the creditor became alarmed. This were elected, and if it was found that a large portion of was not the fact. business was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary, lief to the honest debtor; but one equally important he would unite with him in referring it to a Select Com-would be considered, the securing the just rights of the mittee, provided the resolution offered by the gentleman creditor. Any one who had surveyed the United States from South Carolina, (Mr. HAYNE,) should go to the same during the last six months, and had witnessed the tremenCommittee; both propositions, Mr. M. said, had reference dous effects of the bankrupcies that had prevailed in difto the relationship between debtor and creditor, and it was ferent parts of the Union, must have been convinced that difficult to legislate so as to preserve the rights of the the most crying evils existed in regard to that subjectcreditor, and yet give liberty to the honest debtor, which fraudulent debtors giving undue preference, making false they all had so much at heart. When the two subjects consignments, &c. and putting fair dealing at defiance. should come before the same committee, they would con- Mr. H. said, whilst he was disposed to join with the gensider them in every point of view, and digest such a sys-tleman from Kentucky, in affording relief to honest debtThe gentle-ors of every class and description, he should be no less tem as would be acceptable to the House. man from Kentucky had asserted, that no Standing Com-anxious to secure the just rights of creditors. All he demittee in either House had ever brought forward a pro- sired was, that the whole subject, in all its bearings position of this kind: the gentleman had himself, Mr. M. and relations, should go to the enlightened committee, said, brought forward the subject on the first business who would deliberate seriously on it, and present the day of each Session for the last three years, and he would views which their deliberations would suggest; and he appeal to him and to others whether its failure was not had no doubt, if the talents and experience of the Senate to be attributed to its having been brought forward ori- were directed to the subject, the result would be a wise Mr. MILLS then moved to postpone the further consiginally in an undigested form; and whether there was and beneficial law. not more probability of something being accomplished by leaving one Committee to consider both propositions to-deration of the subject to Tuesday next, which., after a few The Senate adjourned to Monday. gether, than by bringing each forward before distinct remarks from Mr. JoHNSON, of Kentucky, was agreed to. Committees. With this explanation, Mr. M. said he should move to lay the resolution on the table.
MONDAY, DEC. 12, 1825.
Mr. MACON, observed, that, to his mind, there was a This day was principally occupied in the election of clear distinction between the measure proposed by the resolution and a bankrupt law. A law to abolish impri- Officers of the Senate. After several ballotings, WALTER sonment for debt would apply to all honest debtors of LowRIE, of Pennsylvania, (late a member of this body) whatever class or vocation; whereas a bankrupt law was chosen Secretary. MOUNTJOY BAILEY, was chosen would apply to a few comparatively, as he understood Sergeant at Arms, and HENRY TIMS, Doorkeeper. The that bankrupt laws embraced merchants only; the lat-Rev. Dr. STAUGHTON was chosen Chaplain to the Senate. ter were also highly penal, and if a fraudulent bankrupt was caught, he would be severely punished. [Hanged, said Mr. MILLS, in an under voice.] The gentleman from Massachusetts says, hang him. I did not know, sir, that the people in his part of the country were so fond of hanging; but I confess I prefer relieving debtors, honest ones, by the mode proposed by the gentleman from Kentucky, and shall vote for his resolution.
Mr. HAYNE, of S. C. said he had that morning the honor of submitting a resolution on the subject of bankruptcies; in so doing, his object was not to call for the immediate decision of the Senate on that proposition, but to refer it to some committee, when they shall have been appointed. He should be particularly desirous, if the gentleman from Kentucky, (Mr. JOHNSON,) should obtain his Select Committee, with a view of considering the subject in all its bearings, to ascertain how far process in the Courts of the United States might be modified, and how far general relief might be extended throughout the Union; that the committee, viewing the whole of the subject, might present the result of their deliberations to the Senate. He should still maintain his resolution, and if the gentleman from Kentucky should succeed in his proposition, he intended to move, at the proper time, to refer it to that committee. He was not disposed to object to that proposition, and he hoped that, in the spirit of mutual accommodation, he would not object to the suggestion which he now made. The proposition of the gentleman from Kentucky, Mr. H. said, would afford rehef to unfortunate debtors of a particular class, for that bill never did propose to extend it beyond the Courts of the United States. The relief afforded would, therefore, only be as one in a hundred; but a mild and judicious bankrupt law would not be confined to this class, but its benefits would be extended to every class throughout the Union. This was a subject for fair inquiry-there existed, Mr. H. said, in this House, and in the nation, a prejudice on the subject of bankruptcy. Many imagined that the
TUESDAY, DEC. 13, 1825.
The Senate proceeded to the consideration of the following resolution, submitted on a former day, by Mr. JOHN SON, of Kentucky:
"Resolved, That a Committee be appointed to inquire Mr. HAYNE, of S. C. thought the suggestion made on into the expediency of abolishing Imprisonment for Debt." the subject the other day, by the gentleman from Massachusetts, (Mr. MILLS,) a very good one, and he hoped it would meet the approbation of the honorable mover: he should, therefore, move to amend the resolution by adding the following words:
"And, also, that they be instructed to inquire into the expediency of establishing an uniform system of Bankruptcy throughout the United States, with leave to report by bill or otherwise."
Mr. H. remarked, further, that, by referring both subjects to the same committee, sufficient time would be given for the inquiry, and the whole ground would be occupied: the only objection would be, its not being referred to the Committee on the Judiciary, but that committee would, he presumed, have so much to do, it would, probably, not be able to bestow the necessary attention on the
details of these measures.
Mr. JOHNSON, of Kentucky, said he should make no objection, as far as he was concerned, but would vote for the proposition, provided no objection were made to it by the Committee on the Judiciary.
The amendment was agreed to, and the resolution, as amended, adopted.
The Committee was ordered to consist of seven members.
The Senate then proceeded to the consideration of the following resolution, submitted yesterday, by Mr. KANE, of Illinois:
On the Judiciary.
[DEC. 13, 1825.
"Resolved, That the Committee on the Judiciary be in- a great constitutional question-one vitally interesting to structed to inquire into the expediency of so amending the the Union, and particularly to the State which he in part Acts of Congress regulating processes in the Courts of represented a State which was unfortunate enough to be the United States as to place the persons and property the first member of this Confederacy, which had felt judi(with regard to the proceedings against them) of citizens cial power under the enactment of a code of laws issued of the States admitted into the Union since the 29th of Sep-under the name of Rules of Court. Mr. J. said, that the tember, 1789, upon a footing of equal security with the Federal Circuit and District Courts for the Kentucky Dispersons and property of citizens of the original States." trict, had issued certain rules of court, which operated, to Mr. HOLMES, of Maine, said he should be much grati-all intents and purposes, as the execution laws of the State fied if the honorable gentleman who had moved the reso- of Kentucky, so far as related to judgments or decrees lution would briefly state his object in making the motion, obtained in the Federal Courts for that State. He had as his views would probably be useful to the Committee on not those rules of court to present to the Senate, which he the Judiciary. called a code of execution laws; at a proper time, he hop
Mr. KANE then rose, and said, that the explanation re-ed to have it in his power to present them; for the prequired by the honorable gentleman from Maine, lay within sent he would say that these rules, if he recollected right, narrow limits, and might be explained in few words. The regulated the ca. sa. which took the body of the debtor; object is, as expressed upon the face of the resolution, to they regulated the forth-coming bond and the replevin procure such amendments in the acts of Congress, regu- bond; the terms upon which real and personal estate lating processes in the Courts of the United States, as will should be sold; at what time, and upon what credit; and, place the citizens of the several States upon a footing of in fine, he considered the rules a complete system (of its equal security in their persons and property. The Pro- kind) of execution laws; laws which were not in force in cess act of the 28th September, 1789, amongst other Virginia; laws which were not in force in Kentucky; and things, in effect, provided that the modes of process in the laws which were not in force by acts of Congress. These Circuit and District Courts, in suits at common law, Courts, acting under the authority of the United States, should conform to those then used in the Supreme Courts declared that this power had been exercised in conseof the States. By "modes of process" was meant, as is quence of a decision of the Supreme Court of the Union. decided in the case of Wayman vs. Southard, by the Su- He had not examined that opinion with so much accuracy preme Court, every step taken in a cause; and "indicates as to give an opinion whether he concurred with the the progressive course of the business from its commence- Judges of the Circuit and District Court for the State of ment to its termination." Thus, the persons and proper- Kentucky as to latitude of principle which they believed ty of the citizens of the States then in existen were the Supreme Court had assumed. It would, however, placed under the protection and guardianship of their own become the bounden duty of Congress to look into that laws. This provision continued in force, without modifi- matter, and see if it were possible that irresponsible judication, until the act of May, 1792, was passed, by which cial officers had assumed the right, and had exercised the the same was made subject to such alterations and addi- power, of making laws for a sovereign and independent tions as the Circuit and District Courts might make, and State. He thought they might be satisfied with the exerto such regulations as the Supreme Court of the United cise of the power to declare State laws unconstitutional, States should, by rule, prescribe. He did not under- at their will and pleasure, and leave to the Representastand, nor did he know that it was so understood any tives of the People to frame the laws. From what he where, that these "modes of proceeding" were by this could learn, he supposed the Judges had, in giving this latter act made subject to any alterations, additions, or re- opinion, doubted whether the regulation and creation of gulations, other than such as time and practice should rules, to regulate the sale of property, and the disposition show to be indispensable to the correct administration of of the body of the debtor, was the exercise of legislative justice. The benefits of the provisions of '89, have been power. Mr. JOHNSON said he would appeal to every memadjudged to have application to the citizens of those ber of this body-he would appeal to every intelligent States only which had existence when the act was passed. jurist of this nation-whether, in England or America, if It was for the purpose of placing the citizens of other it was at all doubtful whether the system of execution States upon the same footing, that he ventured to intro-laws was not a substantive and a vitally important legisla duce this resolution. These citizens, in their persons and tive power; and whether, in all the States, in the United property, are now subject to be dealt with, not in a man- States, and in Great Britain, the statute books did not inner prescribed by their own laws, but according to such variably prove that legislative bodies, the Representatives rales as the Courts may think proper to adopt. The State of the People, where they exist, have not at all times which he had the honor in part to represent, as is the exercised this power exclusively. Mr. J. said, in many case with its neighbors, Indiana and Missouri, has no other cases the Court might be authorized to interfere in the than a District Judge. No inference was, however, to be forms of judicial proceedings; and, like the colors of the drawn from the few remarks he had submitted, that the rainbow, it might sometimes be doubtful where legislative Judges are blameable for the manner in which they have power ended and judicial power began. But, in the case exercised so large a discretion. The principle is to be mentioned, he could not conceive of a higher or more exdreaded; and the cause of complaint may be removed by clusively legislative question, than that which had domiextending the benefits of the act of '89 to all the States, nion over the property and liberty of the citizen. But, or by the passage of a law establishing a system uniform he said, he should not longer trespass upon the patience and impartial in its operations. It was not essential to the and courtesy of the Senate, but should conclude by say explanation required of him, nor to the purpose of the re- ing that he believed that the exercise of such a power, by solution, that he should, on this occasion, indicate a pre- the Judges, was as contrary to the spirit of our Constituference for any particular plan; but he would think himself tion, as if the King of England and his two Houses of fortunate if he had succeeded in convincing the Senate Lords and Commons had given us this code. that further legislation was necessary.
Mr. R. M. JOHNSON, of Kentucky, remarked, that he had not taken notice of the proposition of the gentleman from Illinois, until he found it on his table, and he was at some loss to know the precise objects which the gentleman intended to embrace; but he was now extremely happy to learn, from the explanation given, that the motion involved
Mr. HOLMES, of Maine, said his object was attained by the clear explanation given by the honorable mover. He had pointed out the evil and the remedy he proposed: this was the object he had in view in calling on him, and he was perfectly satisfied.
The question was then taken and the resolution agreed to.