Slike strani


Distribution Question.

(FEB. 28, 1837.

The Senator from Kentucky had said that the present was now rising, and would probably continue to rise. proposition was identical with that of the last session. The rice crop, also, was rather belter, though the toMr. B. thought there was a most malerial difference be. bacco was not quite as much; so that the products for ex. tween them, and, in fact, no simili ude at all. At the

port in 1837 might be fairly put down to equal those of last session, there was an actual ascertained surplus; but 1836. The profits of trade were never higher, and the now there was no surplus actually in the 'Treasury. customs would probably not be less than $25,000,000 or There was only a possibility that it might accumulate. $30,000,000, though in bis estimate he had made the The one was a case of absolute necessity, the surplus hay. customs rather less than last year. ing accumulated during several preceding years. But In relation to the revenue from the public lands, Mr. now they were called on to provide for a distribution of c. had been guided more by the opinions of others wbo a surplus which might never occur.

had more experience, and he had set it down at eight or The measure, he said, would be an injury to the State nine millions of dollars. To this was to be added the Governments, by inducing them to enter upon extrava. | stock in the United States Bank, which would make an gant schemes of improvement, in anticipation of a surplus. aggregate, for the year, of $42,000,000. Expectations would be excited by the act, wbich would The question now, whether there would or would not never be realized. This, stimulating them to extrava. be a surplus, depended (he said) on the answer to the gant schemes, would throw them into difficulty, and do question whether Congress would appropriate all this an unknown amount of mischief. And why legislate at money. Would politicians of the Jefferson school, who all on the subject at this juncture! The provision in the had expelled the old administration, partly on account bill proposed a distribution of the surplus on the 1st of of its prodigality in an anuual expenditure of some January next; but, before that time, another session of $12,000,000, would they go so far as to appropriate Congress would commence, and there would be time even $27,000,000? At this Mr. C. would place the ex. enough then to legislate on what was certain, and not penditure, though he thought the extreme ought not to uncertain or improbable.

exceed fifteen or sixteen millions, and the average not Another objection to the measure was, that it would more than twelve or fourteen millions. There would tend to fix perpetual distribution on the General Gov. then be a surplus of some fifteen or seventeen millions, ernment. The distribution law of the last session Mr. with the enormous expenditure which he admitted might B. believed to be judicious, and the lesser of the two be made. evils, one of wbich was unavoidable. But he would not Last year, the reiterated predictions that there would contribute to the establishment of a system which he be no surplus had proved to be false. This year they considered pernicious. And legislation of this kind, in would be equally so. There was a heavy surplus now, 80 quick succession, he thought was calculated to fix the and, without extraordinary expenditures, there would system upon us.

be at the end of the year. There were two reasons The country, he thought, must feel greatly indebted to which he thought decisive in urging at this time the their watchful guardians, who were for dividing a sur- measure of distribution. One was, that if they made plus among them which had no existence except in ima- no disposition of the surplus, the scenes of last year gination. Mr. B. had always supposed that, when a would be renewed; the banks would loan extravagantly, trust had been committed to trustees, they had dis. relying on the surplus as banking capital, and would ex. charged their duty faithfully when they distributed funds tend speculation every way and to every thing. This after they had actually accrued. But here gentlemen state of things the President himself bad denounced; and proposed to execute a trust which had not yet devolved yet, notwithstanding past experience and these denunci

ations of the President, we were now told to omit this But there was another aspect in which the question measure for preventing such a result. The opposite might be viewed, of great importance to the Union, and course (Mr. C. said) was the true one. Pass this law especially to the planting Stales of the South. No sys- now, and it would check extravagance and speculation, tem which the advocates of the tariff could devise would and remedy the very disordered state of the currency, be better calculated than this system to perpetuate the which would otherwise be still more disordered. This tariff. If Congress would give in to the system of an- would meet fully and decisively the two first objects of nual distribution, this country would not, for years, if the Senator from Pennsylvania and of every Senator. ever, be relieved from the tariff system. From the The next argument was, that the passage of the bill want of time, Mr. B. said he should forego some of the would familiarize us to a system of distribution, which remarks which he had intended to make on this subject. might ibus be permanently ingrafted on the administra

Mr. CALHOUN said the question was now brought tion of the Government; whereas distribution ought to to the single point, of what discriminalion there was be- be an exception, and not the rule. To this latter proptween this bill and the other, and whether this was un. osition Mr. C. agreed most heartily; and no man urged wise and that a wise one. Gentlemen admitted that the it more than he. He was the first to denounce such a situation of the banks last year and now was precisely system, and his opinion on this point bad undergone no the same. The next point of the Senator from Pennsyl. change whatever. It ought to be an exception, and not vania (for others had followed almost exactly in the the rule. His own language was, that it was to be used track which he had stricken out) was, that when the law as medicine, and not as food; and the provisions of this of last year was passed, there was a large surplus in the very bill were founded on the disordered condition of Treasury, while now there was none. But (said Mr. the republic. It was in the congestive state, and this C.) notwithstanding the distribution on the 1st of Janu- bill was intended to remove the obstructions. But the ary last, our Treasury is as full now as it was at that dose must be repeated till the system should become time.

healthy. In Mr. C's opinion, the measure ought to be Mr. C. here went into the details of various statements repeated while the revenue should be going down, till and estimates, to prove this assertion. He made the the time of its reduction to the economical wants of the sum in the Treasury now $42,000,000. The income of Government. It might require repetition again and the customs last year he said was $21,000,000; which again; while the scheme, as a permanent one, would be differed by $2,000,000 from his estimate for the present perfectly absurd. As such, there was not the smallest year. The imports, he said, were regulated by the es. reason to fear that the people would ever come into it. ports, which were now known. The exports of cotton General Jackson, in two of his messages, bad strongly were greater than in the year preceding, and the price I recommended it; but, with all his popularity and power,

upon them.

FEB. 28, 1837.)

Distribution Question.



even he could not carry it; and nothing but absolute ne- one year more; at the next, again for two years; and so cessity had ever effected the passage of the former bill, on, till, finally, the whole scheme would become forever or could effect the passage of this; and that this had al. perpetual and eternal. But he had not counted on the ready passed the House was decisive proof that it was good fortune to the country that at this session the a measure of necessity.

friends of the scheme would come forward with a prop. The Senator from Pennsylvania was in favor of re-osition that it should be perpetual. And this matter was ducing the revenue; and so was Mr. C. Early in the calculated to have so much the more favor, as eternity session, the Senator from New York and himself passed was greater than time. Mr. B. rejoiced that the en. some words on the subject, and Mr. C. then told him tire magnitude of the proposition now stood revealed. that he had no faith in a reduction at this session, which the system (Mr. B. said) of permanent distribution was difficult at all times, but was now attended with in- now avowed openly and aboveboard. Let us superable difficulty. There were then two measures in go on with the word deposite, and attach it to the view, one of which was to reduce the tariff of 1833. Mr. ) harbor bill and every thing else. The word requisition c. thought then there was very little prospect of the was worn out during the confederacy, and led to the passage of such a law, or of a law reducing the revenue adoption of this Government, which was established for from the public lands. Yet, if they would and could re- the sole purpose of being independent, with power to duce, he said, go on and do so. It was now the last day call for the money to carry it on. It was now proposed but one, and ihere was no hope that the bill for redu. to annihilate the very ground on which the Federal Gov. cing would pass. The administration majorities in both ernment was formed. The scheme was disclosed, and Houses had failed of reduction. Would ihey now leave there was now no doubt that the high intelligence and the money in the bands of the banks? Mr. C. trusted incorruptible virtue of the people would look for a disthey would not. There were now but three alternatives, ferent project. one of which was to leave the money in the banks. We had now, then, got a proposition for a permanent Would Congress do this, receiving only two per cent., distribution, and the surplus was not intended to be apand that not on the whole, but only a part of the amount, propriated, but to be distributed. And could any one when it was well known that with ihem it was at least doubt that Congress would not find a perpetual fund? worth six per cent.? Were they to leave it with the Yes, they would find it. There were interests beyond banks, as an instrument for political purposes! Why that would have ample power to back and to bribe them; should gentlemen recommend so extraordinary a course, interests that were cemented together on the ground of so unequal

, so partial, to avoid returning it to the people resisting appropriations, and of resisting a reduction of to whom it belonged? Why were they so averse to such the revenue also, and of increasing it from all its sources. a distribution? Was it to prevent the people from being They were now for yielding to the act of compromise, corrupted? Were the people alone capable of being throwing around it the sanctity which was now claimed corrupted? Were the Government and banks all pure, for it. The duty on wine had been already reduced, in while the people, the people alone, were corrupt and contravention of the compromise; and when it should corruptible? Mr. c. however, would not argue in re expire, in June, 1842, on the next morning, when Congard io the State Governments, as he thought they of gress would be untied from the obligations in which the course must be perfectly safe.

act had tied them up, on that very morning of the 1st of The second alternative (Mr. C. said) was to expend July, Congress would instantly restore the protective this enormous amount. That had already been contem. duties, and fill the Treasury to overflowing, and not with plated as a dangerous error. In 1828, the income of the the continual current of a rill across the continent; on Government was raised enormously. We were now that day an act would be passed, compared to which about in the commencement of the operation of raising that of 1828 was only a trifle. They would then want the expenditure, and at the very time when the reve. $50,000,000 or $100,000,000. nue was going down at about an annual average of Mr. B., in the midst of some incidental remarks, allu$2,000,000 till 1842. Mr. C. thought $12,000,000 or ded to the bill of Mr. CALHOUN for ceding the public $15,000,000 a most ample provision; especially as the lands to the States. Where was the person, he asked, fortifications and other defences being nearly completed, who was simple enough to suppose that this proposition the expenses must be nearly limited to the civil list. for distribution did not surrender that bill, leaving nothThe administration of Mr. Monroe was called but the bone to support a shadow? The lands that gant in the expenditure of $10,000,000, which was the could now be got for $i 25 per acre would in 1842 be extreme annual amount. The appropriations then for raised to $5 and $10 per acre. Let this bill pass, and fortifications and the army were called most extravagant. farewell to that bill

; farewell to the extinction of the But now gentlemen could not be contented with less federal title to lands, in favor of the States; farewell to than $20,000,000 or $30,000,000; and at this rate the all graduation of the price of the public lands. If this expenditure would very soon overrun the income. We bill should pass, the Treasury would be kept for the must then raise the tariff or cat down the expenditure. purpose of being ravaged-the spoil of political scramThese sudden vibrations (Mr. C. said) were all wrong. blers, and nothing but a remnant would be left for the This want of looking forward, this wilful blindness to immolated victim, the duped and ruined Federal Goythe future, was wholly unworthy of those who had the ernment. We know the young States are to be de. management of the republic. The responsibility and voured by the old, and hence the measure is the more the danger was great, if either this bill should be lost, or odious to the West. The land bill of Mr. Clay was far if a resort should be had to extravagant expenditures. preferable to the measure now presented. That bill

The last and only remaining alternative was a deposite gave 12} per cent. of their own carcass to the new of the surplus with the States. It was now late in the Stales. But this gave not one slice, not even a lick of session, and Mr. C. would not further consume the lime; their own blood. but what he had said was ample to show that there was If driven to the alternative, Mr. B. would take that in no material distinction between the case now and that of preference to this; but, rather than take cither, he the year preceding.

would place his bat on his head and walk out of the CapMr. BENTON said, when the distribution bill of the itol, never again to behold the inside or outside of its last session was up, it was represented as one operation. walls. Mr. B. rejoiced that the proposition had been But it made way for others. At the next session, he brought forward at this early stage, with the purpose of then thought there would be another proposition for | making it perpetual, habitual, eternal, and that the word SENATE.]

Distribution Question.

(PEB. 28, 1837.


was even ostentatiously used, thrown in their faces, and

raising money to distribute; we shall no longer hear of driven down their throats.

reducing the revenue of the country to its necessary exAnd now for the Senator from Ohio, (Mr. Ewing.) penditure; we shall then have no difficulty in disposing That Senator had favored Mr. B. with a few words of the surplus; it will go to the States as a matter of quoted from a speech of his. He had read it as he found course; and our whole system of government will thus it, and as Mr. B. bad spoken it, and never in his life had be changed. he been better understood. The Cherokee treaty, the For my own part, (said Mr. B.,) I should be sorry to Florida 'war, and innumerable bills, all of which, be reduce the tariff below the proper limit. I am in favor said, were for working the machinery of Government, of affording to our domestic industry all the incidental providing for the pay of officers of Government, and protection which can be yielded to it in raising the revefor improving the condition of the country, belonged

nue necessary for the wants of the Government. Into the working of Government machinery. Mr. Jeffer deed, if any thing could reconcile me to the doctrines of son's purchase of Louisiana for fifteen millions of dollars the Senator, it would be the protection which they must was not extravagant, and it would not be charged as the necessarily afford to our manufactures. Let this amendmeans of working Government machinery. At that time

ment pass the Senate, as it has already passed the men charged it to the expenditures for the support of House, and who can believe that the tariff will ever be the common family.

reduced? If all the surplus money which can be colHe would now say a word on the subject of a surplus. | lected by this Government is to be distributed amongst No word in the English language had been so much the several States, this will perpetuate high duties forabused as this, for the last twelve months. Gentlemen

It is not, however, either my intention or my asked last year for a division of the surplus. But did wish to quarrel with him on this account. If he will, they put it in the bill? No; it was not surplus, but ap- | by advocating this system of policy, force upon us a high propriated money, which they recaptured and distribu. tariff, my constituents will bear their part of the dispen. ted among the States. Mr. B. here read over several sation with Christian fortitude. appropriations wbich bad not been expended. These,

I am sorry now to believe in the truth of the declara. he said, were unexpended balances from the last year, tion of the Senator from Missouri, (Mr. BENTUN,) that because the appropriations were made too late, But the land bill is a lifeless corpse. I have clung to that they would never be abandoned, and the taxes must be measure, through good report and through evil report, kept up for the purpose of paying them. On the 1st of | until it has been abandoned by all its other friends, and January next, there would be ten or twelve millions of I am left as the only mourner of its unhappy fate. Dead unexpended appropriations. Now, he asked, what is and gone, as it appears to be, I shall not do its memory surplus money under our laws! Here he read from the

so much injustice as to compare it with the system of law, that appropriations were valid for two years after distribution which its former friends bave now adopted their passage. This act, he said, had been in force forty in its stead. years, and this bill would go to violate it. No word, The land bill would be the safety-valve, the regulator then, was more abused than the word surplus. Gentle. of our system of revenue and expenditure, without inmen were unwilling to insert the reserved $5,000,000, Aicting any of the evils on the Federal Government as over and above all appropriations.

which must flow from annual distributions of the surThe revenue, Mr. B. maintained, was in greater dan- 1 plus in the Treasury. ger in the United States Bank than in the deposite banks. What is the theory of our Government under the conBut what had the Government to do with banks? They stitution? Congress possess the power to levy and collect were built on the surplus money, banks upon banks. taxes. For what purpose! To accomplish the great ob

We had already seen the fatal effects of this measure jects specified in the constitution. This power of levying on this session. All kept it in their eye, and stood to- iaxes carries with it an immense responsibility. The gether, resisting appropriations and a reduction of the

representatives of the people, when they know that all revenue, and swelling the amount. What effect had this

the money they appropriate must be taken from the measure on the bill sent to the other House, on the 25th pockels of their constituents, will be careful to expend of February, for reducing the revenue? If there had it with economy and discretion. But we possess a vast been no scheme for distribution, that bill would bave reservoir of wealth in our public lands, so irregular in been acted on immediately. But now, by this scheme, its current that, in one year, it pours into the public that bill lay paralyzed, and probably dead forever. It Treasury twenty millions, and in the next it contributes would be seen that, when the revenue was to be reduced, but one tenih of that sum. This deranges all our legis. the surplus party would stand together and vote against | lation, and renders all great interests of the country it. It would be so on appropriations; their vote would Auctuating and insecure. It encourages extravagant be one and indivisible, and they would be for raising the appropriations by Congress, and banishes economy from duties on the 1st July, 1842, and for raising the price of our legislation. It leaves every interest in doubt and unthe public lands. Let gentlemen take their course. certainty. lo one year, when we have more money than Those who voted for this bill would also vote for a per. we know how to expend, we hear the cry that the tariff manent distribution, and to raise the duties in the lariff must be reduced; the revenue must be diminished to the of 1842, and to deny pre-emption to settlers. Whatever necessary expenditures of the Government; protection might be their intentions, such would be the effect of must be withdrawn from our manufactures. The next their votes.

year, perhaps there may be a reaction. Speculation in Mr. BUCHANAN must say, in candor, to the Senator the public lands may have exhausted itself, and the re. from South Carolina (Mr. Caluoun) that he had entirely ceipts of the Treasury from this source may be greatly failed to convince him he was wrong. Of one thing, diminished. What comes then? Tbe tariff must be however, he had convinced him, and that was that the raised; the duties on imports must be increased to meet Senator, in fact if not in profession, was one of the very the necessary wants of the Government. Thus the pub. best tariff men in the country. Let bim succeed in sup- lic mind is kept in a perpetual state of excitement. No porting this amendment which had been adopted by the domestic interest can calculate upon any fixed and House; let him succeed in establishing a system of dis- steady protection. We are in a state of continual doubt, tribution as the settled policy of the country; and then public opinion fluctuating with the Aucluations in the what will be the inevitable consequence? High taxes sales of the public lands. None of the great interests of upon imports will be maintained for the purpose of the country can ever flourish, unless they can calculate,

FEB. 28, 1837.)

Distribution Question.


with some degree of confidence, upon some steady and erect a house, and desired to have it elegantly and sub-
certain course of legislation in relation to themselves. stantially built, whether he would put a given amount
Now, sir, a distribution of the proceeds of the public for that purpose into the bands of his agent, upon con-
lands among the States would remedy all these evils, dition that the whole surplus which he could save, atter
and correct all these anomalies of our system. It would the work was completed, should be his own property?
secure to us a settled policy, upon which the country This would be offering bim a premium to be faithless to
might rely. It would draw off from the General Gov. his trust. No, sir; I deny that, in applying to the Amer.
eroment this eccentric source of revenue, and distribute ican people the laws which govern human nalure gene-
it among the States. We should then be left where the rally, I am treating them with disrespect. I merely say
constitution intended to place us. The Government that they are mortal men, and not angels. I should be
would then be administered on its original principles. the last man to distrust their patriotism, because I firmly
All our expenditures would then be derived from the believe that, comparing them with the rest of mankind,
taxes which we might impose on the people, and the they are, in the mass, more pure and more virtuous than
tariff would thus be rendered fixed and certain. What | any other nation upon the face of the earth.
ever protection might then be afforded would be stable. Our own bistory presents us a useful lesson upon this
Under such circumstances, an incidental protective du.subject. Let us refer to the days of the confederation;
ty, comparatively small, would be of more real value and what was then the state of things? Did the different
than a much larger one, subject to all the risk and un. State Governments pay into the Federal Treasury their
certainly which now exist. A manufacturer, whilst contingents, which were due upon every fair principle?
embarking in business, would not then dread lest the Would the debts of the Revolution bave ever been dis.
policy of Congress might change before be could get charged, had the old confederation continued to exist?
into successful operation. There would then be no No, sir. The members of the State Legislatures refused
taxes raised from the people to be distributed among the to tax the people of the respective States for these pur-
people. We should hear no more of surpluses.

poses. They were placed in such a position that their Combining some such a disposition of the proceeds of duty to the Government of the confederation was a: war the public lands with an arrangement, as to the lands with the interests of their constituents; and the conse. themselves, which would be satisfactory to the new quence was, that Government became a mere shadow-States, the system might thereby be rendered perfect destitute of power, and incapable of performing is most and permanent. I am strongly impressed with the be

necessary functions. Yet these men, who refused to lief that a plan might be devised which would meet the perform their duties, were the very men who had peril. approbation of all reasonable men in the new States, led every thing in the cause of liberty. whilst the just rights of the old States would be amply I voted for the deposite bill of the last session on the secured. But all hope of such a consummation bas ai. very principles then maintained by the Senator from most departed. The friends of the land bill have cast it South Carolina. At that time we heard yothing from aside. Even the Senator from Kentucky has abandoned him wbich would authorize us to infer that be intended the promising child which he had adopted and nursed so to make the extreme medicine of the constitution its long and so tenderly, and is now caressing and cherish. daily bread. ing the ill-favored bantling which is now before the (Mr. Calhoun here explained. He said that the bill Senate.

introduced by him at the last session contained a disiriHas any argument which I urged when I first addres. bution for several years. ] sed the Senate been answered by the gentleman from Mr. B. continued. I was perfectly aware of that fact; South Carolina? [Mr. Calhoun.] He says thai it is a but with whom did this portion of bis bill find favor? 13 reflection upon the virtue and patriotism of the Ameri- it not notorious that he abandoned it himself? He advocan people and their representatives, to suggest that they cated the bill as an extreme remedy for an extreme case, would withhold the necessary appropriations from the and justified the measure from its absolute necessity. Federal Government, because the Slates might expect The patient was then in a state of the most alarming to receive what would remain unexpended in the Treas. pletbora. The danger of apoplexy was imminent. We ury at the conclusion of each year. Can this inference bled him copiously in order to save his life.

But now, be fairly drawn from my argument? Every wise legisla. | if we are to believe my friend from Georgia, (Mr. Kiso,] tor, of every age, in framing any plan of government, whose opinions upon this subject are entitled to great has always taken care that ihe duiy of those who were consideration, our patient wili ere long be as lank and to administer it should not clash with their interests. In lean as the knight of La Mancha. He is now threatenother words, that those who were to work the machine ed with a galloping consumption. Shall we, then, San. should not have any strong feeling opposed to its sucess- grado like, continue to bleed? When the symptoms ful operation. Man, in his best state, is but a frail being change, the treatment should be different. Alihough I If you place his interes! upon the one side and his duty do not concur with the Senator from Georgia in the upon the other, the history of the human race abundant. | opinion he has expressed in regard to the future state of ly proves that he has too often abandoned his principles the Treasury, yet I cannot perceive the least necessity, for the sake of promoting his private advantage. Lead under existing circumstances, to pass another deposite us not into templation, was the prayer of Him who best bill. I can never consent to make that which was an ex. understood human nature. Am I, then, to be charged ception, under a peculiar state of things, the general with reflecting upon the American people, because I be. rule of our conduct. It is so rendered still more emphatilieve they will be influenced by the motives which bave cally by attaching this amendment to a common approswayed all mankind from the beginning? What wise priation bill. If you introduce this policy, as a general man would ever think of establishing a constitution system, you will change the whole theory and practice which would place the interest of the Governors in op. of our Government. position to a correct and efficient administration of the What effect will this principle probably proluce upon Government? Would not this be emphatically ihe case, the State Governments at home? They are now frugal if you say to the Senators and Representatives in Con. and careful of the people's money, because their expend. gress that you shall bave every dollar of surplus in the itures are derived from taxes levied upon the people. Treasury at the end of each year, for the use of your The members of the State Legislatures are placed in oun States, which you can withhold from national ob. that condition of responsibility to iheir immediale constit. jects? I would ask the Senator, if he were about 10 uents, which necessarily secures prudence and economy

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Distribution Question.

(FEB. 28, 1837.

in making appropriations. But let the flood.gates of the tribution was an evil which ought not to be encouraged; national Treasury be opened, let copious streams of and if it must take place, the next Congress could pro: money Aow in upon them, and you will have wild and vide for it. Were they afraid to trust them with the extravagant schemes for spending it, wbich may be ru. question, and would they therefore legislate not only for inous to the States themselves. They will thus involve the present, but for futurity? There was as much evil themselves in debts, and rely upon the national Treasury in too much legislation as in too little, especially in to pay them. This will produce pressure upon their legislating for evils which might or might not exist. representatives to get as much as they can from the Gen- Mr. W. said he had no interest in the deposite banks. eral Government, and give as little as they can to nation. They were not of his party, but of the party opposed to al objects.

the administration. If gentlemen would investigate, I would put a question to my friend from Arkansas, they would find that, in every instance, there was either (Mr. SEVIER.) We have removed and are about remov. a majority of the stock opposed to the administration, or ing all the Indians east of the Mississippi to the country a majority of the directors; and all the hue and cry west of his State and that of Missouri. These turbulent against the deposite banks was made by the political and restless savages will all be imbodied on the Western friends of those who controlled them. Mr. W. there. frontier of these States. The Government are bound by fore had no interest in them on political grounds. But every principle to yield their citizens protection. Chiefly the strongest objection to the amendment (provision) for this necessary purpose, the Senate has passed a bill was that it was an improper mode of legislation. And to increase the rank and file of the army. Does the in what situation would this species of legislation place Senator believe that the bill will ever become a law, some of the Senators who last year opposed appropria. should we adopt the system of distributing surpluses tions for these fortifications, but would vote for them among the Stales?

this year with a small amendment added, which had [Mr. Benton exclaimed “neser, never,"]

no connexion with the original bill? (Mr Ewing, The two principles are as much opposed to each other of Ohio, said nearly every one voted for the bill last as light and darkness. If the surplus derived from tax- year.) Mr. W. said he spoke from the record; he would ation is to be annually given to the States, all appropria- not recite it, but refer to it. Let gentlemen look at it tions in Congress will fail, unless such as may be made themselves. Mr. W. was for making proper appropria. under the pressure of immediate and pressing necessity. tions for the welfare of the country, but be protested

I voted for the deposite bill last year because no other against this log-rolling system of legislation, connecting practicable mode existed of relieving the Treasury, and together subjects totally distinct, and compelling mem. removing the money from the deposite banks. But no bers to take both or neither. such necessity now exists. No man now knows whether Mr. WEBSTER said the Senator from New Jersey there will be a surplus or not. If there should be, as I was certainly under a mistake. A bill for certain new think there will, it will be small, unless, indeed, this works was opposed at the last session. But the bill very bill should create it by defeating those measures in known as the common fortification bill was not opposed. the other House necessary for the delence of the coun. Mr. BENTON said perhaps there would be found in Iry, and the reduction of ihe revenue to the standard of this fortification bill a part for new works. our expenditures.

Mr. NILES and Mr. CRITTENDEN also addressed Mr. WALL said he voted for the distribution bill of the Senate on the subject of the amendment of the House the last session, but he never did intend to adopt the to distribute the surplus revenue; after which, principle as one upon which he would act in all 'future The Senate took a recess. circumstances, or which he would make into a system. If circumstances should be the same at that time, he

EVENING Session, would act upon it according to his judgment. But they

DISTRIBUTION QUESTION. were now entirely different. It was not now the ques. The Senate resumed the consideration of the bill from tion how the money in the Treasury on the 1st of Janu. the House, making appropriations for fortifications, &c. ary, 1838, should be disposed of, but whether they for the year 1837, the question being on a motion to strike should now sanction, by a deliberate act, a system of out the section of the bill which provided for a deposite log-rolling legislation. The bill, without this distribution of the surplus revenue, on the 1st of January next, with provision added to it, providing for the common defence the several Stales. of the country, was distinctly within the limits of the The debate was continued to a late hour with much constitution. Who would not say that it was his duty to earnestness, when the question was taken on the motion provide for the defence of the country? The bill to above stated, and decided as follows: which this amendment was ingrafted was introduced in YEAS--Messrs. Benton, Black, Browr, Cuthbert, Ew• the House on the 21st of December, 1836, (the same billing of Illinois, Fulton, Grundy, Hubbard, King of Ala. failed last year,) and was acted on, so far as concerned bama, King of Georgia, Linn, Lyon, Nicholas, Niles, the appropriations, in the Senate bill till the 27th of Norvell, Page, Parker, Rires, Ruggles, Sevier, Strange, February. In the original bill there were appropria. | Tallmadge, Walker, Wall, Wright--26. tions for fortifications in Maine, Massachusetts, Connecti. Nars-Messrs. Bayard, Calhoun, Clayton, Crittenden cut, Rhode Island, New York, Maryland, Virginia, Lou- Davis, Ewing of Ohio, Hendricks, Keni, Knight, Moore ; isiana, and Florida, and one or two oihers. These provis. Prentiss, Preston, Robbins, Southard, Spence, Swift, ions were for defence, and were clearly and unequivo- | Tomlinson, Webster, White--19. cally constitutional. But when it was brought to the So the motion to strike out the provision for the disSenate, there was connected with it a measure for di. tribution among the States of the surplus revenue on the viding, not what was now a surplus, but a surplus 1st of January next, was decided in the affirmative. which depended upon prophecy: Mr. W. was not wil. And, thus amended, the bill was ordered to a third ling ro legislate on prophecy. There might or might reading. not be a surplus on the 1st of January, 1938; and if The various bills which were yesterday ordered to a there might not be, Mr. W. would not make provision third reading were severally read a third time and passed. for what might not take place. If there should then be The bill concerning pilots came up on its third reada surplus, there would be men here then as honest and ing. faithful as now, and there would be time enough for Mr. CALHOUN objected to it, as relating to a subject them to legislate on facts. All acknowledged that dis- which required considerable attension, and as one which

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