Page images
PDF
EPUB
[graphic]

shall be required to be made of the actual speech and address of this respondent on said occasion, which this respondent denies that said article and specification contain or correctly or justly represent.

And this respondent, further answering the tenth article and the specifications thereof, says that at Cleveland, in the State of Ohio, and on the 3d day of September, in the year 1866, he was attended by a large assemblage of his fellow-citizens, and in deference and obedience to their call and demand he addressed them upon matters of public and political consideration; and this respondent believes that said occasion and address are referred to in the second specification of the tenth article; but this respondent does not admit that the passages therein set forth, as if extracts from a speech of this respondent on said occasion, correctly or justly present his speech or address upon said occasion, but, on the contrary, this respondent demands and insists that if this honorable court shall deem the said article and the said second specification thereof to contain allegation of matter cognizable by this honorable court as a high misdemeanor in office within the intent and meaning of the Constitution of the United States, and shall receive or allow proof in support of the same, that proof shall be required to be made of the actual speech and address of this respondent on said occasion, which this respondent denies that said article and specification contain or correctly or justly represent.

And this respondent, further answering the tenth article and the specifications thereof, says that at St. Louis, in the State of Missouri, and on the 8th day of September, in the year 1866, he was attended by a numerous assemblage of his fellow-citizens, and in deference and obedience to their call and demand he addressed them upon matters of public and political consideration; and this respondent believes that said occasion and address are referred to in the third specification of the tenth article; but this respondent does not admit that the passages therein set forth, as if extracts from a speech of this respondent on said occasion, correctly or justly present his speech or address upon said occasion, but, on the contrary, this respondent demands and insists that if this honorable court shall deem the said article and the said third specification thereof to contain allegation of matter cognizable by this honorable court as a high misdemeanor in office within the intent and meaning of the Constitution of the United States, and shall receive or allow proof in support of the same, that proof shall be required to be made of the actual speech. and address of this respondent on said occasion, which this respondent denies that the said article and specification contain or correctly or justly represent.

And this respondent, further answering the tenth article, protesting that he has not been unmindful of the high duties of his office or of the harmony or courtesies which ought to exist and be maintained between the executive and legislative branches of the Government of the United States, denies that he has ever intended or designed to set aside the right

ful authority or powers of Congress, or attempted to bring into disgrace, ridicule, hatred, contempt, or reproach the Congress of the United States, or either branch thereof, or to impair or destroy the regard or respect of all or any of the good people of the United States for the Congress or the rightful legislative power thereof, or to excite the odium or resentment of all or any of the good people of the United States against Congress and the laws by it duly and constitutionally enacted. This respondent further says that at all times he has, in his official acts as President, recognized the authority of the several Congresses of the United States as constituted and organized during his administration of the office of President of the United States.

And this respondent, further answering, says that he has from time to time, under his constitutional right and duty as President of the United States, communicated to Congress his views and opinions in regard to such acts or resolutions thereof as, being submitted to him as President of the United States in pursuance of the Constitution, seemed to this respondent to require such communications; and he has from time to time, in the exercise of that freedom of speech which belongs to him as a citizen of the United States, and, in his political relations as President of the United States to the people of the United States, is upon fit occasions a duty of the highest obligation, expressed to his fellow-citizens his views and opinions respecting the measures and proceedings of Congress; and that in such addresses to his fellow-citizens and in such his communications to Congress he has expressed his views, opinions, and judgment of and concerning the actual constitution of the two Houses of Congress, without representation therein of certain States of the Union, and of the effect that in wisdom and justice, in the opinion and judgment of this respondent, Congress in its legislation and proceedings should give to this political circumstance; and whatsoever he has thus communicated to Congress or addressed to his fellow-citizens or any assemblage thereof this respondent says was and is within and according to his right and privilege as an American citizen and his right and duty as President of the United States.

And this respondent, not waiving or at all disparaging his right of freedom of opinion and of freedom of speech, as hereinbefore or hereinafter more particularly set forth, but claiming and insisting upon the same, further answering the said tenth article, says that the views and opinions expressed by this respondent in his said addresses to the assemblages of his fellow-citizens, as in said articles or in this answer thereto mentioned, are not and were not intended to be other or different from those expressed by him in his communications to Congress-that the eleven States lately in insurrection never had ceased to be States of the Union, and that they were then entitled to representation in Congress by loyal Representatives and Senators as fully as the other States of the Union, and that consequently the Congress as then constituted was not in

[graphic]

fact a Congress of all the States, but a Congress of only a part of the States. This respondent, always protesting against the unauthorized exclusion therefrom of the said eleven States, nevertheless gave his assent to all laws passed by said Congress which did not, in his opinion and judgment, violate the Constitution, exercising his constitutional authority of returning bills to said Congress with his objections when they appeared to him to be unconstitutional or inexpedient.

And further, this respondent has also expressed the opinion, both in hiscommunications to Congress and in his addresses to the people, that the policy adopted by Congress in reference to the States lately in insurrection did not tend to peace, harmony, and union, but, on the contrary, did tend to disunion and the permanent disruption of the States, and that in following its said policy laws had been passed by Congress in violation of the fundamental principles of the Government, and which tended to consolidation and despotism; and such being his deliberate opinions, he would have felt himself unmindful of the high duties of his office if he had failed to express them in his communications to Congress or in his addresses to the people when called upon by them to express his opinions. on matters of public and political consideration.

And this respondent, further answering the tenth article, says that he has always claimed and insisted, and now claims and insists, that both in the personal and private capacity of a citizen of the United States and in the political relations of the President of the United States to the people of the United States, whose servant, under the duties and responsibilities of the Constitution of the United States, the President of the United States is and should always remain, this respondent had and has the full right, and in his office of President of the United States is held to the high duty, of forming, and on fit occasions expressing, opinions of and concerning the legislation of Congress, proposed or completed, in respect of its wisdom, expediency, justice, worthiness, objects, purposes, and public and political motives and tendencies, and within and as a part of such right and duty to form, and on fit occasions to express, opinions of and concerning the public character and conduct, views, purposes, objects, motives, and tendencies of all men engaged in the public service, as well in Congress as otherwise, and under no other rules or limits upon this right of freedom of opinion and of freedom of speech, or of responsibility and amenability for the actual exercise of such freedom of opinion and freedom of speech, than attend upon such rights and their exercise on the part of all other citizens of the United States and on the part of all their public servants.

And this respondent, further answering said tenth article, says that the several occasions on which, as is alleged in the several specifications of said article, this respondent addressed his fellow-citizens on subjects of public and political considerations were not, nor was any one of them, sought or planned by this respondent, but, on the contrary, each of said occasions arose upon the exercise of a lawful and accustomed right of the

people of the United States to call upon their public servants and express to them their opinions, wishes, and feelings upon matters of public and political consideration, and to invite from such their public servants an expression of their opinions, views, and feelings on matters of public and political consideration; and this respondent claims and insists before this honorable court, and before all the people of the United States, that of or concerning this his right of freedom of opinion and of freedom of speech, and this his exercise of such rights on all matters of public and political consideration, and in respect of all public servants or persons whatsoever engaged in or connected therewith, this respondent, as a citizen or as President of the United States, is not subject to question, inquisition, impeachment, or inculpation in any form or manner whatsoever.

And this respondent says that neither the said tenth article nor any specification thereof nor any allegation therein contained touches or relates to any official act or doing of this respondent in the office of President of the United States or in the discharge of any of its constitutional or legal duties or responsibilities; but said article and the specifications and allegations thereof, wholly and in every part thereof, question only the discretion or propriety of freedom of opinion or freedom of speech as exercised by this respondent as a citizen of the United States in his personal right and capacity, and without allegation or imputation against this respondent of the violation of any law of the United States touching or relating to freedom of speech or its exercise by the citizens of the United States or by this respondent as one of the said citizens or otherwise; and he denies that by reason of any matter in said article or its specifications alleged he has said or done anything indecent or unbecoming in the Chief Magistrate of the United States, or that he has brought the high office of President of the United States into contempt, ridicule, or disgrace, or that he has committed or has been guilty of a high misdemeanor in office.

Answer to Article XI.—And in answer to the eleventh article this respondent denies that on the 18th day of August, in the year 1866, at the city of Washington, in the District of Columbia, he did, by public speech or otherwise, declare or affirm, in substance or at all, that the Thirtyninth Congress of the United States was not a Congress of the United States authorized by the Constitution to exercise legislative power under the same, or that he did then and there declare or affirm that the said Thirty-ninth Congress was a Congress of only part of the States in any sense or meaning other than that ten States of the Union were denied representation therein, or that he made any or either of the declarations. or affirmations in this behalf in the said article alleged as denying or intending to deny that the legislation of said Thirty-ninth Congress was valid or obligatory upon this respondent except so far as this respondent saw fit to approve the same; and as to the allegation in said article that he did thereby intend or mean to be understood that the said Congress had not power to propose amendments to the Constitution, this respondent

[graphic]

says that in said address he said nothing in reference to the subject of amendments of the Constitution, nor was the question of the competency of the said Congress to propose such amendments, without the participation of said excluded States, at the time of said address in any way mentioned or considered or referred to by this respondent, nor in what he did say had he any intent regarding the same; and he denies the allegations so made to the contrary thereof. But this respondent, in further answer to and in respect of the said allegations of the said eleventh article hereinbefore traversed and denied, claims and insists upon his personal and official right of freedom of opinion and freedom of speech, and his duty in his political relations as President of the United States to the people of the United States in the exercise of such freedom of opinion and freedom of speech, in the same manner, form, and effect as he has in this behalf stated the same in his answer to the said tenth article, and with the same effect as if he here repeated the same; and he further claims and insists, as in said answer to said tenth article he has claimed and insisted, that he is not subject to question, inquisition, impeachment or inculpation, in any form or manner, of or concerning such rights of freedom of opinion or freedom of speech, or his said alleged exercise thereof.

And this respondent further denies that on the 21st day of February, in the year 1868, or at any other time, at the city of Washington, in the District of Columbia, in pursuance of any such declaration as in that behalf in said eleventh article alleged, or otherwise, he did unlawfully, and in disregard of the requirement of the Constitution that he should take care that the laws should be faithfully executed, attempt to prevent the execution of an act entitled "An act regulating the tenure of certain civil offices," passed March 2, 1867, by unlawfully devising or contriving, or attempting to devise or contrive, means by which he should prevent Edwin M. Stanton from forthwith resuming the functions of Secretary for the Department of War, or by unlawfully devising or contriving, or attempting to devise or contrive, means to prevent the execution of an act entitled "An act making appropriations for the support of the Army for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1868, and for other purposes," approved March 2, 1867, or to prevent the execution of an act entitled "An act to provide for the more efficient government of the rebel States," passed March 2, 1867.

And this respondent, further answering the said eleventh article, says that he has in his answer to the first article set forth in detail the acts, steps, and proceedings done and taken by this respondent to and toward or in the matter of the suspension or removal of the said Edwin M. Stanton in or from the office of Secretary for the Department of War, with the times, modes, circumstances, intents, views, purposes, and opinions of official obligations and duty under and with which such acts, steps, and proceedings were done and taken; and he makes answer to this

« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »