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pers. I do not mean to say that the parts of the honorable Senator's bill, to which I have been so seriously objecting, were plagiarized from me; but merely that all which is not actually mischevious in his bill was substantially copied from the bill now in my hand, as it was at first framed, and as it was described in the newspapers. I will prove this : my bill originally proposed to pay to Texas a specific sum, just one-half of the sum now proposed by the Senator from Missouri, for her ownership of the public lands situated in the country, commonly called New Mexico, north of a line to be run in an easterly direction from the Paso del Norte to the head waters of the Red river ; cautiously reserving, though, to the territory in which the right of property in a portion of the public lands was thus to be purchased the principle of compromise embodied in the resolutions of annexation. This reservation, it will be at once perceiv. ed, is an arrangement which cannot be dispensed with without incurring the risk of immediately multiplying the number of free States, and deeply endangering the whole southern section of the Union.

This I had resolved to offer as a new scheme of compromise ; which, with the establishment of a territorial government in New Mexico, in Deseret, and California, and the ultimate admission of California as a State, when freed from her present unfortunate organization, I hoped might tend to settle the vexed question of the Wilmot proviso forever. I should certainly have offered the whole bill as it was first drawn up, and in the form in which I had submitted it to the consideration of va. rious sage friends, with whom I am in the habit of counselling upon this subject, but for certain proceedings in several of the free States of the North, of which we have been recently notified, which satisfied me that I could not offer anything that at all bore the characteristic features of s compromise, without encouraging our arrogant foes to fiercer and more extended aggressions, and bringing down other and more irritating insult upon the southern States of the Confederacy.

The resolutions of Vermont, now upon your table—the incendiary messages of the Governors of Pennsylvania and of Massachusetts-the truly demoniacal resolutions now before the New York Legislature—the extraordinary harangues made in this hall since we assembled,- these and other facts of a kindred character satisfied me that the season for compromise had forever passed by; or that at least, if propositions of compromise were hereafter to be offered, they ought to emanate from the North. I became satisfied that the time had arrived when it behooved southern Senators and Representatives in Congress to stand firmly and resolutely up in strict maintenance of our constitutional rights, as they were secured by our venerated forefathers ; leaving it to the champions of aggression and the perpetrators of injustice to determine whether they would indeed take upon themselves and their constituents the responsbility of dissolving that Union which was once so justly dear to the heart of every American. With these views I contented myself with offering the bill which I am now asking to be allowed to introduce, care tailed of those other provisions which have been now brought forward, in a disguised form, by the honorable Senator from Missouri.

Now, sir, I appeal to the Senate and the country whether I have not a right to complain of the honorable Senator froni Missouri for having

thus unceremoniously appropriated to himself the work of my hands, and the result of my painful meditations? If the honorable Senator had condescended to ask my consent to his becoming godfather to a measure which, in its purer and less objectionable shape, did not originate with him ; if he had given me due notice of his intention thus to pirate upon the poor creations of my intellect; had this astounding liberty been taken by a friend, or by one friendly to the South in her present trying position, I should not, perhaps, have seriously complained of the outrage. But, sir, the case is a very different one indeed. The offensive conduct which I am noticing has been practised by an individual more responsible, in my judgment, than any man, living or dead, for the unhappy condition in which the republic is involved. It was he that urged so imperiously through the Senate the odious Oregon bill, passed eighteen months since. It was he that voted against the Mexican treaty, by which a territorial domain so invaluable was secured to the nation. It was he who attempted, after the treaty had become part of the supreme law of the land, to nullify its provisions, by setting up what is known as the Protocol in opposition to it. It is he who presumes to disobey the instructions of the Missouri Legislature, to whom he owes the Senatorial robes which now invest his person, and all the opportunities of acquiring renown and influence, which he has enjoyed for the last thirty years. It is he who has taken upon himself to wander off some thousands of miles into the bosom of his own State, and to inveigh, in language of the coarsest scurrility and most envenomed abuse, against men whom he dares not meet here in debate-whose characters, public and private—are as spotless as purity itself—and whose whole lives have been illustrated and adorned by the practice of all those virtues which bespeak the patriot, the philanthropist and the Christian. This, sir, is the heroic chieftain who, when far distant from the objects of his hustility, denounces them as traitors, disunionists and villians, and threatens on getting sight of them in the Senate house to demolish them forever; but who, when he gets here once more among us, is either mysteriously and stoically silent, or, assuming a truly lamb-like meekness of aspect and of manner, and a soft nasality of intonation, is seen to coo round the Senate chamber “as gently as any sucking dove." This, sir, is the person who has presumed, in the very bosom of one of the large slave States of the Union to declaim fiercely against slavery, and to lend all the encouragement which, as "a southerner and slaveholder," he had it in his power to supply to the enemies of our institutions north of Mason and Dixon's line. This is the political leader who has scattered confusion and discord through the whole democratic ranks of the North, every man of whom, but for him and his accursed teachings, I verily believe would, under the sage and honest counsels constantly emanating from the honorable Senator from Michigan, who sits before me, ]Mr. Cass, and other highly-valued democratic leaders of the North, have stood firmly and fearlessly up in support of the non-intervention doctrines of the renowned Nicholson letter. This is the - learned Theban,” who has not only taken it upon himself to proclaim, in more than one speech, now in print, that Congress has a right under the Constitution to legislate úpon slavery in the territories, but who has even gone so far as to assert that no man of sense on the Continent nou doubted the authority of Congress to legislate in this manner; though he well knew at the time that the honorable Senator from South Carolina, (Mr. Calhoun,] the honorable Senator from Michigan, (Mr. Cass,] the honorable Senator from Georgia, (Mr. BERRIEN,) and thousands and hun {reds of thousands resident in different parts of the republic, all of them possessed of understanding at least as sound and as trustworthy as his own, entertained opinions directly the reverse of that which he was thus so fiercely fulminating; among whom I must mention the Senator from Texas, [Mr. Houston,) who sits over the way, and who, in his late anti-Gadsden letter, has so emphatically declared himself opposed to the Wilmot proviso upon every ground of opposition to it heretofore agoumed. This, too, sir, is the indiscreet rhetorician whose inflammatory addresses to large popular assemblies in Missouri, during the last summer, are said to have produced a most startling effect among the slave population in the surrounding country; who, as it is reported, by twenties and forties, put themselves in full flight for the Father of Wa. ters, and made their sudden escape into the neighboring State of Illinois. [Here Mr. Benton left his seat, walked towards the door of the Senate chamber, and passed rapidly through it.] See, Mr. President, he flies as did those same deluded sons of Africa among whom his eloquence is reported to have awakened a regular stampede. He escapes me just as I was about to compare him to that degenerate Roman Senator, whom Cicero once addressed in language that will never perish, exclaiming in the hearing of such men as Cæsar, and Cato, and Brutus, with majestic cadence : " Quousque tandem abutere Catalini nostra patientia ?" As Tully said of that same degenerate Roman, I feel that I can say now in behalf of myself and of my friends, in relation to him who has just departed from our presence, “ Tandem aliquando Quirites, L. Catalinam furentem audacia, scelus anhelantem pestem patriæ nefarie molientes vobis atque huic urbi ferrum flammamque minitantem, ex urbe, vel ejecimus, vel emissimus ; vel ipsum egredienten verbis prosecuti sumus." I may well add : “ Abiit-excessit--evasit-erupit.!

But I will endeavor to explain the origin of the whole movement as well as I can, by mentioning one or two facts which are known to me, and which perhaps are not quite as well known or as fully appreciated by some other members of the Senate. I shall be quite specific, Mr. President-I shall use the plainest and strongest language which I can employ consistently with the rules of parliamentary courtesy. I hope not to disturb unduly the sensibilities of any one present. I hope espe. cially that the honorable Senator over the way, (Mr. BENTON,) will not grow at all restive under my explanations. I trust that he may be able to keep his temper, and to retain his seat among us as long as I may continue to occupy the attention of the Senate. Indeed I should feei most seriously aggrieved were that honorable gentleman again, as on a former occasion, to grow uneasy under my strictures, and be seen again precipitately to fly our presence. He seems to sit quietly enough, and, in the hope of engaging his patient audience, I will proceed. As a pre liminary remark, I beg leave to say it has ever been my opinion that God, in bestowing upon his creatures certain faculties, designed that

they should all be, as far as possible, usefully employed. There is perhaps no other faculty so important to man's happiness as that of vision. Indeed, I entirely agree with Mr. Addison when he says: “Our sight is the most perfect and most delightful of all our senses. It fills the mind with the largest variety of ideas, converses with its objects at the greatest distance, and continues the longest in action without being tired or satiated with its proper enjoyments.” But this is not all, sir ; by the proper exercise of this faculty of our nature, we are not only able to receive pleasures innumerable, but to ward off dangers innumerable, too, and guard against surprises from the designing and the selfish. Though it is a melancholy fact that my own power of vision is by no means perfect, yet I labor to supply all actual deficiency in this respect by the extreme of vigilance-being mindful of the wisdom of the legal proverb -vigilantibus, non dormientibus, leges adjuvant.

Well, sir, by good or ill fortune, it did so happen on the day before yesterday, that, looking about this chamber to see what was going on therein, (for, without being exactly a spy upon my brother Senators, I have for a year or two past deemed it sound policy to exercise much watchfulness in regard to the movements of particular members of the body)-I say that, in glancing around this hall for the purpose named, I did see a certain Senator, who sits just to my left, [Mr. Bexton,) glide across the chamber to the seat usually occupied by the Senator from New York, [Mr. SEWARD,) and immediately proximate to that of the honorable Senator from Kentucky, (Mr. CLAY. So unusual an apparition awakened my surprise, and aroused the speculative principle of my mind to action. It was not long before I was able to say to a friend: “ Rest assured there is some scheme on foot for the betrayal of the South. I should not be at all surprised if ere long we witnessed an attempt to smuggle California into the Union.” I say smuggle, sir, and I mean precisely what I say, intending to cast no reflection whatever upon the honorable Senator of Kentucky, whom I do not even suspect of illicit or improper motives of action. Well, sir, it is surprising how soon my apprehension on this point was realized.

On yesterday, when the message of the President now under consideration came in, the member from Missouri arose, and with that imposing nasality of intonation for which he is at least as much distinguished as for his learning or eloquence, he proceeded to say that he had expected the honorable Senator from Kentucky, (Mr. Clay,] would have moved to refer the message and accompanying documents to a special committee, insinuating that an understanding to that effect existed between the honorable Senator from Kentucky and himself. The Senator from Kentucky seemed not to be altogether surprised by this, but alleged that, whilst quite willing to serve if appointed, upon such a committee as the one proposed to be raised, he must decline making the motion. Whereupon the Senator from Missouri, who seemed resolutely bent upon accomplishing his object, himself moved for a special committee, and in total disregard of parliamentary usage, went so far as to name the honorable Senator from Kentucky as the most suitable person for chairman of this special committee. Much to my gratification—but certainly not at all to my surprise—the honorable Senator from Kentucky mani. fested no eagerness whatever to become the mere agent of the gentlemen moving in this business, for a purpose so censurable. I thought it best to move a postponement of the whole affair until to-day; and now it appears that the honorable Senators from Kentucky and Missouri have at last agreed heartily to co-operate in this magnificent enterprise.

Well, sir, I at least may honestly avow perfect disinterestedness of motive in regard to this curious affair, having no father, brother, or sonin-law to be specially benefitted by the result of this effort to drag Cali. fornia into the Union before her wedding garment has yet been cast about her person, and ere she has been regularly bidden to the nuptial. I leave others to answer for themselves. But, making all allowance for the intrinsio weakness of humanity ; regarding it as quite natural for one who has been for some time past among us in this chamber quite solitary and alone,to desire to secure at least one confidential ally -one Fidelis Achates ; yet I feel bound to say that in my judgment the Senator from one of the slave States of this Confederacy who, un ler all the awful circumstances which surround us, could be induced by self-love-ambition for family distinction-or any other motive of 2 mere personal character- to disregard the interests of his constituents; to expose them to dangers even more multiplied than those of which they have already become cognizant; to subject them to the hazard of ultimate dishonor and ruin-the Senator who does this shows that he who is capable of doing this, deserves censures which a regard for de corum alone restrains me from uttering, but which an intelligent and spirited constituency will assuredly and speedily inflict. Sir, let me speak out still more explicitly. To the honorable Senator from Missvari I might well say, as Nathan said unto David, Thou art the man. Yes sir, I might deal a little more freely with that gentleman and say, “ Sir, you, who would not aid in acquiring California by voting for the treaty with Mexicoyou, who refused last winter to unite with those who struggled night and day to supply our suffering brethren in California with the protection of a government and laws-voting even against the amendment of the honorable Senator from Wisconsin, the adoption of which would have been so beneficial to the people of California and New Mexico, and have even saved the Union itself from the hazırds of the present critical hour; you, who instigated a foreign government to call in question the treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo after its ratification. and endeavored to defeat its provisions by insidiously setting up the protocol in opposition to it; you, sir, least of all men, have a rigat to seize the control of Californian concerns into your hands.” Such 20 address might be easily made to the gentleman to whom I have b'en a along alluding, and he would find it impossible to answer it. Yes site impossible, because truth is powerful and will prevail ; and I might add, with a significance which few would be dull enough not to perceive, and the application of which few or none would fail to notice because Public justice is certain, and the time of vengeance has alreais arrived.

Mr. Foote. I regret the necessity imposed upon me of occupying the attention of the Senate for a few minutes, whilst I notice an allusion to myself, in which the honorable Senator from Kentucky (Mr. Clay, has

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