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formance of his duties, and to discharge them when he is no longer willing to be responsible for their acts.” This, Sir, completes the work. This handsomely rounds off the whole executive system of executive authority. First, the President has the whole responsibility; and then, being thus responsible for all, he has, and ought to have, the whole power. We have heard of political units, and our American executive, as here represented, is indeed a wnit. We have a charmingly simple government l Instead of many officers, in different departments, each having appropriate duties, and each responsible for his own duties, we are so fortunate as to have to deal with but one officer. The President carries on the government; all the rest are but sub-contractors. Sir, whatever name we give him, we have but on E ExECUTIVE of FICER. A Briareus sits in the centre of our system, and with his hundred hands touches every thing, moves every thing, controls every thing. I ask, Sir, Is this republicanism 2 Is this a government of laws? Is this legal responsibility? According to the Protest, the very duties which every officer under the government performs are the duties of the President himself. It says that the President has a right to employ agents of his own choice, to aid HIM in the performance of HIS duties. Mr. President, if these doctrines be true, it is idle for us any longer to talk about any such thing as a government of laws. We have no government of laws, not even the semblance or shadow of it: we have no legal responsibility. We have an executive, consisting of one person, wielding all official power, and who is, to every effectual purpose, completely irresponsible. The President declares that he is “responsible for the entire action of the executive department.” Responsible! What does he mean by being “responsible”? Does he mean legal responsibility? Certainly not. No such thing. Legal responsibility signifies liability to punishment for misconduct or maladministration. But the Protest does not mean that the President is liable to be impeached and punished, if a Secretary of State should commit treason, if a collector of the customs should be guilty of bribery, or if a treasurer should embezzle the public money. It does not mean, and cannot mean, that he should be answerable for any such crime or such delinquency. What, then, is its notion of that responsibility which it says the President is under for all officers, and which authorizes him to consider all officers as his own personal agents? Sir, it is merely responsibility to public opinion. It is a liability to be blamed ; it is the chance of becoming unpopular, the danger of losing a reëlection. Nothing else is meant in the world. It is the hazard of failing in any attempt or enterprise of ambition. This is all the responsibility to which the doctrines of the Protest hold the President subject. It is precisely the responsibility under which Cromwell acted when he dispersed Parliament, telling its members, not in so many words indeed, that they disobeyed the will of their constituents, but telling them that the people were sick of them, and that he drove them out “for the glory of God, and the good of the nation.” It is precisely the responsibility upon which Bonaparte broke up the popular assembly of France. I do not mean, Sir, certainly, by these illustrations, to insinuate designs of violent usurpation against the President; far from it : but I do mean to maintain that such responsibility as that with which the Protest clothes him is no legal responsibility, no constitutional responsibility, no republican responsibility; but a mere liability to loss of office, loss of character, and loss of fame, if he shall choose to violate the laws and overturn the liberties of the country. It is such a responsibility as leaves every thing in his discretion and his pleasure. Sir, it exceeds human belief that any man should put sentiments such as this paper contains into a public communication from the President to the Senate. They are sentiments which give us all one master. The Protest asserts an absolute right to remove all persons from office at pleasure; and for what reason P Because they are incompetent? Because they are incapable? Because they are remiss, negligent, or inattentive? No, Sir; these are not the reasons. But he may discharge them, one and all, simply because “he is no longer willing to be responsible for their acts!” It insists on an 'absolute right in the President to direct and control every act of every officer of the government, except the judges. It asserts this right of direct control over and over again. The President may go into the treasury, among the auditors and comptrollers, and direct them how to settle every man's account : what abatements to make from one, what additions to another. He may go into the custom-house, among collectors and appraisers, and may control estimates, reductions, and appraisements. It is true that these officers are sworn to discharge the duties of their respective offices honestly and fairly, according to their own best abilities; it is true that many of them are liable to indictment for official misconduct, and others responsible, in suits of individuals, for damages and penalties, if such official misconduct be proved; but, notwithstanding all this, the IProtest avers that all these officers are but the President's agents; that they are but aiding him in the discharge of his duties; that he is responsible for their conduct, and that they are removable at his will and pleasure. And it is under this view of his own authority that the President calls the Secretaries his Secretaries, not once only, but repeatedly. After half a century’s administration of this government, Sir ; – after we have endeavoured, by statute upon statute, and by provision following provision, to define and limit official authority; to assign particular duties to particular public servants; to define those duties; to create penalties for their violation ; to adjust accurately the responsibility of each agent with his own powers and his own duties; to establish the prevalence of equal rule; to make the law, as far as possible, every thing, and individual will, as far as possible, nothing ; —after all this, the astounding assertion rings in our ears, that, throughout the whole range of official agency, in its smallest ramifications as well as in its larger masses, there is but ONE RESPONSIBILITY, ONE DISCRETION, ONE WILL | True indeed it is, Sir, if these sentiments be maintained, true indeed it is, that a President of the United States may well repeat, from Napoleon, what he repeated from Louis the Fourteenth, “I am the State!” The argument, by which the writer of the Protest endeavours to establish the President's claim to this vast mass of accumulated authority, is founded on the provision of the Constitution, that the executive power shall be vested in the President. No doubt the executive power is vested in the President; but what and how much executive power, and how limited ? To this question I should answer, “Look to the Constitution, and see; examine the particulars of the grant, and learn what that executive power is which is given to the President, either by express words or by necessary implication.” But so the writer of this Protest does not reason. He takes these words of the Constitution as being, of themselves, a general original grant of all executive power to the President, subject only to such express limitations as the Constitution prescribes. This is clearly the writer's view of the subject, unless indeed he goes behind the Constitution altogether, as some expressions would intimate, to search elsewhere for sources of executive power. Thus the Protest says that it is not only the right of the President, but that the Constitution makes it his duty, to appoint persons to office; as if the right existed before the Constitution had created the duty. It speaks, too, of the power of removal, not as a power granted by the Constitution, but expressly as “an original executive power, unchecked by the Constitution.” I should be glad to know how the President gets possession of any power by a title earlier, or more original, than the grant of the Constitution; or what is meant by an original power, which the President possesses, and which the Constitution has left unchecked in his hands. The truth is, Sir, most assuredly, that the writer of the Protest, in these passages, was reasoning upon the British Constitution, and not upon the Constitution of the United States. Indeed, he professes to found himself on authority drawn from the Constitution of England. I will read, Sir, the whole passage. It is this: “In strict accordance with this principle, the power of removal, which, like that of appointment, is an original executive power, is left unchecked by the Constitution in relation to all executive officers, for whose conduct the President is responsible; while it is taken from him in relation to judicial officers, for whose acts he is not responsible. In the government from which many of the fundamental principles of our system are derived, the head of the executive department originally had power to appoint and remove at will all officers, eacecutive and judicial. It was to take the judges out of this general power of removal, and thus make them independent of the executive, that the tenure of their offices was changed to good behaviour. Nor is it conceivable why they are placed, in our Constitution, upon a tenure different from that of all other officers appointed by the executive, unless it be for the same purpose.” Mr. President, I do most solemnly protest (if I too may be permitted to make a protest) against this mode of reasoning. The analogy between the British Constitution and ours, in this respect, is not close enough to guide us safely; it can only mislead us. It has entirely misled the writer of the Protest. The President is made to argue, upon this subject, as if he had some right anterior to the Constitution, which right is, by that instrument, checked, in some respects, and in other respects is left unchecked, but which, nevertheless, still derives its being from another source; just as the British King had, in the early ages of the monarchy, an uncontrolled right of appointing and removing all officers at pleasure ; but which right, so far as it respects the judges, has since been checked and controlled by Act of Parliament; the right being original and inherent, the check only imposed by law. Sir, I distrust altogether British precedents, authorities, and analogies, on such questions as this. We are not inquiring how far our Constitution has imposed checks on a prečxisting authority. We are inquiring what extent of power that Constitution has granted. The grant of power, the whole source of power, as well as the restrictions and limitations which are imposed on it, is made in and by the Constitution. It has no other origin. And it is this, Sir, which distinguishes our system so very widely and materially from the systems of Europe. Our governments are limited governments; limited in their origin, in their very creation; limited,

because none but specific powers were ever granted either to any department of government, or to the whole: theirs are limited, whenever limited at all, by reason of restraints imposed at different times on governments originally unlimited and despotic. Our American questions, therefore, must be discussed, reasoned on, decided, and settled, on the appropriate principles of our own constitutions, and not by inapplicable precedents and loose analogies drawn from foreign States. Mr. President, in one of the French comedies, as you know, in which the dulness and prolixity of legal argument is intended to be severely satirized, while the advocate is tediously groping among ancient lore having nothing to do with his case, the judge grows impatient, and at last cries out to him to come down to the flood / I really wish, Sir, that the writer of this Protest, since he was discussing matters of the highest innportance to us as Americans, and which arise out of our own peculiar Constitution, had kept himself, not only on this side the general deluge, but also on this side the Atlantic. I desire that all the broad waves of that wide sea should continue to roll between us and the influence of those foreign principles and foreign precedents which he so eagerly adopts. In asserting power for an American President, I prefer he should attempt to maintain his assertions on American reasons. I know not, Sir, who the writer was, (I wish I did; ) but, whoever he was, it is manifest that he argues this part of his case, throughout, on the principles of the Constitution of England. It is true that, in England, the King is regarded as the original fountain of all honour and all office; and that anciently indeed he possessed all political power of every kind. It is true that this mass of authority, in the history of that government, has been diminished, restrained, and controlled, by charters, by immunities, by grants, and by various modifications, which the friends of liberty have, at different periods, been able to obtain or to impose. All liberty, as we know, all popular privileges, as indeed the word itself imports, were formerly considered as favours and concessions from the monarch. But whenever and wherever civil freedom could get a foothold, and could maintain itself, these favours were turned into rights. Defore and during the reigns of the princes of the Stuart family, they were acknowledged only as favours or privileges graciously allowed; although even then, whenever opportunity offered, as in the instance to which I alluded just now, they were contended for as rights; and by the Revolution of 1688 they were acknowledged as the rights of Englishmen, by the prince who then ascended the throne, and as the condition on which he was allowed to sit upon it. But with us there never was a time when we acknowl

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