Pennsylvania daily telegraph. (Harrisburg, Pa.) 1857-1862, April 16, 1861, Image 1

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Pennsylvania Legislature
FRIDAY, April 12.
The Senate was called to order at 10 o'clock;
A. K, Mr. PENNEY in the Chair.
Prayer by Rev. Demi. (less.
On motion of Mr. IMBRIE,, the reading of
the Journal was dispensed with.
-Mr. NICHOLS presented a remonstrance of
citizens of Philadelphia against the passage of
the bill to incotporate, the Navy Yard, Broad
street and Fairmount Passenger Railway Com
Referred to the Committee on Railroads.
Mr. SERRLLL presented a petition of citizens
of Chester county, in favor of a law, authorizing
the erection of State scales in the twenty-fourth
ward of the city of Philadelphia.
Referied to the Committee on the Judiciary.
prtition of citizens of Chester and
.Dalaware counties, in favor of a new school
district near the line of said counties:
Referred to the Committee on Education.
Also, a remonstrance of similar import
Referred to same Committee.
Mr. THOMPSON presented. three petitions of
citizens of Montgomery county, inlavor of the
repeal of an Act abolishing the office of sealers
of Weights and Measures in said county.
Referred to the Judiciary Committee.
Mr. CLYMER presented two petitions of citi
zens of Maidencreek township, Berks county,
in favor of the passage of an Act to prevent the
running at large of cattle, horses, hogs, &c.
Referred, to the Committee on Agriculture,
Mr. BENSON presented a petition of citizens
of Lock Haven, Clinton county, in favor of a
law to'authorize the banks to issue small notes.
Referred to the Committee on Banks.
Also, one of similar import from citizens of
Jersey Shore, Lycoming county. - .
Referred to the Committee on Banks.
Mr. GREGG presented a petition of citizens
of Williamsport, Lycoming county, in favor of
an Act requiring the resumption of specie pay
ments and authorizing the issue of small notes.
'Laid upon the table. '
Mr.. BOUND presented a petition of citizens
of Columbia county in favor of a law to tax un
seated lands for the support of the poor. •
Referred to the Committee on the Judiciary.
Mr. CRAWFORD presented a petition of citi
zens of Juniata county in favor of law for the
destruction of noxious animals in said county. ,
Referred to the Committee on Agriculture
and Manufactures. •
Mr. HALL presented a remonstrance of Citi
zens of Cambria county againstthe bill to allow
the Commissioners of said county to borrow
Laid upon the table.
Mr. IRISH presented a remonstrance of citi
zens of Allegheny county against the passage
of a supplement to au Act to incorporate the
Pittsburg and Steubenville Turnpiae Road cora-
"Laid upon the table.
Mr. CONNELL, (Corporations,) as committed,
House bill No. 864, entitled sal Act to incorpo
rate Cove Lodge, No. 868, Independent Order
of Odd Fellows.
Also, (same,) as committted, Howe bill No.
867, entitled a supplement to an Act to author
ize the Governor to incorporate the Mauch
Chunk Water company:
Mr. DOME, (Election Districts,) as commit
ted, House bill, No. 1019, entitled an Act to
change the place of bolding elections in Perry
township, Snyder county.
Mr. FULLER, (aims,) as committed, House
bill, No. 1076, entitled an Act to ohange the
place of holding elections in Texas township,
Wayne county.
Mr. MEREDITH, (Agriculture and Domestic
Manufactures,) as committed, House bill No.
1074, entitled an Act-relating to the killing of
game in Adams county.
Mr. HAMILTON, (Roads and Bridges,) with
a - negative reCommendation t House bill No.
1088, entitled an Act to appoint viewers to var
cats part of a certain road in Juniata county.
Mr. THOMPSON, (same,) as committed,
House bill No. 627, entitled an Act to lay :out
a State road in Barks and Lebanon countids.
, Mr. 'FULLER, (Compare ; Bills,) presented a
-report which wag read and engrossed upon the
official records of the Senate.
Mr. THOMPSON, (New - Counties, &c.,) as
committed, an Act.tei run and fma portion of
the boundary lino - between! Columbia and Lu
zerne counties.
Mr. SMITH, (Judiciary,) as •cosataitted, an
Act supplementray to the penal code, passed in
Mr. NICHOLS, (Militia System* as conunit
tedl, House bill No. 891, entitled an Act to
change the name of the first Regiment of Artil
lery, lint Brigade, Pennsylvania Militia.
Mr. GREGG, (Railroads,) as committed,
House bill, No. 788 entitled a supplement to
an Act to incorporate- the Phillipsbiirg and
Waterford Railroad cempany.
Mr. M'CLURE from the Select Committee to
which was referred the Govornor's message re
lative to arming the State, presented the fol
lowing_report, viz :
To Hon. R. M. Palmer, Speaker of the &see:
SlR—The-undersigned, a select committee to
Which was referred the message of the Governor
relative to the militia of the. State, with in
structions to confer with a similar Committee
fotan.the House of Representatives, and report
by bill otherwise , repott that they have die
charged the duty assigned them, and that the
,Joint Committee of the two Houses have unani
mously concurred in a bill for the better organi
zation of the militia of the Commonwealth,
which bill will be promptly reported to the
Singe of 'Representatives for its consideration.
Harrisburg, April 1861.
, Mr. IRISH, from a committee of conference,
presented the following report :
Thecommittee of conference appointed by
the Senate to confer with a similar committee
appointed by the House of Representatives, on
the subject of the difference between the two
Houses on bill No. 104, on the file of the House,
entitled "an Act relating to executors and other
trustees," have adopted the following report :
That the Senate be recommended to recede
from so much of the amendments made by the
Senate, as strike out the first section, and that
the said section be amended in the twentieth
line by adding after the word "Judge" the
wordit, "and one Associate Judge in Tiacation,"
and ill the•tirenty-first line by striking. 9;104
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words "President Judge,"• and insert after the
word "said," the word "Judges." And that
the House concur in the amendm'ents made by
the Senate, introducing an additional section,
and the same be made the second section of the
Buss Baez. IN MACS
Mr. BENSON read in place an Act authori
zing the Ormunissionem of, Fetter county to
borrow money.
Referred to the Judiciary Committee.
Mr. CRAWFORD, an Act relative to the de
struction of certain animals in Juniata county.
Referred to the Committee on Agriculture and
Domestic Manufactures. -
• Mr. GREGG, an Act to divide the borough of
Williamsport into two wards
Referred to the Judiciary Committee.
Mr. CONNELL, alurther supplement to the
Act incorporating the city of Philadelphia.
Referred to the Judiciary Committee.
Also, an Act to enable Edwin W. Lehman,
executor named in the last will and testament
of James A. Lehman, to, sell and convey certain
real-estate. „ -
Referred to the Committee on Estates and
Mr. FULLER, an • Act to • incorporate the
Sewickley Mutual Fire Insurance Company.
Referred to the Committee on Corporations.
. Mr. WELSH; for M.r. - Paracsa, an Act to regu
late the selling of second-hand iron, &0., in
Schuylkill county. . .
Referred to the Judiciary Committee.
Mr. SERRILL, an Act to, prohibit. the impor
tation of. porgies and sea bass into Philadelphia
and other ports tuijecent at improper seasons.
Referred to the Judiciary Committee.
Senate bill No. 127, entitled -" Resolutions
proposing amendments to the Constitution,"
came up in order on second, reading.
The first, second and third sections were, read
and agreed to.
-The fourth section was read.
Mr. YARDLEY. I move to amend by strik
ing out, in the second line, the words "grant
ing or." I am of the opinion that the case
herein set forth is entirely covered by, the first
section. - '
Mr. FINNEY. In 'explanation of 'the section
I would state that the Legislature of the State
of New York, as long ago as 1826 or 1830,
passed a general banking law; and in 1846 they
I found it necessary to enact such a clause as the
one now before this Senate, in order to-prevent
an extension of special privileges. ,Tlic object of
the section is to eVentually, bring all special
charters under the 'general law. -
I perceive the force o the , objection made by
the Senator fro e. Bucks, ,(Mr. Yamnirk,')..and
am willing 'that the words" ndieated shall be
stricken out.
Mr. GREGG. I suggest that under the ope
ration of this section; thohe ,banking institu-
tions which desird to have their Charters re
newed under the banklugiystem lately inaugu
rated in this State, could not :obtain suciva re
newal. _ ' -
FINIsTEY. I call the attention of the
Senator from Centre to the fact that this sub
ject is to be passed to the Leglaliataire. of next
year, and' then to, the ,people, which -process
will occupy about, three years. If the next Le
gislature, and then the people agree to the
amendments, their enactment will ,be neces- ,
nary. And if banking -Institutions desire to be
'chartered under thq preient law there is noth
ing to prevent them, as, they Will have add
cient time.
The amendment Was then agreed to.
The section as amended - was agreed to.
The fifth section. was read.
On nuttion of Mr. WELSH,, some ,•verbal
amendments were made M the Beetion.
Mr. HALL.. There are t wp distinct proposi
tions embodied, in this,section- 7 the last' of :
which, relative to calling the yeas and nays
upon the final pumice, of every. 61.11, ' , believe
to be right and proper. The firstof tliese . pro-•
positions requiring that 'a.majority of all the
members of the Senate and Hpuss,(whether or
not those bodies contain their full ecimplement,)
shall be recorded in favor of the, Pa/sezepf each
bill which 'becomes a' law, I believe, is not
right. I move to amend by Striking out all
that part of thereetion - requires that no
bill shall become a law =Jeri it receives thee
votes of & majority of, the members of the Sea
ate and-HOuse of Representatives.
Mr. WELtH. I trust that the amendment.
will not prevail." Lao not intend to comp) , the
Senate by any dhoussion -on- this point, as"
think its propriety, or > impropriety will• strike
this a,glanco. Its, object is to require
that, upon the final wimp of each bill, there
shall be seventeen votes recorded in its favor in
the Senate, ,and fifty-One votes in the House.
Several of the States have emended their con
stitutions, in order to provide fortiiiistune par
pose. I have before me the constitution; of the
State of Ohio, in the ninth section. of the second
article of which, is set forth the following pro
vision,: ,
"Searles 9. Each Heine shall keep a correct'
journal of its proeeedMge, which - , shall be pub
lished. At the &she of any two members" the ,
yeas and nays shell be -entered upon the put=
nal, and on the passage of every bill, in either
Clouse, the vote shall be taken by.yeas and
nays, and entered upon'the journal, and no law
shall be . passed, in, either HonsilN, without the
concurrence of *Majority of all the members
elected' thereto."
_•• • '
I have received several letteri from citizens
of Ohio and Maryland, (in, thelAgialattires of
both of which States a similar provision pre
valls,) in reference to this subject- - •
In the Legislature of Maryland, the, yeas and
nays must-be required upenthefinal passag,e of
every bill, and it requires ; apertsdn -number of
votes—the consent of,"„bolieve, twelve, Sena
tors -a-to passevery hill, • The inferniation which'
I have received from these States is, that the
object has worked most benefielelly, in the Le
gislature, that the effect of its operation is to
compel members to, .be more
and care
ful, not only as regards the votes they may
give, but with referenceto thedischarge of their
legislative duties. I believe ; that if this See
tion is added to the, Constitution of our State,
the result would lie that' while members of the
Senate and llonsesvere faced by a strict sense'
of duty, which would show itself upon the re
cords of the Senate and House, to attend faith
fully and with more assiduity to the labors im
posed upon them. by their Constituents, the
sessions would be shortened,' and the expenses
of the Legislature greatly diminished. If the
object designed by thiegection be accomplished,
it would, certairdyleacidevement of great
consequence atilt - ititpeiquace ' to the' people of
Penneylvardaoacif only in 'shbitening the ses
iion. tuad.preVentinglinwise, hasty and unjust
leeslation E lm i t tO•like #,Rpr ; time,
WOO e-Vetr,6o.;Pbttteol9vgFßoltr• I see no ;
./400:94 itILY-ul” 3 4tion . of- the ge4tOr .from
Renate Committee
Blair should prevail, as the whole section ap
pears to use to be wise and proper, and I hope
it will meet the approval of the Senate.
Mr. HALL. The amendment to the Consti
tution suggested by the. Senator from Crawford
met the approbation of the. Committee on the
Judiciary, although it was not reported iby :
them, being acted upon by the Senate before
they.had time to -report. The amendment of
the Senator from Yorkdid not meet their ap
probation. ....
The SPEAKER, pro tent. The Chair deSires to .
correct the Senator. No resolutions on the sub
ject have been reported by the Cominittee.
Mr. lIALL. I have not so stated. I was
merely referring to the opinion of the Judiciary
Committee with regard to the amendments.
I am opposed to the first part of this section
for the reason that it is anti• Democratic- anti-
Republican, and contrary to that principla of
our Government which says "the majority
shall rule." I propose to show this. With re
gard, however,' to the latter portion of the sec
tion, which.provides that on the final passage
of every bill, in each branch of the Legislature,
the yeas and nays shall be called, I am inclined
to believe it is right. The Senator from YOrk
says that all that is necessary for the passage of
a bill is that seventeen Senators and fifty-One
members of the House vote for it. I would
call the attention of the Senator to the &et
that although sixteen votes may be recorded in
favor of the passage of a bill, the absence et one
vote may defeat the measure. Does the Sen
ator propose to sit here and vote all the tinie
Because the Maryland Legislature may see
proper to have a constitutional enactment re
quiring that unless ten Senatnrs shall do so and
so, all the rest - of tire - Senate cannot do so, is no
reason that the Pennsylvania Legislature should
be act likewise. lam opfaised. to
the section because I- believe:it to be contrary ;
to that principla_of eurgovernment which says
that the majority ; shall rule. At any time at
all, it leaves a factious minority, no matter how
full the Senate may be, if it' dims not happen
that seventeen _votes are cast in favor of. a
measure, to defeat it.
- Mr. WELSEf. - The Senator from Blair states
'his objection to a portion ofthis section to be
based upon the sopposition of its being anti-
Democratic and anti-R.ePublican. Now, I think
this part of the section is entirely Democratic.
I do not know, however, whether it is oither
Republican or anti-Republican. .
The presumption of the people of PennsYl
vania, is that when'they elect Senators atid Re.
presentatives to the Legislature of Pennsylvania,
those officers thus elected will occupy seats on,
this floor' and attend' to the businew before
them. The presumption is that there is always
thfrty-three gentlemen upon the 'floor of this
Senate and one hundred in the Howie of Re
presentatives, and that it-requires but afiimple
majority 'of the number elected by the people,
and supposed` to be - here at all times, unless,
prevanted iby some 'extraordinary oalfse—thii
presumption is that it simply requires a-majori
ty of the number elected to secure the passage
of any bill. As regards that point, I think the
section is eminently Democratic. '
.But the main point .whieh I haye to, make. is
that which I have already-stated—the necessity
for each Senator and Representative to be at his'
post, discharge his duty and get away from the
seat of government as soon as ,he ; possibly den.
I think that the amendment:to the 'Constitu
tion proposed by myself, will- have that effect.
It has worked in the most salutary mariner in
those States in which it has been tried. The.
Constitution of the State of Ohio, which I have
read_carefully, provides it number .of other Safe
guards in- reference to Legislation, which would
be wise and well for the people'of Pennsylvania
should they insist on having them incorporated
in the Constitution of this. State.
Mr. FINNEY. In treating of questions of
organic law, we should talk about things as
they are.' Party considerations have nothing
to do, with. this question whatever. I regard it
as eminently Republican;; for this country is a
Republio—it was: never a Democracy, , though
unfortunately there has , been for a long time "a
party in this country called the Democratic
party. Rut this, is a Republic ; and the theoiy
of a Republic is a representative government.
• The section- proposed as :an.amendment by
.the Senator. from York , provides that:the - laws
passed by the representatives of the people shall
reflect the sentiments of each portion- of the
State. This idea--,is certainly Republican,
whether Democratic or not. If the amendment
of the Senator of which lam very much in fa
vor, be sustained, then in the enactment of
every law each portion of the State is repre
sented. Some .one portion • may ,be mis
yepresented, or it may be properly rep
.resented,: still it is represented ;according to
Republblan principles, which are that the repre
sentative is elected in order that he, may exer
cise his judgment upon the passage of every
Act. His' constituents have chosen him
because:of a real or supposed capacity to dis
charge the functions of a iegislator, in accord
ance.with a„Republican government, and when
.his vote is cast upon the::passage of a bill, he
represents that constituency, whether they
agree with-him or not. When we are all re
quired to vote, it will obviate or remove to a
great extent, this system of shirking re
sponsibilities with regard to legislation, and
will develope a Republican system-call itDern
9cratic or what you please. 'I am not speaking
now in a party sense.
There can: be no loss of time in consequence
of the adoptiOn of the proposed measure, be
cause if these amendinents are austaMed, the bu
siness of legislation will be considerably short
ened and members will have plenty of time and
can afford to go'through with the operation of
calling the yeas and nays upon the final passage
of every=bill. Many of the evils that result'
from this system of covering up the actions of
members---of avoiding responsibility, when
their conscierrce does not- allow them to vote
for a meaaure, and is weak enough to cause
them to avoid taking the responsibility of
voting at all, would be avoided under the
operation of these provisions. On every prin
ciple' of leOislative morality and Republican
doctrine—:or rather Republican
. principles of
government—l think this amendment ought to
be adopted:
Mr. HALL. I did not anticipate that' any
Senatof would suppose .I had referred to this
matter in a party sense.
Mr. PINNEY. "I 'desire to explain. I bad no
reference to the Senator froth Blair, but was
merely stating a general proposition.
, Mr. HALL. If the Senator stated a general
proposition, then it had nothing to do with the
subject before the Senate. I spoke of thisprin
ciple as-being contrary to those on which the
Government of any Republican or Democratic
country is to be founded or of any country
governed by the'Peophs where the will of the
Majority must prevail, which I think should
always be the case`in assemblies of the repre
sentatives of the people,
I desire to ask the Senator from-York a quei
ton, and Iput it to the judgment Of 'the; •Sen-'
ate. Suppose there are twenty Senettes; here
to-day, and on the final passsge of .a bill which
is in charge of the Senator from Huntingdon or
some other-Senator, sixteen votes are record
ed in itslfavor:and four against it, would the
defeat of that bill be' ccording to Democratic,
Republican or, any other principles that are
right? The Senator from York seemed to think
that the latter portion of this section was ac
cording to a Democratic idea and did not pos
sibly partake of a Republican nature.
seemed to be• hinting at party. •
Mr. WELSH. I rise to explain. I - did not
hint at a question of party, in any manner.
The Senator himself presented that featurel of
this discussion; by, making some insinuatl3ns
relative to ,Democratic . principles. Ido not
know whether or not he referred to party.
The Senatdr asks a-question,.,tbat if twenty
Senatcas being ptesent and a bill receives
teen votes on its finalpassage and four in op
position to it, would the defeat of that billibe
in accordance with right principles'? In the
beginning of my remarks upon this bill, I
stated that, if the meoure was adopted it would
require the attendance of twenty-three instead
of twenty Senators. That is, the object of:that
portion of the section whiCh I have offereti as
an amendment. .
HALL, Does the Senator from York be
tieve that the.history of past sessions Presents
any grounds upon which an expectatiOn can, be
based that by a method of this character he can
Compel the attendance - iif every Senator all the
time ? Can :We by any legislative enactment
make every Senator'be.present.all the -
The Senator finin CrawfOrd (Kr.' Fir) cer
tainly does ?apt think so. - The portion of the
section to which T refer would not, have any
ether, effect than that 4of alloiiing a factious and
small majority of four todefent the Passage of
any bill in favor of which sateen votes are Ire
cerded. • .
The - Senator frem York, says that I have
raised _a party question by talking about the
DemoCratic• party. I did not say anything
abOut that,political party. "
Mr. WELSH; T said that the Senator alluded
to anti-llepublican and anti-DemOcratic princi
ples. Ido not know , What lie meant—whether
he referred to existing parties, or Whether in an
abstraCt point of view.
Mr. HALL. I did not refer to the Republi
can or Democratic party. But if the 'Senator
from York chOoses to place hiniself, witli - regard
to this particular question, in the position of
fiacring anti-Republican princiPles or anti-
Democratic principles, then • I have nothing
further to say.
Mr.. WELSH. I desire to explain. The
Senator from Blair stated, .a moment ago, that
he had,not alluded, to this as a party question ;
but now, when he thinks he can•make a point,
he turns around, and takes se different positihn.
Mr. HALL. :I considerthat Democratic prin
ciples and Republican principles are synony
mous terms; arid: aid I wish them applied to
any Party, It WOhld be to the party to wag'. I
have the honoitebelong. ,
But I say, that it is wrong for a small minor
ity to control the will of the majority. The
final adoplikon:nt ieetion; is-ran- amendment
to the constitution; must have that effect if it
does not prodUce the other effect of compelling
the attendance of every Senator dining all the
time the:Senate is in session. •
-Kr. FINNEY. It is no answer to an argu
ment to cite an extreme case.. Now,.the ex
treme case of sixteen Senators in this body Vot
ing for a measure and one defeatirig the action
of the whole sixteen is barely:suti3osable.
It ht a case which, whenever it shalls occur,
will be be right
and proper; bemuse, no
law ought to pass when thereare but seventeen
Senators present; and that factious minority is
doing its duty perfectly well When it prevents
such a course.
Mr. HALL. I desire to ask a question. Sup
pose there are twenty-nine Senators here, as has
been the case one hundred times this session;
suppose thattfteen Senators vote in favor, of
the passage of a bill, and fourteed against: it,
should the bill be defeated because the other
two Senators, Whose votes would" be necessary
in order to make a majority; of the Senate, did
Mr. FINNEY. I think so. The principle
that'l have mentioned is then asserted. pr-,
dhuirily in legislation, there would be no diffi
culty, because the great majority of the.' bills
proposed do not meet with any particulex op=
position'. Theygenerally have the consent' cif.a
majority ot the' Senate, when. thete may,be but
eighteen Senators present ; but Where there is
'an honest difference of sentiments with regard
to a -laiv which 'to afflict the whole of the
people of the State. There is no impropriety
in having a representation Of the entire pedple
in the passage of that law, when it shallbeceme
so, and the misfortune of one or two'memllers
being;absent cannot be provided against. Wears
aware of.the imperfection Of human institutions
and the impossibility of Making.a mere ma
chine out.of "anything - that' depends upon hu
man action. We'niay make a Machine to do a
thing exactly in accordance with certain ed
laws, "but when we come to eat together ds a
body.politic, we'never can - reduce our action to
to syStem of a mere machine. We cannot de
vise anything that would be exaaly perfect
Which is to depend upon the combined action
btmen; but weiwillapproidrnate as near aslwe
can to the prineiple government whichlwe
wish to sustain. It has been asserted 'by the
Senator from 'York, that in the ligislateres b£
other other States,' no fault haa - been
with regard to •the existenceof such 'an amend,
went as he proposes, and that it 'is in amord
time With the idea of a republican form of go
vernment. I think the subject ought to I be'
seriously considered by the Legislature with a
view 'to the main principle of a republican
gOveminent; which is, representation in legis
lation: . ;
Mr. IRISH. It seems to me that the objec
tion of thZ Senator from Blair, in the extreme
sulaitikin to which he has resorted in order
to find excuses for adopting a system of this
kind, would - apply, to the present Constitution.
Under our danstitution as it now stands, it is
in the power of ten individuals, constituting a
portion of a law making body; to defeat the
will of one hundred and twenty-two members of
the Legislature. If the House should pass a
bill unanimously, and twenty-one members of
this Senate Would vote in favor of it, it would'
be in the power of the Governor and one mail
in the Senate, to.defeat the will of this large
number of.the, mbers of the Legislature.
'The adoption' of this'aystem would be merely
carrying 'out the theory of checks and:balances,.
and of proper safe-guards against improper le
gialation, which has been already inaugurated
in the Constitution. It is only adding anothd
useful feature to what already exists.
Mr. HALL; The veto power placed'in the
hands of the Governer of Pennsylvania has al- ,
ways been , irCigarded hymen everywhere as avert'
dangerous, power ;ought and to be very sparingly'
used. I ell:adVtlierefore, make no argument in •
fever of it;433.lmswer to my Iriehd front Alle !
gheny: -Bnt.the extreme case tirat:Lhave cited,
ansvrered ligithe Senator from Omyvford,as,weil
as the Senator from Allegheny, does not an
swer any of the other questions at all. Sup
pose that forty-nine men voted in favor of the
passage of a bill, in the other House, and forty
eight against: It is not a law, and why? •Be
cause a minority of three choose to stay away.
Does not this amendment to the constitution
allow a small minority to stay away - for any
purpose whatever, in orderthereby to gain their
purpose? Does it-not allow that small minori
,ty, who leave the Hall, if you please, and do
not choose to vote, to control the Will of those
ninety-seven members?
litr. WELSH. The Senator from Blair, is
talking about the will of ninety-seven members.
According to his own statement of the case,
forty-eight of the members of the House present
are opposed to a particular bill• and forty-nine
in favor of it.
Mr. HALL. But a majority of the whole
House, (a portion of the members being absen
at the time,) are in favor of the passa g e of the
bill, and it should therefore be passed. I sub
mit whether Ibis amendment to the Constitu
tion ought to be adopted in view of these facts.
If the amendment would have the effect of
producing the constant attendance of every
Senator on this floor, and of every member of
the lower House, I would vote for it,-because
then the majority would govern in all cases ;
but is there a Senator here who thinks that it
will have that effect? How many bills have
been passed this session by a close vote which
did -not get the votes of seventeenaSenators ?
Reverse the proposition, and how many bills
would have passed if they had not got seven
teen votes ?
Mr. FINNEY. It appeafa to me that the ar
gument of , the. Senator from Blair with regard
to majorities, is wrongly conceived. If this
Section passes, it will require always a majority
of the representation of the whole State, to pass
a bill. At present, a bill may be passed by a
majority of the number of Senators present
voting for it, without respect to whether or not
a portion of the Senate is absent. This amend
ment to the Constitution proposes the Demo
cratic idea of a majority, considered in the light
of a representation of the whole State. With
regard to majorities, practicable and proper
ideas should obtain, in the passage of laws af
fecting the people of the whole State.
On. the motion of Mr. RALT,, to amend the
fifth section,
The yeas and nays were required by Mr.
HALL and Mr. WELSH . , and were as follow,
Yncs.—Messrs. Benson, Connell, Fuller,
Hall, Hamilton, Landon, Meredith, Nichols,
Serrill and Palmer, Speaker-10.
NAYS.—Messrs. Blood, Boughter, Bound,
Clymer, Crawford, Finney, Gregg, liestand,
Im.brie, Irish, Lawrence, Mott, Parker, Penney,
Roth son, Silliudel, Smith, Thompson, Welsh
and Yardley,--20.
So the antendment .was not agreed to.
BRIE. I move to amend by inserting
the word "public" after the word "every" in
the fourthlMe of the fifth section.
MY reason for offering the amendment is this:
I believe that - it Willbe taking up too much of
the time:of the:Legislature to call the yeas.and
nays upon (every little bill, especially in the
House,of. . Representatives, whore it takes con
siderable time to go through with that process.
-If. •tide amendment does not pass, the yeas and
nays will have to be balled 'upon every bill, no
difference whether any objection be made to its
final passage or not,;'hence the time of the Le
gislature is unnecessarily taken up at the ex
pense of the Commonwealth. If any bill is ob-'
jectionable it is very easy for Senators to call the
.yeas and nays.
Hr. RAM. If thissection is adopted at all,
it should be without any distinction between
public and private bills.. lam opposed to the
whole idea of calling - the yeas and nays on the
passage of every bill. The most important
measures upon which we have acted this win
ter have been private bills ; and those which
have met the most hostility in this Senate, and
the only bills to which this rule would not ap
ply, if the amendment is adopted, have been
private bills. The bills for the commutation of
the tonnage tax, and for the relief of the Sun
bury and . Erie railroad company, were of that
class,-and the only ones which caused a full
attendance of this Senate. Will we cause the
subject to be litigated for the purpose of testing
the constitutional question of whether a bill is
of, a public or a private character? Such ques
tions will arise. If the section is to be passed
at all, lei it be,passed as a whole. As for my
.self, I intend to vote against it, '
MX. IMIiRIE. With regard to the bills for
the, commutation of the tonnage tax and the
completion of the Sunbury and Erie Railroad, I
hold that they were
,public bills. There will
never be any danger of bills of such a character
passing either branch of the - Legislature with
out.the.yeas and nays being called. I believe
that every bill which affects the interests of the
whole Commonwealth should be ruled as being
of a public nature.
Air. FINNEY. In respect to the idea of pub
lic and private bills, - there is no Well defined
distinction between them, We frequently call
a bill , a public bill, -which may be private, or a
private a public bill; or one having a general
effect A member may ask for the enactment
of a law creating, a bank. The bill is of a local
character, and we call it private because it re
lates to a certain county; nevertheless, it af
fects the whole- Commonwealth. Every little
election law has relation to a principle which
obtains all, over the Commonwealth, so that
there is no well-defined limitation as to what
are public or what are private bills.
• Another matter which the Senator from
Beaver seems to forget is that if the amendments
prevail these local bilis-will not be before the
Legislature, and that theinecessity for a great
majority of such bills will be obviated by one
general law, which will create a mode of ar
riving at the same end without direct Legisla
tion or interposition. In. such an event, pri
vate or,lo.caltills,w nzg
hich interest onlyitieu
lar section of thestat u e, will not be objected
to, and the calling ofthe yeaa and nays '*ll
not be as much a matter of course as the =tibia
of the Speaker in directing the attention of the
Senate to a suspension of the rules, in order to
read a bill a third time. seems to me, as
has been stated by the Senator from Blair,lhat
this section is more important, - perhaps, in its
application to private hilt those termed
public bills. Most of the .important measures
that haveleen-pass4 here have been subjects
nuttrined : bypersons outside of these halls, and
have reference to piinciples of action that are
not best understood* the Legislature; being
based upon the opinionsof the Courts—general
lawa that come into requisition in the Judicial
departinent of the Government. They receive
the assent of the Legislature because their pro
,pri,etyis obvious or because the experience of
those who.sent them here is accetle.d to, as the
proper rule for enacting the law. I think that
:the applieation of the principle of this section'
is more voper when applied to both public and
private bills. •
1 , 9:0 , 493. X hells . the Auiendment.of the
: • . -•
ham tinting' girt.
Having procured Steam Power Presses we are
prepared to execute JOB and BOOK PRINTING of every
description, cheaper that it can be done at any other es
tabliehmentin the country
RATES UV A. 1.0111011181140.
Aar Four lines (micas cimstitute onetalf square. Eig
'Meg or more than four constitute a square.
Unit Square, one day
one week,.,. . •
one month•.•
three months
six months
_ .. . . . •
0110 year.... . . 600
One Square ono day
It one week.... 260
46 one mont... . . . .300
'.. three months.... 5 00
" six months.... . 800
0110 year 10 00
,Business notices inserted in the Load l.loll4o!lb__CP
before Marriages and Deaths, FIVE CENTS PER /MR
or each insertion.
air-Marriages and Deaths to be charged as regular
NO. 87.
Senator from Beaver will not be adopted, be
cause it destroys the effect of the whole sec
Mr. PENNF,,Y. It is perfectly apparent to
me that it would be wholly inconsistent with
the requirements of the Constitution should
the amendment of the Senator .preirtill. It
strikes me as inconsistent with the provisions
of all organic ldw, to use terms which would
be the subject of very doubtful litigation. No
Senator is able to decide whether a certain bill
is public or private, and almost every day we
have &discussion on this question. There is no
such distinction.
The amendment of Mr. IMBRIE was not
agreed to.
The section was then agreed to.
Mr. CLYMER offered the following to coma
in as a new section, to be numbered section six
of the bill, and section twenty-eight of the
SEC. 28. That no bill making an appropria
tion of money (except for the ordinary expensed
of the Government) releasing or compromising
any claim or demand of the Commonwealth
against individuals or corporations, or authorizz
ing a loan or exchange of securities belonging
to the Commonwealth, shall become a law un
less upon its final passage it "shall receive the
votes of two-thirds of all the members of the
Rouse of Representatives ; but should the Gov
ernor of the Commonwealth, by special mes
sage to the Legislature, recommend any appro
priation or the release or compromise of any
claim or demand, or a loan or exchange of se
curities belonging to the Commonwealth, then
the bill authorizing such appropriation, release,
compromise, loan or exchange, shall become a
law upon its receiving the votes of a majority
of all the members of the Senate and a major
ity of the members of the House of Represent
Mr. IBISH.I.It occurs to me, in regard to that
amendment, that it is liable to the same objec
tion as that of the amendment offered by the
Senator from Beaver: Questions may often arise
as to what is an ordinary, and what is an ex
traordinary expense in appropriations to carry
on the business of the government. I suggest
to the Senate that the exception, "except for
;or ordinary expenses of the government," is
not a sufficiently definite one to be made use of
in that connection.
Mr. CLYMER. I would state, Mr. Speaker,
that in preparing this amendment, a difficulty
was to be surmounted. It was not intended by
this amendment to embarrass the appropriations
of money for the support ot the Executive, Le
gislative or any other department of the govern
ment, or for the payment of the interest upon
the State indebtedness. For all such purposes,
I believe that a fair majority of the whole Sen
ate, as required by the section just adopted, was
right and proper; and yet, how to to make that
distinct and clear,was the difficulty under which
,I labored. The nearest approach I could make
to such a course, was to except the ordinary ex
penses of the government, in the amendment
which I have offered. Long usage' has so well
defined what are the ordinary expenses of the
government of this State, that it seems to me
no [difficulty could arise on this question. If
any Senator would suggest any more precise or
clear statement of the idea I desire to reach, I
would be most happy to accept it as an amend
ment. I have, however, submitted this amend
nent, to a number of Senators , in whose judg
ment I have much confidence, and - they seem
to agree with me that it was a precise and ac
curate statement, such as was requiredin a con
stitutional amendment. I naiy-have been mis
taken as well as they in regard to that matter.
Mr. FINNEY. I appreciate the motives of
the Senator from l3erks in the amendment he
has offered. lam of the opinion that, it is an
unnecessary check and guard to the passage of
a bill. Now the amendment - which was proposed
by the Senator from York is perhaps a sufficient
check upon the passage of the bill. When we
come to take into consideration that another
department of the Government, in the exercise
of the veto power, has its functions to discharge,
then the principle asserted in this amendment
by the Senator from Berke comes in. A vote of
two-thirds is then required. The main object
ion to the amendment of the Senator, in, my
opinion, is that it is an unnecessary restriction
and check upon legislation. The moat of the
money paid by the Commonwealth iLdishirsed
through a general appropriation, and I do not
think it will be policy to subject that bill to a
- greater restriction with regard to its enact
ments than other bills, because it is gre,aterthan
any other bill. It is one of the essential duties
of the Legislature and one of the necessities of
the State. It ought to be relieved as much as
possible from the mereaction of party divisions,
for in the animosity of party zeal and strife
which exists. in governments of this character
the essential bill of the session may be defeated
by the kind of legislation proposed to be adopt
ed by the amendment. I know that these
things are speculative, but nevertheless they are
likely to occur.
Mr. CLYMER. I will suggest to the Senator
from Crawford that as far as the general ap
proiuriation bill is concerned that is one'which
more immediately affects the necessities of the
government, and is, by the operation ,of the
amendment of the Senator frgm. York, subject
ed to the same necessities thff this amendment
would subject it. It requires a majority of all
the Senate and of the members 'of the rouse
f o r the passage of that bill; therefore my amend
ment would not affect it. But, sir, the Senator
from Crawford well knows and yesterday justly
complained that there area number of cases
in which appropriations are asked from the
State about,which we know nothing and cannot
of necessity knOw anything. It was intended
by Myself in. this amendment to reach cases of
that kind---cases in - which the Legislature were
not informed. If there are among these eases
any that are really meritorious and can be so
shown to this body, and are of such a nature that
universal consent will be given them, it is not
to be supposed that that consent could be with
held. But if there is any doubt in regagi• to
appropriations then, by this araendthent to, the
tonstitation, we have placed within our power
the Means of information from a responsible
source, from the Executive of - the Common
wealth, who from his high, position and from
that known integrity which should ever char
acterize him, would lay before the Legislature
such reasons which should induce this Legisla
ture to pass such appropriations of that kind,
upon the same footing as will be required by
the amendment of tlit ssWatoe from York ,if it
should become a por,tioa:ciflikftVezietikation.
I think it is.evidentrto s , Sentife,sind,cer
fainlyA itas been . tWCI7: - of the' people thutiAtte, that we
sufficient examination make appropsiatisms los
improper elajegtk io ,aelo„notclejt, hei!es.
any bad de s 0 improkelsinotistegatii' •
reason that we have no source of sinfimation
upon Which to base our judgment. In ortlet to
enable us to act with discrimination 034 taro
in making these appropriations, I,haie design
ed by [this amendment:that no *llk fq!!Prottna
' pvlo=4 on :2efitf, s ' 2767,04,'
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