Monday, July 15, 2013
"faithful and rigid compliance with the restrictions of power contained in the Constitution..."
“...It is obvious that the agitation with respect to slavery in the States; the measures for advancing personal interests under the cover of protective tariffs for profuse expenditures for internal improvements; for the support by the public treasury of different schemes to promote private wealth and interests, have a common origin in mistaken views of constitutional law. These erroneous views are sometimes held by those apparently occupying antagonistic positions, yet, their projects being based upon similar constructions of the national compact, their respective supporters are ultimately led into harmonious action, however conflicting their purposes may at first appear. If the general government has the right to incorporate banks, or to carry on extensive systems of internal improvement, it will be difficult to resist the argument that it has a right to interfere with local interests in other respects.
It is of vital importance that clear and correct views of the Constitution and of the rights of the States, should exist in the minds of our people. It should be understood that interference with the local affairs of the different States, is not to be avoided from motives of expediency, but from the higher and stronger considerations of constitutional limitations, restrictions and obligations. The dignity and sovereignty of the several states will best be secured where their rights are clearly appreciated and fully recognised—where they rely upon the national compact, and not upon forbearance from improper assaults, nor upon the intrusive guardianship of those who have nothing to do with their local institutions. Their rights should be defended by the barriers of the Constitution, and not by the assumed protection of individuals who are engaged in the passing excitements or the speculative projects of the day.
All measures of government which are calculated to harmonise conflicting interests and calm excitements, should be firmly sustained, and our citizens should be invoked to cherish fraternal feelings among the people of the different States of the Union. But these considerations should not be substituted in the place of constitutional rights, or solely relied upon to the exclusion of the constitutional compact, to preserve and perpetuate our political institutions.
The chief magistrate of our Union in his late message to Congress has avowed his approval of the distinctive doctrines which were entertained and expressed by Presidents Jefferson and Jackson in their communications to Congress. Whatever conflicts ot opinion may have existed heretofore with respect to particular questions which have excited the public mind, and which may for a time have obscured in the apprehension of some, true views of our national compact, all who concur in the purpose of maintaining the provisions of that instrument and preserving the purity of our congressional legislation, will sustain and uphold the views which he has expressed and the policy which he has marked out. By doing so they will not only put an end to all sectional agitations under whatever pretext commenced or continued, but also to the practice becoming so common of resorting to the National capital with designs of perverting its legislation to purposes of pecuniary gain. It will then cease to be true that the humble claim for redress for conceded wrongs is often overlooked, while equivocal measures, making large drafts upon the revenues of the people, are sustained and carried through by the influence of the very funds which they draw from the public treasury.
At this time the people would approve of a law granting the public lands to actual settlers. Necessary improvements can best be promoted in our new States by giving them a population which will cultivate their soil and increase their resources rather than by bestowing the national domain in large quantities upon a few individuals engaged in speculative schemes who will hold them from occupation until they can command the highest prices. A distribution of these land[s] to actual settlers will be a humane measure, affording homes to the destitute, employment to labor and creating wealth by increasing the productions of the soil. Improvements constructed by individual enterprise, and managed with economy and skill will follow upon the path of the hardy settler, while our government will be saved from the evils which threaten it from the corruption of legislation and from the exercise of unconstitutional powers.
New-York has an historical interest in a faithful and rigid compliance with the restrictions of power contained in the Constitution of the United States and in its amendments.
There were those in the convention which formed that instrument, who wished to create a consolidated government and annihilate local legislatures, and others who sought to give a preponderating influence to the larger states, by inequalities of representation founded upon wealth and population. Although, at that day, its ample territory, its fertile soil and its commanding position, gave assurance of future wealth, population and greatness, the delegates from New-York strenuously opposed these schemes, and asserted the equality of the local governments and their rights of sovereignty. A majority of its delegates withdrew from the convention when the principles of equality were impaired. It adopted the Constitution reluctantly, because its language admitted of constructions dangerous to the rights of the states, and its assent was accompanied by a resolution "that the Constitution be ratified in full confidence that the amendments proposed by this convention will be adopted."
The amendments which this State was chiefly instrumental in procuring, secure the free exercise of religion, freedom of speech, and the right of the people to bear arms and to petition for redress of grievances. They shield the persons and property of our citizens against unreasonable searches and seizures by regulating criminal proceedings, and preserving the right of trial by jury. To prevent misconstruction and abuse of power, our State demanded the amendments which declare that "the enumeration of certain rights shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people," and that " the powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively." These articles constitute the great barriers against the encroachments of the general government and the principal defences to the rights and sovereignty of the States, and the liberties of our citizens. The great principles which New-York asserted at the period of the adoption of the Constitution in behalf of the several States, and of the rights of the people, it will continue to maintain and defend.
The past history of our State and Nation admonish us that their prosperity and progress are best promoted by rigid economy in the management of their affairs, and by strict compliance with the requirements of their respective constitutions.
I shall cordially cooperate with you in every measure calculated to advance the interests or welfare of the people of this State.
HORATIO SEYMOUR. Albany, January 3, 1854.
- New-York Daily Tribune, Thursday, January 03, 1854. Vol. XIII. No. 3,966. Pg. 3.
Wonder what Governor Seymour would have thought of New York City and mayor bloomberg? It's quite obvious that bloomberg has no intention of continuing “to maintain and defend” the rights of the people of New York City. Nor do his fellow usurping mayors involved in the treasonous Mayors Against Illegal Guns.