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Report of Committee of Style 8 - Max Farrand, The Records of the Federal Convention of 1787, vol. 2 
The Records of the Federal Convention of 1787, ed. Max Farrand (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1911). Vol. 2.
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Report of Committee of Style8
WE, the People of the United States, in order to form
a more perfect union, to establish justice, insure domestic tranquillity, provide for the common defence, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
Sect. 1. ALL legislative powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.
Sect. 2. The House of Representatives shall be composed of members chosen every second year by the people of the several states, and the electors in each state shall have the qualifications requisite for electors of the most numerous branch of the state legislature.
〈(a)〉 No person shall be a representative who shall not have attained to the age of twenty-five years, and been seven years a citizen of the United States, and who shall not, when elected, be an inhabitant of that state in which he shall be chosen.
〈(b)〉 Representatives and direct taxes shall be apportioned among the several states which may be included within this Union, according to their respective numbers, which shall be determined by adding to the whole number of free persons, including those bound to servitude for a term of years, and excluding Indians not taxed, three fifths of all other persons. The actual enumeration shall be made within three years after the first meeting of the Congress of the United States, and within every subsequent term of ten years, in such manner as they shall by law direct. The number of representatives shall not exceed one for every forty thousand, but each state shall have at least one representative: and until such enumeration shall be made, the state of New-Hampshire shall be entitled to chuse three, Massachusetts eight, Rhode-Island and Providence Plantations one, Connecticut five, New-York six, New-Jersey four, Pennsylvania eight, Delaware one, Maryland six, Virginia ten, North-Carolina five, South-Carolina five, and Georgia three.
〈(c)〉 When vacancies happen in the representation from any state, the Executive authority thereof shall issue writs of election to fill such vacancies.
〈(d)〉 The House of Representatives shall choose their Speaker and other officers; and they shall have the sole power of impeachment.
Sect. 3. The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two senators from each state, chosen by the legislature thereof, for six years: and each senator shall have one vote.
〈(a)〉 Immediately after they shall be assembled in consequence of the first election, they shall be divided 〈* (by lot)〉 as equally as may be into three classes. The seats of the senators of the first class shall be vacated at the expiration of the second year, of the second class at the expiration of the fourth year, and of the third class at the expiration of the sixth year, so that one-third may be chosen every second year: and if vacancies happen by resignation, or otherwise, during the recess of the Legislature of any state, the Executive thereof may make temporary appointments until the next meeting of the Legislature.
〈(b)〉 No person shall be a senator who shall not have attained to the age of thirty years, and been nine years a citizen of the United States, and who shall not, when elected, be an inhabitant of that state for which he shall be chosen.
〈(c)〉 The Vice-President of the United States shall be, ex officio,9 President of the senate, but shall have no vote, unless they be equally divided.
〈(d)〉 The Senate shall choose their other officers, and also a President pro tempore, in the absence of the Vice-President, or when he shall exercise the office of President of the United States.
〈(e)〉 The Senate shall have the sole power to try all impeachments. When sitting for that purpose, they shall be on oath. When the President of the United States is tried, the Chief Justice shall preside: And no person shall be convicted without the concurrence of two-thirds of the members present.
〈(f)〉 Judgment in cases of impeachment shall not extend further than to removal from office, and disqualification to hold and enjoy any office of honor, trust or profit under the United States: but the party convicted shall nevertheless be liable and subject to indictment, trial, judgment and punishment, according to law.
Sect. 4. The times, places and manner of holding elections for senators and representatives, shall be prescribed in each state by the legislature thereof: but the Congress may at any time by law make or alter such regulations.
〈(a)〉 The Congress shall assemble at least once in every year, and such meeting shall be on the first Monday in December, unless they shall by law appoint a different day.
Sect. 5. Each House shall be the judge of the elections, returns and qualifications of its own members, and a majority of each shall constitute a quorum to do business: but a smaller number may adjourn from day to day, and may be authorized to compel the attendance of absent members, in such manner, and under such penalties as each house may provide.
〈(a)〉 Each house may determine the rules of its proceedings; punish its members for disorderly behaviour, and, with the concurrence of two-thirds, expel a member.
〈(b)〉 Each house shall keep a journal of its proceedings, and from time to time publish the same, excepting such parts as may in their judgment require secrecy; and the yeas and nays of the members of either house on any question shall, at the desire of one-fifth of those present, be entered on the journal.
〈(c)〉 Neither house, during the session of Congress, shall, without the consent of the other, adjourn for more than three days, nor to any other place than that in which the two houses shall be sitting.
Sect. 6. The senators and representatives shall receive a compensation for their services, to be ascertained by law, and paid out of the treasury of the United States. They shall in all cases, except treason, felony and breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest during their attendance at the session of their respective houses, and in going to and returning from the same; and for any speech or debate in either house, they shall not be questioned in any other place.
〈(a)〉 No senator or representative shall, during the time for which he was elected, be appointed to any civil office under the authority of the United States, which shall have been created, or the emoluments whereof shall have been encreased during such time; and no person holding any office under the United States, shall be a member of either house during his continuance in office.
Sect. 7. The enacting stile of the laws shall be, “Be it enacted by the senators and representatives in Congress assembled.”
〈(a)〉 All bills for raising revenue shall originate in the house of representatives: but the senate may propose or concur with amendments as on other bills.
〈(b)〉 Every bill which shall have passed the house of representatives and the senate, shall, before it become a law, be presented to the president of the United States. If he approve he shall sign it, but if not he shall return it, with his objections to that house in which it shall have originated, who shall enter the objections at large on their journal, and proceed to reconsider it. If after such reconsideration two-thirds of that house shall agree to pass the bill, it shall be sent, together with the objections, to the other house, by which it shall likewise be reconsidered, and if approved by two-thirds of that house, it shall become a law. But in all such cases the votes of both houses shall be determined by yeas and nays, and the names of the persons voting for and against the bill shall be entered on the journal of each house respectively. If any bill shall not be returned by the President within ten days (Sundays excepted) after it shall have been presented to him, the same shall be a law, in like manner as if he had signed it, unless the Congress by their adjournment prevent its return, in which case it shall not be a law.10
〈(c)〉 Every order, resolution, or vote to which the concurrence of the Senate and House of Representatives may be necessary (except on a question of adjournment) shall be presented to the President of the United States; and before the same shall take effect, shall be approved by him, or, being disapproved by him, shall be repassed by *three-fourths of the Senate and House of Representatives, according to the rules and limitations prescribed in the case of a bill.
Sect. 8. The Congress may by joint ballot appoint a treasurer. They shall have power.
〈(a)〉 To lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts and excises; to pay the debts and provide for the common defence and general welfare12 of the United States. 〈but all duties imposts & excises shall be uniform throughout the U. States.〉13
〈(b)〉 To borrow money on the credit of the United States.
〈(c)〉 To regulate commerce with foreign nations, among the several states, and with the Indian tribes.
〈(d)〉 To establish an uniform rule of naturalization14 and uniform laws on the subject of bankruptcies throughout the United States.
〈(e)〉 To coin money, regulate the value thereof, and of foreign coin, and fix the standard of weights and measures.
〈(f)〉 To provide for the punishment of counterfeiting the securities and current coin of the United States.
〈(g)〉 To establish post offices and post roads.
〈(i)〉 To promote the progress of science and useful arts, by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries.
〈(j)〉 To constitute tribunals inferior to the supreme court.
〈(k)〉 To define and punish piracies and felonies committed on the high seas, and 〈* (punish)〉 offences against the law of nations.
〈(l)〉 To declare war, grant letters of marque and reprisal, and make rules concerning captures on land and water.
〈(m)〉 To raise and support armies: but no appropriation of money to that use shall be for a longer term than two years.
〈(n)〉 To provide and maintain a navy.
〈(o)〉 To make rules for the government and regulation of the land and naval forces.
〈(p)〉 To provide for calling forth the militia to execute the laws of the union, suppress insurrections and repel invasions.
〈(q)〉 To provide for organizing, arming and disciplining the militia, and for governing such part of them as may be employed in the service of the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the appointment of the officers, and the authority of training the militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress.
〈(r)〉 To exercise exclusive legislation in all cases whatsoever, over such district (not exceeding ten miles square) as may, by cession of particular States, and the acceptance of Congress, become the seat of government of the United States, and to exercise like authority over all places purchased by the consent of the legislature of the state in which the same shall be, for the erection of forts, magazines, arsenals, dockyards, and other needful buildings — And
〈(s)〉 To make all laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into execution the foregoing powers, and all other powers vested by this constitution in the government of the United States, or in any department of officer thereof.
Sect. 9. The migration or importation of such persons as the several states now existing shall think proper to admit, shall not be prohibited by the Congress prior to the year one thousand eight hundred and eight, but a tax or duty may be imposed on such importation, not exceeding ten dollars for each person.
〈(a)〉 The privilege of the writ of habeas corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in cases of rebellion or invasion the public safety may require it.
〈(b)〉 No bill of attainder shall be passed, nor any ex post facto law.
〈(c)〉 No capitation tax shall be laid, unless in proportion to the census herein before directed to be taken.
〈(d)〉 No tax or duty shall be laid on articles exported from any state. 〈No preference shall be given by any regulation of commerce or revenue to the ports of one State over those of another — nor shall vessels bound to or from one State be obliged to enter, clear or pay duties in another.〉15
〈(e)〉 No money shall be drawn from the treasury, but in consequence of appropriations made by law.
〈(f)〉 No title of nobility shall be granted by the United States. And no person holding any office of profit or trust under them, shall, without the consent of the Congress, accept of any present, emolument, office, or title, of any kind whatever, from any king, prince, or foreign state.
Sect. 10. No state shall coin money,15 nor emit bills of credit, nor make any thing but gold or silver coin a tender in payment of debts, nor pass any bill of attainder, nor ex post facto laws, nor laws altering or impairing the obligation of contracts; nor grant letters of marque and reprisal, nor enter into any treaty, alliance, or confederation, nor grant any title of nobility.
〈(a)〉 No state shall, without the consent of Congress, lay imposts or duties on imports or exports, nor with such consent, but to the use of the treasury of the United States.17 Nor18 keep troops nor ships of war in time of peace, nor enter into any agreement or compact with another state, nor with any foreign power; nor engage in any war, unless it shall be actually invaded by enemies, or the danger of invasion be so imminent, as not to admit of delay until the Congress can be consulted.
Sect. 1. The executive power shall be vested in a president of the United States of America. He shall hold his office during the term of four years, and, together with the vice-president, chosen for the same term, be elected in the following manner:
〈(a)〉 Each state shall appoint, in such manner as the legislature thereof may direct, a number of electors, equal to the whole number of senators and representatives to which the state may be entitled in Congress: but no senator or representative shall be appointed an elector, nor any person holding an office of trust or profit under the United States.
〈(b)〉 The electors shall meet in their respective states, and vote by ballot for two persons, of whom one at least shall not be an inhabitant of the same state with themselves. And they shall make a list of all the persons voted for, and of the number of votes for each; which list they shall sign and certify, and transmit sealed to the seat of the general government, directed to the president of the senate. The president of the senate shall in the presence of the senate and house of representatives open all the certificates, and the votes shall then be counted. The person having the greatest number of votes shall be the president, if such number be a majority of the whole number of electors appointed; and if there be more than one who have such majority, and have an equal number of votes, then the house of representatives shall immediately chuse by ballot one of them for president; and if no person have a majority, then from the five highest on the list the said house shall in like manner choose the president. But in choosing the president, the votes shall be taken by states, and not per capita,19 the representation from each state having one vote. A quorum for this purpose shall consist of a member or members from two-thirds of the states, and a majority of all the states shall be necessary to a choice. In every case, after the choice of the president by the representatives,20 the person having the greatest number of votes of the electors shall be the vice-president. But if there should remain two or more who have equal votes, the senate shall choose from them by ballot the vice-president.
〈(d)〉 No person except a natural born citizen, or a citizen of the United States, at the time of the adoption of this constitution, shall be eligible to the office of president; neither shall any person be eligible to that office who shall not have attained to the age of thirty-five years, and been fourteen years a resident within the United States.
〈(e)〉 In case of the removal of the president from office, or of his death, resignation, or inability to discharge the powers and duties of the said office, the same shall devolve on the vice-president, and the Congress may by law provide for the case of removal, death, resignation or inability, both of the president and vice-president, declaring what officer shall then act as president, and such officer shall act accordingly, until the disability be removed, or the period for chusing another president arrive.23
〈(f)〉 The president shall, at stated times, receive a fixed compensation for his services, which shall neither be encreased nor diminished during the period for which he shall have been elected.
〈(g)〉 Before he enter on the execution of his office, he shall take the following oath or affirmation: “I —, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of president of the United States, and will to the best of my judgment and power, preserve, protect and defend the constitution of the United States.”
Sect. 2. The president shall be commander in chief of the army and navy of the United States, and of the militia of the several States24 : he may require the opinion, in writing, of the principal officer in each of the executive departments, upon any subject relating to the duties of their respective offices, when called into the actual service of the United States,24 and he shall have power to grant reprieves and pardons for offences against the United States, except in cases of impeachment.
〈(a)〉 He shall have power, by and with the advice and consent of the senate, to make treaties, provided two-thirds of the senators present concur; and he shall nominate, and by and with the advice and consent of the senate, shall appoint ambassadors, other public ministers and consuls, judges of the supreme court, and all other officers of the United States, whose appointments are not herein otherwise provided for.
〈(b)〉 The president shall have power to fill up all vacancies that may happen during the recess of the senate, by granting commissions which shall expire at the end of their next session.
Sect. 3. He shall from time to time give to the Congress information of the state of the union, and recommend to their consideration such measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient: he may, on extraordinary occasions, convene both houses, or either of them, and in case of disagreement between them, with respect to the time of adjournment, he may adjourn them to such time as he shall think proper: he shall receive ambassadors and other public ministers: he shall take care that the laws be faithfully executed, and shall commission all the officers of the United States.
Sect. 4. The president, vice-president, and all civil officers of the United States, shall be removed from office on impeachment for, and conviction of treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors.
Sect. 1. The judicial power of the United States, both in law and equity, shall be vested in one supreme court, and in such inferior courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish. The judges, both of the supreme and inferior courts, shall hold their offices during good behaviour, and shall, at stated times, receive for their services, a compensation, which shall not be diminished during their continuance in office.
Sect. 2. The judicial power shall extend to all cases, both in law and equity, arising under this constitution, the laws of the United States, and treaties made, or which shall be made, under their authority. To all cases affecting ambassadors, other public ministers and consuls. To all cases of admiralty and maritime jurisdiction. To controversies to which the United States shall be a party. To controversies between two or more States; between a state and citizens of another state; between citizens of different States; between citizens of the same state claiming lands under grants of different States, and between a state, or the citizens thereof, and foreign States, citizens or subjects.
In cases affecting ambassadors, other public ministers and consuls, and those in which a state shall be a party, the supreme court shall have original jurisdiction. In all the other cases before mentioned, the supreme court shall have appellate jurisdiction, both as to law and fact, with such exceptions, and under such regulations as the Congress shall make.
The trial of all crimes, except in cases of impeachment, shall be by jury; and such trial shall be held in the state where the said crimes shall have been committed; but when not committed within any state, the trial shall be at such place or places as the Congress may by law have directed.
Sect. 3. Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying war against them, or in adhering to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort. No person shall be convicted of treason unless on the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or on confession in open court.
The Congress shall have power to declare the punishment of treason, but no attainder of treason shall work corruption of blood nor forfeiture, except during the life of the person attainted.
Sect. 1. Full faith and credit shall be given in each state to the public acts, records, and judicial proceedings of every other state. And the Congress may by general laws prescribe the manner in which such acts, records and proceedings shall be proved, and the effect thereof.
Sect. 2. The citizens of each state shall be entitled to all privileges and immunities of citizens in the several states.
A person charged in any state with treason, felony, or other crime, who shall flee from justice, and be found in another state, shall on demand of the executive authority of the state from which he fled be delivered up, and removed to the state having jurisdiction of the crime.
No person legally held to service or labour in one state, escaping into another, shall in consequence of regulations subsisting therein be discharged from such service or labor, but shall be delivered up on claim of the party to whom such service or labour may be due.
Sect. 3. New states may be admitted by the Congress into this union; but no new state shall be formed or erected within the jurisdiction of any other state; nor any state be formed by the junction of two or more states, or parts of states, without the consent of the legislatures of the states concerned as well as of the Congress.
The Congress shall have power to dispose of and make all needful rules and regulations respecting the territory or other property belonging to the United States: and nothing in this Constitution shall be so construed as to prejudice any claims of the United States, or of any particular state.
Sect. 4. The United States shall guarantee to every state in this union a Republican form of government, and shall protect each of them against invasion; and on application of the legislature or executive, against domestic violence.
The Congress, whenever two-thirds of both houses shall deem necessary, or on the application of two-thirds25 of the legislatures of the several states, shall propose amendments to this constitution, which shall be valid to all intents and purposes, as part thereof, when the same shall have been ratified by three-fourths at least of26 the legislatures27 of the several states, or by conventions in three-fourths thereof, as the one or the other mode of ratification may be proposed by the Congress: Provided, that no amendment which may be made prior to the year 1808 shall in any manner affect theNA and28NA sections of29 article
All debts contracted and engagements entered into before the adoption of this Constitution shall be as valid against the United States under this Constitution as under the confederation.
This constitution, and the laws of the United States which shall be made in pursuance thereof; and all treaties made, or which shall be made, under the authority of the United States, shall be the supreme law of the land; and the judges in every state shall be bound thereby, any thing in the constitution or laws of any state to the contrary notwithstanding.
The senators and representatives beforementioned, and the members of the several state legislatures, and all executive and judicial officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by oath or affirmation, to support this constitution; but no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States.
The ratification of the conventions of nine States, shall be sufficient for the establishment of this constitution between the States so ratifying the same.
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 13, 1787.
The honorable Mr Johnson from the Committee of revision reported the following as a substitute for the 22nd and 23rd articles1
Resolved that the preceeding Constitution be laid before the United States in Congress assembled, and that it is the opinion of this Convention that it should afterwards be submitted to a Convention of Delegates, chosen in each State by the People thereof, under the recommendation of it’s Legislature; for their assent and ratification. and that each Convention assenting to, and ratifying, the same should give notice thereof to the United States in Congress assembled.
Resolved that it is the opinion of this Convention that as soon as the Conventions of nine States, shall have ratified this Constitution, the United States in Congress assembled should fix a day, on which Electors should be appointed by the States which shall have ratified the same: and a day on which the Electors should assemble to vote for the President: and the Time and Place for commencing proceedings under this constitution That after such publication the electors should be appointed, and the Senators and Representatives elected: That the Electors should meet on the Day fixed for the Election of the President, and should transmit their votes certified, signed, sealed, and directed, as the Constitution requires, to the Secretary of the United States in Congress assembled, that the Senators and representatives should convene at the Time and place assigned, that the Senators should appoint a President of the Senate for the sole purpose of receiving, opening, and counting the votes for President; and that after he shall be chosen, the Congress together with the President should without delay proceed to execute this Constitution
[To postpone the report respecting the 22nd and 23rd Ayes — 9; noes — 1.]2
The clause offered to the House yesterday to be added to the 13th article being withdrawn — It was moved and seconded to agree to the following amendment to the 13th article
Provided that no State shall be restrained from imposing the usual Duties on produce exported from such State, for the sole purpose of defraying the charges of inspecting, packing, storing, and indemnifying the losses on such produce, while in the custody of public Officers: but all such regulations shall, in case of abuse, be subject to the revision and controul of Congress.
which passed in the affirmative. [Ayes — 7; noes — 3.]3
It was moved and seconded to proceed to the comparing of the report, from the Committee of revision, with the articles which were agreed to by the House; and to them referred for arrangement.
which passed in the affirmative
and the same was read by paragraphs, compared, and in some places corrected and amended.
[To agree to add “for two years” Ayes — 1; noes — 10.
to insert “service” instead of “servitude” Ayes — 11; noes — 0.
To strike out the words “and direct taxes” Ayes — 3; noes — 8.
__________NA Ayes — 3; noes — 8.
To rescind the rule for adjournment Ayes — 6; noes — 5.
__________NA Ayes — 3; noes — 7; divided — 1.
To strike out the word “to” before establish justice Ayes — 8; noes — 2.]4
Col. Mason — He had moved without success for a power to make sumptuary regulations. He had not yet lost sight of his object. After descanting on the extravagance of our manners, the excessive consumption of foreign superfluities, and the necessity of restricting it, as well with œconomical as republican views, he moved that a Committee be appointed to report articles of Association for encouraging by the advice the influence and the example of the members of the Convention, œconomy frugality and american manufactures.
Docr Johnson 2ded the motion which was without debate agreed to — nem: con: and a Committee appointed, consisting of Col: Mason, Docr. Franklin, Mr. Dickenson, Docr Johnson, and Mr. Livingston.*
Col: Mason renewed his proposition of yesterday on the subject of inspection laws, with an additional clause giving to Congress a controul over them in case of abuse — as follows,
“Provided that no State shall be restrained from imposing the usual duties on produce exported from such State, for the sole purpose of defraying the charges of inspecting, packing, storing, and indemnifying the losses on such produce, while in the custody of public officers: but all such regulations shall in case of abuse, be subject to the revision and controul of Congress —”5
There was no debate & on the question
N— H— ay. Mas. ay. Ct. ay. Pa. no. Del. no. Md. ay. Va. ay. N— C— ay. S. C. no— Geo. ay. [Ayes — 7; noes — 3.]
The Report from the Committee of stile and arrangement, was taken up, in order to be compared with the articles of the plan as agreed to by the House & referred to the Committee, and to receive the final corrections and sanction of the Convention.
Art: 1— sect. 2— On motion of Mr. Randolph the word “servitude” was struck out, and “service” 〈† unanimously〉 inserted, the former being thought to express the condition of slaves, & the latter the obligations of free persons.
Mr Dickenson & Mr. Wilson moved to strike out “and direct taxes,” from sect. 2. art. 1. as improperly placed in a clause relating merely to the Constitution of the House of Representatives.
Mr. Govr. Morris. The insertion here was in consequence of what had passed on this point; in order to exclude the appearance of counting the Negroes in the Representation — The including of them may now be referred to the object of direct taxes, and incidentally only to that of Representation —
On the motion to strike out “and direct taxes” from this place
N— H— no— Mas— no— Ct. no. N— J— ay. Pa. no. Del. ay. Md ay. Va. no— N. C. no. S. C. no. Geo. no. [Ayes — 3; noes — 8.]
Art. 1. sect. 〈7〉.” — “if any bill shall not be returned by the president within ten days (sundays excepted) after it shall have been presented to him &c”
Mr. Madison, & moved to insert between “after” and “it,” 〈in sect. 7. art. 1〉 the words “the day on which” — in order to prevent a question whether the day on which the bill be presented, ought to be counted or not as one of the ten days —
Mr Randolph 2ded the Motion.
Mr. Governur Morris. The amendment is unnecessary. The law knows no fractions of days —
A number of members being very impatient & calling for the question6
N. H. no. Mas. no. Ct. no. N— J. no. Pa. ay. Del. no— Md ay— Va ay. N— C. no. S— C. no. Geo. no— [Ayes — 3; noes — 8.]
Docr. Johnson made a further report from the Committee of stile &c of the following resolutions to be substituted for 22 & 23 articles
Resolved that the preceding Constitution be laid before the U— States in Congress assembled, and that it is the opinion of this Convention, that it should afterwards be submitted to a Convention of Delegates chosen in each State by the people thereof, under the recommendation of its Legislature, for their assent & ratification; & that each Convention assenting & ratifying the same should give notice thereof to the U— S— in Congs. assembled—
“Resolved that it is the opinion of this Convention that as soon as the Conventions of nine States, shall have ratified this Constitution, the U— S— in Congs. assembled should fix a day on which electors should be appointed by the States which shall have ratified the same; and a day on which the Electors should assemble to vote for the President; and the time and place for commencing proceedings under this Constitution — That after such publication the Electors should be appointed, and the Senators and Representatives elected: That the Electors should meet on the day fixed for the election of the President, and should transmit their votes certified signed, sealed and directed, as the Constitution requires, to the Secretary of the U— States in Congs assembled: that the Senators and Representatives should convene at the time & place assigned; that the Senators should appoint a President for the sole purpose of receiving, opening, and counting the votes for President, and after that he shall be chosen, the Congress, together with the President should without delay proceed to execute this Constitution.”7
Recd. read and compared the new printed report with the first printed amended report. Made some verbal alterations, and inserted the propositions moved by Maryland which had been overlooked.
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 14, 1787.
The1 report from the Committee of revision, as corrected and amended yesterday, being taken up, was read, debated by paragraphs, amended, and agreed to as far as the first clause of the 10 section of the first article inclusive
The House adjourned.2
The Report of the Committee of stile & arrangement being resumed,
Mr. Williamson moved to reconsider in order to increase the number of Representatives fixed for the first Legislature. His purpose was to make an addition of one half generally to the number allotted to the respective States; and to allow two to the smallest States.
On this motion
N. H. no— Mas. no. Ct no. N. J— no. Pa ay— Del. ay. Md ay. Va. ay. N C. ay. S— C. no. Geo. no [Ayes — 5; noes — 6.]
Art. 1. sect. 3. — the words * “by lot” were struck out nem: con: on motion of Mr. Madison, that some rule might prevail in the rotation that would prevent both the members from the same State from going out at the same time —
“Ex officio” struck out of the same section as superfluous; nem: con: 〈and “or affirmation” after “oath” inserted also unanimously — 〉
Mr Rutlidge and Mr. Govr. Morris moved “that persons impeached be suspended from their office until they be tried and acquitted”
Mr. Madison — The President is made too dependent already on the Legislature, by the power of one branch to try him in consequence of an impeachment by the other. This intermediate suspension, will put him in the power of one branch only — They can at any moment, in order to make way for the functions of another who will be more favorable to their views, vote a temporary removal of the existing magistrate —
Mr. King 〈concurred〉 in the opposition to the amendment
On the question to agree to it
N— H. no. Mas. no— Ct. ay— N— J. no. Pa. no. Del— no. Md no. Va. no. N— C. no. S. C. ay, Geo. ay, [Ayes — 3; noes — 8.]
Art. 1. sect. 4. “except as to the places of choosing Senators” added nem: con: to the end of the first clause, in order to exempt the seats of Govt in the States from the power of Congress —4
Art. 1. Sect. 5.5 “Each House shall keep a Journal of its proceedings, and from time to time publish the same, excepting such parts as may in their judgment require secrecy.”
Col: Mason & Mr. Gerry moved to insert after the word “parts” the words “of the proceedings of the Senate”6 so as to require publication of all the proceedings of the House of Representatives.
It was intimated on the other side that cases might arise where secrecy might be necessary in both Houses — Measures preparatory to a declaration of war in which the House of Reps. was to concur, were instanced.
On the question, 〈it passed in the negative〉
〈N. H. no. (Rh. Isd:) Mas. no. Con: no. (N. Y. abs) N. J. no. Pen. ay. Del— no. Mary. ay. Virg. no. N. C. ay. S. C. divd. Geor. no〉 [Ayes — 3; noes — 7; divided — 1.]7
Mr Baldwin observed that the clause. art. 1. sect 6. declaring that no member of Congs, “during the time for which he was elected; shall be appointed to any Civil office under the authority of the U. S. which shall have been created, or the emoluments whereof shall have been increased during such time”, would not extend to offices created by the Constitution; and the salaries of which would be created, not increased by Congs. at their first session — The members of the first Congs consequently might evade the disqualification in this instance. — He was neither seconded nor opposed; nor did any thing further pass on the subject.
Art. 1. Sect. 8.“ The Congress “may by joint ballot appointed a Treasurer”
Mr Rutlidge moved to strike out this power, and let the Treasurer be appointed in the same manner with other officers.
Mr. Gorham & Mr. King said that the motion, if agreed, to would have a mischievous tendency. The people are accustomed & attached to that mode of appointing Treasurers, and the innovation will multiply objections to the System.
Mr. Govr. Morris remarked that if the Treasurer be not appointed by the Legislature, he will be more narrowly watched, and more readily impeached —
Mr. Sherman — As the two Houses appropriate money, it is best for them to appoint the officer who is to keep it; and to appoint him as they make the appropriation, not by joint, but several votes:
Genl Pinkney. The Treasurer is appointed by joint ballot in South Carolina. The consequence is that bad appointments are made, and the Legislature will not listen to the faults of their own officer.
On the motion to strike out
N. H— ay. Mas. no. Ct. ay. N. J. ay. Pa. no. Del— ay— Md ay. Va. no. N— C. ay. S. C. ay. Geo— ay. [Ayes — 8; noes — 3.]
〈“but all such duties imposts & excises, shall be uniform throughout the U— S—” was unanimously annexed to the power of taxation.〉
Art I. sect. 8: To define & punish piracies and felonies on the high seas, and “punish” offences against the law of nations.8
Mr. Govr. Morris moved to strike out “punish” before the words “offences agst. the law of nations.” so as to let these be definable as well as punishable, by virtue of the preceding member of the sentence.
Mr. Wilson hoped the alteration would by no means be made. To pretend to define the law of nations which depended on the authority of all the Civilized Nations of the World, would have a look of arrogance. that would make us ridiculous.
Mr. Govr The word define is proper when applied to offences in this case; the law of 〈nations〉 being often too vague and deficient to be a rule.
On the question to strike out the word “punish” 〈it passed in the affirmative〉
N— H. ay. Mas— no. Ct. ay. N— J. ay. Pa. no. Del. ay Md. no. Va. no. N . C— ay— S— C— ay. Geo— no. [Ayes — 6; noes — 5.]
Mr Wilson 2ded. the motion
Mr Sherman objected. The expence in such cases will fall on the U— States, and the benefit accrue to the places where the canals may be cut.
Mr Wilson. Instead of being an expence to the U. S. they may be made a source of revenue.
Mr. Madison suggested an enlargement of the motion into a power “to grant charters of incorporation where the interest of the U. S. might require & the legislative provisions of individual States may be incompetent”. His primary object was however to secure an easy communication between the States which the free intercourse now to be opened, seemed to call for— The political obstacles being removed, a removal of the natural ones as far as possible ought to follow. Mr. Randolph 2ded. the proposition.
Mr King thought the power unnecessary.
Mr Wilson. It is necessary to prevent a State from obstructing the general welfare.
Mr King— The States will be prejudiced and divided into parties by it— In Philada. & New York, It will be referred to the establishment of a Bank, which has been a subject of contention in those Cities. In other places it will be referred to mercantile monopolies.
Mr. Wilson mentioned the importance of facilitating by canals, the communication with the Western Settlements— As to Banks he did not think with Mr. King that the power in that point of view would excite the prejudices & parties apprehended. As to mercantile monopolies they are already included in the power to regulate trade.
Col: Mason was for limiting the power to the single case of Canals. He was afraid of monopolies of every sort, which he did not think were by any means already implied by the Constitution as supposed by Mr. Wilson.
The motion being so modified as to admit a distinct question specifying & limited to the case of canals.
N— H— no— Mas. no. Ct. no— N— J— no— Pa ay. Del. no— Md. no. Va. ay. N— C— no— S— C. no— Geo. ay. [Ayes — 3; noes — 8.]
The other part fell of course, as including the power rejected.
Mr. Madison & Mr. Pinkney then moved to insert in the list of powers vested in Congress a power — “to establish an University, in which no preferences or distinctions should be allowed on account of religion.”10
Mr Wilson supported the motion
Mr Govr Morris. It is not necessary. The exclusive power at the Seat of Government, will reach the object.
On the question
N. H. no— Mas. no. Cont. divd. Dr. Johnson ay— Mr. Sherman no. N. J— no. Pa ay. Del. no. Md. no. Va. ay. N— C— ay— S— C— ay. Geo— no. [Ayes — 4; noes — 6; divided — 1.]
Col: Mason, being sensible that an absolute prohibition of standing armies in time of peace might be unsafe, and wishing at the same time to insert something pointing out and guarding against the danger of them, moved to preface the clause (Art I sect. 8) “To provide for organizing, arming and disciplining the Militia &c” with the words “And that the liberties of the people may be better secured against the danger of standing armies in time of peace” Mr. Randolph 2ded. the motion
Mr Madison was in favor of it. It did not restrain Congress from establishing a military force in time of peace if found necessary; and as armies in time of peace are allowed on all hands to be an evil, it is well to discountenance them by the Constitution, as far as will consist with the essential power of the Govt. on that head.
Mr Govr. Morris opposed the motion as setting a dishonorable mark of distinction on the military class of Citizens
Mr Pinkney & Mr. Bedford concurred in the opposition.
On the question
N. H— no— Mas— no— Ct no. N— J— no. Pa. no. Del. no. 〈Maryd no〉11 Va ay— N. C. no. S. C. no. Geo. ay.
[Ayes — 2; noes — 9.]
Col: Mason moved to strike out from the clause (art I sect 9.) “No bill of attainder nor any expost facto law shall be passed” the words “nor any ex post facto law”.12 He thought it not sufficiently clear that the prohibition meant by this phrase was limited to cases of a criminal nature— and no Legislature ever did or can altogether avoid them in Civil cases.
Mr. Gerry 2ded. the motion but 〈with a view〉 to extend the prohibition to “Civil cases”, which he thought ought to be done.
On the question; all the States were — no13
Mr Pinkney & Mr. Gerry, moved to insert a declaration “that the liberty of the Press should be inviolably observed —”14
Mr. Sherman— It is unnecessary— The power of Congress does not extend to the Press. On the question, 〈it passed in the negative〉
Art. I. Sect. 9. “no capitation tax shall be laid, unless &c”
Mr Read moved to insert after “capitation” the words. “or other direct tax” He was afraid that some liberty might otherwise be taken to saddle the States with a readjustment by this rule, of past Requisitions of Congs — and that his amendment by giving another cast to the meaning would take away the pretext. Mr Williamson 2ded. the motion, which was agreed to,
On motion of Col: Mason “or enumeration” inserted after, as explanatory of “Census” 〈Con. & S. C. only. no.〉16
At the end of the clause “no tax or duty shall be laid on articles exported from any State” was added the following amendment conformably to a vote on theNA day ofNA viz — no preference shall be given by any regulation of commerce or revenue to the ports of one State over those of another; nor shall vessels bound to or from one State, be obliged to enter, clear or pay duties in another.17
Col. Mason moved a clause requiring “that an Account of the public expenditures should be annually published” Mr Gerry 2ded. the motion
Mr Govr. Morris urged that this wd. be impossible in many cases.
Mr. King remarked, that the term expenditures went to every minute shilling. This would be impracticable. Congs. might indeed make a monthly publication, but it would be in such general Statements as would afford no satisfactory information.
Mr. Madison proposed to strike out “annually” from the motion & insert “from time to time”. which would enjoin the duty of frequent publications and leave enough to the discretion of the Legislature. Require too much and the difficulty will beget a habit of doing nothing. The articles of Confederation require half-yearly publications on this subject— A punctual compliance being often impossible, the practice has ceased altogether—
Mr Wilson 2ded. & supported the motion— Many operations of finance cannot be properly published at certain times.
Mr, Pinkney was in favor of the motion.
Mr. Fitzimmons— It is absolutely impossible to publish expenditures in the full extent of the term.
Mr. Sherman thought “from time to time” the best rule to be given.
“Annual” was struck out — & those words — inserted nem: con:
The motion of Col. Mason so amended was then agreed to nem: con: and added after — “appropriations by law as follows— “And a regular statement and account of the recepits & expenditures of all public money shall be published from time to time.”17
The first clause of Art I. sect 10 — was altered so as to read— “No State shall enter into any Treaty alliance or confederation; grant letters of marque and reprisal; coin money; emit bills of credit; make any thing but gold & silver coin a tender in payment of debts; pass any bill of attainder, ex post law, or law impairing the obligation of contracts,18 or grant any title of nobility.”17
Mr Gerry entered into observations inculcating the importance of public faith, and the propriety of the restraint put on the States from impairing the obligation of contracts — Alledging that Congress ought to be laid under the like prohibitions. he made a motion to that effect. He was not 2ded
Moved by Dr. Franklin seconded by Mr. Willson, to empowed Congress to open and establish canals.
This being objected to — moved by Virginia To empower Congress to grant charters of incorporation in cases where the U. S. may require them and where the objects of them cannot be obtained by a State.
Moved To authorize Congress to establish an university to which and the honors and emoluments of which all persons may be admitted without any distinction of religion whatever. Congress enabled to erect such an institution in the place of the general government. Thus Congress to possess exclusive jurisdiction.
Neg. 6 Noes. 3 ay. 1 State divided.
Moved — And the liberty of the press shall be inviolable. 6 noes. 5 ays.
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 15, 1787.
Mr. Carrol reminded the House that no address to the people had yet been prepared. He considered it of great importance that such an one should accompany the Constitution. The people had been accustomed to such on great occasions, and would expect it on this— He moved that a Committee be appointed for the special purpose of preparing an Address.
Mr Rutledge objected on account of the delay it would produce and the impropriety of addressing the people before it was known whether Congress would approve and support the plan— Congress, if an address be thought proper can prepare as good a one— The members of the Convention can also explain the reasons of what has been done to their respective Constituents.
Mr Sherman concurred in the opinion that an address was both unnecessary and improper.
On the motion of Mr. Carrol
Mr. Langdon. Some gentlemen have been very uneasy that no increase of the number of Representatives has been admitted. It has in particular been thought that one more ought to be allowed to N. Carolina. He was of opinion that an additional one was due both to that State & to Rho: Island. & moved to reconsider for that purpose.
Mr. Sherman. When the Committee of eleven reported the apportionment— five Representatives were thought the proper share of N— Carolina. Subsequent information however seemed to entitle that State to another—
On the motion to reconsider
N— H— ay— Mas— no. Ct ay— N— J. no— Pen. divd. Del. ay. Md. ay. Va. ay— N. C. ay. S— C. ay. Geo. ay. [Ayes — 8; noes — 2; divided — 1.]
Mr Langdon moved to add 1 member to each of the Representations of N— Carolina & Rho: Island.
Mr. King was agst. any change whatever as opening the door for delays. There had been no official proof that the numbers of N— C are greater than before estimated. And he never could sign the Constitution if Rho: Island is to be allowed two members that is, one fourth of the number allowed to Massts, which will be known to be unjust.
Mr. Pinkney urged the propriety of increasing the number of Reps allotted to N. Carolina.
Mr. Bedford contended for an increase in favor of Rho: Island, and of Delaware also
On the question for allowing two Reps. to Rho: Island 〈it passed in the negative〉
N. H— ay. Mas. no. Ct. no. N. J. no. Pa. no. Del. ay. Md. ay. Va. no. N. C— ay. S. C. no— Geo— ay. [Ayes — 5; noes — 6.]
On the question for allowing six to N. Carolina, 〈it passed in the negative〉
N.H. no. Mas. no. Ct. no—N. J. no. Pa. no. Del— no—Md. ay. Va. ay. N—C. ay. S— C. ay. Geo. ay. [Ayes — 5; noes — 6.]
Art 1. sect. 10. (paragraph) 2) “No State shall, without the consent of Congress lay imposts or duties on imports or exports; nor with such consent, but to the use of the Treasury of the U. States” —
In consequence of the proviso moved by Col: Mason: and agreed to on the 13 Sepr, this part of the section was laid aside in favor of the following substitute viz. “No State shall, without the consent of Congress, lay any imposts or duties on imports or exports, except what may be absolutely necessary for executing its Inspection laws; and the nett produce of all duties and imposts, laid by any State on imports or exports, shall be for the use of the Treasury of the U— S—; and all such laws shall be subject to the revision and controul of the Congress”
On a motion to strike out the last part “and all such laws shall be subject to the revision and controul of 〈the〉 Congress” 〈it passed in the Negative.〉
N. H. no. Mas. no. Ct no— N. J. no. Pa divd. Del. no. Md. no Va ay— N— C— ay. S. C. no Geo. ay. [Ayes — 3; noes — 7; divided — 1.]
The substitute was then agreed to: 〈Virga. alone being in the Negative.〉2
The remainder of the paragraph being under consideration — viz — “nor keep troops nor ships of war in time of peace, nor enter into any agreement or compact with another State, nor with any foreign power. Nor engage in any war, unless it shall be actually invaded by enemies, or the danger of invasion be so imminent as not to admit of delay, until Congress can be consulted”
Mr. Mc.Henry & Mr. Carrol moved that “no State shall be restrained from laying duties of tonnage for the purpose of clearing harbours and erecting light-houses”.
Col. Mason in support of this explained and urged the situation of the Chesapeak which peculiarly required expences of this sort.
Mr. Govr. Morris. The States are not restrained from laying tonnage as the Constitution now Stands. The exception proposed will imply the Contrary, and will put the States in a worse condition than the gentleman (Col Mason) wishes.
Mr. Madison. Whether the States are now restrained from laying tonnage duties depends on the extent of the power “to regulate commerce”. These terms are vague but seem to exclude this power of the States— They may certainly be restrained by Treaty. He observed that there were other objects for tonnage Duties as the support of Seamen &c. He was more & more convinced that the regulation of Commerce was in its nature indivisible and ought to be wholly under one authority.3
Mr. Sherman. The power of the U. States to regulate trade being supreme can controul interferences of the State regulations 〈when〉 such interferences happen; so that there is no danger to be apprehended from a concurrent jurisdiction.
Mr. Langdon insisted that the regulation of tonnage was an essential part of the regulation of trade, and that the States ought to have nothing to do with it. On motion “that no State shall lay any duty on tonnage without the Consent of Congress”
N. H— ay— Mas. ay. Ct. divd. N. J. ay. Pa. no. Del. ay. Md. ay. Va. no. N— C. no. S— C. ay. Geo. no. [Ayes — 6; noes — 4; divided — 1.]
The remainder of the paragraph was then remoulded and passed as follows viz— “No State shall without the consent of Congress, lay any duty of tonnage, keep troops or ships of war in time of peace, enter into any agreement or compact with another State, or with a foreign power, or engage in war, unless actually invaded, or in such imminent danger as will not admit of delay”
Art II. sect. 1. (paragraph 6) “or the period for chusing another president arrive” was changed into “or a President 〈shall〉 be elected” comformably to a vote of theNA day of
Mr. Rutlidge and Docr Franklin moved to annex to the end paragraph 7. sect. 1. art II— “and he (the President) shall not receive, within that period, any other emolument from the U. S. or any of them.” on which question
N— H. ay— Mas. ay. Ct. no. N. J. no. Pa ay. Del. no. Md. ay— Va. ay. N. C. no. S— C. ay. Geo— ay. [Ayes — 7; noes — 4.]
Art: II. sect. 2. “he shall have power to grant reprieves and pardons for offences against the U. S. &c”
Mr Randolph moved to “except cases of treason”. The prerogative of pardon in these cases was too great a trust. The President may himself be guilty. The Traytors may be his own instruments.
Col: Mason supported the motion.
Mr Govr Morris had rather there should be no pardon for treason, than let the power devolve on the Legislature.
Mr Wilson. Pardon is necessary for cases of treason, and is best placed in the hands of the Executive. If he be himself a party to the guilt he can be impeached and prosecuted.
Mr. King thought it would be inconsistent with the Constitutional separation of the Executive & Legislative powers to let the prerogative be exercised by the latter — A Legislative body is utterly unfit for the purpose. They are governed too much by the passions of the moment. In Massachusetts, one assembly would have hung all the insurgents in that State: the next was equally disposed to pardon them all. He suggested the expedient of requiring the concurrence of the Senate in Acts of Pardon.
Mr. Madison admitted the force of objections to the Legislature, but the pardon of treasons was so peculiarly improper for the President that he should acquiesce in the transfer of it to the former, rather than leave it altogether in the hands of the latter. He would prefer to either an association of the Senate as a Council of advice, with the President.
Mr Randolph could not admit the Senate into a share of the Power. the great danger to liberty lay in a combination between the President & that body —
Col: Mason. The Senate has already too much power — There can be no danger of too much lenity in legislative pardons, as the Senate must con concur, & the President moreover can require ⅔ of both Houses4
On the motion of Mr. Randolph
N. H. no— Mas. no— Ct. divd. N— J— no. Pa. no— Del. no. Md no— Va ay— N— C. no— S. C. no. Geo— ay. [Ayes — 2; noes — 8; divided — 1.]
Art II. sect. 2. (paragraph 2) To the end of this, Mr Governr. Morris moved to annex “but the Congress may by law vest the appointment of such inferior Officers as they think proper, in the President alone, in the Courts of law, or in the heads of Departments.” Mr Sherman 2ded. the motion
Mr. Madison. It does not go far enough if it be necessary at all — Superior Officers below Heads of Departments ought in some cases to have the appointment of the lesser offices.
Mr Govr Morris There is no necessity. Blank Commissions can be sent —
On the motion
N. H. ay. Mas— no— Ct ay. N. J. ay. Pa. ay. Del. no. Md. divd Va no. N. C. ay— S C no. Geo— no— [Ayes — 5; noes — 5; divided — 1.]
The motion being lost by the equal division 〈of votes,〉 It was urged that it be put a second time, some such provision being too necessary, to be omitted. and on a second question it was agreed to nem. con.
〈Art II Sect. 1. The words, “and not per capita” — were struck out as superfluous — and the words “by the Representatives” also — as improper, the choice of President being in another mode as well as eventually by the House of Reps—
Art: II. Sect. 2. After “Officers of the U. S. whose appointments are not otherwise provided for,” were added the words “and which shall be established by law”.〉5
Art III. sect. 2. parag: 3. . Mr. Pinkney & Mr. Gerry moved to annex to the end. “And a trial by jury shall be preserved as usual in civil cases.”
Mr. Gorham. The constitution of Juries is different in different States and the trial itself is usual in different cases in different States,
Mr. King urged the same objections
Genl. Pinkney also. He thought such a clause in the Constitution would be pregnant with embarassments
The motion was disagreed to nem: con:
Art. IV. sect 2. parag: 3. the term “legally” was struck out, and “under the laws thereof” inserted 〈after the word “State,”〉6 in compliance with the wish of some who thought the term 〈legal〉 equivocal, and favoring the idea that slavery was legal in a moral view—
Art. IV. sect 3. “New States may be admitted by the Congress into this Union: but no new State shall be formed or erected within the jurisdiction of any other State; nor any State be formed by the junction of two or more States, or parts of States, without the consent of the Legislatures of the States concerned as well as of the Congs.”
Mr Gerry moved to insert after “or parts of States” the words “or a State and part of a State” which was disagreed to by a large majority; it appearing to be supposed that the case was comprehended in the words of the clause as reported by the Committee.
〈Art. IV. sect. 4. After the word “Executive” were inserted the words “when the Legislature cannot be Convened”〉7
Art— V. “The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses shall deem necessary, or on the application of two thirds of the Legislatures of the several States shall propose amendments to this Constitution, which shall be valid to all intents and purposes as part thereof, when the same shall have been ratified by three fourths at least of the Legislatures of the several States, or by Conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other mode of ratification may be proposed by the Congress: Provided that no amendment which may be made prior to the year 1808 shall in any manner affect theNA 〈1 & 4 clauses in the 9.〉NA section of article INA .”
Mr. Sherman expressed his fears that three fourths of the States might be brought to do things fatal to particular States, as abolishing them altogether or depriving them of their equality in the Senate. He thought it reasonable that the proviso in favor of the States importing slaves should be extended so as to provide that no State should be affected in its internal police, or deprived of its equality in the Senate.
Col: Mason thought the plan of amending the Constitution exceptionable & dangerous. As the proposing of amendments is in both the modes to depend, in the first immediately, and in the second, ultimately, on Congress, no amendments of the proper kind would ever be obtained by the people, if the Government should become oppressive, as he verily believed would be the case.8
Mr. Govr. Morris & Mr. Gerry moved to amend the article so as to require a Convention on application of ⅔ of the Sts
Mr Madison did not see why Congress would not be as much bound to propose amendments applied for by two thirds of the States as to call a call a Convention on the like application. He saw no objection however against providing for a Convention for the purpose of amendments, except only that difficulties might arise as to the form, the quorum &c. which in Constitutional regulations ought to be as much as possible avoided.
The motion of Mr. Govr Morris and Mr. Gerry was agreed to nem: con (see: the first part of the article as finally past)
Mr Sherman moved to strike out of art. V. after “legislatures” the words “of three fourths” and so after the word “Conventions” leaving future Conventions to act in this matter, like the present Conventions according to circumstances.
On this motion
N— H— divd. Mas— ay— Ct ay. N— J. ay— Pa no. Del— no. Md no. Va no. N. C. no. S— C. no. Geo— no. [Ayes — 3; noes — 7; divided — 1.]
Mr Gerry moved to strike out the words “or by Conventions in three fourths thereof”
On this motion
N— H— no. Mas. no— Ct. ay. N— J. no. Pa no— Del— no. Md no. Va. no. N— C. no. S. C. no— Geo— no. [Ayes — 1; noes — 10.]
M— Sherman moved according to his idea above expressed to annex to the end of the article a further proviso “that no State shall without its consent be affected in its internal police, or deprived of its equal suffrage in the Senate”,
Mr. Madison. Begin with these special provisos, and every State will insist on them, for their boundaries, exports &c.
On the motion of Mr. Sherman
N. H— no. Mas. no. Ct ay. N. J. ay— Pa no. Del— ay. Md. no. Va. no N. C. no. S. C. no. Geo. no. [Ayes — 3; noes — 8.]
Mr. Sherman then moved to strike out art V altogether
Mr Brearley 2ded. the motion, on which
N. H. no. Mas. no. Ct. ay. N. J. ay. Pa. no. Del. divd. Md. no. Va. no. N. C. no. S. C. no. Geo. no [Ayes — 2; noes — 8; divided — 1.]
Mr. Govr Morris moved to annex a further proviso— “that no State, without its consent shall be deprived of its equal suffrage in the Senate”
This motion being dictated by the circulating murmurs of the small States was agreed to without debate, no one opposing it, or on the question, saying no.9
Col: Mason expressing his discontent at the power given to Congress by a bare majority to pass navigation acts, which he said would not only enhance the freight, a consequence he did not so much regard — but would enable a few rich merchants in Philada N. York & Boston, to monopolize the Staples of the Southern States & reduce their value perhaps 50 Per Ct — moved a further proviso “that no law in nature of a navigation act be passed before the year 1808, without the consent of ⅔ of each branch of the Legislature10
On this motion
N. H. no. Mas— no. Ct no. N— J. no— Pa no. Del. no. Md ay. Va. ay. N. C abst S. C. no— Geo— ay. [Ayes — 3; noes — 7; absent — 1.]
Mr Randolph animadverting on the indefinite and dangerous power given by the Constitution to Congress, expressing the pain he felt at differing from the body of the Convention, on the close of the great & awful subject of their labours, and anxiously wishing for some accommodating expedient which would relieve him from his embarrassments, made a motion importing “that amendments to the plan might be offered by the State Conventions, which should be submitted to and finally decided on by another general Convention”11 Should this proposition be disregarded, it would he said be impossible for him to put his name to the instrument. Whether he should oppose it afterwards he would not then decide but he would not deprive himself of the freedom to do so in his own State, if that course should be prescribed by his final judgment—
Col: Mason 2ded. & followed Mr. Randolph in animadversions on the dangerous power and structure of the Government, concluding that it would end either in monarchy, or a tyrannical aristocracy; which, he was in doubt. but one or other, he was sure. This Constitution had been formed without the knowledge or idea of the people. A second Convention will know more of the sense of the people, and be able to provide a system more consonant to it. It was improper to say to the people, take this or nothing. As the Constitution now stands, he could neither give it his support or vote in Virginia; and he could not sign here what he could not support there. With the expedient of another Convention as proposed, he could sign.12
Mr. Pinkney. These declarations from members so respectable at the close of this important scene, give a peculiar solemnity to the present moment. He descanted on the consequences of calling forth the deliberations & amendments of the different States on the subject of Government at large. Nothing but confusion & contrariety could spring from the experiment. The States will never agree in their plans— And the Deputies to a second Convention coming together under the discordant impressions of their Constituents, will never agree. Conventions are serious things, and ought not to be repeated— He was not without objections as well as others to the plan. He objected to the contemptible weakness & dependence of the Executive. He objected to the power of a majority only of Congs over Commerce. But apprehending the danger of a general confusion, and an ultimate decision by the Sword, he should give the plan his support.13
Mr. Gerry, stated the objections which determined him to withhold his name from the Constitution.14 1. the duration and re-eligibility of the Senate. 2. the power of the House of Representatives to conceal their journals. 3— the power of Congress over the places of election. 4 the unlimited power of Congress over their own compensations. 5 Massachusetts has not a due share of Representatives allotted to her. 6. ⅗ of the Blacks are to be represented as if they were freemen 7. Under the power over commerce, monopolies may be established. 8. The vice president being made head of the Senate. He could however he said get over all these, if the rights of the Citizens were not rendered insecure 1. by the general power of the Legislature to make what laws they may please to call necessary and proper. 2. raise armies and money without limit. 3. to establish a tribunal without juries, which will be a Star-chamber as to Civil cases. Under such a view of the Constitution, the best that could be done he conceived was to provide for a second general Convention.
On the question on the proposition of Mr Randolph. All the States answered- no
On the question to agree to the Constitution. as amended.15 All the States ay.
The Constitution was then ordered to be engrossed.
And the House adjourned16
No State shall be prohibited from laying such duties of tonnage as may be sufficient for improving their harbors and keeping up lights, but all acts laying such duties shall be subject to the approbation or repeal of Congress.
Moved to amend it viz. No State without the consent of Congress shall lay a duty of tonnage. Carryed in the affirmative
6 ays 4 Noes, 1 divided.
Made several verbal amendment in the progression on the system.
Added to the V article amended “No State without its consent shall be deprived of its equal suffrage in the Senate.
Mr. Mason moved in substance that no navigation act be passed without the concurrence of ⅔ of the members present in each house.
Mr. Randolp moved that it be recommended to appoint a second convention with plenary powers to consider objections to the system and to conclude one binding upon the States.
The question being taken on the system agreed to unanimously—
Ordered to be engrossed and 500 copies struck— Adjourned till monday the 17th.
provided17 that any state may lay additional duties on shipping for the support of Lights, piers marks or Buoys or for the deepening or improvement of Harbours.
The legislature shall have power to erect piers buoys or marks and to deepen or clean harbours for facilitating or improving navigation—
No State shall be prohibited from laying such duties of tonnage as may be sufficient for improving their harbours and keeping up lights or buoys, but all acts laying such duties shall be subject to the approbation or repeal of Congress. Amended. 6 ay. 4 noes. 1 divided.
Mr. Gerry’s objections
The appointment of the Senate for six years — and no rotation
The Power given to the Legislature over their Journals
The Power given to the Legislators to pay themselves
Massachusetts has not her propo. of reptives.
Three fifths of the Blacks, being classed as Taxables
The Power given respectg. Commerce will enable the Legislature to create corporations and monopolies
The V. P destroys the Independce. of the Legislature
Freemen giving up certain rights should be secured in others
The Legislature allowed to make any laws they please
The Constitution has given away every mode of revenue from the States
The Judiciary will be a Star Chamber
Many other objections which he would not enumerate18
[In addition to the items noted above in the Records, Mason had made the following notes on his copy of the draft of September 12:]
In the beginning of the 4th clause of the 3rd section of the 1st Article, strike out the words — the vice-president of the United States, and instead of them insert — a vice-president of the United States shall be chosen in the manner hereinafter directed whoNA refused
In the 1st clause of the 10th section of the same Article strike out ex post facto laws — and after the words obligation of insert — previous.NA refused
In the latter end of the 3rd clause of the 2nd Article — enquire of the committee about the senate chusing the vice president
In the 7th clause of the 1st section of the 2nd Article — strike out the words during the period for which he shall have been elected — and instead of them insert — so as in any manner to affect the person in office at the time of such increase or diminution.
At the end of the 1st clause of the 2nd section of the 2nd Article add the words — or Treason; but he may grant reprieves in cases of treason, until the end of the next ensuing session of Congress.
Section 4th of the same Article — Inconsistency between this and the 7th clause of the 3rd section of the 1st Article — amend by inserting after the word office the words — and disqualified from holding or enjoying — any office of honor, trust or profit under the United States.
Article 3rd, section 1 — before the word diminished — insert — encreased or —
In the 2nd clause of the 2nd section of the 3rd Article — strike out the word Fact — and insert — Equity.
In the 3rd section of 3rd Article — corruption of blood inaccurately expressed; and no exception or provision for the wife, who may be innocent, and ought not to be involved in ruin from the guilt of the husband.
Section 2nd, Article 4th — The citizens of one State having an estate in another, have not secured to them the right of removing their property as in the 4th Article of the Confederation — amend by adding the following clause: and every citizen having an estate in two or more States shall have a right to remove his property from one State to another.
[8 ]Madison’s copy of this report is a printed broadside, preserved, with other printed papers, in Volume XV of “Writings to Madison.” It shows additions, alterations and interlineations in Madison’s handwriting, and these are indicated here by enclosing in angle brackets. Underscoring was likewise done by pen. At the top of his copy Madison wrote:
[* ]〈The words “by lot” — were not in the Report as printed; but were inserted in manuscript, as a topografical error, departing from the text of the Report referred to the Committee of Style and arrangement.
[9 ]“ex-officio” crossed out by Madison.
[10 ]This paragraph has caused a great deal of confusion. The Report of the Committee of Detail on August 6 provided for a two-thirds vote of both houses to overrule the president’s veto. On August 15 this was changed to three-fourths. The Committee on Style seem to have changed this back to two-thirds in this paragraph, but left it as three-fourths in the next. On September 12th, this was changed again to two-thirds.
[12 ]See Appendix A, CCLXXXI, CCCXLIV, CCCLXXII.
[13 ]Interlined by Madison.
[14 ]“naturalization”, see Appendix A, CCL.
[* ](punish) a typographical omission
[15 ]Interlined by Madison.
[15 ]The “n” of every “nor” in this section was crossed out by Madison.
[17 ]Marginal note by Madison marked to be inserted at this point: “provided that no State shall be restrained from imposing the usual duties on produce exported from such State for the sole purpose of defraying the charges of inspecting packing storing & indemnifying the losses on such produce while in the custody of public officers. But all such regulations shall in case of abuse be subject to the revision & controul of Congress.”
[18 ]“Nor” crossed out, and “No State shall without the consent of Congress” interlined by Madison.
[19 ]“and not per capita” crossed out by Madison.
[20 ]“by the representatives” crossed out by Madison.
[21 ]“time in” crossed out and “day on” substituted by Madison.
[22 ]“but the election shall be on the same day” crossed out and “which day shall be the same” interlined by Madison.
[23 ]“the period for chusing another president arrive” crossed out, and “a president be chosen” inserted by Madison.
[24 ]Madison indicated by signs that the clause “when called into the actual service of the United States” should follow immediately after “militia of the several States”.
[25 ]“of two-thirds” crossed out by Madison, and inserted again after “legislatures”.
[26 ]“three-fourths at least of” crossed out by Madison.
[27 ]“of three-fourths” inserted by Madison.
[28 ]“and” crossed out, and “1 & 4 clauses in the 9” inserted by Madison.
[29 ]“the first” interlined by Madison.
[1 ]Note in margin “Present from N H”.
[2 ]Vote 514, Detail of Ayes and Noes. Votes 512-513, Detail of Ayes and Noes, might be repeated here. They are as likely to belong to this day’s records as to those of September 12.
[3 ]Vote 515, Detail of Ayes and Noes.
[4 ]Votes 516-522, Detail of Ayes and Noes.
[* ]〈This motion & appointment of the Comittee, not in the printed Journal. No report was made by the Come.〉
[5 ]See also August 25, note 13.
[† ]〈See page 372 of the printed Journal.〉
[6 ]See Appendix A, CXCII.
[7 ]The proceedings on these resolutions are not given in the Journal nor by Madison; in the report to Congress September 28, 1787, they are dated September 17.
[1 ]Crossed out: “It was moved and seconded to reconsider the 3 clause of the 2d sect. 1st article which passed in the negative. It was moved and seconded to add the words ‘which shall then fill such vacancies’ after the words ‘meeting of the Legislature’ in the 2d clause of the 3d sect. 1st article which passed in the affirmative.” See further Detail of Ayes and Noes, Votes 523-540.
[2 ]Journal (pp. 377-378) adds the following amendments, which may have been taken from the interlineations of the Brearley copy or may have been supplied by Madison: — “Add at the end of the first clause of the eighth section, first article, ‘but all duties, imposts and excises, shall be uniform throughout the United States.’ Add at the end of the fifth clause of the ninth section, first article, ‘no preference shall be given by any regulation of commerce or revenue to the ports of one state over those of another. Nor shall vessels bound to or from one state, be obliged to enter, clear or pay duties in another.’ Add at the end of the sixth clause of the ninth section, first article, ‘and a regular statement and account of the receipts and expenditures of all publick money shall be published from time to time.’ ”
[* ]〈“By lot” had been reinstated from the Report of five made Aug. 6. as a correction of the printed report by the Come of stile & arrangement.〉
[4 ]See Appendix A, CCX.
[5 ]Detail of Ayes and Noes, Vote 526, records a question to reconsider the 1st clause of this section, which was defeated.
[6 ]In the margin of his copy of the draft of September 12, Mason has worded this proposed change: “of the journals of the senate,” and has written opposite it — “refused”.
[7 ]Crossed out: “Seven States were in the Negative: three in the affirmative: one divided.” Madison evidently inserted the vote in the text from the list sent to him by John Quincy Adams (see above September 12, note 2). This is Vote 521, Detail of Ayes and Noes.
[8 ]Detail of Ayes and Noes, Vote 532, records the adoption of a motion to reconsider this clause.
[* ]〈This motion by Dr. Franklin not stated in the printed Journal, as are some other motions.〉
[9 ]Upon this discussion, see Appendix A, CCLVII-CCLX, CCLXXVIII, CCCL, CCCLIII, CCCLXXIV.
[10 ]See Appendix A, CCLV, CCCXC.
[11 ]Taken from Journal.
[12 ]Detail of Ayes and Noes, Vote 537, makes this a motion “to reconsider the ex post facto clause”, which is more in keeping with Gerry’s remarks in seconding it.
[13 ]Crossed out “N. H. no. Mas. no. . . . Geo. no.”
[14 ]See Pinckney’s proposition on August 20, and Appendix A, CLXXIII, CXCII.
[* ]〈In the printed Journal N. Hampshire ay.〉
[15 ]McHenry agrees with Detail of Ayes and Noes, Vote 538, in making the vote Ayes, 5; noes, 6.
[16 ]Taken from Journal.
[17 ]This paragraph is possibly a later insertion. If so it was taken from Journal. See above note 2.
[18 ]“obligation of contracts”, see above August 28 and Appendix A, CCXXIX, CCCXCVIII.
[1 ]Crossed out “It was moved and seconded to appoint a Committee to prepare an address to the People of the United States to accompany the Constitution which passed in the negative. It was moved and seconded to reconsider the 3rd clause, 2nd sect, 1st article. which passed in the affirmative It was moved and seconded to —”
[* ]〈In the printed Journal N. Carolina— no & S. Carol: omitted.〉
[2 ]Taken from Journal, which ascribes Vote 545, Detail of Ayes and Noes, to this question. The correctness of this is doubtful.
[3 ]See Appendix A, CCCLXVI.
[4 ]See also Appendix A, CLVIII (79).
[5 ]Based upon Journal (p. 383). See above note 1.
[6 ]Crossed out “in another place”. Change accords with Journal, p. 384.
[7 ]Taken from Journal, see above note 1.
[8 ]In the margin of his copy of the draft of September 12, Mason had written:
[9 ]See Appendix A, CCC.
[10 ]See Appendix A, CLI.
[11 ]Upon this proposal, see above August 31 and September 10, and Appendix A, CXXXI, CLXIV, CCXXXV.
[12 ]For Mason’s objections, see below (with references under note 21).
[13 ]See Appendix A, CLXX.
[14 ]See King’s copy of these below, also Appendix A, CXXVIII, CXXXIII, CLVII, CLXXV.
[15 ]In addition to the changes noted above in the Records, September 13-15, the following have been compiled from the Baldwin, Brearley and Washington copies of the draft of September 12:—
[16 ]The session continued until 6 p.m. See Appendix A, CIX.
[17 ]On a loose scrap of paper among the McHenry MSS.
[18 ][On back of sheet:] no no no no | aye aye aye aye aye aye
[20a]Taken from K. M. Rowland, Life of George Mason, II, 383-385.
Madison is in error. The Journal reading is identical with his own. See above note 10.