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with an analytical attempt to ascertain the exact propor-
tion that should exist between them. All that it is now
necessary to understand, is, that our currency is composed
of too much paper and too little coin.
We must change the proportion. There is no fear that
we shall have too much coin or too little paper. Every
change will make the currency more stable, will diminish
the evil influence of the banks, while it increases their
salutary agency, and will preserve our farmers, mechan-
ics, and merchants, from the periodical losses which they
have heretofore suffered.
How, Mr. Speaker, is this object to be accomplished?
Commerce comprises two divisions:
1st. Local commerce.
2d. General commerce.
It is necessary that the currency should, by the division
of its value, be adapted to both of these.
Local commerce comprises all traffic which does not
require the transportation to a distance of either of the
vasues exchanged. All ordinary purchases and sales
which are occurring every moment in every part of the
Union, incalculable in number and in amount, come under
this head—including all the ordinary transactions of the
farmer, the mechanic, the lawyer, the doctor, indeed of
every citizen except the merchant.
These constitute at least three-fourths of the entire
commerce of the country. As no transportation of money
is necessary, the metallic coins would answer, even
though the amounts were larger than they ordinarily are.
Gold pieces of $20, $10, $5, and silver dollars and halves,
with quarters, tenths, twentieths, (5 cent pieces,) and
cents, for change, would answer every purpose. The
proposition is too plain for doubt. I proceed to the sec:
ond branch, general commerce, in which one or both of
the values exchanged is transported to a distance.
I will first remark, as a general principle, that, when
any article of value is transported from the place of pro-
duction to the place of consumption, a corresponding
value is returned from the place of consumption to the
place of original production. . When applied to local
commerce, this merely means that every article which is
bought, is, in general, paid for. - -
To take an example. The western merchants buy, on
credit, goods in New York, sell them for produce in the
West, ship this to New York to pay for their goods.
This is the simplest possible case, and one which does
not very often occur. Our own farmers are frequently
their own merchants—take their produce to New Orleans,
sell it for money, purchase groceries with a part, return
with the rest, and pay cash to the merchant for his dry
goods. This cash the merchant must now transmit to
New York, to pay for his goods. . It would be as tedious
as it is unnecessary to trace out this principle in the infi.
nite and complicated varieties of its application.
It is evident that, as the products of one country can-

not, in most instances, be exchanged directly for those of

another, that the returning or paying value must be cur-
rency, or transferable capital.
If there were no currency but metallic coins, a large
portion of the coins of one place would be travelling to
another, at the same instant that a like portion of the coin
of the second place was travelling to the first place. For
instance: New Orleans sends groceries to Cincinnati, and
Cincinnati sends produce to New Orleans. Supposing no
currency but coins, the money to pay for the groceries
would be on its way from Cincinnati to New Orleans at
the same time that the money to pay for the produce
would be on its way from New Orleans to Cincinnati.
The inconvenience and expense of transporting the
coin, although small in the instance mentioned, would be,
in most cases, an oppressive tax upon the people. This
would not be the only evil; the coin, while on its way,
would be a dead loss of commercial capital, and its remo-

val from the local commerce would be deeply felt. The
withdrawals and sudden arrivals of considerable amounts
of specie would occasion injurious fluctuations, which,
though small in degree, and limited in extent, in each in-
stance, would be deeply injurious in the aggregate.
I will not follow the inquiry further. It is evident that
metallic currency is as unfit for general commerce as it is
necessary for local commerce. The question at once
arises, What is the proper currency? It must be trans-
ferable, and such as, when used, will not withdraw any
portion of productive capital from the community.
The interchange of commodities, effected by commerce,
suggests at once the means.
He who owes the New Orleans merchant for his groce-
ries, applies to the pork merchant, to whom the commis-
sion merchant at New Orleans is indebted for his produce,
and pays him in money for an order on the commission
merchant. This is sent to the grocer, who, on applica-
tion to the commission merchant, obtains the money. The
same is done in New Orleans, and the debts, all round,
are discharged without sending a dollar out of either
But, as those who owe debts in distant places cannot
easily find the persons who have debts owing to them in
the same places, an agency is necessary to do this business.
As a matter of course, it falls into the hands of banks or
Those who owe debts abroad pay the amount in money
to the nearest bank, and receive, instead, an order or bill
of exchange on the bank near which the debt is to be
paid. Meanwhile, those abroad who owe debts in this
country, have in like manner purchased bills of exchange
of their own banks on the banks in this country, and for-
warded them to their creditors here.
All the debts are thus paid, without the transportation
of a dollar; the bank receiving a small premium on each
bill, as a compensation for its services.
As the debts mutually owed do not exactly balance each
other in point of time, the banks find it expedient to ex-
tend their business on their own capital, and to ensure
greater confidence by becoming responsible for the punc-
tual payment of their bills of exchange.
This is the system of exchange now in operation. A
more admirable or important one cannot be found in the
whole frame-work of society. It is to commerce what
printing is to knowledge.
It was by deranging this that the United States Bank
produced embarrassment among the merchants, far more
than by the direct operation of diminishing its discounts.
Had it merely ceased to issue domestic bills of exchange,
the State banks would liave supplied the void. But its
operations were artfully directed to prevent, or at least
delay, the application of this remedy. The attempt has
failed, and its effect has passed, or at least only remains
in memory, that justice may be done to those who ad-
vised and aided it.
From what has been said it is evident that there must
be at least enough paper money or bills of exchange for
general commerce. There are branches of general com-
merce for which paper money, in the form of ordinary
bank bills, of a high denomination, would suffice, and
probably another increase of notes for large amounts
might be made without risk, to be used in the largest
payments of local commerce. But every such increase
takes the place of the corresponding quantity of metallic
coins, and by so much diminishes the stability of the cur-
tency, and, when carried further, converts it into a
power fluctuating at every impulse, and ruinous in every
fluctuation. **
If, then, any paper money is issued, beside bona
fide bills of exchange, the notes must be for such amounts
that they will not come immediately in competition with

the metallic coins,

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Withdraw all bank notes under five dollars, and silver dollars and halves will rapidly fill their place.

Withdraw all notes under ten dollars, and the same effect will be produced in a higher degree.

The excellent proposition of the committee on coins will, if passed into a law, greatly aid this operation, by causing gold to circulate with silver, and thus enabling us to diminish the quantity of bank notes more than we could otherwise do.

By carrying it still further, and withdrawing all bank notes under twenty dollars, gold and silver pieces would soon fill their places.

We need not fear going too far—the danger is in doing

too little, not too much.
wants of general commerce, far aliead of us.
possible for us to reach it.
were entertained of our doing too much, the gradual
manner in which the change is to be effected will remove
them. In its progress we shall have full opportunity for
examination and experience, which will, if impartially
acted upon, urge us forward to its completion.
I will not lengthen out a speech, already too long, by
an investigation of the proportion which should exist
between the paper money and the metallic coin, and the
proportion which should probably exist under the sys-
tem proposed.
it may be remarked, generally, that the paper money
would be in far greater proportion to the business done
by it, to wit, general commerce, than the metallic coins
to the business performed by it, to wit, the local com-
The metallic coins, great in number and small in their
several amounts, change hands rapidly and incessantly,
making by each change an item of local commerce.
While the notes and bills of exchange, few in number,
and large in amount, change hands far less frequently,
requiring in many instances considerable time to perform
a single act of general commerce.
This will account for the disproportion at present
existing between them, which is apparently contradictory
of the principles I have stated.
Many of the errors in opinion upon this subject would
in like manner be explained away or converted into con-
firmations. I wish much that I had time to examine
some of the most common, by bringing them to the test of
the principles which I have laid down.
These errors have arisen almost entirely from the want
of a clear understanding of the differences between local
and general commerce, and the currency required for
The merchant engaged in general commerce sees
plainly that coins will not do his business, and therefore
thinks a metallic currency the dream of a visionary.
Financiers and writers upon the subject, deceived by
the apparently large amounts of the business of general com-
merce, and not noting the infinite rills which constitute
local commerce, have strengthened the erroneous opin-
ions by ingenious arguments.
I am not aware that the distinction has ever before
been clearly taken. I hope that the novelty will not pre-
vent the truth from being acknowledged and acted upon.
It is true that the effect will be to diminish the circula-
tion and the corresponding profits of the banks; but a
thousand fold indemnification will be found in the perfect
currency, which would ensure to personal worth its due
credit, and to honest industry its proper reward.
I need not say that I consider the United States Bank,
and the removal of the deposites, subordinate to this great
question. Thoroughly convinced as I am of its necessity
and importance to the nation, I cannot regard without
deep regret the obstacles which party politics may pre-
sent to the passage of a bill essential to the interests of our
common constituents.

We see the limit fixed, by the
It is im-

Even if any apprehensions

Strong indeed must be the prejudices, and bitter the party feeling, which will prevent a western man from sup|porting it. Those who come from the cities, who have been associated with the stockholders and stock brokers, for them there may be some excuse, however weak and | insufficient. But we of the West, who are not saddled |oth such a moneyed power, nor yet cursed with the system in all its complicated and injurious excess--we, whose constituents are industrious farmers and mechanics, whose property depends upon a stable currency, how we can oppose the measure passes my knowledge. If the |bank party dislike the financial system of the Government, as now existing, they should vote for this bill, to place it on a better footing. I agree, with them, that it is inexpedient to leave the temporary arrangement made by the Treasury as it is. Highly as I esteem the ability and integrity of the Secretary of the Treasury, and the pure patriotism and enlightened judgment of the President, I would not wish the State banks to remain connected with the Government as they now are, unless an imperious necessity required it. For once, let us thrust aside party barriers, and move on calmly and impartially in the discussion and adoption of this measure. If the distressed gentlemen are really desirous of applying a corrective to our fluctuating currency, if they will cease awhile from panic speeches and panic letters, and |turn seriously to the business of legislation, an opportuni|ty is now afforded of applying that correction. Grant that the mode of applying it be not the one they would prefer, yet they should lend their aid in rendering it as effectual as possible. I do not myself believe that the system proposed in the bill will effect the purpose as easily and as rapidly as a properly-constituted United States Bank would do. But for two years we cannot bring into operation a new bank, even if we were all agreed as to the restrictions required by the constitution. The measure proposed is the only one which is practicable. It has been shown to answer the purposes of the Government; it cannot operate injuriously until the United States Bank notes are withdrawn from circulation, and by that time, if we join heartily in applying the corrective provided by the bill, it will be out of the power of any or all the banks to seriously affect our currency. Meanwhile, it leaves us perfectly free to modify or abolish it, as experience may direct. A decent respect for our constituents should of itself induce us to support this measure, that we may learn the opinions to which the events of the last six months have given rise, instead of forestalling their influence by binding them down to an institution which they may utterly reject. But the hope of their acquiescence is, perhaps, visionary. It is the necessary consequence of high excitement, that men, acting in mass, are, by their own momentum, forced farther than any one individual would have gone. Party animosity grows into a habit; and those who are tainted with it read, speak, and think, of but one side. It is far more probable that they will do as some of them have done before. The same influences were brought to bear when the last United States Bank approached the expiration of its charter. A quotation from a speeeh of the same distinguished geutleman from whom l have already quoted, will show an identity as remarkable as it is reprehensible.

Extract from Mr. Clay's speech on the bill to renew the bank charter of 1791, made in Congress, February 15, 1811.

“I shall not stop to examine how far a representative is bound by the instructions of his constituents. . That is a question between the giver and receiver of the instruc. tions. But I must be permitted to express my surprise at the pointed difference which has been made between the opinions and instructions of State Legislatures, and the

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opinions and details of the deputations, with which we have been surrounded, from Philadelphia. Whilst the resolutions of these Legislatures—known, legitimate, constitutional, and deliberative bodies—have been thrown in the back ground, and their interference regarded as officious, these delegations from self-created societies, com: posed of whom nobody knows, have been received by the committee with the utmost complaisance. Their communications have been treasured up with the greatest diligence. Never did the Delphic priests collect with more holy care the frantic expressions of the agitated Pythia, or expound them with more solemnity to the astonished Grecians, than has the committee gathered the opinions and testimony of these deputies, .# through the gentleman from Massachusetts, pompously detailed them to the Senate! Philadelphia has her immediate representatives, capable of expressing her wishes, upon the floor of the other House. If it be improper for States to obtrude upon Congress their sentiments, it is much more highly so for the unauthorized deputies of fortuitous congregations.”— History of Bank, p. 354. I leave to others the application of the quotation. Prophecies of ruin were then made, and the prophets worked anxiously for their fulfilment. The same who prophesied that the election of Jefferson, the repeal of the sedition law, the war, nay, our many victories, would ruin us. Happy country, that could thus be ruined! Although the gentleman from whom I have quoted no longer advocates the principles for which he then contended, notwithstanding this and other changes read to us the humiliating lesson, that, while events sweep onward in one unvarying chain of cause and consequence, the men who patriotically and ably struggled against them at one time become their pliant tools at another; yet enough of those who were then foremost in the democratic cause still remain among us, to aid us with their counsel and experience. A speech made against the recharter of the United States Bank in 1811, by my honorable friend from Kentucky, [Colonel Johnsox,] then, as now, a distinguished member of this House, furnishes an explanation of the F. and a guide to the future. This contest is to him ut a repetition of the battles of his youth, and will but

out the commercial part of the United States, arising from bankruptcies in England, which have occasioned the return of many bills from England protested. These are the causes which produce distress, and will continue to produce it, until we are a people less dependent on foreign commerce. But believing as I do on this subject, viewing the effects of this great political moneyed institution with abhorrence, I would not vote for it, let the temporary distress be what it may. I would rather see the present crop of hemp brought to one deposite, which would make a bulk larger than this Capitol, and consumed with a lighted torch, and ascend to the heavens in smoke as a sacrifice, than vote for the passage of this law; and, sir, the people I represent would justify my vote. They would bear the loss without a murmur, they would act the part of freemen worthy of freedom, they would magnanimously bear the calamity without complaint, if their patriotism required the sacrifice. They are a most worthy people, a virtuous people, an enlightened people, a glorious people, descendants of this great American family, inheriting that spirit of independence which equally sustained our cause under defeat and victory, upon all the battle-grounds of our Revolution. I will not be alarmed out of my vote by clamor, no matter from what quarter it may assail me. I never will be driven from my duty by alarms and fears. I will stand firm to the cause I conceive to be just, and the people will support me; they despise wavering and temporizing. If you continue this charter twenty years more, you can never put it down.” See p. 233.

“No, sir; instead of having petitions which would reach from the Speaker to the seats of the members, you would have them packed upon your tables until they would intercept my view in addressing you. Yes, sir, they would rise up higher, and implore that Goddess of Liberty who presides over the deliberations of this House. We are told that this bank is necessary to the collection, safe-keeping, and the transmission of the revenue to dif. serent parts of the United States. It is stated that the State banks are strangers to us, and cannot be trusted with the deposite of public money. I am sorry to hear such a sentiment. It has originated from a panic, an

increase the many obligations which this country grate

fully acknowledges to be due to him. “The influence of this bank is palpable and notorious. We have the evidence from the long roll of petitions now imploring Congress to renew the charter. If in twenty years this bank is to be the idol of some and the alarm of others—if the solvency of so many individuals depend on. it—if ruin and devastation will, in the event of its dissolution, spread wide in the country—then, sir, it will only require twenty years more to make it stronger than the Government. To induce us to vote for this institution, we have been persuaded, flattered, alarmed, petitioned, and threatened; and we have been amused with the rise and history of the banking system.” How truly this presents the present power of the bank; and the succeeding paragraph may apply now to the entire West as it then applied to Kentucky. Again: “My colleague, [Mr. McKee, ) whose opinions I had been in the habit of considering as my own, until this unfortunate question which divides us, has stated that, in his opinion, the dissolution of this institution would be felt by the citizens of the Western country, and that our surplus hemp would not command as good a price. I differ in opinion from my colleague, if he suposes the Western country will feel any great pressure rom the dissolution of this bank. I grant, the people of Kentucky may not be entirely exempt from some inconveniences common on such an event. But our produce will fall from other very different causes. Interruptions in commerce, stagnation in trade, bankruptcies through

alarm, an ideal danger. That great and good man, the Secretary of the Treasury, has told you otherwise by his report now before me, of date 12th January, in which it |appears that of about $2,400,000, upwards of $800,000 are deposited in the State banks, $75,000 of which are deposited in the State Bank of Kentucky, and I should be sorry if it was not as safe there as in the hands of the United States Bank, in the possession of foreigners. If State banks will not do, let the United States build vaults for the safe-keeping of the revenue.

“But, sir, the alarming consequences which must arise from a dissolution of this corporation. It will deprive us of a circulating medium, it will interrupt commerce and produce bankruptcies. It is to produce the distress of farmers and the ruin of merchants; it is to prevent emigration, and it is to strike the foundations of the Government. This picture gives me no alarm. It is the picture of a wild and distempered imagination. If serious injury will be felt by many in the power of this moneyed aristocracy, I feel and sympathize with the sufferings of those who may be needy without any fault of their own; but something is due to posterity, and even in that point of view I am not willing to entail upon them the baneful effects of a great moneyed corporation, with a capital of twenty millions of dollars, extending its arms of power and influence to every part of the United States, and having the destiny of good men within its control, whenever it receives the nod to exercise its giant power. No, sir, I am ready to see and feel the sad crisis which has been described. If we die with less money, we shall live in more honor and enjoy more happiness. I wish to see is the greater reason why the poison should be destroyed. Like the strong man we read of in holy writ, let us see if the violent death of this corporate body will pull down the pillars of the constitution, that another Volney may sit upon the ruins of this Capitol and mourn the fallen empire of this great and happy republic.” These arguments are at this moment entirely, peculiarly applicable. At that time they were deemed amply sufficient by the democratic party throughout the Union; and time, however much it may change individuals, cannot change principles. Those who advocate these principles will be with the people, whether their opponents call them democrats or tories, and their opponents will be against the people, whether their names be federals or whigs. Let us fervently hope that no national disasters will now occur to force us from the judicious application of these principles. The, war which followed the expiration of the charter of the last United States Bank, stimulated the State banks to excessive issues, which drove specie out of the country, and stimulated a wild spirit of adventure, that raised prices far beyond the proper standard. On the return of peace, when our excessive paper-money prices came in collision with the cash values of foreign countries, the bubble burst at once, spreading ruin over all. The general failure of the ill-managed banks, and the utter prostration of business, created a universal necessity, whose urgent calls occasioned the chartering of the present bank. Thus hastily ushered into existence, with powers heedlessly granted, far more than it was safe or expedient to grant, the bank was raised into successful operation by the elastic nature of public confidence, a wanton abuse of which has been its ruin. But we are now safe from a like disaster, and the safety is strengthened by our knowledge of the causes of such disasters. We can now proceed to apply these principles to our legislation. The people always have sustained them, and always will sustain them. The only hindrances are such as may be presented by the skirmishes of a party warfare. We have had, unfortunately, too much of this already. It has protracted our session and occupied our time to no purpose, except an injurious and angry excitement. Legislative discussions, whose sole object should be the ascertainment of great political truths, have been converted into opportunities for the exhibition of the ingenuity or the passions of the debaters, or for the far less pardonable purpose of deluding the public mind as to the causes which have affected the public interest. Recent votes have shown that a large majority of this House are weary of such discussions, and are willing to unite upon the measures required by the public interest. I shall be gratified if the reasons which l have presented, and which, upon careful examination, have convinced my own judgment, shall have the slightest effect in aiding this purpose. - We all desire to make an arrangement which will facilitate the financial operations of the Government and correct our national currency. Those who believe (and I am one of them) that a United States Bank, properly restricted, would best effect these two objects, will agree with me, that our own dif. ferences of opinion, as to the nature and extent of these restrictions, render the organization of it utterly impracticable, and its organization, even if practicable, would be utterly useless during the two years that must intervene before it goes into operation. The arrangement proposed by the bill is shown to be practicable by former and recent experience. It is the only one that can possibly exist until the present bank charter expires. It binds us to nothing; it is incapable,

H. of R.] The Deposite Bill. [JUNE 24, 1834.

whether so much depends upon this corporation: If so, it

during that period, of doing any injury; it diminishes central, and increases State influences, and offers a definite mode for the gradual correction of our currency, the common object of all. Should it prove incompetent, I shall readily join in adopting another system; and in the examination of the present arrangement, and its comparison with the new system, we shall be aided by the experience of the intervening time, and guided by the opinions of our constituents, with which we shall then be fully acquainted. By adopting this measure we shall quiet the excitement which has extended its baneful influence even to the personal relations of the members of this House; we shall be able to part in cordiality and kindness, and to meet our constituents with the happy consciousness of having faithfully performed the duties which they assigned to us, When Mr. LANE had taken his seat, Mr. McVEAN rose and commenced by stating that he desired to call the attention of members to the position the House occupied in relation to the subject-matter then under discussion. We have (said Mr. McV.) passed a resolution declaring that the charter of the Bank of the United States ought not to be renewed; we have passed a resolution declaring that the deposite of the public moneys ought not to be made in the United States Bank; and we have also passed a resolution declaring that provision ought to be made by law to continue the deposite of the public moneys in the State banks. It is in affirmance of, and with a view to carry into effect, the principle advanced in the last resolution, that the bill now under consideration was introduced by the Committee of Ways and Means. Its adoption is opposed by the gentleman from Georgia, [Mr. Fosten,) and other gentlemen who have this day addressed the House, on the ground that the public moneys were illegally removed from their deposite in the United States Bank. I shall briefly state the main argument advanced in support of this position, and then endeavor, with equal brewity, to give it an answer. The argument is, that the act of removal originated with the President, whilst the discretionary power of removal was confined to the Secretary of the Treasury, not as a subordinate, but as an independent officer of the Government; that, although, in point of form, the Secretary did the act, it was, in spirit and in truth, the act of the President, who had no right to advise, direct, or control that officer; and the act, not being his, according to the true intent and meaning of the law, is, for that reason alone, reversible. Sir, if these premises were true, I should concur in the conclusion, for I am as far as any person from giving my approval to any measure of Government which rests its claim for that approval on its former accuracy alone. I will, sir, permit an officer of Government, in a court of justice, or in enforcing obedience to his official commands, to show, in his justification, that all the formalities of law have been observed by him. But here, sir, at the bar of this House, or at the bar of public opinion, I will allow no such justification. The act must be right, not only in form, but in substance also. Not only the body must be persect, but the animating principle also. The independence of the Secretary of the Treasury is attempted to be maintained, on the assumption that the Treasury Department is not an Executive department; and this assumption, it is said, is proved by the peculiar phraseology of the act establishing the Treasury Department, as well as by the particular mode of expression adopted in the bank charter. The act creating the Treasury Department does not, either in its title or in its body, denominate it an Executive department, in express terms; and in this it differs from some of the acts establishing the the other Executive departments of the Government. From this difference it is argued that Congress intend

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ed, by this most obscure negative implication, to deny
to it an executive character. But, sir, how do we
arrive at the character of a particular office? From its
name, or from the duties belonging to it? Are we not
to inquire into the nature of the services required to be
performed by it, in assigning to it its character? What
are the duties of the office of the Secretary of the Treas-
ury? Are they, in their nature, judicial, legislative, or
executive? The answer will determine the classifica-
tion of the office, and not the title of the act establishing
the office. I would respectfully ask of those who place
so much importance in names, or rather, in this instance,
in the absence of any qualifying name, whether, in their
opinion, a clause in the act establishing the State, War,
or Navy Departments, declaring, in express terms, that
they should not be considered Executive departments,
would in the least affect their character as such Or, to
go further, suppose the act establishing the Treasury De-
partment was entitled “An act to create a legislative or
judicial department, to be denominated the Treasury De-
partment,” would that title affect the character of its
prescribed duties, or make the functions of the office ju-
dicial or legislative? I say it would not, sir; for, although
I am willing to admit the potency of a name, I deny that
it can either make white black, or black white—a power
that seems to be claimed for it in this instance.
It has been found necessary, in the support of this ar-
gument, to assert that the Treasury Department is a legis-
Rative department, and that the Secretary of the Treasury
is the fiscal agent of the Legislature. Let us, for one mo-
ment, czamine this matter. An agent is a person appointed
to execute the will and purposes of his principal...A legisla-
tive agent is a person appointed to execute the will and pur-
poses of the Legislature. How does the Legislature give
expression to its will and purposes? By the enactment of
laws, and by the enactment of laws only. A legislative
agent, therefore, is a person appointed to execute the laws
of the Legislature. And here, sir, we have arrived at the
precise definition of an executive officer, such as the con-
stitution of the United States has declared the President
to be. To give the Secretary of the Treasury, as a legis:
lative agent, the power to execute laws independently of
the Executive, would not only be a robbery of the powers
of the President, but also a usurpation on the part of
Congress, and a most flagrant violation of the constitution,
which has placed the law-making and the law-executing
powers in different hands. The executive authority of
this Government is vested exclusively in the President
by the constitution, and as well might the President cre-
ate an agency to make laws as Congress an agency to
execute laws, insubordinate to the constitutional Execu-
tive. But, sir, it is said, admitting the Secretary of the
Treasury to be an executive officer, that, by the act char-
tering the bank, the power given to him was distinct from
that of his office. independently of the constitutional
objections that might be successfully urged against this
proposition, I answer, a grant to the Secretary of the
Treasury is a grant to the office, and not to the individual.
the act does not grant the power to the person who, for
the time being, shall be Secretary of the Treasury, but
to the secretary of the Treasury. Instead of its being a
new appointment, in reference to an office; it is the en
largement of the duties of a pre-existing office.
‘īhe error of investing the Secretary of the Treasury
with a legislative agency, which has obtained plausibility
by the wrongful substitution of terms, has been follow-
eó up by other errors of opinion more and more fla-
grant. I believe, sir, that the gentleman from Georgia
fMr. Fosten] denies that the Secretary of the Treasury
had the power of removing the deposites at all, except in
obedience to express instructions received from Congress,
his legislative principal. How any person, with the bank
charter before him, can make this assertion, is, to me,

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surprising; for I aver that it is not in the power of human
language to reserve power more absolute and unqualified
than is done in this grant. There are no directions given
for, and no restraints imposed upon, his power of action;
he is merely required to report the reasons which induced
him to act, after the consummation of the deed.
The very direction as to his subsequent conduct is
equivalent to a denial of the position that he is to receive
his instructions from Congress previous to his action; for,
if Congress be in session, he is directed to report to it im.
mediately his reasons for the removal. What sublime
mockery it would be to witness the Secretary reporting
the reasons which governed him in the performance of an
official act to the very Congress from which he had re-
ceived instructions to do the very act, and without which
instructions he could not have acted at all! It would be
giving him the power and the faculties of an automaton,
and, at the same time, holding him to the strictest moral
I have authority for saying that the Secretary of the
Treasury is entirely independent of the control of Con-
gress in this matter—authority which no friend of the
bank will feel himself at liberty to question. I alluded,
sir, to what was said by the honorable member from Penn-
sylvania, [Mr. BINNEy,) at the commencement of this Con-
gress, the first time the House had the pleasure of listening
to him. The question then discussed was the proper ref.
erence of the letter of the Secretary of the Treasury, as-
signing his reasons for the removal of the deposites. That
honorable member then stated that the Secretary of the
Treasury sustained the relation of umpire between the
bank and the Congress. Mark, Mr. Speaker, the rela-
lation of umpire. That gentleman is a distinguished law-
yer, and he well knows the character of an umpire. It
is, sir, that of perfect independence of the parties between
whom he is to decide. No stronger figure could be used
to show that the Secretary is not the agent of the Con-
gress, and the bank, or of either of them. The honor-
able member asserted that the Secretary was the umpire,
and his decision the award, and that through that award
Congress derived its whole power of action over the sub-
ject, as an appellate tribunal. That the power in Con-
gress, now to act in this matter, was not an original, but
a derivative power, derived from the action of the Secre-
tary, and, consequently, that we were confined in our
action to the review of the reasons assigned by the Sec-
retary of the Treasury.
Sir, there is nothing in all the noise we have heard
about despotism and usurpation, but the clamor of poli-
ticians who are hungering and thirsting after place. There
is nothing in any of the measures of the administration, in
respect to this whole matter, that cannot find a precedent
in all the administrations since the establishment of the Gov-
ernment under the existing constitution. Sir, the powers
of this Government in relation to the Congress and Execu-
tive are well defined. Congress has absolute as well as ple-
nary power over the revenues and moneys belonging to
the Government. It can direct the place where they shall
be kept, by whom kept, when removed, and for what
purpose removed; but it is, nevertheless, the duty of the
President to see that all laws made by Congress respect-
ing them are faithfully executed, and of this power he
cannot be divested—he cannot even divest himself of it.
Having, as I humbly conceive, answered the principal
argument against the right of removal of the deposites, I
will not now trouble the House with any argument as to

the expediency of that measure. . It is, I believe, admitted by nearly all the members of this House that the State banks must be used as a depository of the public moneys, if the Bank of the United States is not to be rechartered. The gentleman from Illinois, near me, [Mr. DU.NcAN, J as a substitute for the bill reported by the Committee of Ways and Means, has offered a bill to recharter the Bank

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