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make a treaty binding, it is necessary that it should be made by the authority of the United States, and this is all which is necessary. This authority is delegated to the President and Senate, and, when exercised by them, the States have agreed that it is duly made. Whereas, as to a law, it must be made in pursuance of the constitution, and of this the judicial d: is constituted the judge. Now, these treaties have been made by the President, and ratified by two-thirds of the Senate. They have therefore been made under the authority of the United States; and thus the States, by becoming parties to the constitution, have declared them to be the supreme law of the land. Is it in the power of any State to declare that, in making these treaties, the limits prescribed by the constitution, were passed that there was an exercise of power not to be delegated; t is, in most cases, a safe rule by which to ascertain the correctness of an assumed principle, by following it out in its consequences...What would they be in the case we are now considering, if these treaties are invalid? If they are void as to the United States, or as to any of the States, they are so as to the Indians. If they cannot be carried into effect, in good faith, because they infringe upon the rights of the States, they are inoperative for all purposes. The Indian tribes may say with great propriety to this Government, if you have not the power to fulfil the stipulations o in the treaties made with us, we are under no obligation, on our part, to comply with them. If you exceeded your powers, the treaties are at an end. And what would then be the result? Why, every cession of land made by virtue of them is a void grant. The boundaries which now circumscribe them, are no longer fixed and permanent. Every thing conceded by them in these treaties, is set afloat. Are the States more especially benefited by them, prepared for this result? Are they willing to acknowledge the principle that no permanent rights were acquired for them by the ratification of these treaties? If the Indian tribes possess the rights of soil and sovereignty to the extent which I have attempted to show they do possess them; if the treaties and laws entered into and enacted by the United States in relation to these tribes, are valid, the power to pass this law does not exist, and its inexpediency is obvious. It takes away from those tribes, or impairs the rights which belong to them. It substitutes a legislative enactment, requiring only a majority of both Houses of Congress for a treaty which requires the assent of two-thirds of the Senate. If my physical strength was competent to the task, I
would submit to the committee some considerations evincing the impolicy of the passage of this bill, growing out of the enormous expense which will attend its execution, and the utter annihilation which it will cause of the tribes who may remove to their contemplated residence west of the Mississippi. But I have already exhausted my strength in the discussion of the other interesting questions connected with the bill. I shall leave these topics to my friends who may follow me in this debate. I would not, if I had the power, excite any improper sympathy in favor of these remnants of a once powerful race. I will not ask the committee to consider the manner in which the white man was received by them, when he first set his foot upon the shores of the Western world ; to the cessions of lands which from time to time they have made to the colonies, and to this nation; to their present condition as improved in civilization, in morals, and religion; to their attachment to their present homes, the lands which they occupy, the graves of their fathers. No, sir, our obligations to sustain and protect them where they now are, are derived from sources which need not the aid of sympathy to give them credit.
My friend from New York [Mr. STORRs] pointed out the view which would hereafter be taken of our decision on this bill, should it become a law. He took us from this Hall, and assembled us before the tribunal of our own countrymen, who would pronounce the sentence of condemnation; before the tribunal of assembled nations, who would pass a like sentence; before the tribunal of pos. terity, where would be open the volume of history, in which would be found written in letters of fire, this republic violated its solemn treaty obligations with the Indian tribes, because it had the power, and was actuated by motives of interest to do it. Sir, our future historian will not have the power of the recording angel, as he writes this sentence, and drops upon it a tear to blot it out. It will remain there as long as time endures. It is like the ulcer of infamy; no balsam can healit: it is like the wreck of a ruined reputation; no artist can rebuild it. I might pursue the train of thought suggested by my friend from New York. I might assemble this nation before the most august tribunal ever to be erected—the tribunal of the last day. But I shall not attempt to draw aside the veil which conceals the transactions of that day. Divine inspiration hath written for our admonition, and I pray that it may not be repeated, in the retributions of the last judgment, Cursed be he that possesseth himself of the field of th: fatherless and him that hath no helper, and the congregated universe pronounce]the sentence just.
INDEX TO THE DEBATES IN TEIE SENATE.
Adjournment, joint committee appointed to wait upon the Georgia, motion to print the remonstrance of the State of,
President, and notify him that Congress were
against treaties formed by the United States with