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terests, yet it would have been impossible to have defined a power of this nature; and therefore gene: ral terms only were used in conferring it, : 508. These general expressions, however, ought to be scrupulously confined to their legitimate signification; and in order to ascertain whether the execution of the Treaty-making power can be supported in any given case, the principles of the Constitution, from which the power proceeds, must be carefully applied to it.
509. The power must be construed in subordination to the Constitution ; and, however in its operation it may qualify, it cannot supersede or interfere with, any other of its fundamental provisions; nor can it be so interpreted as to authorize the destruction of other powers given in that instrument.
510. A Treaty to change the organization of the Government, or annihilate its sovereignty, or overturn its Republican form, or to deprive it of its Constitutional powers, would be void ; because it would defeat the will of the People, which it was designed to fulfil.
511. A Treaty, in its general sense, is a compact entered into with a foreign Power, and extends to all matters which are usually the subject of compact be. tween independent nations.
512. It is, in its nature, a contract, and not a Le• gislative act; and does not generally effect, of itself,
the objects purposed to be accomplished by concluding it; but requires to be carried into execution by some subsequent act of sovereign power by the contracting parties, especially in cases where it is intended to operate within their respective territories,
518. The exercise of such a right may become necessary to the public welfare and safety, from measures of the party with whom the Treaty was made, contrary to its spirit, or in open violation of its letter; and on such grounds alone can this right be reconciled, either with the provisions of the Constitution, or the principles of public Law.
519. All Treaties, as soon as finally ratified by the competent authorities, become of absolute efficacy ; and as long as they continue in force, are obligatory upon the whole Nation.
520. If a Treaty require the payment of money to carry it into effect, and the money can only be raised or appropriated by an Act of the Legislature, the existence of the Treaty renders it morally obligatory on Congress to pass the requisite Law; and its refusal to do so, would amount to a breach of the public faith, and afford just cause of war.
521. That department of the Government, which is entrusted by the Constitution with the power of making Treaties, is competent to bind the National faith at its discretion ; for the power to make Treaties must be co-extensive with the national exigencies, and necessarily involves in it every portion of the national sovereignty, of which the co-operation may be necessary to give effect to negotiations and contracts with foreign Nations.
522. If a Nation confer on its Executive department, without reserve, the right of treating and contracting with other Sovereignties, it is considered as having invested it with all the power necessary to make a valid contract; and that it is competent to alienate the public domain and property by Treaty; because that department is the organ of the Nation in making such contracts; and such alienations are valid, because they are made by the deputed assent of the Nation. the most scrupulous good faith, but are to receive a fair and liberal interpretation; and their meaning is to be ascertained by the same rules of construction which are applied to the interpretation of private contracts.
528. If a Treaty should be, in fact, violated by one of the contracting parties, by proceedings incompatible with its nature, or by an intentional breach of of any of its articles, it rests with the injured party alone to pronounce it broken.
529. The Treaty in such cases is not absolutely joid, but voidable at the election of the injured party ; and unless he choose to consider it void, it remains obligatory, as he may either waive or remit the infraction, or demand a just satisfaction.
530. But the violation of any one article, is a violation of the whole Treaty; for all the articles are dependent on each other, each of them is deemed a condition of the rest; and the breach of a single article overthrows the Treaty, if the injured party so elect.
531. This consequence may, however, be prevented by an express provision in the Treaty itself, that if one article be broken, the others shall nevertheless continue in full force; and in such a case it would not be competent for Congress to annul the Treaty on the ground of the breach of a single article.
532. The annulling of a Treaty by an Act of the Legislative Power under the circumstances in which such a measure is justifiable, or its termination by war, does not divest rights of property acquired under it; nor do Treaties in general become ipso facto extinguished by war between the parties: those