rival Whig and Democratic parties for 1852 were not held till very late — convening in Baltimore
, the Democratic
on the 1st, and the Whig
on the 16th of June.
But it had already been made manifest that a new article — acquiescence in the Compromise of 1850--was to be interpolated into the creed of one or both of these parties, if the strength of its champions should be found sufficient.
Indeed, a public pledge had, several months before, been signed by Henry Clay
, Howell Cobb
, and some fifty other members of Congress, of either party, that they would support no candidate thereafter who did not approve and agree to abide by that Adjustment.
And this Compromise, according to the interpretation now put upon it by its leading supporters, was in essence a compact to refrain from and oppose all future “agitation” or discussion adverse to the security, or the presumed interests, of Human Slavery.
In the Democratic National Convention, on the first ballot for a Presidential candidate, Gen. Cass
received 117 votes, Mr. Buchanan
93, and there were 78 scattered among eight others, of whom Gov. Marcy
and Mr. Douglas
On the third ballot, Gen. Cass
received 119; but he then began to decline; and on the thirteenth his vote had sunk to 99, while Mr. Douglas
's had risen to 50, and his friends had high hopes.
On the fourteenth ballot, Mr. Douglas
's vote, which had risen gradually, was 92; while Gen. Cass
's had settled to 33.
On the next ballot, Mr. Douglas
for the first time fell off; the result announced being — Douglas
64; all others 53.
On the thirty-third, Gen. Cass
ran up again to 123; and on the thirty-fifth to 131, which was his
dropping to 60 on the thirty-third, and to 53 on this.
, of New Hampshire
, was first named on this ballot, receiving 15 votes.
He ran up to 30 on the next; fell back to 29 on the following; and there stood till the forty-sixth, when he received 44; while Gov. Marcy
received 97; Gen. Cass
78; Mr. Buchanan
28; and Mr. Douglas
32, with 8 scattering.
On the forty-eighth, Gen. Pierce
received 55, and on the next 232 votes-being all that were cast but six--and was declared the candidate.
, William R. King
, of Alabama
, received 126 on the first ballot, to 174 scattered among nine rivals; and on the second ballot he had 277 to 11 for Jefferson Davis
, and was nominated.
This Convention, beside reaffirming the more essential propositions of its three predecessors, and one or two others condemning Nativism, indorsing the famous Kentucky
Resolutions of 1798 and 1799, etc., etc.; with reference to Slavery,
Resolved, That Congress has no power under the Constitution to interfere with or control the domestic institutions of the several States, and that such States are the sole and proper judges of everything appertaining to their own affairs, and not prohibited by the Constitution; that all efforts of Abolitionists or others, made to induce Congress to interfere with questions of Slavery, or to take incipient steps in relation thereto, are calculated to lead to the most alarming and dangerous consequences; and that all such efforts have an inevitable tendency to diminish the happiness of the people, and to endanger the stability and permanency of the Union, and ought not to be countenanced by any friend of our political institutions.
Resolved, That the foregoing proposition covers, and is intended to embrace, the whole subject of Slavery agitation in Congress;