2. Resolved, That negro Slavery, as it exists in fifteen States of this Union, composes an important portion of their domestic institutions, inherited from their ancestors, and existing at the adoption of the Constitution, by which it is recognized as constituting an important element in the apportionment of powers among the States, and that no change of opinion or feeling on the part of the non-slaveholding States of the Union, in relation to this institution, can justify them or their citizens in open or covert attacks thereon, with a view to its overthrow; and that all such attacks are in manifest violation of the mutual and solemn pledge to protect and defend each other, given by the States respectively on entering into the constitutional compact which formed the Union, and are a manifest breach of faith, and a violation of the most solemn obligations.
This was adopted: Yeas 36; Nays 20; the division being identical with the foregoing, save that Mr. Trumbull
, of Illinois
, was now present, adding one to the Republican
While the above resolve was under consideration, Mr. Harlan
, of Iowa
, moved to add to it as follows:
But the free discussion of the morality and expediency of Slavery should never be interfered with by the laws of any State, or of the United States; and the freedom of speech and of the press, on this and every other subject of domestic and national policy, should be maintained inviolate in all the States.
This was rejected: Yeas 20; Nays 36 (as upon the adoption of the second resolve, with the order reversed).
3. Resolved, That the Union of these States rests on the equality of rights and privileges among its members; and that it is especially the duty of the Senate, which represents the States in their sovereign capacity, to resist all attempts to discriminate either in relation to persons or property in the Territories, which are the common possessions of the United States, so as to give advantages to the citizens of one State which are not equally assured to those of every other State.
This was also adopted — Yeas 36; Nays 18: the Yeas, as upon the first vote; as also the Nays, except that Messrs. Grimes
did not vote.
The next was the touchstone — its passage by a party vote the object of the movement.
4. Resolved, That neither Congress nor a Territorial Legislature, whether by direct legislation or legislation of an indirect and unfriendly character, possesses power to annul or impair the constitutional right of any citizen of the United States to take his slave property into the common Territories, and there hold and enjoy the same while the territorial condition remains.
This important resolve — the sentence and death-knell of “Popular Sovereignty” --was passed by the decisive majority of thirty-five Yeas to twenty-one Nays1
--every Democratic Senator
present but Mr. Pugh
, of Ohio
, voting for it; though Messrs. Latham
, of California
, of Indiana
, of Minnesota
, and perhaps one or two others, had been known in other days as friends of Mr. Douglas
, and champions of his doctrine.
himself was absent throughout,