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[387] armies to overpower the Government, but they were due to the Federal Executive and his advisers of the cabinet. This fact is so interesting as a matter of history, it is so important to a right understanding of the whole subject, and bears so clearly upon the question, what is our duty as citizens and what the policy of our Government, as regards the tolerance or suppression of this rebellion, that you will allow me to quote one authority upon the point from among the rebels themselves.

The Richmond Examiner in an elaborate eulogy of Floyd, who in the extent and infamy of his treachery certainly excelled his fellow-traitors in the cabinet, makes this plain avowal:

All who have attended to the developments of the last three months and knew aught of the movements of the Buchanan Administration up to the time of Floyd's resignation, will justify the assertion that the Southern Confederacy would not and could not be in existence at this hour but for the action of the late Secretary of War.

The plan invented by General Scott to stop secession was, like all campaigns devised by him, very able in its details and nearly certain of general success. The Southern. States are full of arsenals and forts commanding their rivers and strategic points; General Scott desired to transfer the army of the. United States to these forts as speedily and as quietly as possible. The Southern States could not cut off communication between the Government and the fortresses without a great fleet, which they cannot build for years; or take them by land without one hundred thousand men, many hundred millions of dollars, several campaigns, and many a bloody siege. Had Scott been able to. have got these forts in the .condition.he desired them to be, the Southern Confederacy would: not now exist.

Such is the truth fairly stated by the Richmond Examiner, in the interest of the rebels. The Union has been severed, not by violence from, without, but by treachery within. It has been convulsed from its centre to its circumference, not from any internal: weakness in our Federal system, but by the infernal villany of our Federal rulers.

Traitors have betrayed the Union, traitors have betrayed our forts; and the betrayal no more proves moral weakness in the one case than it does material weakness in the the other. There is no fortification so impregnable but that a traitorous governor may yield it without a blow — neither is there any government on God's earth that secret treachery may not enfeeble or temporarily overthrow.

“If,” said Webster, “those appointed to de. fend the castle shall betray it, woe betide those within. Let us hope,” he added, and how vain the hope as regards ourselves! “that we shall never see the time when the Government shall be found in opposition to the Constitution, and when the guardians of the Union shall become its betrayers.”

I do not mean to say, gentlemen, that President Buchanan, who at the close of his Administration, partially redeemed his character, by calling to his counsels those brave men and true patriots, Mr. Holt and General Dix, was personally privy to the designs of the false secretaries whom they replaced ; but it is neverthe-less true that he is the man who, under the Constitution, is directly responsible to the American people for the acts of his Administration.

In his position timidity was treason and inaction was crime. He alone could execute the laws, he had the power to execute them, and he did not execute them; and for the simple want of their non-execution the country drifted rapidly towards. destruction. This was a case which the founders of our Republic had not anticipated. As Mr. Sherman, of Ohio, aptly said, “the Constitution provided against every probable vacancy in the office of President, but did not provide for utter imbecility.”

I am aware that Mr. Buchanan's friends attribute his conduct in the whole matter to an amiable credulity and a humane desire to avoid the shedding of a drop of blood. I am sure that none of us would wish to deprive him of whatever benefit he may derive from the plea of Virtuous motives, but allowing them all the force they are entitled to, we must still exclaim: “Curse on his virtues, they've undone his country!”

For no other of the confederates in this great villany will the candid historian venture with success, the apology of mental imbecility or moral cowardice. They are men who make the boast that for long years it has been the aim of their existence to overthrow, not by open and honorable opposition, but secretly, traitorously, and by subornation of treason, the most benignant Government in the world, and one to which they were bound by solemn oaths and by sacred honor. They are men who, pretending to be gentlemen, have made conspiracy a trade, and perjury a habit. They have blended professions of patriotism with the practice of treason, linked the duties of a senator with the position of a spy, and made as eat in the cabinet the office of a thief. With a refinement of meanness that could belong to no chivalry but that of slaveholding, and would be practised by no knights save those of “the golden circle,” they have to the last moment drawn their official salaries from the nation they were betraying; they have perfected their schemes of plunder in the very capital which they were seeking to cripple, and beneath the folds of the flag that they were swearing, to support and plotting to humble. They are men, in brief — for the subject is a revolting one--who, imitating Judas and.rivalling Arnold, have made their daily life simply and purely a daily lie.

Did time permit: me I would like briefly to refer to the national events that, following in quick succession, have interrupted, what Mr. Seward happily :calls “the majestic march of ”

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