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A debate arose on their report. No case was ever argued in the Senate with more frankness of expression. Three Senators in five would have been glad, for party reasons, to support Kellogg and admit Pinchback; but the Senators were driven by facts to a conclusion dead against their party interests, and extremely honourable to them as individual gentlemen. A long debate ended in the adoption of the committee's report. The Senate not only declared that Kellogg was not the lawful Governor of Louisiana, and Pinchback not the lawful Senator for Louisiana, but directed that a new election should be held, so that the “reign of anarchy” might be put down in true republican fashion, by a public vote.

When pressed by the Senate to explain his action, President Grant admitted that the late election in Louisiana was “a gigantic fraud.” He yielded to the Senate, that a new election ought to be held, so as to ascertain whether General McEnery or William P. Kellogg was the popular choice; but he reserved to his cabinet the right of choosing a convenient time for calling on the citizens of Louisiana to exercise their right.

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