that dissolution would be commenced by the article in the Missouri Constitution.
“ That article,” declared Mr. Adams, “is itself a dissolution of the Union.”
Time had added tenfold strength to this argument, for Congress, at the behest of the Slave Power
, had gone on violating the Constitution
It would now shortly seek to impose on Kansas
a constitution open to Mr. Adams
's special objection, but also far more infamous in that it not merely recognized an existing state of society, but was an instrument in the erection of slavery on virgin soil.
had warned the Administration in December, 1857, that if it persisted in foisting the1
Lecompton Constitution on the people of Kansas
, it would have to maintain it by force of arms.
You will then, he said, have nationalized this difficulty; you will have legalized civil war instead of localizing the Kansas
Nevertheless, on February 2, President Buchanan
message to Congress, denouncing the free-State inhabitants of Kansas
as rebels, and counselling a settlement of the existing distraction by making the Lecompton Constitution
the basis of admission to the Union
He reminded them that the Supreme Court had adjudged that “slavery exists in Kansas
by virtue of the Constitution of the United States
,” Lib. 28.28.
and that ‘Kansas
is therefore at this moment as much a slave State as Georgia
or South Carolina
The popular demonstrations against this policy, the3
resistance promised by the Legislature of Kansas
's adverse report in the Senate, Crittenden
's attempt to5
secure submission of the Lecompton Constitution
to the popular vote—were all in vain.
The two houses disagreeing, a conference committee adopted the bill contrived by William H. English
, and on April6
30 the enabling act was passed.
The first section of Article 7 of the Constitution
embedded in the act read as follows:
The right of property is before and higher than any7 constitutional sanction; and the right of the owner of a slave to such