View original document

The full text on this page is automatically extracted from the file linked above and may contain errors and inconsistencies.


















The House having tinder consideration the bill (H.R.2331) to repeal all
statutes relating to supervisors of elections and special deputy marshals,
and for other purposes-

Mr. LACEY said:
Mr. SPEAKER: The bill now before the House has been brought
forward at an unusual and an unseemly time. This special session of Congress was called by His Excellency the President of
the United States because of the grave condition of financial affairs—produced, as many of usk believe, by the election of 1892—
produced, as many others think, by the existing laws enacted by,
Republican Congresses in times past. Instead of meeting the
serious financial question 3 in the manner in which they should be
met; instead of promptly bringing forward a bill to revise a tariff
which we are told is a n a t r o c i t y " and an iniquity of " class legislation," this bill is suddenly thrust upon the country, wholly unexpected and wholly uncalled for. There can be no election in
which Federal laws will be involved until 1894—more than one
year from this time.
Now, what is the reason for this peculiar action on the part of
the majority in this House? They find themselves confronted'
with a difficult Question. In the last campaign, by fusion in
many localities and by giving it out in others, that the Democratic party was the free-coinage party, the Democrats succeeded in carrying this House by the very large majority which
occupies the floor here to-day. When the President calls this
Congress together it is suddenly discovered that all of the gentlemen upon his side are not by any means of one mind upon this
question. A division arises. A free-coinage man of 1890 is put
forward to introduce and take charge of a bill in this House to
repeal the Sharman act, and making no further provision of any
kind in Regard to silver coinage.
That time-honored leader of free silver and greenbacks, who
has been so famous in this country for so many years in his advocacy of every measure for the free coinage of silver and the
unlimited issue of paper currency, is put in charge of the same
measure at the other end of the Capitol. And we find the Democratic party in this House split wide open, split up the back, so
to speak, and it becomes necessary to do something to get the
members together. A caucus is hurriedly held and the election
bill is brought to the front again as the war cry upon which the
party is to rally and which will with its cohesive effect bring
them again into line with the Administration. This is the purpose; it is the only purpose that I can see, and if some gentle510

man on the other side of the House will deny it he will give his
party at least the benefit of that denial.
It is said that all the laws which this bill proposes to repeal
are unconstitutional; and; as usual, our Democratic brethren
come forward defending that time-honored instrument. The
Constitution of the United States is infringed, they say. And
my brilliant young friend [Mr. TUCKER], who has not only inherited the legal mind of an illustrious ancestry, but who is himself a close and earnest student of constitutional law, tells us
that this law is unconstitutional. And in the report whi6h is
filed by the committee in this case, the decisions of the Supreme
Court in the Siebold case and in the Yarborough case are not even
dignified by being cited. They are absolutely ignored; and my
friend who has made this report rests under the possibility of
some day being charged with having made the report without
knowing the existence of those two decisions.
Now, this is unfair to himself. The decisions of the Supreme
Court, it seems to me, closed that question. Judge Jackson, who
has recently been promoted to the Supreme bench by a Republican Administration, and who is a Democrat of the old school,
one of those gentlemen who are so fond of the Constitution, has
said in the Carpenter case (41 Fed. Rep.) that these decisions
settle the question and that the la^r is constitutional. My friend
from Virginia, I think, ought to be included in the bill proposed
by Mr. A L L E N of Mississippi—A bill to restore parity between
the legislative body and the Executive. There ought to be such
an amendment to that bill as may restore the parity between
him and the Supreme Court of the United States, because he se-1
riously and gravely differs with that tribunal on the great constitutional question.
Mr. Speaker, there was a time when the question was an open
one, and when the very statements that are made in the majority
report on the present bill were embraced in the briefs of counsel
in the Supreme Court of the United States. We have here the
remarkable example of a learned committee introducing as part
of their majority report the claim that a law is unconstitutional
which has been upon the statute books for twenty-three years,
and which has been twice decided to be valid by the highest
court in the land.
The brief of counsel for the losing party in a constitutional
case in the Supreme Court is hardly the proper authority to
quote as the doctrine of a House committee. The opinion of the
court in a case in its proper constitutional jurisdiction was much
more worthy of being quoted as the law. Counsel usually regard themselyes as in hard luck if they can find nothing favorable to cite except in dissenting opinions or in the briefs of the
losing counsel.
Now, sir, I do not feel inclined at this time to enter upon any extended discussion of the constitutional question involved. I am
willing to let that go, as it has already been decided by the highest
authority in the land. I desire to discuss the propriety of the
bill from the standpoint of expediency, from the standpoint of
propriety and fitness rather than that of constitutionality. And
now let me read from a speech made by an eminent constitutional
lawyer on the Democratic side of the House, a distinguished'
gentleman who is courteous at all times and never allows his'
partisanship to get the better of his judgment. I read from a

speech of the gentleman from Alabama [Mr. OATES], found in the
CONGRESSIONAL R E C O R D of 1890, volume 109, page 6862, in which
he uses this language:
Section 4 of Article I of the Constitution reads as follows:
"The times, places, and manner of holding elections for Senators and
Representatives shall he prescribed in each State by the Legislature thereof;
but the Congress may at any time by law make or alter such regulations except as to the places of choosing Senators."
The entire history of this clause of that instrument shows that it was thft
intention of its framers, as well as of the States which adopted it, that they,
through their respective Legislatures, should primarily exercise this power;
and they have so exercised it, with but few additional regulations by Congress to secure greater uniformity, for over one hundred years.
That Congress may at any time make or alter the regulations of the States
for holding such elections 1 freely admit. But for Congress to make or
alter these State regulations when the States have made such as do not obstruct nor deny to the State representation it should first toe ascertained
that there is an overwhelming necessity therefor.
The alternative power vested in Congress is a necessary one for the preservation of its own integrity and the perpetuation of the Government itself,
but it never was intended to be exercised except for such a contingency. Is
there present the indisputable evidence of such a state of affairs in any one
State or number of States, which justly calls for the interposition of Congress to make or alter the laws of such State or States touching the election
of members of Congress therein? If so, I say let the proper remedy be applied.
I do not object to such reasonable amendment as will secure a fair and
honest election. I do not believe in fraud. There is at this time nowhere in
our country any necessity or excuse for it, whatever may have been in the
past. I want no dishonesty; I want every lawful voter to have a fair opportunity to vote, and, if he does so, he vote to be counted as cast.

This patriotic statement of my friend from Alabama I read
with a great deal of pleasure, as having a direct baaring upon
the matter now before us.
Mr. OATES. If the gentleman will allow me a moment, I
want to say that I have not receded an iota from the position
then taken. I indorse everything that I said.
Mr. LACEY. I am very glad my friend from Alabama takes
that position, and if he does and adheres to it, I shall confidently
expect him to vote against a portion of this bill, if not the whole
of it. I shall expect him to vote at least for the amendment that
I have offered.
' Mr. OATES. I expect to vote for the bill, and will give my
reasons, which are perfectly satisfactory.
Mr. LACEY. I shall expect my friend to vote for the amendment at least, and I commend it to his careful and prayerful consideration.
Again, Mr. Speaker, on the question as to whether or not the
law which we are considering is constitutional law let me cite
another distinguished Democratic authority. If the Supreme
Court of the United States is not good authority on constitutional
law, who can say that the chairman of the last Committee on
Appropriations of this House, now in charge of the red men of
the forest, is not good authority? A bill was introduced by that
distinguished gentleman, my friend from Indiana, Judge HODMAN—
(H. R. 3328) to maintain the purity of the ballot box, prevent bribery and
corruption in elections and appointments, and punish perjury for the violation of its provisions.

The first section provides:
That it shall be unlawful for any person or persons to give, advance, or
permit any of his or her property, personal or real, to be used, directly or

indirectly, to aid, assist, or influence any person or persons to vote for or
procure the appointment of any person or persons to any office under the
Government of the United States.

And section 3 provides:
SEC. 3. That any person or persons violating the first section of this act
may be indicted in the courts of the United States, andfinedin any sum not
exceeding $500, and imprisoned by the court any period of time not exceeding one year.

This bill was introduced no doubt on account of the recent disclosures from the great city of New York, introduced to cover
in part the act of a certain foreign ambassador, in whose case it
has been currently stated that "when friends were few and calls
were great," just before Ijhe last election an auction was held and
the mission prospective put up to the highest bidder, 4 'Here is
one first-class mission to Rome for sale. Who will bid? Going!
Who will start it? Do I hear a bid? Five thousand dollars! Ten
thousand dollars! Fifteen thousand dollars! Will somebody
give more? Yes. Thirty thousand! Forty thousand! Fifty
thousand dollars! Last call! Knocked down to the gentleman
there with his trousers turned up and a single eyeglass on.
Please give your name to the clerk." [Laugh tej\]
Mr. COGSWELL. And who said this country is not a fit place
for a gentleman to live in?
Mr. LAG.EY. Yes. He is stated to have said that this country was not fit, as my colleague suggests, for a gentleman to live
in. In fact we have come to a time when we do not need to
import Englishmen. We raise them in New York. The bill
introduced by my friend from Indiana evidently had this particular instance in view, But is that bill constitutional? 1 ask my
friend from Virginia [Mr. TUCKER] if Judge Holman's bill is
constitutional, to punish bribery in the purchase of public office
and in the election of Members of Congress: to punish bribsry
in the purchase of seats in the Senate of the United States?
This report says It is not, that these laws are wholly unconstitutional. That the United States is powerless to prevent, or even
punish, crimes against the suffrage at Federal elections. The
strongest nation in the world does not even have the right of
self-preservation, for it can not live as a republic if the ballot
ceases to make its peaceful decisions upon the great national
Mr. Speaker, I introduced an amendment onNyesterday which
I now desire to call to the attention of the Democratic members
of this House. They are bound to vote for this bill, and the
whole of it. I know, gentlemen, you are not free agents in this
matter. But you shall have the opportunity to have a yea-andnay vote on the proposition to amend this bill, however; and let
me call your attention now to what the amendment proposes.
It is proposed by this amendment to strike out the words
u fifty-five hundred and six, fifty-five hundred and eleven, fiftyfive hundred and twelve, fifty-five hundred and thirteen, fiftyfive hundred and fourteen, fifty-five hundred and fifteen, and fiftyfive hundred and twenty " from the pending bill, and thus take
away that provision in the bill which repeals the sections that I
have named.
Now let me call your attention to what these sections contain.
They are as follows:
SEC. 5506. Every person who, by any unlawful means, hinders, delays, pre*
vents, or obstructs, or combines and confederates with others to hinder, de510

lay, prevent,"or obstruct, any citizen from doing any act required to be done
to qualify him to vote, or from voting at any election in any State, Territory, district, county, city, parish, township, school district, municipality, or
other territorial subdivision, shall be fined not less than $500, or be imprisoned not less than one month nor more than one year, or be punished by
both such fine and imprisonment. (See paragraphs 2004-2010.)
SEC. 5511. )t, at any election for Representative or Delegate in Congress,
any person knowingly personates and votes, or attempts to vote, in the name
of any other person, whether living, dead, or fictitious; or votes more than
once at the same election for any candidate for the same office; or votes at a
place where he may not be lawfully entitled to vote; or votes without having
A lawful right to vote; or does any unlawful act to secure an opportunity to
vote for himself, or any other person; or by force, threat, intimidation,
bribery, reward, or offer thereof, unlawfully prevents any qualified voter of
any State, or of any Territory, from freely exercising the right of suffrage,
or by any such means induces any voter to refuse to exercise such right, or
compels,.or induces, by any such means, any officer of an election in any
such State or Territory to receive a vote from a person not legally qualified
or entitled to vote; or interferes in any manner with any officer of such election in the discharge of his duties; or by any such means, or other unlawful
means, induces any officer of an election or officer whose duty it is to ascertain, announce, or declare the result of any such election, or give or make
any certificate, document, or evidence in relation thereto, to violate or refuse
to comply with his duty or any law regulating the same; or knowingly receives the vote of any person not entitled to vote, or refuses to receive the
vote of any person entitled to vote, or aids, counsels, procures, or advises
any such voter, person, or officer to do any act hereby made a crime, or omit
to do any duty the omission of which is hereby made a crime, or attempt to
do so, he shall be punished by afineof not more than SR500, or by imprisonment not more than three years, or by both, and shall pay the costs of the
SEC. 5512. If at any registration of voters for an election for Representative or Delegate in the Congress of the United States, any person knowingly
personates and registers, or attempts to register, in the name of any other
person, whether living, dead, or fictitious, or fraudulently registers, or
fraudulently attempts to register, not having a lawful right so to do; or
does any unlawful act to secure registration for himself or any other person; or by force, threat, menace, intimidation, bribery, reward, or offer, or
romise thereof, or other unlawful means, prevents or hinders any person
aving a lawful right to register from duly exercising such right; or compels or induces by any of such means, or other unlawful means, any officer
of registration to admit to registration an7 person not legally entitled
thereto, or interferes in any manner with any officer of registration in tlie
discharge of his duties, or by any such means, or other unlawful means, induces any officer of registration to violate or refuse to comply with his duty
or any law regulating the same; or if any such officer knowingly and will-,
fully registers as a voter any person not entitled to be registered, or refuses
to so register any person entitled to be registered; or if any such officer or
other person who has any duty to perform in relation to such registration
or election, in ascertaining, announcing, or declaring the result thereof, or
in giving or making any certificate, document, or evidence in relation thereto,
knowingly neglects or refuses to perform any duty required by law, or violates any duty imposed by law, or does any act unauthorized by lawrelating
to or affecting such registration or election, or the result thereof, or any certificate, document, or evidence in relation thereto, or if any person aids,
counsels, procures, or adyises any such voter, person, or officer to do any act
hereby made a crime, or to omit any act the omission bf which is hereby made
a crime, every such person shall be punishable as prescribed in the preceding
SEC. 5513. Every registration made under the laws of any State or Territory, for any State or other election at which such Representative or Delegate in Congress may be chosen, shall be deemed to be a registration within
the meairing of the preceding section, notwithstanding such registration
is al$o made for the purposes of any State, Territorial, or municipal election.
SEC. 5514. Whenever the laws of any State or Territory require that the
name of the candidate or person to be voted for as Representative or Delegate in Congress shall be printed, written, or contained on any ticket or
ballot with the names of other candidates or persons to be voted for at the
same election as State, Territorial, municipal, or local officers, it shall be
deemed sufficirnt prima facie evidence to convict any person charged with
voting, or off t ring to vote, unlawfully, under the provisions ot this chapter,
to prove that the person so charged cast or offered to cast such ticket or
ballot whereon the name of such Representative or Delegate might by law
be printed, written, or contained, or that the person so charged committed


any of the offenses denounced In this chapter with reference to such ticket
or ballot.
SEC. 5515. Every officer of an election at which any Representative or
Delegate in Congress is voted for, whether such officer of election he appointed or created by or under any law or authority of the United States,
or by or under any State, Territorial, district, or municipal law or authority,
who neglects or refuses to perform any duty in regard to such election required of him by any law of the United States, or of any State or Territory
thereof; or, who violates any duty so imposed; or who knowingly does any
acts thereby unauthorized, with intent to affect any such election or the result thereof; or who fraudulently makes any false certificate of the Tesult
of such election in regard to such Representative or Delegate, or who withholds, conceals, or destroys any certificate of record so required by law respecting the election of any such Representative or Delegate; or who neglects
or refuses to make and return such certificate as required bv law; or who
aids, counsels, procures, or advises any voter, person, or officer to do any
act by this or any of the preceding sections made a crime, or to omit to
do any duty the omission of which is by this or any of such sections made
a crime, or attempts to do so, shall be punished as prescribed in section fiftyfive hundred and (ten) (eleven). (See paragraph 5511.)
Sac. 5520. If two or more persons in any State or Territory conspire to
prevent by force, intimidation, or threat any citizen who is lawfully entitled
to vote from giving his support or advocacy, in a legal manner, toward or
in favor of the election of any lawfully qualified person as an elector for
President or Vice-President, or as a member of the Congress of the United
States, or to injure any citizen in person or property on account of such
support or advocacy, each of such persons shall be punished by a fine of not
less than five hundred nor more than five thousand dollars, or by imprisonment. with or without hard labor, not less than six months nor more
than six years, or by both suchfineand imprisonment.

Let us pass by the question as to whether there is a propriety
and a necessity for any Federal supervision at the polls. Let us
lay that aside,' and for the sake of the argument agree with my
friend from Virginia [Mr. TUCKER] and the gentleman from
Georgia [Mr. LAWSON] and the other gentlemen who have discussed this question upon the Democratic side. But will they
say that a law is unconstitutional which punishes crimes committed against the Federal elections in various States? Will
they say that under the Constitution of the United States there
is no power in this Congress to protect the purity of Federal
•elections by punishing ballot-b^x stuffing, bribery, intimidation,
false registration?
Is there no power to punish innumerable repetitions of voting
,by the same man? Is it possible there is no such power in the
National Government? Is the repeater who nullifies the will of
the citizens and substitutes his own corrupt wish for the people's will beyond the reach of national law? I balieve, gentlemen of the Democracy, that you will say, im The Supreme Court
of the United States is right, and we will follow it upon this
questipn, and we will now vote upon this question as to its propriety, and not as to its constitutionality."
Section 5506 provides that any person who shall, by unlawful
means, hinder, delay, obstruct, or prevent an elector from qualifying himself to vote at a Federal election, shall be punished.
That offense is made a crime. It is a crime against the nation.
It is one form of treason itself.
Section 5511 provides that if any one falsely personate another
and votes at a Federal election, if John X votes in the name of
John Y, who is de^d, or who has moved out of the ward, if, in
short, any of the crimes of repeating-or of false personation are
committed, they shall be. treated and punished as crimes not
only a gains t the State in which the offense is committed, but
against the lawt> of the United States; and the Federal courts
snail have jurisdiction of the offense.


It also makes force, threats, intimidation, and bribery offenses
against the Federal law. And why should they not be, gentlemen of the majority? W h y should not there be a law to prevent
bribery,'ballot-box stuffing, and the like; and if the law is repealed in relation to supervisors, inspectors, and all that, why
should not the law which punishes these crimes remain as a
wholesome menace against the wrongdoers of the localities in
which these crimes are committed? Surely these criminals are
not proper subjects of your tender care.
Mr. HENDERSON of Iowa. It only relates to the election of
Federal officers.
Mr. LACEY. It is limited to the election of Federal officers.
I will ask any gentleman upon the other side to suggest some
reason why this law should' be repealed; because no one can be
indicted until after the election. It can not control the election;
and when a mail is indicted, his trial occurs in a Federal court,
before a Federal jury, after indictment by a Federal grand jury,
and all these proceedings take place in courts that have been renowned for their purity. If those laws are to be repealed in the
interest of the 44 heeler," the statutes against mail robbing and
counterfeiting should g o next. You should not indulge in unjust discrimination in favor of any of these "industries."
Take the next sectioh, 5512. It punishes as a crime fraudulent
registering or fraudulent attempts to register, and the hindering
or preventing any one from exercising the right of suffrage by
force, threat, menace, intimidation, bribery, or other unlawful
And yet our Democratic friends propose to strike that section
from the statute books. This bill is wrongfully named. It ought
to be called a bill for the protection of corruption and iniquity
at elections, because.that will be its effect.
Section 5514 simply deals with the laws of evidence relating
to the punishment of crimes against the Federal election laws.
Section 5515 punishes public officers who violate the Federal
election laws.
Section 5520 punishes conspiracy to prevent any one from voting or giving his support or advocacy to one side or the other
in Federal elections, by force, intimidation, or threats.
A long discussion has been had on both sides as to the propriety of the present law^ My good friend from Alabami [Mr.
OATES], who tells us that he has not changed his mind since
1890, says to us that if there is any reason why in any locality
the laws can not be enforced, or if there are any laws in any locality that encourage fraud in elections, he is in favor of amending the existing laws, so as to prevent and punish i t . ?
Now, Mr. Speaker, let us see whether or not any State has
taken up this subject in a way requiring Federal action. Many
States have done so, but I will take one State simply and review
its election laws. I hope that my good friends from that State
upon the floor of this House, whom I esteem personally, and who
are among the best members we have, will not take any offense
because I single out their State. I simply take the State of
South Carolina because its laws on this subject are, perhaps,
better known and understood, and because its election laws are
the pioneers in a course that can not be too strongly condemned.
In the first place the laws of that State provide that there shall
be no county home rule. Whilst the Democracy are always con510

tending for home rule, they provide that the governor shall make
the appointment of the officers to hold the elections. This right
is taken away from the county officsrs elected by the people, and
the first cardinal principle of Damocratic faith is violated in
these laws. Now, does that law work well or does it work ill?
Is it calculated or intended to prevent the voice of the people
from being recorded in any locality?
Let me call your attention to the action of the executive of
that grand old State in 1838.
In the first place, there is a district in one part of that State
so overwhelmingly Republican that it would be hard to prevent
the election from being unanimous if a full and a free ballot is held
and an honest count is made. And let me say right here, to the
credit of the honorable young attorney-general now representing one of the districts of South Carolina in this Congress, the
certificate of election was given to the colored brother here in
the election last fall of that .State.
In 1888 an attempt was made to enforce the election laws in
that district, if possible, to utilize the enormous Republican majority that had been congested into that district. School districts had baen cut in two; * townships had been divided, and lines
had been placed there in such a way as far as possible to put into
a pocket in that single district the entire Republican vote of
South Carolina.
Mr. T ALBERT of South Carolina. Will the gentleman allow
me to ask him a question?
Mr. LACEY. Certainly.
- Mr. TALBERT or South Carolina. I want to ask him, as the
only colored man in this august body is the Representative of a
South Carolina district, if it is not in bad grace for him to stand
up here and say anything derogatory of that State? What State
in the North can the gentlem m point to that has sent a colored
man to hold a seat on this floor? South Carolina has done so;
and that ought to stand commendatory of that State; and I think
it is time that this abuse of South Carolina should be stopped.
I stand here and hurl it back at the gentleman.
The SPEAKER. Does the gentleman from Iowa yield to the
gentleman from South Carolina?
Mr. LACEY. Certainly; I always yield.
Mr. TALBERT of South Carolina. I have had my say.
Mr. LACEY. I was complimenting my friend from South Carolina that he and his wing of the Democratic party——
Mr. TALBERT of South Carolina. A very strange way to
compliment me.
Mr. LACEY. Had managed to split the old party wide open.
It is always necessary that there should be two parties everywhere. Destroy one and another will spring up. In the lowest
order of vegetable life Dirwin tells us of a curious little plant.
In the beginning it is single and about as,big as a pin head, but
as soon as it matures it splits and forms two from the one. There
is a duality in all things. My friend has two eyes, two ears, t^o
feet, and he believes in gold and silver both.
Mr. TALBERT of South Carolina. And greenbacks.
Mr; LACEY. And republics must have two parties. In that
proud Stjite the Democracy , being supreme, began to fight among
themselves. Their elections, however, were not held at the polls,

but they hold them in primaries; and my friend who has just objected (and he stands up for South Carolina, and I am glad to see
him do so, for a man ought to stand by his own State} won his
place at the primaries.
South Carolina has now been split up, one-half of the Democrats went off with the Alliance people, and the other half are
the old timers. They go into a primary; they can not elect at
the polls
Mr. TALBERT of South Carolina. Th£ Alliance people are
the true Democrats.
Mr. LACEY (continuing). But they carry the primaries, and
the election merely records the verdict of the primaries. That
this system transfers the elections from the polls to the primaries
of a party is a certain fact, and it calls for action at the hands of
the Federal Government when it deprives anybody of the right
of suffrage in a district. There is good reason why the laws punishing crime ought to remain upon the statute books. In 1888 the
Republican candidate in the district to which I referred applied
through his executive committee for leave to have a Republican
member upon the election boards, and the governor answered
him in writing. I commend this answer to my friend from South
Carolina, and ask him if he indorses it? The governor refused
to recognize the existence of the Republican party in that State,
and he goes on to say:
It will be sufficient simply to say that, in my judgment,, a departure from
the wisely established methods and principles upon which these appoint*
ments are made would endanger the continuance of the perfectly free, fair,
and peaceful elections—the professed object of your desire—that are the
proud boast and the highest achievements of Democratic rule in this State.
To the eternal honor of our State and the Democratic party, it can now be
said that our elections are the freest and fairest in the world, and that not a
single citizen of hers, no matter what his rank, color* or condition, can. under
her just and equal laws, impartially administered as they are, be by any
perversion or intimidation, barred at the polls, from the free and full exercise of his suffrage. There is not only perfect freedom in voting, but the
amplest protection afforded the voter.

That was the statement of the governor at that time. Let us
see how that election was held under the laws of which I complain, and, I think, rightly.
Mr. McLAURlN. Did I understand the gentleman to say that
that was the statement of the governor of South Carolina?
Mr. LACEY. ' Yes, sir.
Mr. McLAURIN. I would like to say, in addition to that and
in explanation of it, that there is no Republican party in South
Carolina to-day, and that there has not been any for several years,
except just a few men hanging on to get the crumbs and the
droppings. There is not to-day, and there never has been for
ten years, any Republican party in South Carolina worthy of
the name, and there never will be again.
Mr. LACEY. Now, my friend takes the good out of all that
his colleague has said. "His colleague told us that they had
kindly given us a Republican Congressman, and a black Republican at that, and he wanted to know if my friends had done as
well; but now the other gentleman from South Carolina [Mr.
MCLATJRIN] tells us there is no Republican party there at all, so
I suppose that the gentleman [Mr. MURRAY] who is here claiming to represent the Republican party of South Carolina and
8,000,000 negroes in the United States, does not represent anybody, but is here by sufferance.

Mr. McLAURIN. We gave the election, not to a Republican or a Democrat, but to the man who got the majority of the
votes and was fairly elected.
Mr. LACE Y. Well, that was right; but is Mr. M U R R A Y a Democrat or a Republican?
Mr. McLAURIN. Mr. M U R R A Y is a South Carolina Republican, but he comes here and votes on financial questions, be it
said to his eternal honor, with the 'Democrats, because the interests of his people are identical with the interests of the white
Mr. L ACE Y. With the Administration Democrats or with the
anti-Administration Democrats? [Laughter.]
Mr. McLAURIN. The anti-Administration Democrats- cut
such a small figure in South Carolina that they are hardly worth
talking about.
'Mr. GEAR. They are batter represented on this floor.
Mr. L ACE Y; Mr. Speaker, I have been warned that I have but
an hour, and I hope that if my friends do feel constrained to interrupt me at all they will not take up much of my time. I wish now
to follow up this election a little. The governor of South Carolina
said that there was no Republican party in that State, and he is
corroborated by my friend from South Carolina ("Mr. McLAURIN],
who seems to represent the Democratic party there.
Mr. TALBERT of South Carolina. I would like to say to my
friend that South Carolina is able to take care of itself
The SPEAKER. Does the gentleman from Iowa yield?
Mr. LACEY. No, sir; I do not. I do not decline to yield for
a question, but not to a mere interruption or interjection, as I
do not wish to have my time frittered away in that manner.
Now, let us look at this election, conducted under those "wise
laws " which the governor of South Carolina describes, and let
us see whether there is any occasion for a Federal law to protect
the voters. Under the election law of South Carolina a screen
has to be erected in front of the voting place and only one man
is permitted to go In at a time. The governor does not appoint
judges of election except on one side. A l l are of his own party.
He does not recognize the other side, so that when (the voter
goes in there he and the Democratic judges and the Almighty
are alone. [Laughter.]
In one of the towns of this district - the colored brethren, believing that they belonged to the Republican party, organized a
"conspiracy " against the South Carolina election laws. One of
them who could read went in to inspect the two ballot boxes
when he cast his vote. While he was in there, being able to
read, he found that the right-hand box was the Presidential box,
and on the left hand was the Congressional box, and when he
came out he formed a line of the colored voters who could not
read. Another one bf them climbed a tree outside, where he
could look over the screen of boards.
The first man went in with his tickets, and he put his Presidential ticket in the right-hand box, and his Congressional
ticket in the left-hand box, and so they went on in succession.
Well after awhile, as the procession moved on, the judges of
election made the discovery that a "fraud-" was being perpetrated and that tl^e tickets were actually all going into the proper
boxes; so they shifted the ballot boxes, and then the man who

had climbed the tree to see what a South Carolina election would
look like to a man up a tree [laughter], shouted out: " Change
dem tickets, de boxes is shifted! " And the voters changed tha
tickets, and they went right along, putting the right-hand ticket
in the right-hand box and the left-hand ticket in the left-hand
box, and the fraud against the election laws of the grand old
Palmetto State continued. The country was in great danger.
Now, what did the judges of election do? They could tolerate
no such outrage as this. They sent for the sheriff, and directed
him to call upon the man to come down out of the tree; but Zaccheus would not come down, and therefore the sheriff climbed
the tree and took him down, and the election, a "free and fair
election," was finished. And yet my friends say that the election
laws of none of the States have been so framed as to accomplish
or encourage anything but honesty, purity, and uprightness!
Mr. TALBERT of South Carolina. T want to say to my friend
that in our State any man who has a registration ticket, whether
he be white or colored, can vote, and I deny the general tenor
of the gentleman's assertions, and I would like to have the proof.
Mr. LACEY. Mr. Speaker, I am very glad that the gentleman confines his denial to the general tenor of my remarks instead of denying the facts. I am responsible for the tenor of
the remarks, and the facts speak for themselves. Now, in the
language of the gentleman from Alabama, is there any necessity
therefor a law that will punish false counting or ballot-box
stuffing? When that election closed that evening Miller had
1,300 tickets in the Presidential box, and they were thrown out,
and his opponent got the certificate of election. He was unseated. In the last Congress the same game was played, and
the contestant of the election was not even permitted to have his
case heard in this House. The report involving the right to
true representation of the people of the most populous district
in South Carolina .was not considered in the House, and the
right of those'people to representation went over at the jend of
the session as unfinished business.
Why this is too serious for a comedy; yet some one of the distinguished gentlemen who are engaged in preparing works of
that kind might take one of these elections as the subject of a
new comic opera. I think that one of these men climbing a tree
and watching the election carried on below would bring down
the house.
Mr. TALBERT of South Carlonia. The gentlem&n makes a
statement of which we call upon him to produce the proof; we,
deny it.
Mr. LACEY. I only allude to this case because
Mr. JOHNSON of Indiana, Mr. Speaker, I believe I shall
have to object to the gentleman from Iowa any longer interrupting the gentleman from South Carolia. [Laughter.]
The SPEAKER. The gentleman from Iowa, as the Chair
understood, yielded.
Mr. LACEY. Yes, sir, I yielded. I like my friend from South
Carolina. He always looks so good-natured I can not refuse to
consent to an interruption from him.
But I will pass now from South Carolina. In selecting that
State I did not intend to make any invidious distinction as,
against any other not less ingenious localities in which similar
elec.ion laws have been invented.

I know, Mr. Speaker, that the management of elections in these
States will make no difference to the party' to which I belong.
W e have one member from South' Carolina and he is a spared
"monument of mercy." He is the sole representative of 8,000,000 people. There is no longer any excuse for these laws in the
South. My friends, you have 22,000,000 people in the Southern
States, 6,000,000 black, 16,000,000 white; I admire the courage, I
admire the brains, I admire the endurance of the Southern people
and I think too much of them to belive that the 16,000,000 whites
of the South run anjr risk of being "dominated" by the 6,000,000
of the negro race living among them. It makes no difference to
the Republican party, because the South is gone, so far as we are
The gentleman from Kentucky yesterday said he had witnessed
the breaking up of the great Democratic party at Charleston, and
he wanted to live long enough to see the Republican party go the
Same way. I hope not, because that breaking up at Charleston
was a bloody dissolution. That party pulled the ruins of the national temple down around themand involved the country in fearful calamity. The Republican party is a national party. Tho igh
gentlemen* may say it is not, it is the only national party. It is
the only party that works for the interest of every part of this
In the South, which tli eg en tie man from Kentucky spoke of yesterday so feelingly—in the South the work of the Republican
party has been shown by the very census reports that he read.
He tells us that in 1860 there were $5,000,000,000 of assessed property in the Southern States, and that in 1890 there were only
$5,500,000,000. He neglects to tell you that in 1860 the slaves
were assessed, and that item is now stricken from the assessment
roll. He ignores the vast destruction of the war. He neglects
to call your attention to the fact that within the last ten years,
from 1880 to 1890, at all times, under wise Republican laws, a
part of the time it is true administered by a Democratic President, the great Southern States have incraased their assessment
over $2,000,000,000. They have overcome the loss of their slaves;
they have overcome the destruction of their property; and Atlanta and Birmingham and many other cities of the South have
risen up under the wise and beneficent laws enacted by the Republic an party. Protection is doing its good work in the South as
well as the North, The for^e and the spindle have gone South.
I was interested in observing that a committee from the State
of Georgia—from the city of Atlanta, that queen of the Southappeared recently before the Committee on Ways and Means,
asking that dangerous committee to spare the industries of Atlanta and Birmingham. And I was interested in seeing a freetrade Democrat from the State of my own birth—the governor
of West Virginia, who was elected upon the free-trade platformcome before the Committee on Ways and Means, asking them to
spare the coal miners of West Virginia, to spare the iron industries of West Virginia, to spare the industries represented by
my friend from the Wheeling district, and to allow them to
prosper under Democratic rule as they have prospered in Republican times in the past: and his request, as I understand, was accompanied with a threat that the grand young State of West
Virginia would not silently submit to the destruction of her industries.

Mr. PENDLETON of West Virginia. May I interrupt the
Mr. LACEY. I am not attacking my friend's State, and I
must decline to yield.
Mr. PENDLETON of West Virginia. All right.
Mr. LACEY. It is my State as well as his; and I have the
right to speak of her^ When my friend from South Carolina
interrupts in regard to a matter affecting laws of his State I am
glad to yield; I would be still more glad to hear him say that he
would favor the repeal of those laws.
Now, what other localities are there where these laws are necessary? My friend from Illinois [Mr. BLACK], a gentleman who
does not represent a special district of his State, but is Congressman-at-large, tells us that the Federal law was put into
force last year in the city of Chicago, and that u Black Jack Yattaw's bum boat" was polled for inspectors and for marshals. Now,
you do not go to Democratic headquarters for Republican marshals: yet he tells us that marshals were drawn from "Black
Jack Yatta/w's," the Democratic headquarters of the lake front
Is there in the city of New York any reason for this law? Is
there in any State any reason why the law against crimes at
elections should be repealed? Is there any reason why the law as
to supervisors should be repealed so far as the city of New York
is concerned? The silver-tongued gentleman from New York
[Mr. FELLOWS], whom I do not now see in his seat—we do not
often see these ,New Yorkers, except when they come down here
to vote on a silver bill, or to vote on taking up an election bill—
the gentleman told us the other evening that if this election law
was repealed the Democratic majority of 76,000 in the city of
New York would be increased to 90,000; and I do not know but
that he rather held out the hope that it might go to a, hundred
thousand if necessary in order to overcome the vote in the districts farther north.
Mr. Speaker, this statement of the gentleman was not received with indignation on the Democratic side. This statement that if the Federal election laws punishing crimes in New
York City should be repealed, the Democratic vote in that city,
would be increased to the extent of 24,000 was not received with
a storm of hisses upon the Democratic side of the House. My
Democratic friends you can not afford to listen in silence to such
language from your own side; You have been in the minority
a long time; but you are now in power; you have a character to
preserve; you have a character to make. You represent, or
claim to represent the people of the United States; and the
things you could support in your feeble minority; the things you
could do when you were out of power, you should not think of
doing now when you are clothed with the responsibility of the
administration of the Government of 67,000,000 of freemen. You
should rise to the dignity of the great trust with which your
party has been honored. You can not afford thus openly to
espouse the cause of crime and to^efface from the statutes the
terrors of punishment which alone deter so many men from evil
doing. You can not afford to give this public notice that you
are unworthy of trust and confidence.
And, Mr. Speaker, you can not afford to repeal these laws in
order to strengthen the already too strong hand of Tammany.

Tammany is swallowing up the Democratic party. I am reminded of a campaign story of a few years ago. which was told
in my own State, that fits the case exactly. An Englishman had
gone hunting into the wilds of India, and the news came that he
had been killed and that his body was on its way home. His
friends went to the landing and took the remains—the coffinout of the vessel when it reached Liverpool, but upon opening
it they could find nothing in it except the unbalmed body of a
tiger with a bullet hole through it. They immediately telegraphed to Calcutta, "Where is George? There is nothing in
the box but a tiger." The answer came back, "George inside
tiger." [Laughter.]
And that is the situation of the Democracy of the South here
to-day. They are inside the Democratic tiger—the tiger that
was carried last March in the procession. Don't you remember
it, gentlemen, how it was carried in triumph down the avenue?
That tiger has swallowed up the Southern Democracy, and it is
now necessary to bring forward the repeal of the election laws
to bring up something new to offer to the Southern contingent
so as to get them again in line in order that the election bills
may be repealed and that the State of New York may have its
majority in the city increased by 24,000. With this addition to
their majority they can dictate to the party at all the coming
national conventions. New ^ York will then be theirs in fee,
It is no reflection upon the city of New York to say that strict
law is needed there. A city with 76,000 majority of honest voters—and let us concede them to be honest—is in no danger of
being overawed by the minority. If they have 76,000 of an actual
majority,.with the judges of election, with the judges of the court,
with the jurors drawn by the local authorities, is it likely that
the Tammany tiger will allow any of his cubs to go to Sing Sing?
Is it likely that Tammany will permit any of its voters, its repeaters, who operate on the same day in New Jersey on one side
and New York on the other, to be convicted?
But there is a wholesome fear of the Federal courts. You have
seen many cases where rioters have stopped railway trains, but
when they found that the United States mail was on board they
have withdrawn and allowed the train to proceed on its unobstructed way. Why? Simply because they feared tfye Federal
courts; because they feared the law that was administered in
justice, and in justice only, by the purest judiciary that the world
has ever seen, a judiciary elevated above and beyond all local
and political influences.
Gentlemen of the Democracy, Judge Jackson, the judge of your
own choice, nominated by President Cleveland, promoted by
President Harrison, instructed the grand jury at Memphis to
look into election frauds, and when they were brought before
him in the form of an indictment and the election officers who
were alleged to be guilty were put on trial, he instructed the
jury earnestly and fearlessly. And so the Federal judges in all
cases have done. They are removed beyond all party politics
and will enforce the law of the land. They do not hold their
offices through the favor of the prisoners in the dock.
And why should these particular laws for the punishment of
crime be repealed? They say that they are taking away the
rightful power of the States; that they are destroying confidence

in the loo il administration of governmental affairs. If there is
a reason for confidence always, is there not always some good
reason for 1 ick of canfidence? Repeal these laws, says the gentleman from Virginia, and put these men oa their honor, and we
will hive good times again. The gentleman from Kentucky
[Mr. BRECKINRIDGE] says. remove from the great cities the laws
that interfere in election—the Federal laws that protect elections, and the millenium will come. To put criminals upon
their honor is too visionary a scheme for practical legislation.
Ah, my friend, it would be simply loosing the enemy that has
been chained, to take away the last vestige of control from the
hands of the General Government in the city of New York, and
turn it over to the local society thit has its foot on all the industries of that city.
But the gentleman from Illinois t3lls us that a million and a
quarter of votes were recorded in the last election in favor of the
repeal of these laws.
Mr. BLACK of Illinois. I said a million and a quarter majority.
Mr. LACEY. A million and a quarter majority. That the
Populists of the South voted with the Democracy of the South for
the repeal of thase st it ates. I call the attention of the gentleman
to the fact that the Chicago platform did not pledge the party to
their repeal. Nothing of the kiniL There was denunciation of
the force bill, but you did not dare to write in your platform the
proposition that you would repeal the laws for the punishment
of bribery at elections.
I imagine the platform of your pirty, written as it ought to
be in order to sustain the action of this House, would recite
something like this: That we. the Democratic party, in convention assembled, denounce all laws, all Federal laws, that provide for the parity of elections as uncon stitutional and void. W e
favor the repeal of every law that prevents any man from stuffing the ballot box. We favor the repeal of every law which prevents any man Irom repeating his vote, from accepting a bribe
at elections, or from giving a bribe."
Cou'.d you have gone to the people on such a platform as that?
On the contrary, you simply went on to denounce the Lodge
bill, the great, voluminous document that you could, hold up
before an audience and could say anything" was in it that you
wished to. Nobody could contradict it, because they would not
have an opportunity to examine it. My friend from Massachusetts made the mistake of making a bill of one hundred and some
odd pages, which any man could get up and hold in his hand,
while making a speech, and shakfc it before the audience anl say
th it anything he chose was in it, and nobody was able to tell the
No one had time to go through its details and find out how
false the charges were against that bill. But you would not
have dared to go before the American pe 3p!e and say j^ou wanted
to repeal the laws that sent Sim Coy to the penitentiary. You
would not h ive d.ired to go before the American people and say
you wanted to repeil the laws which punished these offenses by
prosecution in the Federal courts.
No v, Mr. Speaker, I am admonished that my t'me is drawing
to a close. Let me say that, as far as the Republican party is
concerned, the administration of this law for the next four years

is to be in the hands of the Democracy. We would rather trust
them nationally than trust them locally.* We all recognize the
fact that there are plague spots in this country. The chaplain
in the earljr part of the present ssssion prayed for relief against
the great cities and asked the Almighty to purify them. The
gentleman from Kentucky [Mr. BRECKINRIDGE] yesterday told
us that the right way to purify them was to withdraw from
them the protection of Federal legislation. The chaplain also
prayed for help from on high to prevent our young'farmarsfrom
going to the great city of New York. He was afraid it would
spoil the farmers. It no doubt does spoil many of them, bat it is
the salvation of New York.
Now, if I remember right, it was the proud boast of the present governor of New York that he had a stone bruise on his
heel when he went down to the city of New York, a young lad
from the country, and started his life in that city. It is this
honest yeomanry from the-country that purifies and upholds a city. Were it not for the recruits that come from such a
source the sinks of iniquity from which these vast majorities
are drawn, in which these repeaters are housed, would become
almost uninhabit ib]e. And when you take away from those
localities the wholesome fear of some po-ver that they can not
control at the next caucus, some power that they can not control
at the next election, you take away from them th3 only protection that there is to an honest billot in the great cities.
And Chicago is rapidly coming forward to a position where
the same condition of things Will be seen as is seen in New York.
'When the telegraph wire-sends out the news that the majority
below the Harlem River is so much, then we begin to count how
many of the honest yeomanry in the back districts will be disfranchised by the votes of the Baxter street repeaters. In the
future I look forward with trepidation to the condition of my
friend's city of Chicago. The word will come that above the
Calumet River the majority is so much, and it will take so much
south of the river and elsewhere in the State of Illinois to
change the result. That condition o! things is coming, because
when you crowd people together in a great city crime stalks
abroad; and it is no discredit to say of Chic igo that she is like
London in her wickedness as well as in her magnitude and her
enterprise. It is no discredit to the city of Chic igo to help protect her and her local authorities in the administration of the
good and wholesome laws of the State of Illinois upon the question of the purity of elections.
Mr. BLACK of Illinois. Will the gentleman allow me to interrupt h im? Does not the gentiem an honestl y belie ve that if the
city of Chicago can conduct a clean election without outside help,
she should be allowed to do so?
Mr. LACEY. Why, certainly; there is no doubt about that.
Mr. BLACK of Illinois. That is all.
Mr. LACEY. But, my friend, if she is trying to conduct an
honest election, if her policemen are trying to enforce the laws,
it will not hurt them to have a little outside help.
Mr. BLACK of Illinois. I beg to say to the gentleman in reply to that suggestion that she not only is trying to do it, but is
succeeding so well that there was but one contest instituted within
her borders, and that was institutsdbe'ore the tribunal appointed
by the State laws and satisfactorily adjusted.

Mr* LACEY. My friend forgets that the great metropolis of
the West has had her new-born honors lately thrust upon her.
She has lately become the Columbian city, and she is filled with
the people who have come in from the surrounding co intry and
from the small towns. She has not yet come to such a condition and she has not yet such a class of population as will ultimately congest in her worst quarters. She has enough of them,
God knows; but the number will be increased, and it is a matter
o! the gravest moment to look upon the increase of crime and of
tha criminal classes in the cities. My friend forgets the Haym irket missacre. He forgets that Chicago is at least a good
second to.the city of New York in crime, as she is perhaps a good
first in enterprise.
Mr. BLACK of Illinois. Will the gentleman yield for one moment further? Doe3 the gentleman not remember that the offenses of which he spoke were taken cognizance of by the State
Mr. LACEY. Yes, and a Democratic governor pardoned the
men after they were convicted. [Applause on the Republican
side.] That was one of the results of last fall's election.
Mr. CANNON of Illinois. Will my friend allow me right at
this point to say
The SPEAKER pro tempore (Mr. MALLORY in the chair).
The time of the gentleman has expired.
Mr. LACEY. My time has expired?
Mr. BLACK of Illinois. If the gentleman desires a few moments longer, considering the interruptions he has had, I think
he ought to have them.
Mr. LACEY. I would like to have a little more time. I
would like to have five minutes.
Mr. BLACK of Illinois. I ask unanimous consent that the
gentleman's time be extended five minutes.
There was no objection.
Mr..LACEY. Now, gentlemen
Mr. CANNON of Illinois. I dislike to trespass on my friend
from Iowa, but I desire to call attention to the fact that in 18S6,
at a general election at which mambers of Congress were elected,
a Democratic leader, with other Democratic leaders (and I have
in my mind Mr. Mackin, in the city of Chicago), abstracted ballots from the ballot box. put in other ballots in their places,
committed perjury and forgery, and undar the operation of these
Federal election laws detection was had and that crime was rend3red futile, and one of the men who was sought to ba thus
elected did not take his place in the senate of the State of Illinois, and upon the vote of the senator from that district turned
the election of a United States Senator, and in consequence of
such detection that Democratic leader, Mr. Mackin, was indict 3d, tried, and sent to the penitentiary. [Applause on the Republican side.]
Mr. HENDERSON of Iowa. By whom?
Mr. D O C K E R Y (to Mr. C A N N O N of Illinois). Answer that
" Mr. LACEY. That was done by the judges of his own political faith.
Mr. BLACK of Illinois. Will the gentleman allow me now?
Mr. LACEY. I have only a few minutes left.
Mr. BLACK of Illinois. I got you the five minutes.

Mr. KYLE. We will give you more time.
Mr. BLACK of Illinois. Yield me half a minute.
Mr. LACEY. Very well.
Mr. B L A C K of Illinois. The person referred to in the interruption by the gentleman from Illinois [Mr. CANNON] was convicted and sentenced to the State penitenti iry by State authorities, and every contest there was properly corrected and determined by the State authorities, and all the punishment was
inflicted under St ite law by State authorities.
Mr. GOLDZIER And by a Democratic judge.
Mr. LACEY. The fact that State laws are invoked, and successfully invoked, does not militate against the proposition that
there shoald be laws that can be enforcad in these localities that
are beyond the law, above the law, or below it.
Now, Mr. Speaker, in conclusion, let me say that if this countryteGovernment is ever o /erthrown, if our-liberties are ever
lost, they will be lost by the corruption of the great cities. The
wicked people are numerous enough, they have power enough
•already. Take away the restraining laws an I let each scoundrel
m.ignify himself to a do^en or more by casting as many votes as
he pleases and genuine elections will cease and the nation will be
ready for its overthro w. Oar liberties; if lost, will b3 lost by
fraudulent repeating, fraudulent voting in the city of New York
and other great cities; and it is to the interest of every man who
loves his country to sustain these laws that protect the purity of
the ballot boxes in those cities. So far as Republicans are concerned that is all that affects them. They want fair elections in
those localities; and there is no pretense that these laws can prevent fair elections from being held.
W e not only want fair elections, but we want an honest count;
and you, gentlemen of the Democratic party, whsn you come to
pass this bill, when you who were elected upon an issue of u antiforce bill" come to pass a bill wiping from the stitute books all
punishments of crime against elections, you will be confronted
with a proposition that will be an ugly one to meet on th 3 stump.
You will have to vote " a y e " or "nay " upon e ich of the amendments as to whether you'will sustain bribery, intimidation, repeating, or any of the offenses that are mad a punishable by e ich
section of the Federal law th it you seek to repeal.
Your committee has gone too far. Tamm my has taken control
of your committee; and whilst in the South all that you want is
to get rid of the Federal supervisors, in the great city of New
York all they want is to get rid of the punishment of crime.
They want»to take away that restriction which prevents a man
from going from ward to ward to vote, voting early and often,
coming out of a house where there are 300 families in a single
building and going at night across to Jersey City and escape all
punishment. They want to have the laws that prevent this repealed. If they are in favor of honest elections why not let at
least this part of the laws remain upon the statute books, • Why
not, gentlemen of the Democratic party, vote at least that way
upon the question of the amendments that will strike out from
the bill the sections to which I have referred?
I thank the House for the courtesy of extending my time.
[Loud applause on the Republican side.]