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which the Constitution establishes, to the examination of the annual budget, so important in relation to all the branches of the public service.

The international relations which Mexico cultivates are happily preserved in the greatest harmony. Conducting itself in everything with equity, the Government will take care to maintain and extend these relations in a spirit of cordial good-will.

In conformity with the Convention of the 4th of July, 1868,* the Mixed Commission established in Washington has finished its labours. Their final result cannot as yet be known, as the Commission having disagreed in many cases, it has been necessary to submit their opinions to the decision of the arbiter, whose duties will terminate next June.

In internal affairs there is to be lamented the fact that the public peace in certain localities has been disturbed. This occurred just when it was possible to assure the public that the bands existing in Michoacan for a year past were destroyed to such an extent that' the events in other places have not been sufficient up to the present time to revive them.

With some exceptions, the same persons who have already taken part in various other disturbances of the public order figure among the revolutionists. Neither laws of amnesty for past acts, nor the full enjoyment of social rights and guarantees, nor even the kindness with which they have frequently been treated, have been sufficient to restrain them from seeking to place themselves above the laws.

The Government has not only a strict duty to perform in combating the rebellion under all circumstances, but it has also a firm conviction that the time has passed in which those who appealed to the force of arms could prevail, a conviction in favour of respecting the laws being now general, as also the good disposition of the labouring and respectable citizens, who know how to appreciate the benefits of peace obtained through the enjoyment of a just liberty. With the efficient aid of the representatives of the people and the co-operation of the State authorities, it will be possible in a short time to repress the recent disturbances, as has been lately done in certain. places, by the discipline, the valour, and loyalty of the national army, which has given so many proofs of its republican virtues.

The Executive has demonstrated his desire to use as little as possible the power which Congress thought proper to concede to him. In regard to supplying men for the army, far from its increase, he resolved upon its diminution, and had commenced to carry it into effect when the insurrection of the Sierra of Oaxaca occurred, which was developed from incidental causes. In respect to public expenses,

* Vol. LXI. Page 95.

notwithstanding their considerable increase in order to combat the revolutionists of Michoacan during one year, by means of strict ecomony the idea of new contributions was not entertained until circumstances made the imposition of a tax inevitable, which it was sought to make just in its basis, and in the manner of collecting it.

In spite of the obstacles occasioned by circumstances, improvements of public interest already commenced have been carried on as far as said obstacles would permit. Care has likewise been taken to give attention as far as possible to the different branches of the public service.

The constant conduct of the Government has been well known, protecting the exercise of every liberty and respecting all opinions. It can be affirmed that the emission of ideas, especially by the press, has never had greater freedom. With the firm purpose of complying with the laws, and of causing them to be obeyed, the Government will omit no means whatever which may have for their object the protection of the liberty of the people in the legitimate exercise of all their rights.

It is very pleasant to see the National Congress assembled anew, which, animated as ever by patriotism, will endeavour to act in its deliberations with the most exalted intelligence for the public good. [SEBASTIAN LERDO DE TEJADA.]

SPEECH of the President of Mexico, on the Opening of Congress.-Mexico, September 16, 1876.



IN compliance with a constitutional precept, to-day, the anniver sary of our Independence, you may inaugurate the third term of your ordinary session.

This event, which under all circumstances has a special signi ficance, is at present of greater importance, because it reveals the power of our institutions over armed rebeliion, strengthening the conviction that the nation will know how to surmount all obstacles that may be opposed to her progress and well-being, without doubts for the present and without fears for the future.

Our relations with the friendly foreign Powers have continued in the greatest harmony, it being a source of satisfaction that they are maintained and each day strengthened, cultivated as they are in a spirit of justice and cordial good-will.

On the termination in January of this year of the labours of the Mixed Commission, created in Washington by the Convention of the 4th of July, 1868,* numerous claims remained pending, which, on Vol. LXI, Page 95.

account of the disagreement of the Commissioners, were remitted to the arbiter for his decision. As the stipulated time for the latter was relatively short, it was indispensable to agree to a prolongation, which was adjusted in April and will terminate next November.

Although as yet it is impossible to know the full result of the decisions of the Commission and the arbiter, it can be stated that of the enormous sum of 550,000,000 dollars claimed of Mexico, the hundredth part will not be recognized.

It is pleasing to be able to manifest to Congress that our modest representation in the Exhibition of Philadelphia has been duly appreciated, surpassing what might have been expected owing to the difficulties of our situation. If Mexico has not sent to the Exhibition all that we might have desired, nor that which under ordinary circumstances could have been sent, at least there have been presented in it a few of the evidences of our social advancement, of our industry, and of our valuable natural products, thus stimulating the greater development of our export commerce, of our agriculture, and of our national industry.

The inability to state on this important occasion, as in former epochs, that peace is assured throughout the whole extent of the Republic, is to be regretted. Nevertheless, some consolation for so great a calamity is found in being able to inform Congress that all guarantees have been respected, that the most absolute liberty has existed in every sense without limit, and that the repressive laws, notwithstanding the dangers of the situation, have not been practically applied, except in very rare cases and with full justice.

The disastrous consequences of civil war, so sad for society, the forces of which are completely enervated, and so injurious to the public administration, whose elements and resources, at all times insufficient, are diminished in a great measure by the disturbance of order at the same time that its necessities are multiplied, are to be deplored.

The financial question has at all times been one of those which has most seriously occupied the attention of the Administration. Although it was far from being resolved in former years by a series of administrative measures and with the aid of Congress, a positive advance leading to the important object of regulating the expenses of the Administration, equalizing the receipts and disbursements, had been secured.

These hopes have been postponed by the rebellion, as has been the accomplishment of many internal improvements. Nevertheless, the efforts of the Executive to preserve some works of public utility and to continue as far as possible others, are well known. The telegraph-lines that extend over the territory of the Republic, and which are as useful for the administrative service as necessary to

commerce and all social relations, have been unler constant repair in some places, and completely replaced in others.

During the times of trial for the Mexican nation the qualities of her sons are elevated. Acknowledgment is due to the valour, discipline, and civic virtues of the army, which with abnegation and patriotism, struggling with discomforts of the season, and at times without the necessary elements, has loyally complied with its duty, holding high the banner of our republican institutions, and making a true religion of the respect which all of us owe to the law. It has been seconded in this noble task by the corps of the rural police, with a constancy, activity, and valour indeed laudable.

Our revenue-cutters, although insufficient on account of their limited number, have commenced to render efficient service. Small, indeed, is the sum invested in them, considering the frequent and serious damages that revolts usually cause in some of our ports, and which those vessels have contributed to prevent; having been also employed in the transportation of troops and elements of war, as well as in several military operations, which, by their co-operation, have been crowned with success.

The present rebellion is the same that has been combated and conquered in former years. The foreign intervention having been defeated and the Republic restored, our institutions remained assured, with all the principles established with them. Since then the cause of the disturbers has been simply that of satisfying personal ambitions; at times without mask, and at others disguised in the garments of the Constitution, they have been for eight years trying to destroy it, breaking every social tie, trampling upon all legitimate interests, and perpetrating offences that can never be justified in the eyes of the civilized world, not even by the necessities of the time.

Fortunately the nation, that loves the institutions she has created, and that relies on them to assure her future, will know how to preserve them without a stain. The present rebellion has been successfully combated-it being impossible to doubt its termination-by the general good disposition of the people, who condemn it. The Executive being guided by these sentiments, and relying on the cooperation of all good Mexicans, will continue to make every effort to insure a solid and permanent peace,

It is very satisfactory that you again unite, Citizen Deputies and Senators, for the purpose of resolving upon, with your patriotic zeal and enlightened legislation, whatever may be necessary for the welfare and prosperity of the Republic.


MEXICAN DECREE, amending the Constitution of the Republic.-Mexico, November 6, 1874.


SEBASTIAN LERDO DE TEJADA, Constitutional President of the United Mexican States, to all their inhabitants greeting:

Know ye that the Congress of the Union has decreed the following:

The Congress of the Union, in the exercise of the faculty which Article 127 of the Federal Constitution grants to it, declares that the amendments which are hereafter expressed are approved by a majority of the Legislatures of the States, and are a part of the said Constitution. These amendments shall take effect on the 16th of September of the year 1875.


Section First.-Of the Legislative Power.

51. The legislative power of the nation is invested in a general Congress, which shall consist of two Chambers-one of the Deputies, the other of the Senators.

Paragraph I.-Of the Election and Installation of Congress.

52. The Chamber of Deputies shall be composed of representatives of the nation, elected, in their totality, every two years by the Mexican citizens.

57. The duties of Deputy and Senator are incompatible with any commission or employment whatever of the Union for which a salary is received.

58. The Deputies and Senators proper, from the day of their election up to the day in which their trust is concluded, cannot accept any commission or employment by appointment of the Federal Executive, for which salary is received, without the previous licence of their respective Chamber. The same requisite is necessary for Deputy and Senator substitutes, when in the exercise of their functions.

(A.) The Senate shall be composed of two Senators for each State, and two for the Federal district. The election of Senators shall be indirect in the first grade. The Legislature of each State shall declare elected whoever shall have obtained an absolute majority of the votes cast, or it shall elect from those who shall have obtained a relative majority in the manner which the electoral law prescribes. For each Senator proper there shall be elected a substitute.

(B.) One-half of the Senate shall be renewed every two years. The Senators appointed in the second class shall vacate their seats at

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