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those proposed by Mr. RANDOLPH, was taken up,

viz. that the rights of suffrage in the National Legislature ought to be proportioned to the quotas of contribution, or to the number of free inhabitants, as the one or the other rule may seem best in different cases."

Mr. Madison, observing that the words,“ or to the number of free inhabitants," might occasion debates which would divert the Committee from the general question whether the principle of representation should be changed, moved that they might be struck out.

Mr. KING observed, that the quotas of contribution, which would alone remain as the measure of representation, would not answer; because, waiving every other view of the matter, the revenue might hereafter be so collected by the General Government that the suns respectively drawn from the States would not appear, and would besides be continually varying.

Mr. Madison admitted the propriety of the observation, and that some better rule ought to be found.

Colonel HAMILTON moved to alter the resolution so as to read, “ that the rights of suffrage in the National Legislature ought to be proportioned to the number of free inhabitants." Mr. SPAIGHT seconded the motion.

It was then moved that the resolution be postponed; which was agreed to.

Mr. RANDOLPH and Mr. MADISON then moved the following resolution : "that the rights of suffrage in the National Legislature ought to be proportioned.”

It was moved and seconded to amend it by adding, “ and not according to the present system;" which was agreed to.

It was then moved and seconded to alter the resolution so as to read, “ that the rights of suffrage in the National Legislature ought not to be according to the present system.”

It was then moved and seconded to postpone the resolution moved by Mr. RANDOLPH and Mr. Madison; which being agreed to,

Mr. Madison moved, in order to get over the difficulties, the following resolution: "that the equality of suffrage established by the Articles of Confederation ought not to prevail in the National Legislature; and that an equitable ratio of representation ought to be substituted.” This was seconded by Mr. Gouverneur Morris, and, being generally relished, would have been agreed to; when

Mr. Read moved, that the whole clause relating to the point of representation be postponed; reminding the Committee that the Deputies from Delaware were restrained by their commission from assenting to any change of the rule of suffrage, and in case such a change should be fixed on, it might become their duty to retire from the Convention.

Mr. GOUVERNEUR Morris observed, that the valuable assistance of those members could not be lost without real concern; and that so early a proof of discord in the Convention, as the secession of a State, would add much to the regret; that the change proposed was, however, so fundamental an article in a national government, that it could not be dispensed with

Mr. Madison observed, that, whatever reason might have existed for the equality of suffrage when the Union was a federal one among sovereign States, it must cease when a national governinent should be put into the place. In the former case, the acts of Congress depended so much for their efficacy on the co-operation of the States, that these had a weight, both within and without Congress, nearly in proportion to their extent and importance. In the latter case, as the acts of the General Government would take effect without the intervention of the State Legislatures, a vote from a small State would have the same efficacy and importance as a vote from a large one, and there was the same reason for different numbers of representatives from different States, as from counties of different extents within particular States. He suggested as an expedient for at once taking the sense of the members on this point, and saving the Delaware Deputies from embarrassment, that the question should be taken in Committee, and the clause, on report to the House, be postponed without a question there. This, however, did not appear to satisfy Mr. Read.

By several it was observed, that no just construction of the act of Delaware could require or justify a secession of her Deputies, even if the resolution were to be carried through the House as well as the Committee. It was finally agreed, however, that the clause should be postponed; it being understood that, in the event, the proposed change of representation would certainly be agreed to, no objection or difficulty being started from any other quarter than from Delaware.

The motion of Mr. Read to postpone being agreed to,

The Committee then rose; the Chairman reported progress; and the House, having resolved to resume the subject in Committee to-morrow,

Adjourned to ten o'clock.

THURSDAY, May 31st.


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WILLIAM PIERCE, from Georgia, took his seat.'

In the Committee of the Whole on Mr. RANDOLPH'S Resolutions,—The third Resolution, that the National Legislature ought to consist of two branches," was agreed to without debate, or dissent, except that of Pennsylvania, -given probably from complaisance to Doctor FRANKLIN, who was understood to be partial to a single house of legislation.

The fourth Resolution, first clause, that the members of the first branch of the National Legislature ought to be elected by the people of the several States," being taken up :

Mr. SHERMAN opposed the election by the people, insisting that it ought to be by the State Legislatures. The people, he said, immediately, should have as little to do as may be about the government. They want information, and are constantly liable to be misled.

Mr. Gerry. The evils we experience flow from the excess of democracy. The people do not want virtue, but are the dupes of pretended patriots. In Massachusetts it had been fully confirmed by experience, that they are daily misled into the most

VOL. I.--48

baneful measures and opinions, by the false reports circulated by designing men, and which no one on the spot can refute. One principal evil arises from the want of due provision for those employed in the administration of government. It would seem to be

. a maxim of democracy to starve the public servants. He mentioned the popular clamor in Massachusetts for the reduction of salaries, and the attack made on that of the Governor, though secured by the spirit of the Constitution itself. He had, he said, been too republican heretofore: he was still, however, republican; but had been taught by experience the danger of the levelling spirit.

Mr. Mason argued strongly for an election of the larger branch by the people. It was to be the grand depository of the democratic principle of the government. It was, so to speak, to be our House of Commons. It ought to know and sympathize with every part of the community; and ought therefore to be taken, not only from different parts of the whole republic, but also from different districts of the larger members of it; which had in several instances, particularly in Virginia, different interests and views arising from difference of produce, of habits, &c. &c. He admitted that we had been too democratic, but was afraid we should incautiously run into the opposite extreme. We ought to attend to the rights of every class of the people. He had often wondered at the indifference of the superior classes of society to this dictate of humanity and policy; considering, that, however affluent their circumstances, or elevated their situations, might be, the course of a few years not only might, but cer

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