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Acceptance Of The Hon. J C. Breckinridge

Acceptance Of The Hon. J C. Breckinridge image
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Democratic National Gosvention, ) JBaltimork, Md., I une 23, 1860. 8ir: I nm directed by vote of tha Democratie National Conveiition to inform you that you have heen this d.iy 1 unnnimously nominated by it as lbo i candiduto of the EJemocratio party for the office of President of tho United States, and i;i thoir tiehatf to requcst you to aceopt iho noinination, I beg ; leave, ;it thf .same timo, to inc-.lose to I you a rrpy of tho rcs 1 itions? ndoptrd i by ihe ConvenMon ns the politicul . platform on vvhich the party stand. I have Ihe lionor tobe, very rcipcctfoUy, C CUSHIXO, rrcsiJint. Washington City, July C, 18G0. Dkah Siii: I have your lutter oí the '23(1 uit., by whicli I :nn offieially infonned of my nomination for the ofliee of President of the Ufiited States by tho Democratie National Convention, lately nssomblcd ut BuHiir.orc. The eircumstances of this nominaiion will juRlify me in ruStirfitig to ta personal aspect. I have not sought or dtawrud lo bo placed before tho country for iho office ot' President. When rfcy nnniu was presonted to ihe Conveution at Charleston il was withdrawn by i i'riend in ubedienee to my espreoced wishes. My views had not changed whon the Convention reassembled al Boltimoie, :ind when I heatd of tho difterences whicli occured theru my indispósition to bu connectod prominently witli the eanvass was confinrod und expresscd to many friends. WLhout discussing tho ocourrences wliioh preceded thu nofninatiomr, :md vvhich are, or soor will b:1, wel! anderütood by the country. I bav o'ily to say that I approved, as ju.-t atul neessary to the preservation ut theNuiional orgunization and the sacred r'ght ol representation, the actior. of tho Qua vention over which you cmitiiuied to preside; and thus approving it and j liaving resolved to sustain it, I Rel that I it doja not bcoinu me lo select the noditioe I huil occupy, nrir to tlnink fro:n the responsibiities of the post to which I have been BMÍgoed. Accor dingly, I accept tin nwriaation f o;n a of public dtity, and. as I iiilrik, nnintluenoed. in any dcyree, by the allurements of riinuition. I avai! myself of this occasion to say that the confidence in my personal and public charac'cr, impliod by tho action ei the Convention, will alivays be gratofully remembered, nnd it is but just ako to my own feelinga to espress my gratiliention at tho association of my name with that of my ttmoè General Lañe, a patriot and u toldHsr, whose great services in the fiold and in couneil entitle him to the grati' and coüfi dence of his countrvmen. Tho rusolution adopted by the Con vention havo my cordial upprovtt] Thcv are jast to a!l paris of the tinion, to uil our citizeus, nativo and iMltanilized, and they ío:-n a noble pü.icy lor any Admimstration. The qnestions touohing tho rights of persons and property, which have of lato been much dtcussed, find in these roDolutions a constitotional solution. Our Union i.-i a confedeacy of equal sovcreign States for tho pnrposes enumernied in tho Feden.l Conslitution. Whatevcr the common Governrnont hMs in trusi for all the Statos, rnust be crjoved equally b}: e.T.h. It control the Territorios in trust lor all the States. NothiLg less thnn sovcre;gnty can dcslroy or impair the rights of peiv-ons or property. The Territorial Governments aro subbor dinate and temporary, and not sovereign; heneo they cannot destroy or impair tho rights of persons or property. While!l:ey contiiii'e to bo Tcfritories they are under the control of Congress, but tho Onstitution nowhere confrs on nny branch of tha Federal Government the power to discrimínate ngainst the rights of the States or tho property of tbeir citizens in the Territories. It follows that the citizens of all the States rnay enter the Territories of tho Union with thtir property, of whatever kind, and enjoy it during the territorial conduion without let or hindranee. eitlier by Congress or by the subordínate Territorial Üovernments. These principies flmv dircctly from the ubsenco of Bovoreignty in the Territorial Öovernments, and fi om the equality of tho States. TnJoed they aro eseential to that equality, vvhiih ia and ever has been the vital principio of our eonstitulionnl Union. They have boen settled legislatively - set; led judicially - and are sustained by right and reason. They rest on the rock of the Constltutioa - they will preserve the Union. It is idle to atti'i;pt to emother these ,s(reat issoe, or to miiTipreseot them by tho use of partisan phrases which are misleadiug and delueive. ïhe peoplo will look bcueath stich exprassioos ns "Intervention," "Conyres tiional Slave Code," and the like, and will penétrate to the real questions involved. The friends of equality do not and Lever did demand a "Congressional Slavo Code" r.or any otter code in regard to proportv iu the Territories, They hold the doctrine of non-intervu'iition by Congress or by ;v Territoriitl Legislature cither to eatabl'sh or proliibit Sluverv; but thoy assert (fortiñod by tho highest judicial tribunal in the Union) the phiin dtity of the Federal Government Li all t departments, to secure, when necesarv, to ti;e citizens ol all the States, the enjoyment of their propei ty in the common Territories as everywherc el.-e within its jurisdiction. only logical answer to this would seetn to be to oluim fioverciirn power for the Territorio, or to deny that the Conslitution recognizes propurty in slyep, or to dery that such proporty can exist. Inexorable logic, which work i s iteady way through clondn nud ]iassion, compel.s the country to meet the issue. There is no evasivo middlc gi-fiund. Already the sigrn mul iply of n fiinatiial and growiiig party, whicli denies that tinder the Coiistitution, or by any other law, slavc pro,c:t7 c. -n exit-; nnd ultiitiatoly tho xtiuggU' must conis hetweon this pnrty and thé National Democracy, susiained by all the other conservativo elenients in the Union I think it will h-j iinp-sible for h caodid niind to discover hostility to he 1 L'uion, ui' a (;tint (-Í eectioflitlisjn iu !;o resKMiition iopfed by the Conven ü'.ii. Tlie Constituí uu u tid tho Uijíoü repose on tha Mjflulity oí the States, wnich lius !:ku a broa d foundation undarneath erar whU politica! itructiim. Ai I coiistrne tliein tho resolulitUM .-ir)] us.-ert tilín equality. 'Vi.ey duinnnd nothing 6w anv State orsection thüt la tmt clteerfully cunoeded t ;ill tlie lt is rail to refnethK'f ih:;t the L:Lf Lordcra which huvti nfl'u-tt' il uur ooiihíry havo pmwn out oí lliu viuhainn of tíínte quality, nnd íhat ua lougn tbin fcreat principio has beoo u.-pectod we iiave been blessed vi!i) hüiiKony uncí peace. Nor wilt it b oiisy to persuado the country that rosolutions nre sectiontl which i'.onrnnund the support ol n mnjnrity of t!iu States and are ipproved bv th bone and body of the old DemocVnoy, and by u Viist limsa of eonservativu opinión everywhen, without regurd to par. It has been neccssnry moro thnii once in our history to pauso and solermily assert the truo chnrncter of this Opvermnent. A memorables instatire occurred in the Btruggfe wMefc ended in the civil revolutiou of 1800. The llepublii:ans of that d:iy, liko iho Democracy üf tliia, ware wtigmatizcd as', Uut they nobly oendue ted tbo con'avst undor the Constitution, nul sitvt'd our political system. Bv u Lkif coü.slituuoDn! struyslu. it s intcnded now to assert and sstnLüah tbo eqnulity of the States, aa the only basi-s of union nnd When tLís obj.'c, so nntional, so constitutiotinl. ar just, huil bo aecorr.pH.-hed, üio jast cloud ffiül disappeurfro the Amcricnu sky, nnd witli comm,,;, !1:Uj.iö and hwrti thu S-.aicsand ihu pon o will unito tdevelupe t'.io resomcus of thu wholurjiitry, t bind it tngetUer wi:h tho boncls of intw-oourse and brotln;rhoo]„ and toimpeüt onwjuj in is great esruor. Thu CoOititutiiu] and the Eqntityof tho States! These are syiuM oi tsvjBi-Ustiflg Union. Let these b the rullyinw cries of tb e peoplu. I trust that this canvass ii bc condiicted without rancor, and that twnu orato iiryiiments take thu place uf bot words and passionato accutati ns. bove all, I venture hmnblv to hopo that Divino Providcnce, to" whom wo uwu our oriiü,our ginvth nnd all uur properity, will continue to protct outbfloved country aainsr. ail dunger, turoiga and douiestiu. I ain witli great reepeut, yotir frienff, JOHN 0. BRECKÏNEIDU K. lo the lion. 0. Cusm.vo, Pre.-iidunt of Ihu DtiiK)cmtie National CoOTtn, lioi).