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The Florida Theft

The Florida Theft image
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Following is a brief and complete sumu.tty ff tli testimony taken in Florida by the Potter sllb-CbíwftiíWee The witnessci examined werc of tato McLin.ex-member of the Hstnrning Boai'd ; lio tln'co oflicdrs of Baker county who made a alte canvass; Edward Clark, of Leon county, ono of tbo oanvaseing )oard, who countcd n Boventy-four fraudtllent votos of Leon otmtyi Cox, Ulerk of Jiakcr iSouuty, and tuuth, one of the iliPpËct'lrs in preeinüt No. 19, Ijeoii éounty. Thete itnesnes ttere all Hopublil'ans; and principal ftctora iii tho Ifaddi that tlUminated in declariüg the State of Florida for Mr. Hajes. McLin, the most ïrilpo'rtarit iitiifciS) MiBWflea thiit thn statement herttoföre made b+ nim and püblldiofl was true, and thon preeeedèd to íaíráte in detail the factí thrtt cajistituted the 'rauds uy which the State wm tafeen frortt Mr; Tilden, and tbo record made to show tPatth'e State was carncd by Hayes. McLin's testimony show eonclusive'y that he, at the time ie aided in declaring the resuit of the can vaos of tho Returning Board, was aware of the frauds committed ir. I5akcr oounty, and also of aallot-box stuffing in Leoncounty, aft'' tht the Baker county frand was the result of a cónspiracy origii'iatfid and cariied out by the Collector of Cus'oms at Fernandina, Qov. Stearns, and others, whose interest ït wis to stoal the 3tato from the üemocrats. BIcLin testitiei thftt Stearus saw all of the returns of the different parta of tho State, and taid to wituess that the fraudulcnt return froin Baker oounty was read and used at tho first opening and reading of returns, at the commencement of the labora of the board: that Stearns also told him that by the use of the frauduleut Bakc r county returu the State went tfi Ilayes. Iu the case of ballot-box stuïïinii in L'jon county, McLn fcwore that ho knew of the printiug of a diminutivo ballot on olection day, for the purpose of stumng ballot-boxea. McTjin alo testifica that Noyes was the leader of tuo visitiug statesmen, and that it was distiECtly reprcented to him (the witnees) that Noyes repreaented Mr. Hayes, and that it was promivcd throush Mr. Nojea that he (the wituess) would bo rewarded'if the Etate was counted for Havcs. In coafirmatiou of this statement McLin taid Noyea called npon him justupon the eve of nis leaving Taüahasiee, thaukinghim for hi labor on the Retnrotng Board: tb.t Afterword he wiote to Mr. Noyes, and rtcoived a reply frt m him stating that he was ao wcll pleated with MeLm'd letter that he had indoreed it and teut ittoMr. Hayev; that shoitlyaftcrward witness reetivc-d ft tfilepram, sent by order of Hayes, tenderitig him tho appointment of Associate JiiBtice of New Mexico. McLin test fied that Boon afterward he rosponded to the telegram bysaying he wou'd accept the poiiition, and hia appointinfnt carne. McLin confesaes tn havitig r. ceived the fraudulent Baker county reti.rns in an irrpgi!ar and ille gal way, by receiving it at the hand of Qov. Stearns inntoad of by rnail, as required by la-.v. McLia f urther testified that Noyes acled as attoruey be'orc the Eoturiiing Board in defenee of the Alachua county frauás, knn-n aa Archer Precinct No. 2, whero the precinct return was forged by adiïiug 219 uamea to it. Ho was alo present at the time of the opening and reading of the returns of the State bef ore the Betnrning Board, at the commencement of its proceedings, when the true return from Baker county, which would make Mr. Tilden s majority ninety-five in the Htate, was suppressed, and tho fraudulent return from that county counted, which gave the Stato to Hayos by forty-three niajority. Tho testimony also developed the fact tha't in Baker county three witneases- Driggers, Allen and Green- formed a canvasing board of their own, made a cauvass of the vote of that county by üirowing out two precincts without law or reaaon, and, as sworn to by themsfclves, for the parpose of giving the county to tho Republicana, and, as it afterwaril turucd out, the State to Mr. Hayea. They testify, in substance, that Groen was appointed a Justice of the Peace for the express purpoae of gotting a cinva8S that should rid the Dtmocrats of their majority in that oounty. All three of these witnosses give detailed cori'obcrattve statements of the manner in which the wrong waB consummated. John Slierman's Defeiise. We fiiid in some of the Western joarnals a Washington telegram, accoiding to which Secretary Sherman promises that he will prove James E. Auderson to be a liar and a cheat. Thus Mr. Sherman proposes, as we are told, to meet the case made against him on the first diiy of the Potter comroittee's investigaticn. We suggest to Mr. Sherman that such a line of defense must prove entirely inadequate. It will be in vain for him to impeach the character or credibility of Anderson. All evidence on that subject will be irrelevant to Mr. Sherman's case. Proving Anderson to be the worst mau in the world will not in the least diminÍ8h the force of the evidence iutroduced on the first day of the investigation. Tliat evidence fully establiiilies the charge against Mr. Sherman; and the witness lrom whom it proceeds is no other than John Sherman himseii. The first part of this evidence is tho followiug letter, beariug Mr. Sherman's siguature : New Oeleans, Nov. 20, 187C. Gentlemen : Your noto of even dato h&s just been rectived. Neitber Mr. Iiayes, myself, the gentlemen who acsompany me or tho country at large eau ever forget the obligationa undor which yon will have placed ub, should yon stand flim in the poaition you have taken. From a long and iutimatc acquaintancc with Gov. Hayus, I ain jiistifiedin sssuming repponsibility for promisos mado, and will guarautee that you shall be providod for as ton uftiT the 4th of Marcli as may be practicable, and iu such marnier 48 wül enable you both to leavo Louiaiana shouM you doem it necessary. Vory truly yours, John Siikrman. Mr. t. A. Weber and Janies E. Anderson. Mr. Sherman appeared before Mr. Potter's committee to testify respecting this letter. He was sworn, the letter was put into his hands, and he was interrogated abont it. To the question whether ho ever wrote such a letter, he replied by dcclining to swear that he had never written it. He deelined to say that there was anything iu it that he could not have written ; but lie avowed that " there aro things iu this letter that I would have written." While hc thus refused to deny positively Ihut he had written it, his verbiago and elabórate phrases involvel au ndmission that the lotter was really his ; and this is the jndgment of all fair-minded people, Kepublicuns as well as others. Now, this is the testimony ihat cstablislies tho case against Mr. Sherman. It is made up of his own statement undcr oath, equivalent to a confession that this letter is really his, and oí tho letter itself proposing to Weber and Anderson tb at they should not exposé the false cliaraoter of certain fraudulent documents. which document were indispensable to the counting iu of Eutherford B. Hayes as President of the Uni ted States. Such is the evidence, procceding from himnclf, which Mr. Sherman has to confront, and no charges or proof in regard to other subjects, brought agitinst James E. Anderson or any other individual, can afteet this evidence one jot or tittle. This letter, with Mr. Shernian's sworn statement coneerning it. settles kke fact that he was ooooMbod in a conspiracy to make liutherford B. Hayes President, when Samuel J. Tilden had been elected ; and (bat with a view of cousummating tbütfonspirncy h promised to the agents whom he. used that, through appoiutments Ui office, or through other meahs within the power of tho Federal a1ministratiou, they sliould be rewa-ded fortheir services by being " provided for as soon after the 4th of March as maybe practicable, and in such manner aa will en.iblo you both to leave Louisiana should you deern it necessary. " liy no afterthought and by no tlevice of his fertile cunning eau Mr. Shermau overthrow tliia evidenco given by himselt". - New York Sun. ilayes IVrsonally Involvcd. We were bitterly disappointed wtieu Socretary Sherman did not deny writing the alleged letter, as we had reason to expeét he wonld. And, while we have not the remotcst ticught that President Hayes has been involved in such matters, he ought to know that the persistent and nbundnnt favor he has shown to min wliowiTi' oonepicuous in the doubtful politienl transaotions of 187G hfta lowerf d him in tho general esteem, and robbed him of the respect and confidence of the best men in tho country. He has deliberately and ontinually i QacA tfee Federal patronage to reward aííd honor UK the whole oonntry knowa to bc disrepntable; hom he knows, iu couSJSfn #ith e+erybody else, to be tainted witii the lisgracefnl maladministration in the Soutlierü States; whom he could not have thought of appointing or retiiining iu office if he had sought porSödb erf nublemiehed character and reputatiOÜ, fflid to -ffhom ererybody sees he extends bis taVftt fof no other reason than that they helpüd, by dubious means, to raise him to t'.-.e Preuidency. Orant that Messrs. Noyes, Stoughton and KaeHon were proper objects of Preeideiitíal furor; eurely the same thing cannot be aíd of Kellogg, whoin Mf, flayes' fritmde allowed to get flnother fflttn'i scat in the Senato ; or of Patikard, Tïhom lie bas maile CoksuI to Liverpool ) or of Madíson Wells, whom lie has retaíu&í in office at New Orleans ; or of Andersöü, whom he has made virtual Ooilector of tiist port ; or af Vhton, whom he made Marshal of Louisiana ; öf f Stearns, whom he made Commissioner to the Hat Springs ; or of McLin, whom he made Jndge in New Mexico ; or of Cowgill, whom he made Marshal in Florida ; or of Qeorge L. Smith, tfhoiSi he made Collector of New Orloaus, becatise he Was the friend of Anderson and was ttlsfactory to Madison Wells ; or of Hngh Oatnpbell, whom he made Attorney of a Western Territory; or of Marks, a Louisiaua elector, who was made Collector of Internal Revenue at the same time that he was subpoaaaed by Kepublicans to testify before the Potter committee; or of Govin, concerned in doubtful election matters in Florida, whom he made Consul; or of a multitude of other men, petty politicians of damaged reputations in Louisiana and Florida, who are stufled into Custom Houses and Washington bureaus, so that every step in the Potter inquriy turns up some new man of the ili omened crowd who has been " taken care of." If he had been consoious of the frauds which are now eomiag to light, he couid hardly have more zealously "taken care of " the persons concerned in them. The forgery of electoral certificates and the other dirty and disgusting crimes of reckles8 carpet-baggers Uo not seriously affect the good name of the country. But when men intimately assoeiated with the authors of these crimes, their partners and alliea, are persistently rewarded by the President, the people have a right to be offended and indignant.- Nttv York Herald, Independent. The President's Title- Wen. Butler's Argument. Gen. Butler, as an individual member of the Judiciary Committee, submitted at great ieDgth to the House of Representatives, just before ndjournnaent, his reaons for dissenting from the resolu tion and report of the majority in regard to the inviolability of the President's title. üe thinks it remarkable that, in the face of fhe sixth section of the act establisning the Electoral Cornmission, the committee shonld have come to the conclusión that the proeeedings of a committee or of Congres.5 subsequent thereto constitute an immovablefinality, when the law itself declares the contrary, and tb e ooutrary was emphatically assnred by the House of Eepresentatives. Instead of constituting a finality these proceedings were on their face and in exprese terms merely n temporary expediency or device to avoid the contingency of a lapsed election for which the constitution had made no provisión. Congress, he says, by expresa words oí the law declared that its object and effect were provisional only. The President entered upon his office with the express notice that his tenure was questionablc in character, of doubtfnl vaJidity, net made absolute by the iaterposition of an extracoustitutional comniifition, but to be examined and adjndicated upon by the courts. Ho agrees witn the committee that Conpress has no power, under the constitution, to eonfer upon the Supreme Court of the United States the original jnrisdiction sought for it in the BlairKimmel bil), but ho says : " ïhe question at isaue is whether the actual President of the United States has a jast and legal title to tho offiso he hoids. A contettalion upon that questiou, if it were jiossible to be had before a court, would i make a 'case,' whioh may well enough be defined to be a controversy betweon contending partios under the forms of law bof ore u court."


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