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Constitutional Amendments

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At the election which is now so near at hand, the people of this state are called to vote upon two constitutional amendments. It is hoped that a full and intelligent vote may be had upon the subject, as they are both of them important. In regard to the one to pro vide a Board of County Auditors for the county of Kejit, it is one that is earnestly desired by the people of Grand Kapids, the second city of the state. The city has grown until methods different f rom the township government are absolutely neoeesary. As the people interested are practically a unit in its favor, the balance of the state should give, tliem an opportunity to manage their affair in the most advantageous manner possible. It is on!y giving them what Detroit already has, and they have surely grown to a position wortby this consideration. On the subject of the increase in salary for the Attorney General we can do no better than ,to quote froni the message of Gov. Kich in 1895. "Whi Ie the people have in the past refused to vote an increase of salaries, they would have done so cheerfully had they understood the real siïuation. 'J'he interests of the State of Michigan require that state officers should attend personally to the duties of their office. If this were done, enough would be saved in salaries paid in the depaitments to largely compénsate for the increase. It is notonly in the interest of economy, but in the interest of good government. It would be a saving of thousands of dollars to the taxpayers of Michigan, should au amendtnent be adopted giving fair compensation and requiring otlicers to give personal attention to the duties of their respective offices. The attorney-general is paid the insigniticant sum of eight hundred dollars a year as the legal adviser of all the state ofiicers, elective and ive; also railroad, insurance and various other departments, where corporations employ attorneys educated and experienced in these particular branches. It cannot help resulting in a loss to 'the state, i believe the state is losing enough to pay a reasonaUe salary to tour attor neys general, through lack of payinfí a fair compensation to one. As an illus tration of the amoiint lost in thisway on account of the small salary paid to this oflicer, in 1890 alone, the 'board of state auditors allowed for attorney fees and expenses the sum of $12,981.84. That occisions may arise when additional counsel is needed is altogether probable. But. if this provisión were adopted. the amount saved in extra counsel would pay the additional salary of the attorney general several times over, and l believe he would save the state much more by having the cases attended to promptly and propeily. The proposed atnendment this spring is diflerent than any ever submitted, inasmuch as it requives the attorney general to live at the capital during hts term ofoffi.ce, and five all of hts time and attention to the state." LAWS OF RIGHTEOUSNESS. Jn hisaddress in favor of arbitration in New York, Bishop Potter eloquently emphasized the truth that war is not the highest expression of genius, and that civilizition's greatest forces are those that in peaee and self-restraint, honor the laws of righteousness. '■We are a great people. Xo one living today can prophesy the influence of the nation represented by this assemblage, upon the civilizatiou of the future. Vvill that intluence be greater if it illustrates itself by force of arms, or by the force of character; by the genius that illustrates the triumph of mechanism in connection with the butchery of men, or royal 8elf-restrnint that holds its band and teaches the world hovv to rule itself by the law of righteousness. because it has learned by the power which it has given in its treaties of arbitration to 'honor this law and to enthrone it, as 1 pray (íod it may beour privilege to do above all the naiions of the world."' INTERNATIONAL BIMETALLISM. The rel urn of Senator Wolcott, c iiipled witli President McKinley'a ringiog utter.mces in favor of an international bimetallic conference, gives great encouragemeat to the friends of that sentiment. Senator Wolcott re ports unusual interest in this subject on the continent and even in England, and is hopeful of results. President McKinley's c'ear terse utterances on this subject leave no doubt as to bis intentions, and there is reason to believe tbat within a few weeks definite steps will be taken to bring about a conference of the leading nations, and to cause this conference to be held ing the year lb(J7.-


Old News
Ann Arbor Democrat