« PreviousContinue »
THE PRESIDENT'S REASONS FOR REMOVING THE PUBLIC DEPOSITS.
consequences of blind fanaticism to the honest Germans a favorable decision upon its pretensions. Those whom who left Rapp's Society, and followed Count Leon with the Bank appears to have made its debtors for the spe. a view of bettering their condition. It affords an in- cial occasion, were warned of the ruin which awaited structive lesson, not to these Gerinans alone, but to all them, should the President be sustained, and attempts who place implicit confidence in fanatic leaders, who were made to alarm the whole people by painting the live on the credulity of an honest, but too confiding depression in the price of property and produce, and public.- Pitts. Manufacturer.
the general loss, inconvenience and distress, which it
was represented would immediately follow the reTHE PRESIDENT'S LETTER, CONTAINING HIS election of the President in opposition to the Bank.
REASONS FOR REMOVING THE PUBLIC DE Can it now be said that the question of a re-charter POSITS.
of the Bank was not decided at the election which en. Read to the "abinet on the 18th of September, 1833. sued? Had the veto been equivocal, or had it not Having carefully and anxiously considered all the covered the whole ground—if
it had merely taken exfacts and arguments, which have been submitted to him, ceptions to the details of the Bill, or to the time of its relative to the removal of the public deposites from the passage-if it had not met the whole ground of constiBank of the United States, the President deems it his tationality and expediency, then there might have been duty, to communicate in this manner to his Cabinet the some plausibility for the allegation that the question final conclusions of his mind, and the reasons on which was not decided by the people. It was to compel the they are founded, in order to put them in curable form, President to take his s'and that the question was and to prevent misconceptions.
brought forward at that particular time. He met the The President's convictions of the dangerous tenden- challenge, willingly took the position into which his cies of the Bank of the U. S. since signally illustrated adversaries sought to force him, and frankly declared by its own acts, were so overpowering when he enter: his unalterable opposition to the Bank as being both ed upon the duties of Chief Magistrate, that he felt it unconstitutional and inexpedient. his duty, notwithstanding the objections of the friends On that ground the case was argued to the people, by whom he was surrounded, to avail himself of the first and now that the people have sustained the president, occasion to call the attention of Congress and the peo- notwithstanding the array of influence and power which ple to the question of its re-charter. The opinions ex. was brought to bear upon him, it is too late, he confipressed in his Annual Message of December, 1829, dently thinks, to say that the question has not been dewere reiterated in those of December, 1830, and 1831, cided. Whatever may be the opinion of others, the and in thit of 1830, he threw out for consideration, President considers his re election as a decision of the some suggestions relation to a substitute. At the people against the Bank. In the concluding paragraph session of 1831-2, an act was passed by a majority of of his Veto Message he said: both houses of Congress re-chartering the present “I have now done my duty to my country. If susbank, upon which the President felt it his duty to put tained by my fellow citizens, I shall be grateful and his constitutional veto. In his Message returning that happy; if not, I shall find in the motives which impel act, he repeated and enlarged upon the principles and me, ample grounds for contentment and peace.” views briefly asserted in his Annual Messages, declaring He was sustained by a just people, and he desires to the bank to be, in his opinion, both inexpedient and evince his gratitude by carrying into effect their deciunconstitutional, and announcing to his countrymen, sion, so far as it depends upon him. very unequivocally, his firm determination never to of all the substitutes for the present Bank, which sanction by his approval, the continuance of that insti- have been suggested, none seems to have united any tution or the establishment of any other upon similar considerable portion of the public in its favour. Most principles.
of them are liable to the same constitutional objections There are strong reasons for believing that the mo for which the present bank has been condemntive of the Bank in asking for a re-charter at that session ed, and perhaps to all there are strong objections on of Congress, was to make it a leading question in the the score of expediency. In ridding the country of an election of a President of the United States the ensuing irresponsible power which has attempted to control the November, and all steps deemed necessary, were taken Government, care must be taken not to unite the same to procure from the people,a reversal of the President's power with the Executive branch. To give the Presidecision,
dent the control over the currency and power over inAlthough the charter was approaching its termina- dividuals now possessed by the Bank of the U. States, tion, and the Bank was aware that it was the intention even with the material difference that he is responsible of the government to use the public deposite as fast as to the people, would be as olujectionable and as danit accrued, in the payment of the public debt, yet did gerous as to leave it as it is. Neither the one nor the it extend its loans from January, 1831, to May, 1832, other is necessary, and therefore ought not to be resortfrom $42,402,304 24, to $70,428,070 72, being an ined to. crease of $28,025,766 48 in sixteen months. It is con. On the whole, the President considers it as conclufidently believed that the leading object of this immense sively settled that the charter of the Bank of the United extension of its loans, was to bring as large a portion of states will not be renewed, and he has no reasonable the people as possible under its power and influence; ground to believe that any substitute will be establishand it has been disclosed that some of the largest su ms ed. Being bound to regulate his course by the laws as were granted on very unusual terms to conductors of they exist, and not to anticipate the interference of the the public press. In some of these cases, the motive legislative power, for the purpose of framing new syswas made manifest by the nominal or insufficient secu- tems, it is proper for him seasonably to consider the rity taken for the loans, by the large amounts discount. means by which the services rendered by the Bank of ed, by the extraordinary time allowed for payment, and the United States are to be performed after its charter especially by the subsequent conduct of those receiv. shall expire. ing the accommodations.
The existing laws declare, that “the deposites of Having taken those preliminary steps to obtain control the money of the United States, in places in which the over public opinion, the Bank came into Congress, and said Bank and branches thereof, may be established, asked a new charter. The object avowed by many of shall be made in said Bank, or branches thereof, unless the advocates of the Bank, was to put the President to the Secretary of the Treasury shall at any time other. the test, that the country might know his final determi. wise order and direct, in which case the Secretary of nation relative to the Bank prior to the ensuing election. the Treasury shall immediately lay before Congress, if Many documents and articles were printed and circulat- in session, and if not immediately after the commenceed at the expense of the Bank, to bring the people to ment of the next session the reason of such order or Vol, XII. 26
The power of the Secretary of the Treasury over the himself relieved from a heavy and painful responsibility deposites, is unqualified. The provision that he shall if in the charter of the Bank, Congress had reserved to report his reasons to Congress, is no limitation. Had it itself the power of directing, at its pleasure, the public not been inserted, he would have been responsible to money to be elsewhere deposited, and had not devolvCongress, had he made a removal for any other than good ed that power exclusively on one of the Executive reasons, and his responsibility now ceases, upon the Departments. It is useless now to inquire why this condition of sufficient ones to Congress. The only high and important power was surrendered by those object of the provision is to make his reasons accessible who are peculiarly and appropriately the guardians of to Congress, and enable that body the more readily to the public money. Perhaps it was an oversight. But judge of their soundness and purity, and thereupon to as the President presumes ihat the charter to the Bank make such further provisions by law as the legislative is to be considered as a contract on the part of the Go. power may think proper in relation to the deposites of vernment, it is not now in the power of Congress to the public money. Those reasons may be very diversi- disregard its stipulations, and by the terms of that confied. It was asserted by the Secretary of the Treasury, tract the public money is to be deposited in the Bank, without contradiction, as early as 1817, that he had during the continuance of its charter, unless the Secre. power to control the proceedings of the Bank of the tary of the Treasury shall otherwise direct. Unless, United States at any moment, "by changing the de. therefore, the Secretary of the Treasury fisrt acts, Conposites to the State Banks;” should it pursue an illiber-gress have no power over the subject, for they cannot al course towards those institutions; that “the Secretary add a new clause to the charter, or strike 'out one of it of the Treasury will always be disposed to support the without the consent of the Bank; and consequently the credit of the State Banks, and will invariably direct public money must remain in that institution to the last transfers from the deposites of the public money, in aid hour of its existence, unless the Secretary of the Treaof their legitimate exertions to maintain their credit;" sury shall remove it at an earlier day. The responsbiliand he asserted a right to employ the State Banks when ty is thus thrown upon the Executive branch of the the Bank of the United States should refuse to receive Government, of deciding how long before the expira. on tleposite the notes of such State Banks as the public tion of the charter, the public interest will require the interest required, should be received in payment of the deposites to be placed elsewhere. And, although, acpublic dues. In several instances he did transfer the cording to the frame and principle of our government, public deposites to State Banks, in the immediate vicin- this decision would seem more properly to belong to ily of branches, for reasons connected only with the the legislative power, yet as the law has imposed it upsafety of those banks, the public convenience, and the on the Executive department, the duty ougbt to be interests of the Treasury.
faithfully and firmly met, and the decision made and If it was lawful for Mr Crawford, the Secretary of the executed upon the best light that can be obtained, and Treasury, at that time, to act on these principles, it the best judgment that can be formed. It would ill will be difficult to discover any sound reason against the become the Executive branch of the Government to application of similar principles in still stronger cases. shrink from any duty which law imposes on it, to fix And it is a matter of surprise that a power which, in upon others the responsibility wbich justly belongs to the infancy of the bank, was freely asserted as one of itself. And while the President anxiously wishes to the ordinary and familiar duties of the Secretary of the abstain from the exercise of doubtful powers, and to Treasury, should now be gravely questioned, and at- avoid all interference with the rights and duties of tempts made to excite and alarm the public mind, as if others, be must, yet, with unshaken constancy,discharge some new and unlieard of power was about to be usurp- bis own obligations: and cannot allow himself to turn ed by the Executive branch of the Government. aside, in order to avoid any responsibility which the
It is but a little more then two and a half years to the high trust with which he has been honored requires him termination of the charter of the present bank. is to encounter,and it being the duty of one of the Ęxecutive considered as the decision of the country that it shall Departments to decide in the first instance, subject to thence cease to exist, and no man, the President be- the future action of the legislative powers, whether the lieves, has reasonable ground for expectation that any public deposites shall remain in the Bank of the United other Bank of the United States will be created by States until the end of its existence, or be withdrawn Congress. To the Treasury Department is entrusted some time before, the President has felt himself bound the safe keeping and faithful application of the public to examine the question carefully and deliberately in moneys. d plan of collection different from the present, order to make up his judgment on the subject: and in must therefore be introduced and put in complete ope- his opinion, the near approach of the termination of the ration before the dissolution of the present bank. charter, and the public considerations heretofore menWhen shall it be commenced? Shall no step be taken tioned, are of themselves amply sufficient to justify the in this essential concern until the charter expires, and removal of the deposites without reference to the conthe Treasury finds itself without an agent, its accounts duct of the bank, or their safety in its keeping. in confusion, with no depositary for its funds, and the But in the conduct of the Bank may be found other whole business of the Government deranged? or sball it reasons very imperative in their character, and which be delayed until six months, or a year, or two years, require prompt action. Developments have been made before the expiration of the charter? It is obvious that from time to time of its faithlessness as a public agent, its any new system which may be substituted in the place misapplication of public funds, its interference in elecof the Bank of the United States, could not be suddenly tions, its efforts, by the machinery of committees, to carried into effect on the termination of its existence, deprive the government directors of a full knowledge without serious inconvenience to the Government and of its concerns, and above all, its flagrant misconduct as the people. Its vast amount of notes are then to be re. recently and unexpectedly disclosed in placing all the deemed and withdrawn from circulation, and its im. funds of the Bank, including the money of the Govern. mense debt collected. These operations must be gra. ment, at the disposition of the President of the Bank, as dual, otherwise much suffering and distress will be means of operating upon public opinion and procuring brought upon the community. It ought to be not a a new charter without requiring him to render a vouchwork of months only, but of years, and the President er for their disbursement. A brief recapitulation of thinks it cannot, with due attention to the interests of the facts will justify these charges, and which have come the people, be longer postponed. It is safer to begin to the knowledge of the public and the President, will, it too soon, than to delay it too long.
he thinks, remove every reasonable doubt, as to the It is for the wisdom of Congress to decide upon the course which it is now the duty of the President to purbest substitute to be adopted in the place of the Bank sue. of the United States; and the President would have felt We have seen, that in sixteen months, ending in May,
THE PRESIDENTS REASONS FOR REMOVING TIIE PUBLIC DEPOSITES.
1832, the Bank had extended its loans more than the conduct and condition of the Bank and its branches, $28,000,000, although it knew the Government intendo in order to enable the Executive Department to decide ed to appropriate most of its large deposites during that whether the public money was longer safe in its hands. year in payment of the public debt. It was in May, The limited power of the Secretary of the Treasury 1832, that its loans arrived at the maximum-and in over the subjects, disabled him from making the investhe preceding March, so sensible was the Bank, that it tigation as fully and satisfactorily as it could be done would not be able to pay over the public deposites when by a committee of the House of Representatives, and it would be required by the Government, that it com hence the President desired the assistance of Congress menced a secret negotiation without the approbation or to obtain for the Treasury Department a full knowledge knowledge of the Government, with the agents, for of all the facts which were necessary to guide his judg. about $2,700,000 of the three per cent. stocks, held in ment. But it was not his purpose, as the language of Holland, with a view of inducing them not to come for his message will show, to ask the Representatives of the ward for payment for one or more years after notice people to assume a responsibility which did not belong should be given by the Treasury Department. This io them, and relieve the executive branch of the Goarrangement would have enabled the Bank to keep and vernment from the duty which the law had imposed use during that time the public money set apart for the upon it. It is due to the President, that his object in payment of these stocks.
that proceeding should be distinctly understood, and After this negotiation had commenced, the Secretary that he should acquit himself of all suspicion of seeking of the Treasury informed the Bank, that it was his in- to escape from the performance of hi own duties, or tention to pay off one-half of the three per cents. on the of desiring to interpose another body between himself the first of the succeeding July, which amounted to and the people, in order to avoid a measure which he about $6,500,000. The President of the Bank, although is called upon to meet. But although, as an act of justhe committee of investigation was then looking into iis tice to himself, le disclaims any design of soliciting the affairs at Philadelphia, came immediately to Washing- opinion of the House of Representatives in relation to ton, and upon representing that the Bank was desirous his own duties, in order to shelter himself from respon. of accominodating the importing merchants at New sibility under the sanction of their counsel, yet he is at York, (which it failed to do,) and undertaking to pay all times ready to listen to the suggestions of the reprethe interest itself, procured the consent of the Secretary, sentatives of the people, whether given voluntarily or aftea consultation with the President, to postpone the upon solicitation, and to consider them with the propayment until the succeeding first of October. Con- found respect to which all will admit that they are just. scious that at the end of that quarter, the Bank would ly entitled. Whatever may be the consequences, how. not be able to pay over the deposites, and that further ever, to himself, he must finally form his own judgment indulgence was not to be expected of the Government, where the constitution and the law make it his duty to an agent was despatched to England secretly to negoti. decide, and must act accordingly; and he is bound to ate with the holders of the public debt in Europe, and suppose that such a course on his part will never be induce them by the offer of an equal or higher interest regarded by that elevated body as a mark of disrespect than that paid by the Government to hold back their to itself; but that they will, on the contrary, esteem it claims for one year, during which the Bank expected the strongest evidence he can give, of his fixed resolu. thus to retain the use of $5,000,000 of public money, tion conscientiously to discharge his duty to them and which the Government should set apart for the payment the country. of that debt. The agent made an arrangement on A new state of things has, however, arisen since the terms, in part, which were in direct violation of the close of the last session of Congress, and evidence has charter of the Bank, and when some incidents connect. since been laid before the President, which he is per. ed with this secret negotiation accidentally came to the suaded would have led the House of Representatives to knowledge of the public and the government, then and a different conclusion, if it had come to their knowledge. not before, so much of it as was palpably in violation of The fact that the Bank controls, and in some cases subthe charter was disavowed. A modification of the rest stantially owns, and by its money supports some of the was attempted with the view of getting the certificates leading presses of the country, is now more clearly eswithout payment of the money, and thus absolving the tablished. Editors to whom it loaned extravagant sums Government from its liability to the holders. In this in 1831 and 1832, on usual time and nominal security, scheme the Bank was particularly successful, but to have since turned out to be insolvent, and to others apthis day the certificates of a portion of these stocks parently in no better condition, accommodations still have not been paid, and the Bank retains the use of the more extravagant, on terms more unusual, and some. monev.
times without any security, have also been heedlessly This effort to thwart the Government in the payment granted. of the public debt, t'at it might retain the public mo The allegation which has so often circulated through ney to be used for their private interests, palliated by these channels that the Treasury was bankrupt, and the pretences, notoriously unfounded and insincere, would Bank was sustaining it, when, for many years, there has have justiñed the instant withdrawal of the public de not been less on an average, than six millions of public posites. The negotiation itself rendered doubtful the money in that institution, might be passed over as a ability of the Bank to meet the demands of the Treasu harmless misrepresentation; but when it is attempted, ry, and the misrepresentations by which it was attempt by substantial acts, to impair the credit of the Govern. ed to be justified, proved that no reliance could be ment, and tarnish the honor of the country, such charges placed upon its allegations.
require more serious attention. With six millions of If the question of a removal of the deposits presented public money in its vaults, after having had the use of itself to the Executive in the same attitude that it ap- from five to twelve millions for nine years without inte. peared before the House of Representatives at their last rest, it became the purchaser of a bill drawn by our Go. session, their resolution in relation to the safety of the vernment on that of France for about nine hundred deposites would be entitled to more weight, although thousand dollars, being the first instalment of the French the decision of the question of removal has been confid. indemnity. The purchase money was left in the use of ed by law to another department of the Government. the Bank, being simply added to the Tre:sury deposite. But the question now occurs, attended by other circum. The Bank sold the bill in England, and the holder sent stances and new disclosures of the most serious import it to France for collection, and arrangements not having It is true that in the message of the President, which been made by the French Government for its payment, produced this inquiry and resolution on the part of the it was taken up by the agents of the Bank in Paris with House of Representatives, it was his object to obtain the the funds of the Bank in their hands. Under these cir. aid of that body in making a thorough examination into cumstances, it has, through its organs openly assailed
the credit of the Government; and has actually made, and! The expenditures purporting to have been made persists in a demand of fifteen per cent or $i 58,842,77, under authority of these resolutions, during the years as damages, when no damage, or none beyond sume tri- 1831 and 1832, were about $80,000. For a portion of fling expense, has in fact been sustained, and when the these expenditures vouchers were rendered, from which Bank bad in its own possession on deposite, several it appears that they were incurred in the purchase of millions of the public money which it was then using some hundred thousand copies of newspapers, reports for its own profit. Is a fiscal agent to the Government, and speeches made in Congress, reviews of the Veto which thus seeks to enrich itself at the expense of the Message, and reviews of speeches against the Bank, public, worthy of further trust?
&c. &c. For another large portion no vouchers whatThere are other important facts not in the contem- ever were rendered, but the various sums were paid on plation of the House of Representatives, or not known orders of the President of the Bank, making reference to the members at the time they voted for the resolu-to the resolutions of the 11th March, 1831. tion.
On ascertaining these facts, and perceiving that ex. Although the charter and the rules of the Bank both penditures of a similar character were still continued, declare that “not less than seven directors” shall be ne. the Government Directors a few weeks ago offered a cessary to the transaction of business, yet the most im- resolution in the Board, calling for a specific account portant business, even that of granting discounts to any of these expenditures, showing the objects to which extent, is entrusted to a committee of five members, who they had been applied, and the persons to whom the do not report to the Board.
money had been paid. This reasonable proposition was To cut off all means of communication with the Go- voted down. vernment in relation to its most important acts, at the They also offered a resolution rescinding the resolacommencement of the present year, not one of the tions of November, 1830, and March, 1831. This also Government Directors was placed on any one Commit. was rejected. tee. And although, since, by an unusual re-modelling Not content with thus refusing to recal the obnoxious of those bodies, some of those directors have been power, or even to require such an account of the erplaced on some of the Committees, they are yet entirely penditure as would show whether the money of the excluded from the Committee of Exchange, through Bank had in fact been applied to the objects contem. which the greatest and most objectionable loans have plated by those resolutions, as obnoxious as they were, been made.
the Board renewed the power already conferred. and When the Government Directors made an effort to even enjoined renewed attention to its exercise, by bring back the business of the Bank to the Board, in adopting the following in lieu of the propositions subobedience to the charter and the existing regulations, mittes by the Government Directors, viz: the Board not only overruled their attempt, but altered “Resolved, That the Board have confidence in the the rule so as to make it conform to the practice, in di- wisdom and integrity of the President, and in the prorect violation of one of the most important provisions of priety of the resolutions of 30th November, 1830, and the charter which gave them existence.
11th March, 1831, and entertain a full conviction of the It has long been known that the President of the necessity of a renewed attention to the object of those Bank, by his single will, originates and executes many resolutions, and that the President be authorized and of the most important measures connected with the requested to continue his exertions for the promotion of management and credit of the Bank, and that the Com. said object.” mittee, as well as the Board of Directors, are left in Taken in connexion with the nature of the expendi. entire ignorance of many acts done, and correspondence tures heretofore made, as recently disclosed, which the carried on, in their names and apparently under their Board not only tolerate but approve, this resolution puts authority. The fact has been recently disclosed, that the funds of the Bank at the disposition of the President an unlimited discretion hias been, and is now, vested in for the purpose of employing the whole press of the the President of the Bank to expend its funds in pay-country in the service of the Bank, to hire writers and ment for preparing and circulating articles and purchas- newspapers, and to pay out such sums as he pleases, to ing pamphlets and newspapers, calculated by their what persons and for what purposes he pleases, without contents to operate on elections, and secure a renewal the responsibility of rendering any specific account of its charter It appears from the official report of the The Bank is thus converted into a vast electioneering Public Directors, that, on the 30th of November, 1830, engine, with means to embroil the country in deadly the President submitted to the Board an article publish- feuds, and, under cover of expenditures, in themselves ed in the American Quarterly Review, containing favo. improper, extend its corruption through all the ramifi. rable notices of the Bank, and suggested the expedien. cations of society. cy of giving it a wider circulation at the expense of the Some of the items for which accounts bave been renBank; whereupon the Board passed the following reso. dered, show the construction which has been given to lution, viz.
the resolutions, and the way in which the power it con“Resolved, That the President be authorised to take fers has been exerted. The money has not been exsuch measures in regard to the circulation of the con. pended merely in the publication and distribution of tents of the said article, either in whole or in part, as speeches, reports of Committees, or articles written for he may deem most for the interest of the Bank." the purpose of showing the constitutionality or useful
By an entry in the minutes of the Bank, dated Marchness of the Bank. But publications have been pre11th, 1831, it appears that the President had not only pared and extensively circulated, containing the grosscaused a large edition of that article to be issued, but est invectives against the officers of the Government; had also, before the resolution of 30th November was and the money which belongs to the stockholders and adopted, procured to be printed and widely circulated, to the public, has been freely applied in efforts to de. numerous copies of the Reports of General Smith and grade, in public estimation, those who were supposed Mr. McDuffie in favor of the Bank, and on that day he to be instrumental in resisting the wishes of this grasp. suggested the expediency of extending his power to ing and dangerous institution. As the President of the the printing of other articles which might subserve the Bank has not been required to settle his accounts, no purposes of the institution. Whereupon the following one but himself yet knows how much more than the resolution was adopted, viz.
sum already mentioned may have been squandered, and “Resolved, that the President is hereby authorised for which a credit may hereafter be claimed in his acto cause to be prepared and circulated, such documents count under this most extraordinary resolution. With and papers as may communicate to the people informa- these facts before us, can we be susprised at the torrent tion in regard to the nature and operations of the of abuse incessantly poured out against all who are Bank."
supposed to stand in the way of the cupidity or ambition
THE PRESIDENT'S REASONS FOR REMOVING THE PUBLIC DEPOSITES.
of the Bank of the United States? Can we be surprized extent, and on the same terms, as it is now performed at sudden and unexpected changes of opinion in favour by the Bank of the United States, is put to rest by the of an institution which has millions to lavish, and avows report of the agent recently employed to collect infor. its determination not to spare its means when they are mation; and from that willingness, their own safety, in necessary to accomplish its purposes. The refusal to the operation may be confidently inferred. Knowing render an account of the manner in which a part of the their own resources better than they can be known by money expended has been applied, gives just cause for others, it is not to be supposed that they would be wil. the suspicion that it has been used for purposes which it ling tu place themselves in a situation which they cannot is not deemed prudent to expose to the eyes of an intel- occupy without danger of annihilation or embarassment. ligent and virtuous people. Those who act justly, do The only consideration applies to the safety of the pubnot shun the light, nor do they refuse explanations lic funds, if deposited in those institutions. And when when the propriety of their conduct is brought into it is seen that the directors of many of them are not question.
only willing to pledge the character and capital of the With these facts before him,in an official report from corporations in giving success to this measure, but also the Government Directors, the President would feel their own property and reputation, we cannot doubt that he was not only responsible for all the abuse and that they, at least, believe the public deposites would be corruptions the Bank has committed, or may commit, safe in their management. The President thinks that but almost an accomplice in a conspiracy against that these facts and circumstances afford as strong a guaranGovernment which he has sworn honestly' to administer, tee as can be had in human affairs, for the safety of the if he did not take every step within his constitutional public funds and the practicability of a new system of and legal power likely to be efficient in putting an end collection and disbursement through the agency of the to these enormities. If it be possible, within the scope State Banks. of human affairs, to find a reason for removing the Go. From all these considerations the President thinks vernment deposites and leaving the Bank to its own that the State Banks ought immediately to be employed resource for the means of effecting its criminal designs, in the collection and disbursement of the public revenue, we have it here. Was it expected when the moneys and the funds now in the Bank of the United States of the United States were directed to be placed in that drawn out with all convenient despatch. The safety Bank, that they would be put under the control of one of the public moneys, if deposited in the State Banks, man, empowered to spend millions without rendering a must be secured beyond all reasonable doubts; but the voucher or specifying the object? Can they be consi- extent and nature of the security, in addition to their dered safe with the evidence before us, that tens of capital, if any be deemed necessary, is a subject of dethousands have been spent for highly improper, if not tail to which the Treasury Department will undoubtedcorrupt purposes, and that the same motive may lead to ly give its anxious attention. the expenditure of hundreds of thousands, and even millions more? And can we justify ourselves to the of the Government without charge, as the Bank of the
The Banks to be employed must remit the moneys people by longer lending to it the money and power of United States now does; must render all the services the Government, to be employed for such purposes?
It has been alleged by some as an objection to the which that Bank now performs; must keep the Goremoval of the deposites, that the Bank has the power, turns; in fine, in any arrangement with the State Banks,
vernment advised of their situation by periodical reand in that event, will have the disposition, to destroy the Government must not, in any respect, be placed the State Banks employed by the Government, and bring distress upon the country. It has been the for. / upon a worse footing than it now is. The President is tune of the President to encounter dangers which were Banks which he has consulted have, in general, con
happy to perceive by the report of the agent, that the represented as equally alarming, and he has seen them sented to perform the service on these terms, and that vanish before resolution and energy. Pictures equally those in New York have further agreed to make payappalling were paraded before him when this Bank ments in London without other charge than the mere came to demand a new charter. But what was the re; cost of the bills of exchange. suk? Has the country been ruined, or even distressed? Was it ever more prosperous that since that act? The It should also be enjoined upon any Banks which may President verily believes the Bank has not the power be employed, that it will be expected of them to facili. to produce the calamities its friends threaten.' The tate domestic exchanges for the benefit of internal comfunds of the Government will not be annihilated by merce; to grant all reasonable facilities to the payers of being transferred. They will immediately be issued for the revenue; to exercise the utmost liberali'y towards the benefit of trade, and if the Bank of the United the other state banks; and do nothing uselessly to emStates curtails its loans, the State Banks, strengthened barass the Bank of the United States. by the public deposites, will extend theirs. What comes As one most serious objection to the Bank of the in through one Bank, will go out through others, and United States, is the power which it concentrates, care the equilibrium will be preserved. Should the Bank, must be taken in finding other agents
for the service of for the mere purpose of producing distress, press its the Treasury, not to raise up another power equally fordebtors more heavily than some of them can bear, the midable. Although it would probably be impossible to consequences will recoil upon itself, and in the attempts produce such a result by any organization of the State to embarrass the country, it will only bring loss and ruin Banks which could be devised-yet it is desirable to upon the holders of its own stock. But if the President avoid even the appearance. To this end it would be ex. believed the Bank possessed all the power which has pedient to assume no more power over them, and interbeen attributed to it, his determination would be only fere no more in their affairs than might be absolutely rendered the more inflexible. If, indeed, this corpora necessary to the security of the public deposites, and the tion now holds in its hands the happiness and prosperity faithful performance of their duties as agents of the of the American people, it is high time to take the Treasury. Any interference by them in the political alarm. If the despotism be already upon us, and our contests of the country, with a view to influence eleconly safety is in the mercy of the despot, recent devel- tions, ought, in the opinion of the President, be followopments in relation to his designs and the means he ed by an immediate discharge from the public service. employs, show how necessary it is to shake it off. The It is the desire of the President that the control of struggle can never come with less distress to the people, the Banks and the currency shall, as far as possible, be or under more favourable auspices than at the present entirely separated from the political power of the counmoment.
try, as well as wrested from an institution, which has All doubt as to the willingness of the State Banks to already attempted to subject the Government to its undertake the service of the Government, to the same i will. In his opinion, the action of the General Govern.