Зображення сторінки
PDF
ePub
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

ted 25,000 dollars, “ for the compensation granted by law to the President of the United States.”

Now, Sir, the compensation granted by law, was at the rate of 25,000 dollars per annum, in full for services, payable at the Treasury quarter yearly; and, consequently, the apropriation of 25,000 dollars, which was made for a whole year's services, could not be paid otherwise than quarter yearly ; as the services accrued ; that is, 6250 dollars at the end of each quarter, and no more.-When, therefore, Sir, you paid to the President 11,000 dollars, in one quarter, you expressly and positively violated the appropriation of Congress, and actually paid to the President, 4750 dollars on account of compensation, for which, at the time of payment, there was not an existing appropriation to jus

[ocr errors]

tify it.

“ Further, Sir, the compensations of all the executive and judicial officers of the government are provided for in the same act of appropriation, which provides for the President, and are by law expressly Ordered to be paid at the Treasury quarter yearly; that is, at the end of each quarter, after, and not before the services have been rendered: And you know, that the constant, uniform, and invariable practice, at the Treasury, has been, except in the case of the President, to pay them in that manner, and not otherwise.

“ Indeed, Sir, it would look like insult, under any other circumstances than the present, to remind the head of the Treasury Department, that a contrary conduct, such as you have adopted in the case of the President, would not only be in violation of the laws of compensation and appropriation ; but, moreover, productive of confusion, distress and bankruptcy at the Treasury : Since the appropriation for the support of government is made payable out of the accruing duties of each

year;

year ; and an established right in the officers of government, to claim their compensations which amount to several hundred thousand dollars per annum, either on the first day of the year, or on the first day of a quarter, before the services were rendered, would create a demand at a time, when there might not, and possibly would not be, a single shilling in the Treasury, arising out of that appropriation to satisfy it.

“ The foregoing facts and reflections, Sir, are addressed to you; and although I believe they cannot more fully confirm those convictions of your own guilt, with which you are impressed, and would, therefore, in that view, have been withheld; yet, Sir, respect for the public opinion, to which the verity of the charges against you is submitted, has induced me to offer them.

“ Nor, Sir, can I close the correspondence with you on this subject, without remarking, that the charges which I have adduced against the President, the late Secretary of the Treasury and yourself, are of solemn and serious import ; that they were not lightly and trivially made, nor are, or will be, lightly and trivally supported before any tribunal, which jointly or severally you dare appeal to; that, specifically repeated, they stand as follows: “ ist. A violation of the laws of appropriation by

Congress;
2dly. A violation of the laws granting compen-

sation to the President, for his services; “ 3dly. A violation of the constitution of the

United States, in various parts and clauses of it;
and,
Athly. A violation of your several and respective
oaths of office.
Ff2

Finally,

[ocr errors]

Finally, Sir, whilst I know of no crime or misdemeanor against the constitution and the laws, greater or higher than that which you have severally committed, I confide in the paramount justice of my country, and the perfect integrity of those constituted authorities, with whom the power of impeachment resides, that the 4th section of the second article of the constitution, which provides “ that the President, Vice-President, and all civil " officers of the United States, shall be removed “ from office, on impeachment for, and conviction

of, treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors," was not made in vain, or is to be regarded by the people of the United States, as a mere dead letter.

" A CALM OBSERVER." November 2, 1795."

Extract from a Justification, published by Mr. Ha

milton, dated 11th November, 1795. " It is requisite to enquire further, whether there has been any improper use or rather abuse of the discretion which is contended for ; for here there is likewise an unquestionable responsibility. It is seen that the advances have at no time equalled one quarter's salary.

$6 Į ask, was it unreasonable or unfit, if constitutional and legal, to afford the President of the United States an accommodation to this extent.

“ I pledge my veracity, that I have always understood, and to this moment I have good reason to be satisfied, that the expenses of the President, those of his household and others incident to his official situation, have fully equalled, if not, on some occasions, exceeded ihe allowance made to

[ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]

him by the United States. Under this conviction, especially, how could the head of a department hesitate, by so small an accommodation as the advance of less than a quarter's salary, to enable the President of the United States to meet his expenses as they accrued, without being obliged to intrench upon his own private resources, or to resort to the expedient of borrowing to defray expenses imposed upon him by public situation? I knew that no possible risk could attend the advance, little considerable as it was.-The estate of the President was answerable in case of death or other premature vacancy, and abundant for the indemnification of the Govern

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small]

ment.

[blocks in formation]

“ Reasons of a peculiar kind forbade hesitationnamely, the scale of expense was unavoidably such as to render the income even of what is deemed a large landed property in this country a slender auxiliary-Without an advance from the Treasury, it was not improbable BORROWING might be necessary-Was it just to compel the President to resort to that expedient for a purpose in fact public, at his private expense ? Was it for the dignity of the nation that he should have been exposed to a necessity, to an embarrassment of this sort ?

My judgment and feelings answered both these questions in the negative. I entertained no doubt of the constitutionality or legality of the advance and I thought the making of it due to the situation ; due to propriety; due to every public consideration connected with the subject-I can never regret it.

How far the President was privy to the course of advancing, I cunnot say—But it is certain they have been all made to his private secretaries upon a general arrangement, and not by special directions from him. I think it proper to add, that very early in the day, and probably before any advance was made, on an application by Mr. Lear for a sum

[merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

which

T, ON de to him

which would constitute an advance, he qualified it by this observation, “if in your opinion it can be “ done with legality and perfect propriety ;" I answered, that I had no doubt of either.

The following Abstract closed Mr. Hamilton's Jus

tification. Quarterly Statements of the Account for Compensation of the President of the United States, from his taking the Oath of Office on the 30th April, 1789, to the zoth Sep

tember, 1795 1789 Sept. 30. Compensation from 30th April to 30th June 1789,

4,246 Compensation i quarter ending 30th

Sept. 1789,

DOLLARS.

6,250

Warrants drawn 26th Sept. 1789,

10,496 1,000

Due to the President, 30th Sept. Dec. 31. Compensation due,

9,496 6,250

[blocks in formation]

Due the President 31st March, June 30. Compensation due,

249:34 6,250

Warrants drawn,

6,499:34 8,253:34

Due

« НазадПродовжити »