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George D. Watrous, of Connecticut:
The Association then adjourned to Thursday, August 24, 1905, at 10 A. M.
Thursday, August 24, 1905, 10 A. M. The President called the meeting to order. New members were then elected.
(See List of New Members.) Franklin M. Danaher, of New York:
In view of the short session this morning and the extent of our programme, I would like to suggest that some announcement be made as to what the Association is to take up this morning; and, in view of the fact that we are going to adjourn at twelve o'clock, I would move that the report of the Committee on Insurance Law be made a special order for tomorrow morning at ten o'clock.
John C. Richberg, of Illinois :
Gentlemen of the American Bar Association: It gives me great pleasure to present to you this morning as the orator of the occasion, the Honorable Alfred Hemenway, of Massachusetts, a distinguished member of this Association for many years and a gentleman who has illustrated in his life the highest virtue of the American lawyer. The annual address was then delivered.
(See the Appendix.)
The regular order now is the calling of standing committees. The Committee on Jurisprudence and Law Reform. Mr. Benedict, of New York, is a member of this committee, and the Chair would ask him if he has any report to present.
Robert D. Benedict, of New York:
The Chairman of the committee is not present, and in his absence I beg leave to say that the only report which the committee has to make is in reference to the bill which was referred to the committee by the action of the Association yesterday. The committee reports recommending that the bill be referred to the committee to be appointed for next year.
The Committee on Judicial Administration and Remedial Procedure.
A. J. McCrary, of New York :
There was nothing referred to our committee last year and the committee has thought of nothing to report on; therefore we make no report.
The Committee on Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar.
The Secretary :
Is there anyone present from that committee? If not, we will pass on.
The Committee on Commercial Law. Mr. Logan is Chairman of that committee, I believe.
Walter S. Logan, of New York:
Mr. President and gentlemen : The Committee on Commercial Law sometimes agree and sometimes do not agree. They are capable of agreement, and they always do agree when the majority is reasonable. I have the honor of presenting the report of the committee upon the Bankruptcy Law, in
which a majority of the committee, and all the members of the committee that are in this country and within reach, join. It is a unanimous report, therefore, from the members of the committee who are in this country and have taken the matter into consideration. The report is in print, and therefore I will not read it, but state its substance. This is the eighth report that the committee has made upon the subject, and their reports have, to a large extent, been embodied in the jurisprudence of the country, and I believe it is the general opinion that the Bankruptcy Law as it stands has been very much improved through the work of this Association. This Association stands committed by its action through a long series of years to the retention upon the statute books of the United States of the Bankruptcy Law as part of our permanent jurisprudence. Year after year the Committee on Commercial Law has reported in favor of the Bankruptcy Law, and of amending it to make it as perfect as possible, and year after year this Association has sustained the committee in its report. A bill is now pending in Congress to repeal the Bankruptcy Law. This bill the committee vigorously oppose, and in opposition to it the members of the committee feel that they are supported by the commercial bodies of the entire country. We believe that, while the Bankruptcy Law is by no means perfect, and is still capable of amendment to its advantage, the principle of it is wise legislation, and the present law as it stands is probably the best Bankruptcy Law we have ever had.
We hope to improve it, and secure amendments which will make it better, but we ask the American Bar Association to stand behind the principle that a proper Bankruptcy Law is wise legislation, and that it should remain on the statute books as a part of the permanent jurisprudence of the country, and not be enacted one year, repealed the next, and again re-enacted in the year following. We therefore recommend a series of resolutions, which I will read.
(See the Report, containing the resolutions read, in the
Everett P. Wheeler, of New York :
I move the approval of the report and the adoption of the resolutions.
George Whitelock, of Maryland:
I desire to bring up now the report of the committee of last year, which, after some discussion, was postponed to be heard at this meeting. That report last year consisted of a majority report and a minority report. This year, in pursuance of the permission granted at the meeting in St. Louis, I have added to the minority report some additional considerations which I will either read or state as the Chair directs.
The Chair understands the rule to be that where a report has been printed and mailed fifteen days before the meeting of the Association it cannot be read.
Walter S. Logan:
I compelled to read my report in spite of that rule. This year I am very glad to be relieved of the necessity of reading it. Two years ago the Committee on Commercial Law made a report in which they advocated certain legislation in reference to commercial combinations. That report gave rise to considerable discussion in the Association, and, after a motion to disagree with it had been voted down, it was referred back to the committee with instructions to report specific remedies for any unlawful combinations which may exist. Last year the composition of the committee was changed, so that I found myself in a minority. There was a majority report and a minority report submitted. The majority report was to the effect that no legislation was needed. The minority report recommended the passage of two specific items of legislation, reported in accordance with the direction of the Association
the year before. It stands in just that way now. that I submit this year I have no doubt you have all read in connection with the reports submitted last year. It is my opinion that the Sherman Act, which confers new rights upon the citizen, should also be amended so that the citizen who is vested by law with those rights may have the ordinary remedies in law and in equity for their enforcement. As the law stands now, a citizen affected by the Sherman Act, who has rights secured to him by that law, is only allowed to enforce those rights in an action at law. The amendment I propose is that he sball have a right to enforce his rights, when the circumstances warrant it and the facts justify it, in a court of equity, in the same manner as any other right may be there enforced. I simply ask to have the equity jurisdiction extended to cover the rights conferred by the Sherman law, as well as those conferred by other laws upon the statute books. There is no other law that I know of under which a citizen, when he is specially injured, cannot bring an action in equity to protect his rights. I ask that he be allowed to do so when his rights are affected by a violation of the Sherman Act. The other recommendation relates to franchise taxation, and provides that where there is a franchise tax it should be graded up instead of down, so that the last million will pay more than the first million.
I submit this minority report, and ask the Association to do equal and exact justice as between the minority and the majority report.
(See the Report in the Appendix.)
I move that the majority report of last year be disagreed with, and that the minority report be adopted.
William Hepburn Russell, of New York:
Do I understand that the only amendment which the Chairman of the committee makes by his minority report is to Section 7 of the Sherman Act?