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“ mode of giving and granting aids in parliament, “ to be raised and paid in the faid colonies.” This makes the whole of the fundamental part of the plan. The conclusion is irresistible. You cannot say, that you were driven by any necessity to an exercise of the utmost rights of legislature. You cannot affert, that you took on yourselves the talk of imposing colony taxes, from the want of another legal body, that is competent to the purpose of supplying the exigencies of the state without wounding the prejudices of the people. Neither is it true that the body so qualified, and having that competence, had neglected the duty.
The question now, on all this accumulated matter, is ;-whether you will chuse to abide by a profitable experience, or a mischievous theory; whether you chuse to build on imagination or fact; whether you prefer enjoyment or hope ; satisfaction in your subjects, or discontent?
If these propositions are accepted, every thing which has been made to enforce a contrary system, must, I take it for granted, fall along with it. On that ground, I have drawn the following resolu. tion, which, when it comes to be moved, will naturally be divided in a proper manner: “That “ it may be proper to repeal an aêt, made in the “ seventh year of the reign of his present ma
jesty, intituled, An act for granting certain du“ ties in the British colonies and plantations in
“ America; for allowing a drawback of the duties " of customs upon the exportation from this king6 dom, of coffee and cocoa-nuts of the produce of “ the said colonies or plantations; for discontinu
ing the drawbacks payable on China earthenware exported to America; and for more ef,
fectually preventing the clandestine running of “ goods in the said colonies and plantations.-And " that it may be proper to repeal an act, made in “ the fourteenth year of the reign of his present
majesty, intituled, An act to discontinue, in such
manner, and for such time, as are therein men« tioned, the landing and discharging, lading or
shipping, of goods, wares, and merchandize, at " the town and within the harbour of Boston, in “ the province of Massachuset's Bay, in North “ America.--And that it may be proper to repeal « an act, made in the fourteenth year of the reign “ of his present majesty, intituled, An act for the
impartial administration of justice, in the cases “ of persons questioned for any acts done by them, “ in the execution of the law, or for the fuppref“ fion of riots and tumults, in the province of “. Massachuset's Bay, in New England. And that may
be proper to repeal an act, made in the “ fourteenth year of the reign of his present ma
jesty, intituled, An act for the better regulating “ the government of the province of Massachuset's “ Bay, in New England.--And, also, that it may
* be proper to explain and amend an act, made in " the thirty-fifth year of the reign of King Henry “ the Eighth, intituled, An act for the trial of “ treasons committed out of the king's domi“ nions.'
I wish, Sir, to repeal the Boston Port Bill, because (independently of the dangerous precedent of suspending the rights of the subject during the king's pleasure) it was passed, as I apprehend, with less regularity, and on more partial principles, than it ought. The corporation of Boston was not heard before it was condemned. Other towns, full as guilty as she was, have not had their ports blocked up. Even the restraining bill of the present session does not go to the length of the Boston Port Act, The same ideas of prudence, which induced you not to extend equal punishment to equal guilt, even when you were punishing, induce me, who mean not to chastise, but to reconcile, to be satisfied with the punishment already partially inflicted,
Ideas of prudence, and accommodation to circumstances, prevent you from taking away the charters of Connecticut and Rhode Island, as you have taken away that of Massachuset's Colony, though the crown has far less power in the two former provinces than it enjoyed in the latter ; and though the abuses have been full as great, and as flagrant, in the exempted as in the punished. The same reasons of prudence and accommodation have weight with me in restoring the charter of Massachuset's Bay. Befides, Sir, the act which changes the charter of Massachuset's is in many particulars so exceptionable, that if I did not wish absolutely to repeal, I would by all means desire to alter it; as several of its provisions tend to the subversion of all publick and private justice. Such, among others, is the power in the governour to change the sheriff at his pleasure; and to make a new returning officer for every special cause. It is shameful to behold such a regulation standing among English laws.
The act for bringing persons accused of committing murder under the orders of government to England for trial, is but temporary. That act has calculated the probable duration of our quarrel with the colonies; and is accommodated to that supposed duration. I would haften the happy moment of reconciliation ; and therefore must, on my principle, get rid of that most justly obnoxious act.
The act of Henry the Eighth, for the trial of treasons, I do not mean to take away, but to confine it to its proper bounds and original intention; to make it expressly for trial of treasons (and the greatest trcasons may be committed) in places where the jurisdiction of the crown does not extend.
Having guarded the privileges of local legislature, I would next secure to the colonies a fair and
unbiassed judicature; for which purpose, Sir, I propose the following resolution : “ That, from " the time when the general assembly or general “ court of any colony or plantation in North Ame
rica, shall have appointed by act of afsembly,
duly confirmed, a settled salary to the offices of " the chief justice and other judges of the superiour “ court, it may be proper, that the said chief juf“ tice and other judges of the superiour courts of “ such colony, shall hold his and their office and “ offices during their good behaviour; and shall “ not be removed therefrom, but when the said “ removal shall be adjudged by his majesty in “ council, upon a hearing on complaint from the “ general afsembly, or on a complaint from the
governour, or council, or the house of represen“ tatives severally, of the colony in which the said “ chief justice and other judges have exercised 66 the said offices.”
The next resolution relates to the courts of admiralty.
It is this :-“ That it may be proper to regulate " the courts of admiralty, or vice admiralty, au“ thorized by the 15th chap. of the 4th of George “ the Third, in such a manner as to make the “ fame more commodious to those who fue, or “ are sued, in the faid courts, and to provide for “ the more decent maintenance of the judges in 66 the same.”