The Debates in the
Federal Convention of 1787
SEPR 13. 1787
1 IN CONVENTION
Col: MASON. He had moved without success for a power
to make sumptuary regulations. He had not yet lost sight of his object. After
descanting on the extravagance of our manners, the excessive consumption of
foreign superfluities, and the necessity of restricting it, as well with
oeconomical as requblican views, he moved that a Committee be appointed to
report articles of association for encouraging by the advice the influence and
the example of the members of the Convention, oeconomy frugality and american
2ded. the motion which was without debate agreed to; nem: con: and a Committee
appointed, consisting of Col: Mason, Docr. Franklin, Mr. Dickenson, Docr.
Johnson, and Mr. Livingston. *2
Col: MASON renewed his proposition of yesterday on
the subject of inspection laws, with an additional clause giving to Congress a
controul over them in case of abuse — as follows,
"Provided that no State shall be restrained from imposing the usual
duties on produce exported from such State, for the sole purpose of defraying
the charges of inspecting, packing, storing, and indemnifying the losses on such
produce, while in the custody of public officers: but all such regulations shall
in case of abuse, be subject to the revision and controul of Congress."
There was no debate & on the question
N. H. ay. Mas. ay. Ct. ay. Pa. no. Del. no. Md. ay. Va. ay. N. C. ay. S. C.
no. Geo. ay. 4
The Report from the Committee of stile & arrangement, was taken up, in
order to be compared with the articles of the plan as agreed to by the House &
referred to the Committee, and to receive the final corrections and sanction of
Art. 1. sect. 2. On motion of Mr. RANDOLPH
the word "servitude" was struck out, and "service"
*5 unanimously inserted, the former being
thought to express the condition of slaves, & the latter the obligations of
Mr. DICKENSON & Mr. WILSON moved to strike out "and direct taxes," from
sect. 2. art. 1. as improperly placed in a clause relating merely to the
Constitution of the House of Representatives.
Mr. GOVr. MORRIS.
The insertion here was in consequence of what had passed on this point; in order
to exclude the appearance of counting the negroes in the Representation. The
including of them may now be referred to the object of direct taxes, and
incidentally only to that of Representation.
On the motion to strike out "and direct taxes" from this place
N. H. no. Mas. no. Ct. no. N. J. ay. Pa. no. Del. ay. Md. ay. Va. no. N. C.
no. S. C. no. Geo. no. 6
Art. 1. sect. 7 " — if any bill shall not be returned by the
president within ten days (Sundays excepted) after it shall have been presented
to him &c"
Mr. MADISON, moved to insert between "after"
and "it" in Sect. 7. Art. 1 the words "the day on which," in
order to prevent a question whether the day on which the bill be presented,
ought to be counted or not as one of the ten days.
Mr. RANDOLPH 2ded. the motion.
Mr. GOVERNUr. MORRIS. The amendment is unnecessary. The law knows no
fractions of days.
A number of members being very impatient & calling for the question
N. H. no. Mas. no. Ct. no. N. J. no. Pa. ay. Del. no. Md. ay. Va. ay. N. C.
no S. C. no. Geo. no — 7
made a further report from the Committee of stile &c of the following
resolutions to be substituted for 22 & 23 articles
"Resolved that the preceding Constitution be laid before the U. States
in Congress assembled, and that it is the opinion of this Convention, that it
should afterwards be submitted to a Convention of Delegates chosen in each State
by the people thereof, under the recommendation of its Legislature, for their
assent & ratification; & that each Convention assenting & ratifying
the same should give notice thereof to the U.S. in Congs. assembled.
"Resolved that it is the opinion of this Convention that as soon as the
Conventions of nine States, shall have ratified this Constitution, the U.S. in
Congs. assembled should fix a day on which electors should be appointed by the
States which shall have ratified the same; and a day on which the Electors
should assemble to vote for the President; and the time and place for commencing
proceedings under this Constitution — That after such publication the
Electors should be appointed, and the Senators and Representatives elected: That
the Electors should meet on the day fixed for the election of the President, and
should transmit their votes certified signed, sealed and directed, as the
Constitution requires, to the Secretary of the U. States in Congs. assembled:
that the Senators and Representatives should convene at the time & place
assigned; that the Senators should appoint a President for the sole purpose of
receiving, opening, and counting the votes for President, and that after he
shall be chosen, the Congress, together with the President should without delay
proceed to execute this Constitution."
1. The year "1787" is omitted in
*2. This motion & appointment of the
3 in the printed Journal. No report was
made by the Come.
3. The words "do not appear" are
substituted in the transcript for "not."
4. In the transcript the vote reads: "New
Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina,
Georgia, aye — 7; Pennsylvania, Delaware, South Carolina, no — 3."
*5. See page 372 of the printed Journal.
6. In the transcript the vote reads: "New
Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, aye — 3; New Hampshire, Massachusetts,
Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, no
7. In the transcript the vote reads: "Pennsylvania,
Maryland, Virginia, aye — 3; New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New
Jersey, Delaware, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, no — 8."