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of his country, and so feeling I cannot but turn and look for the support without which it will be impossible for me to perform that great task. I turn, then, and look to the great American people, and to that God who has never forsaken them.
Allusion has been made to the interest felt in relation to the policy of the new administration. In this I have received from some a degree of credit for having kept silence, and from others some depreciation. I still think I was right. In the varying and repeatedly shifting scenes of the present, and without a precedent which could enable me to judge by the past, it has seemed fitting that before speaking upon the difficulties of the country, I should have gained a view of the whole field so as to be sure after all—at liberty to modify and change the course of policy as future events may make a change necessary. I have not maintained silence from any want of real anxiety. It is a good thing that there is no more than anxiety, for there is nothing going wrong. It is a consoling circumstance that when we look out, there is nothing that really hurts anybody. We entertain different views upon political questions, but nobody is suffering anything. This is a most consoling circumstance, and from it we may conclude that all we want is time, patience, and a reliance on that God who has never forsaken this people. Fellow-citizens, what I have said I have said altogether extemporaneously, and will now come to a close.
This speech is strongly marked by that peculiar and, as it proved, very wise trait of Mr. Lincoln's policy in the early part of his administration, although it subjected him at first to reproach, and to charges on the one side of lukewarmness, and on the other of levity—a watchful consideration of the course of events, and the tone of the public mind; a determination not to attempt the impracticable, and not to be too far in advance of the general public sentiment.
SPEECH AT STEUBENVILLE, I fear that the great confidence placed in my ability is unfounded. Indeed, I am sure it is. Encompassed by vast diffi
culties as I am, nothing shall be wanting on my part, if sustained by the American people and God. I believe the devotion to the Constitution is equally great on both sides of the river. It is only the different understanding of that instrument that causes difficulty. The only dispute on both sides is “ What are their rights ?” If the majority should not rule, who should be the judge? Where is such a judge to be found ? We should all be bound by the majority of the American people-if not, then the minority must control. Would that be right? Would it be just or generous ? Assuredly not. I reiterate that the majority should rule. If I adopt a wrong policy, the opportunity for condemnation will occur in four years' time. Then I can be turned out, and a better man with better views put in my place.
But he was not turned out. The heathen raged, and some of the people imagined a vain thing, yet in the midst of this fearful conflict, with such an approach to unanimity as has not been seen since the days of Washington or Jackson, his fellow-citizens declared that a better man with better views could not be found for the emergency.
EXTRACT FROM MR. LINCOLN'S SPEECH AT PITTSBURG.
It is often said that the tariff is the specialty of Pennsylvania. Assuming that direct taxation is not to be adopted, the Tariff question must be as durable as the Government itself. It is a question of national housekeeping. It is to the Government what replenishing the meal-tub is to the family. Every varying circumstance will require frequent modifications as to the amount needed, and the sources of supply. So far there is little difference of opinion among the people. It is only whether, and how far, the duties on imports shall be adjusted to favor home productions. In the home market that controversy begins. One party insists that too much protection oppresses one class for the advantage of another, while the other party
argues that, with all its incidents, in the long run, all classes are benefited. In the Chicago Platform there is a plank upon this subject, which should be a general law to the incoming Administration. We should do neither more nor less than we gave the people reason to believe we would when they gave us their votes. That plank is as I now read:
Mr. Lincoln's private secretary then read section twelfth of the Chicago Platform, as follows:
“That while providing revenue for the support of the General Government, by duties upon imports, sound policy requires such an adjustment of these duties upon imports as will encourage the development of the industrial interest of the whole country; and we commend that policy of national exchanges which secures to working-men liberal wages—to agriculture remunerating prices—to mechanics and manufacturers adequato reward for their skill, labor, and enterprise ; and to the nation commercial prosperity and independence.”
Mr. Lincoln resumed: As with all general propositions doubtless there will be shades of difference in construing this? I have by no means a thoroughly matured judgment upon this subject, especially as to details; some general ideas are about all. I have long thought to produce any necessary article at home which can be made of as good quality and with as little labor at home as abroad, would be better policy, at least by the difference of the carrying from abroad. In such a case the carrying is demonstrably a dead loss of labor. For instance, labor being the true standard of value, is it not plain that if equal labor gets a bar of railroad iron out of a mine in England, and another out of a mine in Pennsylvania, each can be laid down in a track at home cheaper than they could exchange countries, at least by the cost of carriage ? If there be a present cause why one can be both made and carried cheaper in money price than the other can be made without carrying, that cause is an unnatural and injurious one, and ought naturally if not rapidly to be removed. The condition of the treasury at this time would seem to render an early revision of the Tariff indispensable. The Morrill Tariff bill, now pending before Congress, may or may not become a law. I am not posted as
to its particular provisions, but if they are generally satisfactory and the bill shall now pass, there will be an end of the matter for the present. If, however, it shall not pass, I suppose the whole subject will be one of the most pressing and impor
may recommend measures which he may think proper, and he may veto those he thinks improper, and it is supposed that he may add to these certain indirect influences to affect the action of Congress. My political education strongly inclines me against a very free use of any of these means by the Executive to control the legislation of the country. As a rule, I think it better that Congress should originate as well as perfect its measures without external bias. I, therefore, would rather recommend to every gentleman who knows he is to be a member of the next Congress, to take an enlarged view, and inform himself thoroughly, so as to contribute his part to such an adjustment of the tariff as shall produce a sufficient revenue, and in its other bearings, so far as possible, be just and equal to all sections of the country and all classes of the people.
SPEECH AT BUFFALO. Mr. Mayor and Felloro-Citizens of Buffalo and the State of Nero York-I am here to thank you briefly for this grand reception given to me, not personally, but as the representative of
has been pleased to mention, in his address to me, the fortunate and agreeable journey which I have had from home, only it is a rather circuitous route to the Federal capital. I am very happy that he was enabled in truth to congratulate myself and company on that fact. It is true we have had nothing thus far to mar the pleasure of the trip. We have not been met alone by those who assisted in giving the election to me; I say not alone by them, but by the whole population of the country through which we have passed. This is as it should be. Had the election fallen to any other of the distinguished candidates instead of myself, under the peculiar circumstances, to say the least, it would have been proper for all citizens to have greeted him as
you now greet me. It is an evidence of the devotion of the whole people to the Constitution, the Union, and the perpetuity of the liberties of this country. (Cheers.] I am unwilling on any occasion that I should be so meanly thought of as to have it supposed for a moment that these demonstrations are tendered to me personally. They are tendered to the country, to the institutions of the country, and to the perpetuity of the liberties of the country, for which these institutions were made and created.
Your worthy Mayor has thought fit to express the hope that I may be able to relieve the country from the present, or, I should say, the threatened difficulties. I am sure I bring a heart true to the work. [Tremendous applause.] For the ability to perform it, I must trust in that Supreme Being who has never forsaken this favored land, through the instrumentality of this great and intelligent people. Without that assistance I shall surely fail; with it I cannot fail. When we speak of threatened difficulties to the country, it is natural that it should be expected that something should be said by myself with regard to particular measures. Upon more mature reflection, however—and others will agree with me—that, when it is considered that these difficulties are without precedent, and never have been acted upon by any individual situated as I am, it is most proper I should wait and see the developments, and get all the light possible, so that when I do speak authoritatively, I may be as near right as possible. [Cheers.] When I shall speak authoritatively, I hope to say nothing inconsistent with the Constitution, the Union, the rights of all the States, of each State, and of each section of the country, and not to disappoint the reasonable expectations of those who have confided to me their votes. In this connection allow me to say that you, as a portion of the great American people, need only to maintain your composure, stand up to your sober convictions of right, to your obligations to the Constitution, and act in accordance with those sober convictions, and the clouds which now arise in the horizon will be dispelled, and we shall have a bright and glorious future; and when this generation has passed away, tens of thousands will inhabit this country where only thou- .