Obrázky stránek

and non-resident aliens, individual and corporate, possess a larger area than that of all our farms between the two seas.

It professes a preference for free institutions. It organized and tried to legalize a control of State elections by Federal troops.

It professes a desire to elevate labor. It has subjected American workingmen to the competition of convict and imported contract labor.

It professes gratitude to all who were disabled, or died in the war, leaving widows and orphans. It left to a Democratic House of Representatives the first effort to equalize both bounties and pensions.

It proffers a pledge to correct the irregularities of our tariff. It created and has continued them. Its own Tariff Commission confessed the need of more than twenty per cent. reduction. Its Congress gave a reduction of less than four per cent.

It professes the protection of American manufactures. It has subjected them to an increasing flood of manufactured goods, and a hopeless competition with manufacturing nations, not one of which taxes raw materials.

It professes to protect all American industries. It has impoverished many to subsidize a few.

It professes the protection of American labor. It has depleted the returns of American agriculture-an industry followed by half our people.

It professes the equality of all men before the law. Attempting to fix the status of colored citizens, the acts of its Congress were overset by the decisions of its Courts.

It “accepts anew the duty of leading in the work of progress and reform.” Its caught criminals are permitted to escape through contrived delays or actual connivance in the prosecution. Honeycombed with corruption, outbreaking exposures no longer shock its moral sense. Its honest members, its independent jour nals, no longer maintain a successful contest for authority in its counsels or a veto: upon bad nominations.

That change is necessary is proved by an existing surplus of more than $100,000,000, which has yearly been collected from a suffering people. Unnecessary taxation is unjust taxation. We denounce the Republican party for having failed to relieve the people from crushing war taxes which have paralyzed business, crippled industry, and deprived labor of employment and of just reward.

The Democracy pledges itself to purify the administration from corruption, to restore economy, to revive respect for law, and to reduce taxation to the lowest limit consistent with due regard to the preservation of the faith of the Nation to its creditors and pensioners.

Knowing full well, however, that legislation affecting the occupations of the people should be cautious and conservative in method, not in advance of public opinion, but responsive to its demands, the Democratic party is pledged to revise the tariff in a spirit of fairness to all interests.

But in making reduction in taxes, it is not proposed to injure any domestic industries, but rather to promote their healthy growth. From the foundation of this Government, taxes collected at the Custom House have been the chief source of federal revenue. Such they must continue to be. Moreover, many industries have come to rely on legisiation for a successful continuance, so that any change of law must be at every step regardful of the labor and capital thus involved. The process of reform must be subject in the execution to this plain dictate of justice.

All taxation shall be limited to the requirements of economical government.

"The necessary reduction in taxation can and must be effected without depriving American labor of the ability to compete successfully with foreign labor, and without imposing lower rates of duty than will be ample to cover any increased cost of production which may exist in consequence of the higher rate of wages prevailing in this country.

Sufficient revenue to pay all the expenses of the Federal Government, economically administered, including pensions, interest, and principal of the public debt, can be got, under our present system of taxation, from custom house taxes on fewer imported articles, bearing heaviest on articles of luxury, and bearing lightest on articles of necessity.

We therefore denounce the abuses of the existing tariff ; and subject to the preceding limitations, we demand that federal taxation shall be exclusively for public purposes and shall not exceed the needs of the Government economically administered.

The system of direct taxation known as the “Internal Revenue,” is a war tax, and so long as the law continues, the money derived therefrom should be sacredly devoted to the relief of the people from the remaining burdens of the war, and be made a fund to defray the expense of the care and comfort of worthy soldiers disabled in line of duty in the wars of the Republic, and for the payment of such pensions as Congress may from time to time grant to such soldiers, a like fund for the sailors having been already provided ; and any surplus should be paid into the treasury.

We favor an American continental policy based upon more intimate commercial and political relations with the fifteen sister Republics of North, Central and South America, but entangling alliances with none.

We believe in honest money, the gold and silver coinage of the Constitution, and a circulating medium convertible into such money without loss.

Asserting the equality of all men before the law, we hold that it is the duty of the Government, in its dealings with the people, to mete out equal and exact justice to all citizens of whatever nativity, race, color, or persuasion-religious or political

We believe in a free ballot and a fair count; and we recall to the memory of the people the noble struggle of the Democrats in the Forty-fifth and Forty-sixth Congresses, by which a reluctant Republican opposition was compelled to assent to legislation making everywhere illegal the presence of troops at the polls, as the conclusive proof that a Democratic administration will preserve liberty with order.

The selection of Federal officers for the Territories should be restricted to citizens previously resident therein.

We oppose sumptuary laws which vex the citizen and interfere with individual liberty; we favor honest civil service reform ; and the compensation of all United States officers by fixed salaries ; the separation of Church and State; and the diffusion of free education by common schools, so that every child in the land may be taught the rights and duties of citizenship.

While we favor all legislation which will tend to the equitable distribution of property, to the prevention of monopoly, and to the strict enforcement of individual rights against corporate abuses, we hold that the welfare of society depends upon a scrupulous regard for the rights of property as defined by law.

We believe that labor is best rewarded where it is freest and most enlightened. It should therefore be fostered and cherished. We favor the repeal of all laws restricting the free action of labor, and the enactment of laws by which labor organizations may be incorporated, and of all such legislation as will tend to enlighten the people as to the true relations of capital and labor.

We believe that the public lands ought, as far as possible, to be kept as homesteads for actual settlers ; that all unearned lands heretofore improvidently granted to railroad corporations by the action of the Republican party should be restored to the public domain ; and that no more grants of land shall be made to corporations, or be allowed to fall into the ownership of alien absentees.

We are opposed to all propositions which upon any pretext would convert the General Government into a machine for collecting taxes to be distributed among the States, or the citizens thereof.

In reaffirming the declaration of the Democratic platform of 1856, that "the liberal principles embodied by Jefferson in the Declaration of Independence, and sanctioned in the Constitution which make ours the land of liberty and the asylum of the oppressed of every nation, have ever been cardinal principles in the Democratic faith,” we nevertheless do not sanction the importation of foreign labor, or the admission of servile races, unfitted by habits, training, religion or kindred for absorption into the great body of our people, or for the citizenship which our laws confer. American civilization demands that against the immigration or importation of Mongolians to these shores, our gates be closed.

The Democratic party insists that it is the duty of this Government to protect, with equal fidelity and vigilance, the rights of its citizens, native and naturalized, at home and abroad, and to the end that this protection may be assured, United States papers of naturalization, issued by courts of competent jurisdiction, must be respected by the Executive and Legislative departments of our own Government, and by all foreign powers.

It is an imperative duty of this Government to efficiently protect all the rights of persons and property of every American citizen in foreign lands, and demand and enforce full reparation for any invasion thereof.

An American citizen is only responsible to his own Government for any act done in his own country, or under her flag, and can only be tried therefor on her own soil and according to her laws; and no power exists in this Government to expatriate an American citizen to be tried in any foreign land for any such act.

This country has never had a well-defined and executed foreign policy save under Democratic administration; that policy has ever been, in regard to foreign nations, so long as they do no act detrimental to the interests of the country or hurtful to our citizens, to let them alone; that as the result of this policy we recall the acquisition of Louisiana, Florida, California, and of the adjacent Mexican territory by purchase alone; and contrast these grand acquisitions of Democratic statesmanship with the purchase of Alaska, the sole fruit of a Republican administration of nearly a quarter of a century.

The Federal Government should care for and improve the Mississippi river and other great waterways of the Republic, so as to secure !or the interior States easy and cheap transportation to tidewater.

Under a long period of Democratic rule and policy, our merchant marine was fast overtaking and on the point of outstripping that of Great Britain.

Under twenty years of Republican rule and policy, our commerce has been left to British bottoms, and almost has the American flag been swept from off the high seas.

Instead of the Republican party's British policy, we demand for the people of the United States an American policy.

Under Democratic rule and policy, our merchants and sailors, flying the stars and stripes in every port, successfully searched out a market for the varied products of American industry.

Under a quarter century of Republican rule and policy, despite our manifest advantage over all other nations in high-paid labor, favorable climates and teeming soils ; despite freedom of trade among all these United States ; despite their population by the foremost races of men and an annual immigration of the young, thrifty and adventurous of all nations ; despite our freedom here from the inherited burdens of life and industry in old-world monarchies—their costly war navies, their vast tax-consuming, non-producing standing armies ; despite twenty years of peace—that Republican rule and policy have managed to surrender to Great Britain, along with our commerce, the control of the markets of the world.

Instead of the Republican party's British policy, we demand in behalf of the American Democracy, an American policy.

Instead of the Republican party's discredited scheme and false pretense of friendship for American labor, expressed by imposing taxes, we demand in behalf of the Democracy, freedom for American labor by reducing taxes, to the end that these United States may compete with unhindered powers for the primacy among nations in all the arts of peace and fruits of liberty.

With profound regret we have been apprised by the venerable statesman through whose person was struck that blow at the vital principle of republics (acquiescence in the will of the majority), that he cannot permit us again to place in his hands the leadership of the Democratic hosts, for the reason that the achievement of reform in the administration of the Federal Government is an undertaking now too heavy for his age and failing strength.

Rejoicing that his life has been prolonged until the general judgment of our fellow-countrymen is united in the wish that that wrong were righted in his person, for the Democracy of the United States we offer to him in his withdrawal from public cares not only our respectful sympathy and esteem, but also that best homage of freemen, the pledge of our devotion to the principles and the cause now inseparable in the history of this Republic from the labors and the name of Samuel J. Tilden.

With this statement of the hopes, principles and purposes of the Democratic party, the great issue of Reform and change in Administration is submitted to the people in calm confidence that the popular voice will pronounce in favor of new men, and new and more favorable conditions for the growth of industry, the extension of trade, the employment and due reward of labor and of capital, and the general welfare of the whole country.

Gov. Cleveland Notified.

The Committee on Notification appointed at Chicago, July 11th, to inform Governor Cleveland that he had been nominated for President by the Democratic National Convention, waited on the Governor, at the Executive Mansion of the State of New York, at Albany, N, Y., July 29th, to give to him the formal notification. The Chairman, Col. William F. Vilas, in so informing, said :

Address of Col. Vilas. GROVER CLEVELAND, GOVERNOR OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK : These gentlemen, my associates here present, whose voice I am honored with authority to utter, are a committee appointed by the National Democratic Convention which recently assembled in Chicago, and charged with the grateful duty of acquainting you, officially and in that solemn and ceremonious manner which the dignity and importance of the communication demand, with the interesting result of its deliberations, already known to you through the ordinary channels of news.

Sir : That august body, convened by direct delegation from the Democratic people of the several States and Territories of the Republic, and deliberating under the witness of the greatest assembly of freemen ever gathered to such a conference, in forethought of the election which the Constitution imposes upon them to make during the current year, have nominated you to the people of these United States to be their President for the next ensuing term of that great office, and with grave consideration of its exalted responsibilities have confidently invoked their suffrages to invest you with its functions. Through this committee the Convention's high requirement is delivered that you accept that candidacy. This choice carries with it profound personal respect and admiration, but it has been in no manner the fruit of these sentiments. The National Democracy seek a President, not in compliment for what the man is or reward for what he has done, but in a just expectation of what he will accomplish as the true servant of a free people fit for their lofty trust.

Always of momentous consequence, they conceive the public exigency to be now of transcendent importance, that a laborious reform in adminstration as well as legislation is imperatively necessary to the prosperity and honor of the republic, and a competent Chief Magistrate must be of unusual temper and power. They have observed with attention your execution of the public trusts you have held, especially of that with which you are now so honorably invested. They place their reliance for the usefulness of the services they expect to exact for the benefit of the nation upon the evidence derived from the services you have performed for the State of New York. They invite the electors to such proofs of character and competence to justify their confidence that in the nation as heretofore in the State the public business will be administered with commensurate intelligence and ability, with single-hearted honesty and fidelity, and with a resolute and daring fearlessness which no faction, no combination, no power of wealth, no mistaken clamor can dismay or qualify.

In the spirit of the wisdom and invoking the benediction of the divine Teacher of men, we challenge from the sovereignty of this nation, his words in commendation and ratification of our éhoice. Well done, thou good and faithful servant, thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things.” In further fulfilment of our duty the secretary will now present the written communication signed by the committee.

« PředchozíPokračovat »