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In view of these facts, and considering the large sums of money involved, as well as the important and far-reaching principles likely to be established in the disposition of some of the cases first to be decided, I have entertained the idea of employing associate counsel to aid the solicitors in preparing and arguing some of the cases which will probably be determined at an early day. The general or implied authority for this proceeding is believed to exist in the first section of the act of Congress approved February 26, 1953. If it is not therein contained, it is my opinion that the provisions of the acts in relation to captured and abandoned property, approved respectively March 12, 1863, and July 2, 1864, justify the employment by this department of counsel to protect the public interests relative to such property, the expense thereof to be defrayed from the proceeds of the property received and collected under said acts.
Acting under this beliet, I have informally asked the co-operation in this respect of Hon. Edgar Cowan, a gentleman of admitted ability, learning, and resources as an advocate and jurist, and requested him to consult with the solicitors of the Court of Claims as to the propriety and extent of the assistance so proposed to be rendered, and, generally, as to the best course to be pursued in the premises for the protection of the public interests, with the view of finally adopting such plan of proceeding as might be recommended or thought most expedient after such consultation; but as yet no definite arrangement has been made with him, no money has been paid to him, nor to any other person on this account, none has been agreed or promised to be paid, and no rate of compensation for such service as he might render has been fixed upou or spoken of.
In this contemplated proceeding I have been actuated solely by a sense of duty, and by what I conceived to be sound public policy; and I concluded to employ Mr. Cowan because I knew of no man so able who is unconnected with any proceedings against the government, and who would be likely to be so reasonable in his charges for professional service.
If, in the course I had thus proposed to pursue in the premises, I have, in the opinion of the Senate, acted without authority of law, or injudiciously in any respect, I shall be glad to be so advised. With great respect, your obedient servant,
Secretary of the Treasury. Hon. B. F. WADE,
President of the Senate.
U. S. Senate. S
PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES,
A report of the Secretary of State, in answer to a resolution of the Senate of the
13th instant, in relation to the absence of Governor Alexander Cumming from the Territory of Colorado since his appointment as governor.
APRIL 17, 1867.-Read, referred to the Committee on Territories, and ordered to be printed.
To the Senate of the United States :
I transmit to the Senate, in answer to their resolution of the 13th instant, a report from the Secretary of State.
ANDREW JOHNSON. WASHINGTON, April 15, 1867.
DEPARTMENT OF STATE,
Washington, April 15, 1867. The Secretary of State, to whom was referred a resolution of the Senate of the United States, passed on the 13th of April, 1867, in the following words ; “ Resolved, That the President be requested to inform the Senate, if in his opinion not incompatible with the public interests, when Alexander Cumming was appointed governor of Colorado Territory; how much of the time the said Cumming has been absent from the Territory since his appointment, and whether by permission or not; and how much of said time absent with permission, and how much without permission, and whether on public duties or not; and whether his salary has been paid to him during his absence or not, and how much has been paid to him as salary for the time he has been absent from the Territory”_has the honor to submit the following report:
On the 28th of January the Senate of the United States passed a resolution requesting the President, at his earliest convenience, “to inform the Senate how often the governors, secretaries, and judges of the several Territories have been absent from their posts of duty in the Territories since their appointments; what part of their time, since the date of their commissions, has been spent in such absence from the Territories; whether their absence has been previously authorized by leave granted in each instance; what was the public necessity for such absence in each case, and for their presence at the national capital, if any of them have been there, or are there at this time; and also whether any part, and if so, how much and what part, of the expenses of their several trips to the seat of government have been charged to the government,"
The resolution last mentioned having been referred to the Secretary of State, he made and submitted to the President a report thereupon, which bears date the 4th of February, 1867, which report was expected to be immediately transmitted to the Senate. The Secretary of State now learns that, owing to the delay which attended a necessary reference of the same last-mentioned resolation to other heads of departments, the report of the Secretary of State was not until very recently communicated to the Senate. The said report of the Seeretary of State of the 4th of February contains all the information which is in the possession of this department concerning the matters inquired of in the firstmentioned resolution of the Senate, passed on the 13th of April, instant, except the additional fact, now hereby reported, that a leave of absence to the said Alexander H Cumming, governor of Colorado, which was granted on the 1st day of December, 1866, has been extended until the 27th day of April, 1967. The reason for that extension was the necessity of his attendance at Washing. ton, in relation to Indian affairs within the Territory of Colorado.
The Secretary of State has no knowledge in regard to the payments of salary which have been made to Governor Cumming.
WILLIAM H. SEWARD. T'he PRESIDENT.
U. S. Senate.
Reports of the heads of the several executive departments in answer to a resolu
tion of the Senate of the 11th instant, requesting copies of any official opinions which may have been given by the Attorney General, Solicitor of the
Treasury, or other officer of the government, on the interpretation of the act regulating the tenure of certain civil offices.
APRIL 17, 1867.-Read, ordered to lie on the tạble and be printed.
To the Senate of the United States :
I transmit herewith reports from the heads of the several executive departments, in answer to the resolution of the Senate of the 11th instant, requesting “copies of any official opinions which may have been given by the Attorney General, the Solicitor of the Treasury, or by any other officer of the government, on the interpretation of the act of Congress regulating the tenure of office, and especially with regard to appointments by the President during the recess of Congress.”
ANDREW JOHNSON. Washington, April 16, 1867.
DeparTMENT OF STATE,
Washington, April 13, 1867. The Secretary of State, to whom has been referred a copy of a resolution of the Senate of the 11th instant, requesting the President "to furnish to the Seuate, if not incompatible with the public interests, copies of any official opinions which may have been given by the Attorney General, the Solicitor of the Treasury, or by any other officer of the government, on the interpretation of the act of Congress regulating the tenure of office, and especially with regard to appointments by the President during the recess of Congress," has the honor to report that there are no such opinions on file in this department, and that he has no knowledge of such documents. Respectfully submitted :
WILLIAM H. SEWARD. The President.
TREASURY DEPARTMENT, April 13, 1567. Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of the following resolution of the Senate of the 11th instant:
“That the President of the United States be requested to furnish to the Senate, if in his opinion not incompatible with the public interests, copies of any officia? opinions which may have been given by the Attorney General, the Solicitor of the Treasury, or by any other officer of the government, on the interpretation ! of the act of Congress regulating the tenure of office, and especially with regard to appointments by the President during the recess of Congress.'
In reply I have to submit a transcript of a letter addressed by me to the Solicitor of this department, and of his reply thereto, together with a transcript of his answer to a verbal inquiry relative to the matter referred to in the Senate resolution,
These contain all the information upon the subject in possession of the depariment. I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Secretary of the Treasury. The PRESIDENT.
TREASURY DEPARTMENT, March 2, 1867. Sır: In view of the possibility that the commissions of the chief officers 0: the customs at several ports may within a few days expire by constitutional limitation before their successors have been appointed, I have the honor to request your opinion as to what legal provisions exist for the administration of the duties of the offices of collector, naval officer, and surveyor during the time one or more of them are vacant after the expiration of the commissions of the present incumbents, and in view of the imminence of the emergency, I would request the favor of an early reply. I am, sir, &c.,
H. MCCULLOCH, Secretary. E. JORDAN, Esq.,
Solicitor of the Treasury.
Solicitor's Office, TREASURY DEPARTMENT,
March 7, 1867. Sır: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 2d instant, asking my opinion as to what legal provision is made for the performance of the duties of collector of customs, naval officer and surveyor after the expiration of the commissions of the present incumbents.
În reply I have to say that no distinct or clear provision has been made by Congress upon the subject. At first view it would seem to be a casus omissus, and that the office would remain vacant or in abeyance until a new appointment could be made. This would, however, be a public calamity. Such offices must, as a matter of necessity, be constantly filled, as the duties are required to be performed day by day. They are, in this respect, different from most other offices. In view of this fact, it is not to be presumed that Congress intended to omit a provision for the exigency, but, on the other hand, considered such provision actually made. In many cases the laws provide, in terms, that an
officer opce appointed shall hold the office until a successor be qualified. But no