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COUNT OF ELECTORAL VOTES CAST DECEMBER 6, 1876,
THE PRESIDENTIAL TERM COMMENCING MARCH 4, 1877.
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
March 3, 1877. Resolved by the House of Representatives, (the Senate concurring,) That there be printed 10,000 copies of the proceedings of the Electoral Commission, embracing all of the said proceedings and arguments and briefs of counsel, together with the proceedings of the joint convention regarding all States the returns from wbich were submitted to said commission, 7,500 copies for the use of the House of Representatives and 2,500 copies for the use of the Senate. Attest:
G. M. ADAMS, Clerk. IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES,
March 3, 1877. Resolved, That the Senate concur in the foregoing resolution of the House of Representatives. Attest:
GEO. C. GORHAM, Secretary. IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES,
March 15, 1877. Resolved, That the volume containing the proceedings of the Electoral Commission and of the two Houses in the counting of electoral votes, directed to be printed by a concurrent resolution of March 3, be prepared for publication under the direction of the Committee on Printing.
Resolred, That of the number of copies of said publication allotted to the Senate by said concurrent resolution 200 copies be furnished to the justices of the Supreme Court who were members of the Electoral Commission. Attest:
GEO. C. GORHAM, Secretary.
ELECTORAL COUNT OF 1877.
The dispates as to the votes cast in some of the States by the respectire sets of persons claiming to have been chosen electors at the popular elections held therein on the 7th day of November, A. D. 1876, were of such a nature as to lead to grave fears that difficulty might ensue if there were no further provision for the case than was contained in some of the sections of the act of Congress of March 1, 1792, and the act of March 26, 1804, embodied in the Revised Statutes from section 135 to 143, which sections contained all the legislation that had been provided for any such contingency and that seemed to be entirely inadequate. When the second session of the Forty-fourth Congress convened, the subject immediately attracted attention in both Houses. On the 14th of December, 1876, the House of Representatives passed a resolution for the appointment of a committee of seven, with power to act in conjunction with any similar committee appointed by the Senate, to prepare and report without delay a measure for the removal of differences of opinion as to the proper mode of counting the electoral votes for President and Vice-President of the United States and as to the manner of determining questions which might arise as to the legality and validity of the returns of such votes made by the several States, to the end that the votes should be counted and the result declared “by a tribunal whose authority none can question and whose decision all will accept as final."
On the 18th of December the Senate referred the message of the House of Representatives communicating its resolution, to a select committee, to be composed of seven Senators, with power “to prepare and report, without unnecessary delay, such a measure, either of a legislative or other character, as may, in their judgment, be best calculated to accomplish the lawful counting of the electoral votes and best disposition of all questions connected therewith, and the due declaration of the result," and also with power 6 to confer and act with the committee of the House of Representatives."
The committees provided for by these resolutions were composed, on the part of the Senate, of George F. Edmunds of Vermont, Oliver P. Morton of Indiana, Frederick T. Frelinghuysen of New Jersey, Roscoe Conkling of New York, Allen G. Thurman of Ohio, Thomas F. Bayard of Delaware, and Matt. W. Ransom of North Carolina, and on the part of the House of Representatives of Henry B. Payne of Ohio, Eppa Hanton of Virginia, Abram S. Hewitt of New York, William M. Springer of Illinois, George W. McCrary of Iowa, George F. Hoar of Massachusetts, and George Willard of Michigan.
On the 18th of January, 1877 these committees submitted a report to the respective Houses, signed by all their members except Senator Mor. ton, recommending the passage of a bill, which, after discussion in both Honses, became a law on the 29th of January, in the precise words reported, as follows: