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another thing in another. It was essential, therefore, to its very existence as a Government, that it should have the power of establishing courts of justice, altogether independent of State power, to carry into effect its own laws; and that a tribunal should be established in which all cases which might arise under the Constitution and laws and treaties of the United States should be finally and conclusively decided. Without such a tribunal, it is obvious that there would be no uniformity of judicial decision; and that the supremacy (which is but another name for independence), so carefully provided in the clause of the Constitution above referred to,' could not possibly be maintained peacefully, unless it was associated with this paramount judicial authority.
Accordingly, it was conferred on the General Government, in clear, precise, and comprehensive terms. It is declared that its late jurisdic- judicial power shall (among other subjects enumerated) extend to all cases in law and equity arising under the Constitution and laws of the United States, and that in such cases, as well as the others there enumerated, this court shall have appellate jurisdiction both as to law and fact, with such exceptions and under such regulations as Congress shall make. The appellate power, it will be observed, is conferred on this court in all cases or suits in which such a question shall arise. It is not confined to suits in the inferior courts of the United States, but extends to all cases where such a question arises, whether it be in a judicial tribunal of a State or of the United States. And it is manifest that this ultimate appellate power in a tribunal created by the Constitution itself was deemed essential to secure the independence and supremacy of the General Government in the sphere of action assigned to it; to make the Constitution and laws of the United States uniform, and the same in every State; and to guard against evils which would inevitably arise from conflicting opinions between the courts of a State and of the United States, if there was no common arbiter authorized to decide between them.
The importance which the framers of the Constitution attached to such a tribunal, for the purpose of preserving internal tranquillity, is strikingly manifested by the clause which gives this court jurisdiction over the sovereign States which compose this Union, when a controversy arises between them. Instead of reserving the right to seek redress for injustice from another State by their sovereign powers, they have bound themselves to submit to the decision of this court, and to abide by its judgment. And it is not out of place to say, here, that experience has demonstrated that this power was not unwisely surrendered by the States; for in the time that has already elapsed since this Government came into existence, several irritating and angry controversies have taken place between adjoining States, in relation to their respective boundaries, and which have sometimes threatened to end in force and violence, but for the power vested in this court to hear them and decide between them.
States are submit to the decisions
of the Su
As the final appellate power in all such questions is given to Judicial this court, controversies as to the respective powers of the United States and the States, instead of being determined by military place of war. and physical force, are heard, investigated, and finally settled, with the calmness and deliberation of judicial inquiry. And no one can fail to see, that if such an arbiter had not been provided, in our complicated system of government, internal tranquillity could not have been preserved; and if such controversies were left to the arbitrament of physical force, our Governments, State and National, would soon cease to be Governments of laws, and revolutions by force of arms would take the place of courts of justice and judicial decisions.
59. The Suffrage under the Federal Constitution
The federal Constitution does not state who shall have the right The negative to vote in the United States. The problem was discussed in the character convention, but the original instrument left the matter to the states. Representatives in Congress were to be chosen by the persons provisions. entitled under state law to vote for members of the most numer
should be the national rule.
ous branch of the state legislature; senators were to be elected by the legislatures; and presidential electors were to be chosen as the legislatures of the state should determine. The later amendments designed to secure the vote for negroes were merely negative statements restricting the right of the state to regulate the suffrage. Subject to the limits of the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments,' the states may fix their own suffrage qualifications and, as a result, there is a great variety of practices, some of the states going so far as to enfranchise persons not yet full citizens of the United States. This anomalous situation was discussed by Mr. Lincoln in the New York state convention of 1894.
We have had placed in our hands, at the expense of the State, the Constitutions of all the States in the Union. In examining these Constitutions, with a view, possibly, of borrowing some ideas therefrom, which we might find useful, I find that in sixteen of these States , named in the resolutions, persons are permitted to vote before they become citizens of the United States.
Now, the State of New York has steadily adhered to the principle of citizen suffrage. We do not believe in permitting people to become voters and to participate in the affairs of government until they are at least citizens. In getting at the matter, to see what could be done, so far as this Convention is concerned, it seemed to me that we might very properly call the attention of Congress to this matter by resolution of this Convention; not in the sense of discourteous criticism of the Constitutions of other States, as is suggested in the report of the Suffrage Committee; that was not intended by these resolutions at all; but that we might ask Congress to take some action, with a view to implanting the principle of citizen suffrage in the Constitution of the United States. That instrument does not now regulate this question. It is left to the States themselves, and, I believe, the time has come in our history when the Constitution of the United States ought to define the rules of suffrage, or at least that it should go to the extent of limiting the right of suffrage to people
1 See below, p. 393.
who are citizens. It seems to me that we ought not to have one standard for citizenship and another standard for suffrage; but that in all the States, and especially in the event of a national election, there should be one standard for all voters throughout the entire Union. These voters in these States vote for representatives in Congress, for presidential electors, and they, also, vote for members of the Legislature who elect Senators of the United States, thereby making the qualifications of voters unequal in the different States; and, therefore, it may work to the disadvantage of States holding to citizen suffrage.
To illustrate: Four of these States permit voting after a residence of only six months; so that if a foreigner goes to one of those States the first of May, and declares his intention of be- works. coming a citizen, he may at the following November election vote for any officer, State or national. Thus, after a residence of only six months in this country, he becomes entitled to vote, with the same force and effect, and his vote counts for just as much as the vote of a citizen who has resided here five years, or who has been raised in this country and has been compelled to live here twenty-one years. Again, suppose that two brothers come here by the same steamer; one of them goes to one of these States, and the other remains in this State. The one who goes to these States may vote after living there six months, but the one who remains in New York State must live here five years before he is entitled to vote.
It is this inequality that is aimed at by these resolutions, and A constituthere seems to be no way of remedying this state of affairs except amendment by amending the Constitution of the United States. The Con- the remedy. stitution itself, at the time it was framed, was the creature of compromises. The question of suffrage was left largely to the States themselves. The electors who are entitled to vote for the most numerous branch of the State legislature may vote for representatives in Congress. That, I think, is the only provision in the Constitution on the subject. It seems to me that it is peculiarly proper to take some action upon this matter not in
What are privileges and immunities.
the spirit of criticism, but by way of courteous depreciation or protest. We are here representing ten per cent of the population of the entire Union. We are here representing fifteen per cent of the wealth of the entire Union; and when we find that our sister States have placed in their Constitutions provisions which we believe to be inimical to our interests and the interests of the entire country at large, I think it is proper for us to, at least, call their attention to it, and by going to the source of amendments to the Constitution of the United States, ask that the Constitution itself be so amended as to correct this inequality in the right of suffrage. We have a right to be heard. It is our duty to speak, and we would be remiss if we failed to do so.
60. Reciprocal Guarantee of Privileges and Immunities among the Several States
One of the fundamental purposes of the federal Constitution was to make a nation in which citizens might move freely about without hindrances from the respective states. To secure this end, its framers embodied in it a clause to the effect that "The citizens of each State shall be entitled to all privileges and immunities of citizens of the several States." This clause has been interpreted by the courts in this fashion:
What are the privileges and immunities of citizens of the several States? We feel no hesitation in confining these expressions to those privileges and immunities which are in their nature fundamental; which belong to the citizens of all free governments; and which have, at all times, been enjoyed by the citizens of the several States which compose this Union, from the time of their becoming free, independent, and sovereign. What those fundamental principles are, it would perhaps be more tedious than difficult to enumerate. They may, however, be all comprehended under the following general heads: protection by the government, the enjoyment of life and liberty, with the right to acquire and possess property of every kind, and to pursue and obtain happiness and safety, subject nevertheless to such re