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And for what should we sacrifice all the valuable connexions, principles, and advantages, which have been mentioned ? For electors ?- Who are those electors to be? Logicians sometimes describe the subjects of their profound lucubrations negatively as well as positively. Let us borrow a hint from them, on this occasion. Who are those electors not to be? 1. They will be such as the people will think not the fittest to represent them in the most numerous branch of the legislature ; for no representatives can be electors. 2. They will be such as the people will think not the fittest to be senators; for no elector can be a senator; and therefore the people will not choose those to be electors, whom they would wish to see in the senate. 3. They will be such as the governour has thought not the fittest for any office in the executive or judicial departments; for persons holding appointments in any of those departments cannot be electors. I was going to say, in the fourth place, that they will be such as will be thought not the fittest for any office under the executive department in future. But here, I find, I am mistaken. For they may hold offices the moment after their election of senators; and I will not assert it to be impossible, that they will acquire their qualifications for those offices by their conduct in that election.
Thus far we have pursued their negative descriptions. The task of expatiating on their positive qualities, I beg leave, for the present, to assign to those who must be supposed to understand them much better. For they must certainly know well the purifying virtues of those political alembicks, through which they wish to see our senators sublimated and refined.
Among the numerous good qualities of the electors, we hope, one will be that they will be unsusceptible of intrigue or cabal among themselves. A second, we hope, will be--that they will be inaccessible to the impressions of intrigue and cabal from others. A third, we hope, will be that as the people, by choosing them electors, have intimated decently that they think them not the fittest per. sons to be senators, they will cultivate the same decent reserve with regard to their brothers, their cousins, their other relations, their friends, their dependents, and their patrons.
DELIVERED, on 19th JANUARY, 1790,
IN THE CONVENTION OF PENNSYLVANIA,
ASSEMBLED FOR THE PURPOSE OF REVIEWING, ALTERING, AND
AMENDING THE CONSTITUTION OF THE STATE;
ON A MOTION THAT
" NO MEMBER OF CONGRESS FROM THIS STATE, NOR ANY
PERSON HOLDING OR EXERCISING ANY OFFICE OF TRUST OR PROFIT UNDER THE UNITED STATES, SHALL, AT THE SAME TIME, HOLD AND EXERCISE ANY OFFICE WHATEVER IN THIS STATE."
SPEECH IN CONVENTION,
ON 19th JANUARY, 1790.
It has frequently been my lot to plead the cause of others; sometimes of individuals, sometimes of publick bodies, oftener than once of the commonwealth of Pennsylvania. It is now my lot to be under the hard neces. sity of pleading my own.
That commonwealth, whose cause I have pleaded—and pleaded successfully—that commonwealth, in whose’service I have laboured faithfully -I defy even my enemies to refute the assertion-though, to myself, very unprofitably—that commonwealth, which I have served in times of safety and in times of danger, through good report, and through bad report--that commonwealth, sir, if the present motion shall be adopt. ed, is about to strip me of the most valuable rights of citizenship. And this is to be done without any offence or cause of forfeiture on my part ; unless to have been highly honoured by the president and senate of the United States is, in her consideration,now become