Hawaii Organic Act: Congressional debates on Hawaii Organic Act
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Mr. HALE. No; but I offered the amendment under the impression I had
gained from distinguished men, like the Senator, who for years represented a
Territory in the other House, that it was much better in all these cases that the
officials should be taken from men residing in the Territories. That has so
operated upon me; there were so many evils in the old arrangement, and so many
men were foisted upon the Territories who were incompetent and who added
nothing to the life or the prosperity of the Territories, that I think it has worked
better where residents have been appointed; and while we have not
crystallized that principle into law, it has been done with few exceptions by both
parties appointing residents. My impression is, if all is true that has been said
about the intelligence of the people of Hawaii, their brightness, their
capability of enacting and observing laws, we should do much better if we
provided for the appointment of distinguished residents, actual residents, at the
time of the appointment.
I am rather more hopeful than some of our friends. I think there are Senators
who have looked at this matter personally who are rather hopeless, and who say
that we shall have to send our own people out to govern the people of Hawaii.
I did not vote for the bill which annexed the islands with that view, and I should
not have voted for it if I had had that opinion, but I should have said, "Wait a
while."But, going on the proposition that those people are very intelligent,
that we are going to restrict the suffrage, that not much harm can come during
the time of their remaining as a Territory, I still think that the appointment of
their chief executive should be restricted to those who are actual residents of the
Territory at the time of the appointment. It was with that view that I offered
the amendment; but, of course, the Senate may vote it down.
Mr. FORAKER. I should like to have the amendment which has been
offered read at the desk.
The SECRETARY. On page 29, line 8, after the word "shall," where it last
occurs, it is proposed to strike out the word "reside" and insert the words "be a
resident," so as to read "shall be a resident within the Territory," etc.
Mr. CLARK of Wyoming. Mr. President, I do not want the Senator from
Maine or any other Senator to misunderstand my position in this matter. I
believe and I know that the people of the proposed Territory of Hawaii are as
capable of self-government as the people of any State or Territory in this Union.
But we are not giving them self-government under this bill; we are not giving
them the right to select their governors; we are simply giving .them right to have
a governor appointed by the President of the United States, and the
appointment should be made in the same manner as that of the governor of any
Mr. HALE. We are giving them a very considerable measure of self-
Mr. CLARK of Wyoming. We are giving them more than we have given any
other Territory ever admitted to the Union; and I am glad of it. They should
have the. highest measure of self-government. But where we limit them, we
ought not to limit the exercise of the discretionary power of the President. If
they should go into elections and elect their governor, that would be one
question; but here we have a condition of affairs arising where the President of the
United States is called upon to make the se-lection.
As the Senator from Maine says, I have lived in a Territory; I have
advocated home rule for the Territories, and have insisted that the officers of
the Territories should be appointed from their citizenship, because I have
always contended that the men who go into a country to make new Territories
have as much brains and know the conditions of those countries as well as
any who live outside.
But the Democratic party and the Republican party, while favoring home
rule in the Territories, never insisted that the President of the United States
should be deprived of his authority to go outside of the people of a Territory
to make appointments if he should deem it expedient or necessary. If the
Senator had lived in a Territory as long as I have, he would know that there
are conditions sometimes arising, where, for instance, there are contending
parties for a given office, where partisanship runs much higher than it does in a
general election in one of the States, and where if the head of one of the
contending parties should be appointed by the President it would result in "
confusion worse confounded."In such cases in our Territory since 1888, when the
principle of home rule was first adopted by both political parties, the President
has found it necessary to go outside of the limits of the Territory and appoint the
governor and judges of the courts.
While I say I do not apprehend for a moment that the people of Hawaii would
not select a just and proper person among their own citizenship for the
governorship, yet a condition of affairs might arise where the best interests of the
whole community would be sub-served by the President going outside of the limits
of those islands. Therefore, I say I think that Territory ought to be left in exactly the
same situation as any other; not that I think the President without cause would
go outside and foist unpleasant appointments upon
the people, but because I say a condition might arise when, for the best interests
and the good order of a community, he would be compelled to make
appointments from outside a Territory. I think the discretion ought to be
unlimited in Hawaii the same as it is in the Territories on the mainland.
Mr. TILLMAN. I hope the amendment of the Senator from Maine will not
prevail, for it appears to me from the information I have been able to gather
that we already have an oligarchy in Hawaii, and to perpetuate it by
prohibiting the President from sending some new men there who might inject
some American-ism into that country would be a calamity. I therefore think
that the proposition that the President shall be limited in his appointment to a
resident of those islands is pernicious in policy and will tend to accentuate the
existing evils there.
Mr. CULLOM. I think this bill as it stands on that question is good enough,
and an important feature is that the man who is appointed governor shall reside
in the Territory during his term or office. My own opinion is that the
President of the United States, whoever he may be, will find men in the
Territory who are just as well qualified for the office of governor, or any other
office, as anybody outside of the Territory. I hope the bill will stand just as it
The PRESIDING OFFICER. The question is on the amendment of the
Senator from Maine [Mr. HALE],
The amendment was rejected.
Mr. SPOONER. Mr. President--
Mr. CLARK of Wyoming. I want a vote on my proposed amendment.
The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Chair did not understand that the Senator
from Wyoming had offered an amendment.
Mr. CLARK of Wyoming. I had not offered it, but I intended to offer it. It
was right on this same proposition, Mr. President. I move to strike out, in lines 3
and 4, on page 29, the words "shall reside within the Territory," for the reasons I
Mr. MORGAN. If that motion prevails, we shall endanger those islands, I
think, by having a nonresident governor, who may reside in California and
govern the Territory of Hawaii.
Mr. CLARK of Wyoming. I will say to the Senator from Alabama that my
object is simply to provide for residence at the time of the appointment. Of
course it is supposed the governor of a Territory or a State will reside in the
Territory or State during his incumbency of the office.
Mr. MORGAN. As I understand the object of the bill, it was to require the
governor to reside there and not to restrict the President as to the
appointment of a person who at the time of the appointment resided in the
islands. There are some very strong reasons for requiring the governor to
reside in the Territory.
Mr. CLARK of Wyoming. If I could understand the bill in that way, I
should not object; but I think it is capable of a different construction.
Mr. MORGAN. I think it is; but the committee intended to leave the
President at liberty to make his appointment from where he chose.
Mr. HALE. I understood it the other way. I thought when I appealed to the
Senator from Illinois that he would sustain me in that view, and that is why I
offered the amendment.
Mr. CLARK of Wyoming. That is exactly the way I under-stood it.
Mr. HALE. I understood the committee intended that the governor should be a
resident of the Territory, and that there was no need of my amendment, and
therefore I did not make much point about enforcing it. Now, however, the
Senator from Alabama comes in and says the committee meant the other
thing, just the opposite-meant that the governor might not be a resident. I do
not know who is right about it, whether the Senator from Illinois or the Senator
from Alabama. It now seems that it means either.
Mr. CULLOM. I think the bill is all right as it is on that point. There is"
nothing before the Senate, I believe, in the way of an amendment, Mr.
The PRESIDENT pro tempore. The Senator from Wisconsin [Mr. SPOONER]
Mr. SPOONER. Mr. President, there maybe something in the peculiar
situation in Hawaii--
The PRESIDENT pro tempore. The Senator will pardon the Chair for a
moment while he inquires if the Senator from Wyoming has offered an
Mr. CULLOM. He has not.
Mr. SPOONER. Did the Senator from Wyoming offer an amendment?
Mr. CULLOM. He withdrew it, if he offered it.
Mr. CLARK of Wyoming. I withdrew it under the statement that was made.
Mr. TILLMAN. What was the statement of the Senator from Illinois?
Mr. CLARK of Wyoming. Under the statements of the Senator from Alabama
and the Senator from Illinois, who are both
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