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CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

TWENTIETH DAY
__________

                                                                                                                              MONTGOMERY, ALA.,
                                                                                                                              June 14th, 1901.

     The convention met at 2:30 p.m. pursuant to adjournment,
being called to order by the President, a call of the roll showed
the presence of 88 delegates.

LEAVES OF ABSENCE

     For Today---Messrs. O'Neill of Jefferson, Grant of Calhoun, Sollie, Kirkland.

     For Today and Tomorrow---Mr. Kyle.

     For Tomorrow---Messrs. Robinson, Espy, Weakley, Norwood, Moody.

     For Today, Saturday and Monday---Mr. Haley.

     The report of the Committee on Journal that the Journal for the nineteenth day was found correct was on motion adopted.

     THE PRESIDENT -- Under the rule of the Convention adopted that the call of the roll for the introduction of ordinances, etc. will be discontinued at 11 o'clock, where the call of the Standing Committees is not finished the convention will recur to the point in the order of business where we left off and the convention will now take up the report of the Committee on Executive Department. The question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from Hale (Mr. deGraffenreid.)

     MR. BROWNE--I desire unanimous consent to make a report from the Committee on Taxation, Article XI, so that it can be printed.

     THE PRESIDENT -- Unless there is objection the report will be received.

     The report was read as follows:

     Report of Committee on Taxation.

     Mr. President:

     The Committee on Taxation has instructed me to make the following report, viz:

     All of the ordinances referred to it have been carefully examined and considered by the Committee, arid the substance of some of them has been incorporated in the herewith submitted article on Taxation, which is recommended to be adopted in lieu


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of Article XI of the Constitution of 1875. Those suggestions, presented in such ordinances, which have been incorporated in the proposed article, will be manifest by the reading thereof.

     All ordinances referred to the Committee are herewith returned.

     The changes in the article on taxation are as follows:

     Section 1 has been so amended as to exclude from taxation debts for the rent or hire of real or personal property for the current year of rental or hire, in the hands of the landlord or hirer, when the real or personal property is assessed for taxation at its full value.

     Section 3 has been amended so as to authorize the Governor to negotiate temporary loans, not to exceed $300,000, whereas under the Constitution of 1875, such loans are limited to $100,000 and so as to provide for refunding the bonded indebtedness of the State.

     Section 4 is amended by limiting the amount of State tax to 65-100 of 1 per centum, instead of 3-4 of 1 per centum.

     Section 5 is amended so as to provide for the construction and maintenance of public road, by special taxation, as is now provided for public buildings and bridges but all of such special tax is limited to one-fourth of one per centum, whereas the special tax for such buildings and bridges is now without Constitutional limitation. This section is further so amended as to provide that counties may levy and collect such special taxes as may be authorized by law for public schools, provided that the extent of such tax, the time it is to be continued, and the purpose thereof, shall be first submitted to a vote of the qualified electors of the county who are property tax payers, and voted for by a majority in numbers, and in taxable value of property, voting at such election; Provided also, that no such tax shall increase the total amount of taxation for all State and county purposes except public buildings, roads and bridges to a greater rate than $1.25 on every $100 of taxable property. This public school fund is provided to be equitably appropriated and paid to the several public schools in the county by the Commissioners' Court or Boards of Revenue thereof.

     Section 6 has been amended by striking out the words "or enterprises."

     Section 7 has been amended so as to provide for the levy and collection by cities and towns of a special school tax under similar restrictions to those with regard to the special school tax of counties, providing the rate for all State, county and city purposes shall not exceed $1.75 on the $100 of taxable property. This fund


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is to be appropriated equitably among and paid to the public schools of the city or town by the corporate authorities thereof.

     Section 8 has been entirely omitted.

     An additional section (as Section 9) is recommended, limiting the indebtedness of counties to 5 per centum of the taxable value of the property thereof, but providing it shall not apply to indebtedness in excess of such 5 per centum which has been already created or authorized by law to be created.

     A second additional section (as Section 10) is recommended, limiting the indebtedness of cities and towns to 5 per centum of the taxable value of the property, but allowing an additional 3 per centum indebtedness for water works, gas and electric light plants, and sanitary sewerage. It is further provided that such limitation shall not apply to indebtedness in excess of such five per centum already created or authorized by law to be created.

                                                                                                                                        Cecil Browne,

                                                                                                                               Chairman of Committee on Taxation.

ARTICLE XI

     Taxation.

     Section 1.--All taxes levied on property in this State shall be assessed in exact proportion to the value of such property, but no tax shall be assessed upon any debt for rent or hire of real or personal property while owned by the landlord or hirer, during the current year of such rental or hire, and when such real or personal property is assessed at its full value; provided, however, the General Assembly may levy a poll tax, not to exceed $1.50 on each poll, which shall be applied exclusively in aid of the public school fund in the county so paying the same.

     Sec. 2.--No power to levy taxes shall be delegated to individuals or private corporations.

     Sec. 3.--After the ratification of this Constitution, no new debt shall be created against, or incurred by this State, or its authority, except to repel invasion or suppress insurrection, and then only by a concurrence of two-thirds of the members of each House of the General Assembly, and the vote shall be taken by yeas and nays, and entered on the journals; and any act creating or incurring any new debt against this State, except as herein provided for, shall be absolutely void; provided, the Governor may be authorized to negotiate temporary loans; never to exceed $300,000 to meet the deficiencies in the Treasury; and until the same is paid, no new loan shall be negotiated; provided further, that this section shall not be so construed as to prevent the issuance of bonds for the purpose of refunding, the States existing bonded indebtedness.

     Sec. 4.--The General Assembly shall not have the power to levy, in any one year, a greater rate of taxation than sixty-five one-hundredths of 1 per centum on the value of the taxable property within this State.


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     Sec. 5.--No county in this State shall be authorized to levy a larger rate of taxation in any one year, on the value of the taxable property therein, than 1-2 of 1 per centum. Provided, that to pay debts existing at the ratification of the Constitution of 1875, an additional rate of 1-4 of 1 per centum may be levied and collected which shall be exclusively appropriated to the payment of such debts or the interest thereon; provided further, that to pay any debt or liability now existing against any County, incurred for the erection, construction and maintenance of the necessary public buildings or bridges, or that may hereafter be created for the erection of necessary public buildings, bridges or roads, any county may levy and collect such special taxes not to exceed a rate of 1-4 of 1 per centurn as may have been or may hereafter be, authorized by law, which taxes so levied and collected shall be applied exclusively to the purposes for which the same were so levied and collected; provided further, that for the maintenance of public schools any county may levy and collect such special tax as may be authorized by law; provided such special tax the time it is to continue and the purposes thereof shall have been first submitted to a vote of the property tax payers who are qualified electors in said county, and voted for by a majority thereof in numbers, and in value of taxable property, voting at such election; provided that the rate of such special tax for maintenance of public schools shall not increase the rate of taxation in any one year to more than $1.25 on every $100.00 worth of taxable property, for all State and County purposes, excluding any special tax for the erection, construction and maintenance of necessary public buildings, bridges and roads; and provided further, that such special tax for schools shall be apportioned equitably and paid to the public schools of such county, by the court of County Commissioners or Board of Revenue thereof.

     Sec. 6.--The property of private corporations, associations and individuals of this State shall forever be taxed at the same rate, provided this section shall not apply to institutions devoted exclusively to religious, educational or charitable purposes.

     Sec. 7.--No city, town or other municipal corporation other than provided for in this article, shall levy or collect a larger rate of taxation in any one year on the property thereof than 1-2 of 1 per centum of the value of such property, as assessed for State taxation during the preceding year; provided, that for the payment of debts existing at the time of the ratification of the Constitution of 1875, and the interest thereon, an additional rate of 1 per centum may be collected, to be applied exclusively to such indebtedness; provided, that for the maintenance of public schools such city, town or other municipal corporation may levy and collect such special tax as may be authorized by law; provided such special tax shall not be levied and collected when it shall cause a greater rate of taxation in any one year than $1.75 on every $100.00 of taxable property, for all State, County and municipal purposes, except the erection, construction and maintenance by counties of necessary public buildings, bridges or roads, and provided such special tax for schools, the time it is to continue and the purposes thereof shall have been first submitted to a vote of the property tax payers who are qualified electors in said city, town or other municipal corporations,


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and voted for by a majority thereof, in numbers, and in value of taxable property, voting at such election, and provided such tax for schools shall be apportioned equitably and paid to the public schools of said city, town or other municipal corporation by the municipal authorities thereof; and provided, this section shall not apply to the city of Mobile, which city may levy a tax not to exceed the rate of 3-4 of 1 per centum to pay the expenses of the city government, and may also levy a tax not to exceed the rate of 3?4 of 1 per centum to pay the indebtedness of said city existing at the time of the ratification of the Constitution of 1875, and the interest thereon; provided further, that this section shall not apply to the city of Birmingham, which city may levy and collect a tax not exceeding 1-2 of 1 per centum, is addition to the tax of 1-2 of 1 per centum herein-above allowed to be levied and collected, such special tax to be applied exclusively to the payment of the interest on the bonds of the said city of Birmingham heretofore issued by said city in pursuance of law, and for a sinking fund to pay off said bonds at the maturity thereof.

     Sec. 8.--The General Assembly shall not have the power to require the counties or other municipal corporations to pay any charges which are now payable out of the State Treasury.

     Sec. 9.--No county shall become indebted in an amount greater than 5 per centum of the taxable value of the property thereof; provided this section shall not apply to any indebtedness in excess of such 5 per centum, which has been already created or authorized by law to be created.

     Sec. 10.--No city, town or other municipal corporation shall become indebted in an amount exceeding 5 per centum of the taxable value of the property thereof; provided that for the erection or purchase of water works, gas or electric plants, or sanitary sewerage an additional indebtedness not to exceed 3 per centum may be created; provided, further, that this section shall not apply to indebtedness in excess of such 5 per centum already created or authorized by law to be created.

     MR. BROWNE--I now move that the report be laid on the table until such time as the convention shall be ready to act on it.

     THE PRESIDENT--The report, under the rules, will lie over one day and be printed. The next order of business is the report of the Committee on Executive Department, and the question is on the amendment of the delegate from Hale.

     MR. deGRAFFENREID--I believe I made the motion to amend, and, as the maker of it, I have the right to conclude the argument.

     MR. JONES (Montgomery)--I deem it my duty, in behalf of the committee to explain some of the considerations which convinced them that the provision now sought to be stricken out was a wise one. Three objections are made. One is that it disfranchises the people. Another is, that it is a vain thing to put in the Constitution; and the third one is that there is no means


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of enforcing it. Now, I propose to speak very briefly, because all the speakers not excepting myself, have perhaps occupied more time on this article than was proper. When, Mr. President, was it ever considered an unheard of or improper thing for the people to demand pledges of their rulers? The principle is as old as Magna Charta. Then we come to the disfranchisement argument. Who proposes this, Mr. President? It is the people. Every Constitution is a limitation upon the powers of the people. Every Constitution is a surrender of some of their otherwise inherent rights for the public good. Mention was made the other day that such provision was contrary to the teachings of Jefferson. I have great reverence for the name of Jefferson, though I think in modern days he has been made the father of so many doctrines, that it is hard now to conceive what he stood for originally. But we find this provision in the Constitution of Virginia. that the Governor should be elected for four years, and should thereafter be ineligible to the office. Coming down to later times, a great assembly met in this hall a little over a quarter of a century ago. In view of all the evils under the Constitution of the United States from the right of an officer to succeed himself, those wise men and great men departed from it in one instance, by providing that the President of the new Confederacy should have a term for six years, and thereafter should be ineligible. You will find everywhere, Mr. President, in searching the different Constitutions, from the earliest days of the Revolution down to this good hour, where the people have thought it wise to disfranchise themselves, if that be the effect of it--by providing certain officers should not succeed themselves, or should not be eligible for office beyond a certain length of time. So there is nothing new in the principle. Then the question arises, is there an evil to which it should be applied? If in another place, and not speaking with the sense of responsibility which I think should be borne in mind by a man who speaks on this floor, I might use language to depict in detail some of the evils from which this people have suffered by reason of the ambition of Governors, and their efforts to achieve it. It. is far from the authors of this resolution to condemn ambition in any man. It is said to be an infirmity of noble minds. The best and the purest and the wisest men, when tempted by ambition, sometimes consciously and sometimes unconsciously, do things which they would put far from them, if it were not for the temptation. Deliver us not into temptation, is a wise maxim, as well as one which a Christian ought to remember. It has been my good fortune to have been the intimate friend, with one exception, of every Democratic Governor of Alabama since 1875. I say it conservatively, with no desire to reflect upon any one who has held that office, that there never has been a Governor who cherished that ambition, whose administration would not have been better and higher, if he had not been an aspirant. If the gentlemen ask us to cite some instances, I answer the fact that this Constitutional


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CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

Convention sits here now instead of two years earlier, ought to be evidence to any man of the evils of allowing great power to abuse the Governor's office, and at the same time not curbing his power to abuse them in the pursuit of the Senatorship.

     Mr. President, we want to consecrate the man who holds this high power, we want to impress upon him, no matter how humble he be, no matter how weak he may be, that it is not the man, but the great office he wields, with which the people are concerned. It will be a great day for our State when the citizen who takes this exalted trust, feels that he is cut off from temptation that his enemies even cannot impute to him designs which he may not harbor, and that his administration and his efforts will be tried upon his merits and his acts. It is not altogether what a Governor is or what he does that makes his weight with the people, but it is what they believe to be his designs, whether selfish or unselfish, and I do not suppose of late years, at least, that any man who ever held the office did not in the beginning feel antagonisms that crept up against his efforts to reform abuses or initiate policies from people who believe that in defeating them they might lesson his power to go to the Senate.

     These, in short, Mr. President, were the reasons which actuated the committee in putting the provision in there, that his acceptance of the office should be a pledge to the people. Now it is objected, Mr. President, that pledges that cannot be enforced ought not to be in the Constitution. Why, what is the thirty-seventh Article of the Bill of Rights, what are the glittering generalities abut the equality of the people and the right to pursue happiness? They are simply admonitory. Constitutions frequently contain precepts and examples of morality. It is nothing new in a Constitution to embody some great principle, although it is not capable of enforcement in the courts of the country. Why, Mr. President, at least half of the great commanding constitutions which refer to the Legislative Department, are incapable of enforcement by any earthly tribunal. The Constitution says the legislature shall assemble at such and such a time. Suppose it refuses to do it? Is there any tribunal on earth that can impose obedience to it? The Constitution says it is their duty to assemble on a call of the Governor in extra session. Suppose they refuse to do it, is there any power in the people of Alabama constitutionally to compel them to do it? I might cite other instances, Mr. President. Then it seems to me, sir, that there is no reason for objecting to putting in the Constitution, a pledge which embodies the deliberate public opinion of the people of Alabama, that a man who takes that office parts for the time with other ambitions and consecrates himself to the service of the people for the time mentioned in the Constitution. Mr. President, when that provision is in the Constitution it will have a moral influence,


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that will do as much to build up the State as the ability or genius of the officer in other channels.

     MR. deGRAFFENREID--In the discussion that was awakened by the introduction of this resolution to strike the clause under consideration from the article proposed by the Committee on Executive Department, there has not been a single person to take this floor and maintain that the clause complained of can be enforced or has any legal efficacy whatever. No man who has spoken in favor of that clause, or of that provision, has attempted to say to any man in this Convention that the addition of that clause will add any strength so far as the law is concerned or the ability of the Courts of Alabama to enforce the law, but they merely say that it will have a good moral effect. As I stated on yesterday the Constitution is the fundamental law of a State, its every word should be truth, its every sentence should speak not the desire but the will of the people, and such a will as the courts established by the people, or the legislature called into existence by the people, by appropriate legislation can enforce. Now the gentleman who has just preceded me says that in the Declaration of Rights there are matters that cannot be enforced. I think if the gentleman will consider that he will find that there is not a statement in the Declaration of Rights defining the rights of man, defining the powers of man, defining the duties of legislators, that cannot now be enforced by the courts or by legislation which could be had by legislators called into existence by the people. He says, Mr. President, for instance, that the Constitution provides that the legislators shall meet upon the call of the Governor. How can that be enforced? Why, by appropriate legislation. The legislature can pass a bill that if they refuse to meet upon the call of the Governor that their offices shall be abrogated and that new representatives shall be selected to take their place. But the Constitution of the United States- and I refer now not to the amendments that were adopted subsequent to the war--but to the Constitution that was adopted by the original States, by our fathers, fixed the qualification of Senators and Representatives of the United States. When the people met to fix the Constitution of the United States they said what should and what should not be the qualifications of a Senator or a Representative, and it is, no one denies it, within the exclusive power of Congress to pass upon the qualifications of their own members. We are attempting here out of respect to a sentiment which we cannot enforce as law, to place in the fundamental law of the State a declaration which no court of this State and no court of any State can enforce. The objection as I stated is purely technical--the objection is, that we should not go before the people with anything in our Constitution which is not the law. We are admittedly helpless upon the subject. We go forth to teach the people generally, everywhere, a due respect for the law. Every judge when he charges, a grand jury dwells much upon that proposition, and yet here in


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this assembly we are, out of respect to a sentiment over which we cannot have any control, attempting to put something into the Constitution of this State that is not law and cannot be enforced as such. For these reasons, gentlemen, I think that this part of this article should be stricken from this report. I sympathize with the arguments of the gentleman, and sympathize with the purpose, as I stated, to remove as far as in our power lies every incentive to a Governor of Alabama to so use his power as to effect his political advancement, but in doing so we should maintain respect for the law and for the powers that have been left to the States by the Constitution of the United States.

     MR. WHITE--I think we have debated this question long enough, and I move to table the amendment.

     The motion was seconded.

     MR. LONG (Walker)--I ask for the reacting of the amendment.

     The amendment was read as follows:

     Amend Section 5 by striking therefrom all of the Section that succeeds the following words, in line seven, viz : "After the expiration of his term."

     MR. BROOKS--I would suggest that the Clerk read the clause which is sought to be stricken out so that the Convention will know what they are acting on.

     THE PRESIDENT--The matter has been discussed so long, does the gentleman desire it to be read?

     The delegate assented and Section 5 was read as follows:

     Sec. 5. The Governor, Lieutenant-Governor, Secretary of State, State Treasurer, Attorney General, State Auditor, Superintendent of Education and Commissioner of Agriculture and Industries shall hold their respective offices for the term of four years from the 1st day of December of the year in which they shall have been elected, and until their successors shall be elected and qualified, and after the first election under this Constitution neither of them shall be eligible as his own successor; and the Governor shall not be eligible to election to any office under this State within one year after the expiration of his term; and his acceptance of the office of Governor shall be a pledge to the people not to accept an election or appointment to the Senate of the United States at any time during his term, or within one year thereafter.

     THE PRESIDENT--The question is on the motion to table the amendment.


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     A division was called for, and by a vote of 54 ayes to 56 noes, the motion to table the amendment was lost.

     The Chair stated the question recurred upon the amendment offered by the gentleman from Hale.

     MR. deGRAFFENREID--I move the previous question.

     The motion was then withdrawn, and a division being called for, by a vote of 59 ayes to 56 noes, the amendment was adopted.

     The Chair stated the question recurred upon the adoption of the Section as amended.

     MR. REESE--I rise to ask unanimous consent to offer a short resolution, in order that it may be referred to a committee. It will save very much time.

     There were audible expressions of dissent.

     MR. PETTUS--Mr. President, I desire to offer an amendment to the Section as amended, and ask for a reading of the amendment.

     The amendment was read as follows:

     Amend Section 5, page 6, by striking out the words "neither of them," in the fifth and sixth lines of said Section, and inserting in lieu thereof the words "no one of said officers."

     MR. JONES (Montgomery)--We accept that.

     MR. PETTUS--It is a question of the verbiage, and I think the Committee will accept it.

     MR. JONES (Montgomery) -- We accept it. Mr. Graham has already made the same motion and we accepted it.

     The amendment was thereupon adopted.

     MR. CHAPMAN--I have an amendment to offer to Section 5.

     The amendment was read as follows:

     Amend Section 5, Article V., as follows: By striking out the word "one" in lines seven and nine, and inserting in lieu thereof the word "four."

     MR. JONES (Montgomery)--I move to lay that amendment on the table.

     The motion was carried.

     MR. FOSTER--I have an amendment.

     The amendment was read as follows:


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     Amend Section 5 by adding immediately after the word State, in line seven, the following, "or the Senate of the United States."

     The question being stated, a division was called for.

     MR. LONG (Butler)--I ask for the reading of the amendment.

     The amendment was again read.

     MR. WHITE--I call for the previous question on the adoption of the Section.

     THE PRESIDENT--Will the gentleman allow the Chair to announce the result of the vote. It appears there are 75 ayes and 23 noes, and the amendment offered by the gentleman from Tuscaloosa is adopted. The gentleman from Jefferson calls for the previous question.

     MR. DENT -- I would like to hear the Section read as it stands up to this point.

     The Section, as amended, was read.

     MR. DENT--I now offer an amendment.

     THE PRESIDENT--The gentleman from Jefferson moves the previous question. The question is whether the main question shall now be put.

     MR. PETTUS--I rise to a question of parliamentary inquiry.

     THE PRESIDENT--The gentleman will state the question of inquiry.

     MR. PETTUS--I did not catch the reading by the Clerk, to understand whether or not the word appointment comes in after the word election in the sixth line of Section 5. I would like to know whether that was adopted.

     Adopted:

     Mr. Dent (Barbour) endeavored to secure recognition.

     THE PRESIDENT--The Chair will recognize the gentleman from Barbour so soon as the gentleman from Limestone states his point of inquiry.

     MR. PETTUS--I ask if the words "or appointment" are added after the word election in the sixth line of the fifth section.,

     A number of delegates replied in the negative.

     MR. PETTUS--I would like to offer that as an amendment.


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     MR. DENT--Will the gentleman withdraw his motion for the previous question so that I can offer my amendment?

     MR. WHITE--I will withdraw the motion for the previous question for the gentleman from Barbour if he will renew it.

     MR. DENT--I offer this amendment, and I would like to state the purpose of the amendment.

     THE PRESIDENT--The gentleman can state as soon as the amendment is read, and the question is stated to the convention.

     The amendment was read as follows: Amend section 5, article V, by adding after the words "as his own successor," in the sixth line, the following words "nor shall they be eligible as the successors of each other.

     MR. DENT--The object of the amendment is to prevent an officer who is holding some office, say attorney general, from running for some other office. It prevents an officer who holds the office of Auditor from running for the office of Secretary of State. In other words it is the swapping around that I want to prevent, and that is the object of the amendment.

     MR. PETTUS--I move to lay the amendment on the table.

     Seconded.

     MR. ASHCRAFT -- I want to offer a substitute for the amendment.

     THE PRESIDENT--The Chair would rule that it is not in order, as the question before the Convention is the motion to table.

     On the motion to table a division was called for, and Mr. Pettus asked for a verification of the vote, by the ayes and noes, to which there were expressions of dissent.

     The Chair stated in casting up the vote, there were fifty-five ayes and fifty-two noes, and the motion to table prevailed.

     MR. PETTUS--I withdraw the call.

     MR. DENT -- In compliance with my agreement with the gentleman from Jefferson, I renew the motion for the previous question.

     MR. deGRAFFENREID--Too late---

     THE PRESIDENT--The gentleman from Barbour did not retain the floor and the Chair recognized the gentleman from Lauderdale.

     MR. ASHCRAFT--I desire to introduce an amendment.


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     The amendment was read as follows: Amend Section 5 by striking out of line six thereof, the following words, "as his own successor and the Governor shall not be eligible."

     The Chair stated the question to be upon the amendment offered by the gentleman from Lauderdale.

     MR. ASHCRAFT--This is the same question which was discussed slightly yesterday, on an amendment proposed by the gentleman from Talladega, which was temporarily withdrawn. If that amendment should be adopted, it would read then as follows, beginning in the fifth line, and after the first election under this Constitution, no one of them shall be ineligible to election to any office under this State within one year after the expiration of his term. I tried the best I could, to say on yesterday, the reasons why that amendment should be made. The gentleman from Barbour has stated also some of those reasons. They seem to me to be very clear. There can be no reason, Mr. President, why a State Auditor, should be allowed to succeed the attorney general, or the secretary of state, and not be allowed to succeed himself. It seems to me the question is clear.

     MR. WEATHERLY--I move to lay the amendment on the table.

     Upon the motion to table a division was called for, and by a vote of seventy-nine ayes to twenty-nine noes, the amendment was tabled.

     MR. HARRISON--I desire to offer an amendment.

     The amendment was read as follows: Amend Section 5 by striking out the words "December" where it occurs on the fourth line of said section, and insert in lieu thereof the word "November" and strike out the word "first" where it occurs on the third line of said section, and insert in lieu thereof the word "fifteenth."

     The Chair stated the question to be upon the amendment proposed by the gentleman from Lee.

     MR. HARRISON--The object of that amendment is to prevent the Governor-elect from remaining out of office until two weeks or more of the legislature has passed. It occurs to me that as soon as possible after the---

     MR. JONES (Montgomery)--I think that a very good suggestion and I will accept it on behalf of the Committee.

     The Chair stated the question.

     MR. FOSTER--May I ask the gentleman a question. I did not catch the reading of it; would that make the Governor be installed on the same day that the legislature meets?


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      MR. HARRISON--No, sir; the legislature meets on the second Tuesday. It would not be a perfect fit, but I put it the fifteenth, so it would be only a few days after he comes in, so that we would not have a Governor coming in when half of the legislative session has expired.

     MR. OATES--Is it within the powers of the committee after a measure is in full possession of the convention, to accept any amendment that is offered?

     THE PRESIDENT--The Chair would hold that it is not.

     MR. OATES--I make that point--

     THE PRESIDENT--The Chair was stating the amendment to see whether the House would accept it.

     MR. JONES (Montgomery)--I submit that the Chairman of the committee has a perfect right by every rule of parliamentary law that was ever printed, to get up and state the acquiescence of his committee in an amendment, and I insist I was strictly in order and that the gentleman's point of order was not well taken.

     THE PRESIDENT--The Chair thinks that the Chairman of the committee has a perfect right to indicate to the convention that the committee approves the amendment offered, but it would be proper, after the matter is before the convention, and in the possession of the convention, if it proposed an amendment, to submit the matter to the convention.

     MR. PIERCE--I desire to offer an amendment.

     THE PRESIDENT--There is another amendment before the convention. The gentleman is not in order at this time.

     The question was put upon the amendment of the delegate from Lee, and the same was adopted.

     MR. PEARCE--I desire to offer an amendment.

     The amend was read: Amend section five, in the sixth line after the word election by adding the words "or appointment."

     MR. PETTUS--I move the adoption of the amendment.

     MR. JONES (Montgomery)--How does it read then?

     The section as amended was read "and shall not be eligible to election or appointment."

     MR. JONES--If I am not out of order, I will say in behalf of the committee, they have no objection to that.

     MR. DUKE--I move the previous question.


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CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

     THE PRESIDENT--The question is, shall the main question be put now.

     MR. PARKER (Elmore)--I move to recommit---

     THE PRESIDENT--That is out of order.

     Mr. Burns (Dallas) was trying to secure recognition.

     THE PRESIDENT--For what purpose does the gentleman from Dallas arise?

     MR. BURNS--I was trying to get some information (laughter).

     THE PRESIDENT--The Chair ruling would be---

     MR. BURNS--I think I would be out of order to offer an amendment right now (laughter).

     MR. PARKER (Elmore)--I ask the Chair to state the main question. What is the question? I desire a reading of the amendment.

     THE PRESIDENT--The question is upon the call for the previous question. Shall the main question be now put?

     MR. PARKER (Elmore)-What is the main question.

     The plain question on a vote was ordered.

     Section 5, as amended, on a vote was then adopted.

     MR. ROGERS (Sumter)--I desire to introduce an ordinance.

     THE PRESIDENT--The gentleman is not in order to introduce an ordinance at this time.

     The Secretary will read Section 6.

     The section eras read as follows:

     Sec. 6. The Governor and Lieutenant Governor shall each be at least thirty years of age when elected, and shall have been citizens of the United States ten years and resident citizens of this State at least seven years next before the date of their election. The Lieutenant Governor shall be ex-officio President of the State, which shall elect a President pro tem, from among its own members, who shall discharge the duties of the Lieutenant Governor in the Senate, whenever he is absent or disqualified.

     MR. JONES (Montgomery)--I move the adoption of that Section.

     Mr. Lomax here took the Chair.

     The motion was seconded.


572

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

     MR. SPRAGINS--I offer an amendment.

     The amendment was read: Amend Section 6 by adding at the end thereof, "but the Lieutenant-Governor when acting as President of the Senate shall have no right to vote, except in the event of a tie."

     The amendment was adopted.

     The question recurring upon the adoption of the Section as amended the same was adopted.

     MR. JONES (Montgomery) -- Mr. President, I have an amendment to Section 7.

     THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM--There is a minority report accompanying Section 7 and under the rules it will come in as an amendment to the Section. The Secretary will read the Section, and then read the minority report.

     The Section and report were read as follows:

     Sec. 7. The Lieutenant-Governor, Secretary of State, State Auditor, State Treasurer, Attorney General, Superintendent of Education, and Commissioner of Agriculture and Industries shall receive compensation for their services, which shall be fixed by law, and which shall not be increased or diminished during the term for which they have been elected, and with the exception of the Lieutenant-Governor, shall reside at the Capital. After the adoption of this Constitution, the compensation of the Governor shall be five thousand dollars per annum, which shall not be thereafter increased or diminished during the term for which he shall have been elected.

     The minority report was read as follows:

     The undersigned member of the Committee on Executive Department does not concur in the report of the Committee as to Sections 7 and 27, and he offers as a substitute for Section 7 the following:

     Section 7. The Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Secretary of State, State Auditor and Attorney-General shall receive compensation for their services which shall be fixed by law, and which shall not be increased or diminished during the term for which they shall have been elected, and shall, except the Lieutenant-Governor, reside at the State Capital during the time they continue in office, except in cases of epidemic.

     And he further recommends that Section 27, (which relates to the loaning of money in the State Treasury), as reported by said Committee, be stricken out and do not pass.

                                                                                                                                     Respectfully submitted,

                                                                                                                                     Watkins M. Vaughan.


573

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

     THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM--The question is upon the adoption of the substitute offered by the minority of the Committee.

     MR. VAUGHAN -- I want to offer an amendment to the substitute.

     MR. WATTS--I rise to a question of inquiry.

     THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM--The gentleman will state his question.

     MR. WATTS -- Will that amendment or minority report, leave out the Superintendent of Education and the Commissioner of Agriculture and Industries?

     THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM--The gentleman who made the minority report requests leave to add those two offices to the minority report.

     The leave was granted.

     MR. LONG (Walker)--I rise to favor the minority report of the Committee, Mr. President. Alabama has had, since her admission into the Union, five Constitutions, and neither of these constitutions since 1819, '61, '65, a Republican Constitution that was so cursed in '68, or '75, had any clause in it fixing the salary of the Governor of the State of Alabama. I think it would be unwise for us to say that the Governor of the State shall have a $5,000 salary, and to say it in the Constitution, even if there were merit in the contention. It seems to me that this is a question that should be left to the Legislature of Alabama to settle and to pass upon. There has never been a time, as I have stated before, when such a clause was inserted in any Constitution of this State.

     We were sent here by the people with a pack of cards, with nothing in it except suffrage cards, and here we are drawing and putting in new decks, and dealing from the bottom new officers, creating offices, and increasing salaries, in the first Article of the Constitution we consider. We must remember that this has to go back to the people for ratification. I might vote to increase the Governor's salary in the General Assembly of Alabama, if I were a member of that body when such a question is before it, but I can never see my way clear to vote to place it in the Constitution. In our present constitution, Section 7 of Article V, reads as follows:

     7. The Governor, Secretary of State, State Treasurer, State Auditor and Attorney General, shall reside at the seat of government of this State during the time they continue in office, except in cases of epidemics; and they shall receive compensation for their services, which shall be fixed by law, and which shall not be increased or diminished during the term for which they shall have been elected.


574

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

     I can see no just reason why we are called on here to increase the salary of the Governor. In twenty-five years from now, this great State might want to pay a salary equal to the great State of New York, or some other States that I might mention, and it might be necessary then to pay a salary of $7,500 or $14,000 to the Governor of the great State of Alabama in the future, and yet our Constitution might prohibit it. Another thing I want to call to the attention of this house, this clause in this report of the committee makes this effective immediately upon the ratification of this Constitution, which is clearly in violation, and in strict violation of the Constitution now. It puts it into effect immediately on its ratification, which is nothing more nor less than a second-handed back-salary grab. If you are going to have it, make it apply to the next Governor, after the next general election in Alabama. It seems to me, Mr. President, that the minority report should be adopted, and I hope the convention will vote that way, because I tell you that a $2,000 raise, as little as it is in many of our eyes, and many of the people here who are used to voting away thousands of dollars, to many of the people of this State it will have the same effect as if it were two million dollars, because they will say the principle is the same.

     We have pledged ourselves not to raise taxes. When you take care of the Governor, why not take care of the Attorney General? Why not take care of the Treasurer? Why not take care of the Secretary of State and the State Treasurer? Why not take care of every Judge in the State of Alabama? Why not take care of the poor members of the Legislature, and fix their salaries at eight or ten dollars a day? If you are going to fix one and make an exception, why not place all salaries in the Constitution?

     I admit that the office of Governor is a great office, but it was never the intention of the Democracy of this State to make this an office of money. It was intended to be an office of profit. (Laughter). I can see no reason why. (Laughter). I mean an office of honor, but it is not intended to make it an office of profit so to speak, Mr. President. I hope that the minority report of the committee will be adopted.

     MR. HENDERSON--I have an amendment---

     The amendment was read: "Amend Section 7, by striking the words `Lieutenant Governor' from the first line of said section."

     MR. deGRAFFENREID--I move that it be laid on the table.

     MR. LONG (Walker)--I make the point of order that the minority report has precedence over any amendment offered by any member on the floor.


575

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

     THE PRESIDENT--The chair is of the opinion that under the rules a minority report shall be treated as an amendment, and consequently the point of order of the gentleman from Walker is not well taken, and the question is upon the amendment offered by the gentleman from Pike.

     MR. O'NEAL (Lauderdale)--I move to lay the amendment on the table.

     Mr. Blackwell--I want to ask what the effect of that will be. Won't it carry the minority report with it?

     MR. deGRAFFENREID--No, sir.

     THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM--No, not under our rules. The gentleman from Lauderdale moves to lay the amendment on the table.

     The motion to table was carried.

     MR. BURNETT--I have an amendment.

     The amendment was read: "Amend Section 7 of the minority report by inserting in the first line after the word `the' the word Governor.' "

     The President here resumed the chair.

     THE PRESIDENT--The question is on the amendment proposed by the gentleman from Conecuh.

     MR. O'NEAL (Lauderdale)--I rise to a point of order.

     THE PRESIDENT--The gentleman will state the point of order.

     MR. O'NEAL--As I understand it, the amendment simply embraces what the minority report of the committee already covers.

     MR. BURNETT--The gentleman is in error.

     MR. VAUGHAN--The minority report has the word "Governor" in it.

     MR. BURNETT--I do not understand it. As I understand it the minority report is like the majority report, with the exception of fixing the compensation of the Governor at five thousand dollars.

     THE PRESIDENT--The gentleman who made the minority report says that it contains the word Governor.

     MR.. BURNETT--It has got "Governor" in there.

     THE PRESIDENT--Yes.


576

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

     MR. BURNETT--I withdraw the amendment then.

     MR. O'NEAL (Lauderdale)--I regret that I am unable to agree with the proposition of the gentleman from Walker. The office of Governor is the highest in the gift of a people of any State, and its compensation should be commensurate with the dignity and the responsibility of the position. It is well known to be a subject of just criticism to our form of government, and its practical operation that men occupying the highest and most exalted positions frequently receive less compensation than petty officials. It is a well known fact that many Sheriffs, Probate Judges, the Clerk of the Supreme Court, Clerks of courts and other officials in this State, receive more compensation than the Chief Magistrate of Alabama. The result is that no man who is an incumbent of that high office, unless he has other sources of income of revenue, can accept it would a pecuniary sacrifice, and it operates as a positive bar to gubernatorial aspirations by men of meagre financial resources. Only the rich, old bachelors, or those who are content to live in Montgomery hotels can afford to accept this high position.

     Now the purpose of the committee is to raise this salary, commensurate with the dignity and responsibility of that high office. It is no answer to say that the Legislature can adjust this salary. We know as a matter of fact that for twenty-five years bills of this character have been introduced in the legislature without passage. We know, as the Chairman of the committee wisely stated, that the short interval that elapses between the meeting of the Legislature and the inauguration of the Governor, does not furnish sufficient time for the passage of such a law.

     MR. PETTUS--May I ask the gentleman a question.

     THE PRESIDENT--Does the gentleman yield?

     MR. O'NEAL--Certainly.

     MR. PETTUS--Would it not be competent for the Legislature at one session to provide for an increase in the salary of the Governor to take effect for the next Governor elected?

     MR. O'NEAL -- Yes, of course it would be competent, but they have not done it, and never will do it. The legislators of Alabama are so much engrossed in local legislation, and in looking after the interests of the particular beat in which the member resides, that they do not generally have time to give attention to legislation of this character. We know as a matter of fact that bill after bill of this character has been introduced, and never has been passed and never will be passed. The office of Governor is the highest office within the gift of the people. It is the people's office, and while the people of Alabama are just they are not parsimonious---


577

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

     MR. LONG (Walker)--May I ask a question?

     THE PRESIDENT--Does the gentleman yield?

     MR. O'NEAL--Certainly.

     MR. LONG (Walker)--You state that bill after bill of this kind has been introduced in the legislature; can you recall a single time that such a bill has been introduced?

     MR. O'NEAL--I recall a number of bills of that character, and if the gentleman will search the records he will find a number of such bills.

     Now Mr. President, the law imposes upon the Governor the high and responsible duty of seeing that the laws of the State are faithfully executed. In this republic of ours we depend for our security not upon armies and powerful navies, but upon that majestic supremacy of the law in which alone may be read the progress of a government founded upon the rights and fortified by the intelligence of the people. Alabama, first in the roll of States, is first in all of the elements that constitute a great and powerful and imperial commonwealth. Her people are just and generous, and I deny that they are opposed to this fair, but tardy, measure of justice, to this high official. I believe that they will approve and endorse our action in putting it in the fundamental law of the State, that the salary of the Governor shall not be less than $5,000 a year.

     MR. HOWZE--I have an amendment I would like to offer, either to the substitute, or the original article.

     THE PRESIDENT--To which does the gentleman offer it.

     MR. HOWZE--I offer it to the substitute or the minority report.

     The amendment was read: Amend the substitute for Section 7 by adding the following: The Lieutenant-Governor shall be paid the same compensation as that received by the Speaker of the House, except when serving as Governor, when he shall receive the salary of said officer.

     THE PRESIDENT--The question will be on the amendment proposed by the gentleman from Jefferson to the minority report.

     MR. BLACKWELL--I rise, Mr. President, to discuss the minority report offered by the gentleman from Dallas. I do not want to discuss the amendment.

     MR. LONG (Walker)--I rise to a point of order. I have no objection to the amendment offered by the gentleman from Jefferson, but I make the point of order that it is not germain to the


578

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

subject, and therefore it is out of order. I think it is a good amendment, and the Committee itself has agreed to that amendment, but I don't think now is the time for it.

     The amendment was again read.

     MR. LONG (Walker)--I see that "Lieutenant-Governor" is in the minority report and I therefore withdraw the point of order.

     MR. REESE--I understand the question before the House is the amendment offered by the gentleman from Jefferson to the minority report. I favor the substance of the gentleman's amendment. I, however, am not inclined to think that it goes sufficiently far. When the question as to the establishment of this office came before the Convention, it seemed to be the general opinion that we were not to fasten a lien on the people of the State of Alabama to support this office in any greater dignity than the office had been supported in years gone by, under a different name. I do not think the amendment goes sufficiently far. I am inclined to think it ought to contain the words "and no other compensation." The substance and the purpose that is proposed to be accomplished by the gentleman, is unquestionably a good one. It was said on the floor here the other day, and with great force and with great truth, that we were establishing a new office and placing a lien on the taxable property of the people of this State to support that office. The view that I took of it at that time, and the view that I now take of it is, that we change the name of this officer and the method by which he shall be elected; that we give back to the people the power that they ought to have, the opportunity of selecting their own officers, and I say here, if this Convention refuses to limit the power of the Legislature to pass a law fixing a salary for this officer, the first Legislature will do it,--if the first Legislature does not do it, some other will,--if this Convention refuses to pass a limitation upon the compensation of this officer, it will be dragged through the next legislative halls, and it will be said that this Convention intended that he should receive more pay; that this Convention expressly declined to place him in the status in which the President of the Senate has always stood; they will say that he is a quasi Governor, a species of Governor, and that he has a big office, and that he is compelled by the people of Alabama to carry a biu and honorable title, and the people must give him the money along with the title to support him in respectability. The title is considerable compensation. In these days when the ordinary man in this country, and all of us are entitled only to the title of Colonel, they introduce and legalize a new title in this State, which will be a coveted honor. The man that gets this great office will be known from that time on as Governor, and will have the privilege of having it inscribed upon his tombstone, in order that posterity will know that he held this title. That is all the compensation that he wants.


579

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

     MR. PEARCE--I desire to rise in favor of the amendment. I think the office of Governor in this State is a great responsibility, but I think it is a great mistake to create a demand for more Governors in this country considering the amount of gubernatorial material around here. Why, sir, there are hundreds of men in this State who would like to have the Governorship at the present price. I can show you a hundred in my county that would like to have it at the present figures. It is unnecessary and there is no call for the increase. At this price there has been a great political party in this country slaughtered trying to get this place, and consequently I favor the amendment.

     MR. WADDELL--I rise to a point of order. The gentleman is not speaking to the amendment.

     MR. PEARCE--Well I don't know why I am not. I insist, and state it as a fact, and it is a fact in straight language, and now I make a motion to take an aye and nay vote on the previous question. (Laughter.)

     THE PRESIDENT--The question is on the amendment proposed by the gentleman from Jefferson to the minority report

     On a vote the amendment was adopted.

     The Chair stated the question recurred upon the minority report of the Committee.

     MR. deGRAFFENREID--I move that the minority report be laid on the table.

     MR. REESE--On that I call for the ayes and noes.

     MR. LONG (Walker)--I call for the ayes and noes.

     MR. JONES (Montgomery)--I don't think my friend from Hale remembers that the gentleman who made that report has not had an opportunity to be heard, and I hope he will withdraw that motion.

     MR. deGRAFFENREID--Yes, I withdraw for the purpose of letting him be heard and then I will renew the motion.

     MR. VAUGHAN--I yield to the gentleman from Morgan.

     MR. WHITESIDE--I rise to a point of order.

     THE PRESIDENT--The gentleman will state the point of order.

     MR. WHITESIDE--That the ayes and noes had been called for when the suggestion was made that the gentleman had the right to close the argument, and the vote should be taken.

     THE PRESIDENT--It was called to the attention of the gentleman who made the motion to table, that the gentleman who


580

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

made the minority report has not been heard in advocacy of it, and he therefore withdrew the motion to table in order that the gentleman, might be heard, and the author of the minority report yields to delegate front Morgan.

     MR. PETTUS--I make the point of order that the motion cannot be withdrawn without the consent of the convention. The matter was in the possession of the convention.

     THE PRESIDENT--The point of order is well taken. The question is shall the call for the ayes and noes be sustained.

     The call for the ayes and noes was sustained.

     MR. LONG (Walker)--I call for the reading of the amendment offered by the gentleman from Jefferson, which was adopted.

     THE PRESIDENT--It will be read in due course.

     The Secretary read Section seven as amended.

     MR. PETTUS--Mr. President, I notice that the word "State" occurs before the word Auditor and Treasurer in this section, when it has been stricken out of all the other sections. I ask unanimous consent, to put that office in. The clerk may not have "State" before Auditor and Treasurer.

     Objection was made.

     MR. O'NEAL (Lauderdale)--I desire to call the attention of the Chair to the fact that Superintendent of Education was omitted from the minority report and desire to know if that is intentional or a clerical error.

     THE PRESIDENT--The minority report speaks for itself.

     MR. JONES (Montgomery)--The gentleman had leave, by unanimous consent, to put that office in. The clerk may not have heard it.

     THE PRESIDENT -- The Secretary's recollection is that leave was given to put in the words Commissioner of Agriculture and Industries, and State Treasurer.

     MR. O'NEAL--And Superintendent of Education?

     THE PRESIDENT--It is not so written here. The Chair does not entertain any amendments that are not in writing for the self preservation of this convention.

     MR. VAUGHAN--I desire to answer Mr. O'Neal, and say that section of the Constitution never did have Superintendent of Education in it. The first section of the article has Superintendent of Education incorporated in it, but this section never did have it incorporated in it.


581

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

     MR. O'NEAL (Lauderdale)--I simply arose for a matter of inquiry and that is satisfactory.

     MR. OATES--I merely wanted the minority report read.

     THE PRESIDENT--It has just been read in the hearing of the convention. Does the gentleman desire it read again?

     There was no response, the Chair put the question on the motion to table the minority report, the yeas and noes having been called for. Upon the call of the roll, the vote was as follows:

AYES

                                                              

Messrs. President,

Heflin, of Randolph,

Palmer,

Beddow,

Howell,

Pitts,

Bethune,

Inge,

Rogers, of Lowndes,

Boone,

Jones, of Bibb,

Sanders,

Brooks,

Jones, of Montgomery,

Selheimer,

Burnett,

Lomax,

Smith, of Mobile,

Carmichael, of Coffee,

Lowe, of Jefferson,

Smith, Morgan M.,

Dent,

MacDonald,

Tayloe,

deGraffenreid,

Merrill,

Waddell,

Fitts,

Morrisette,

Watts,

Gilmore,

Norwood,

White,

Graham, of Talladega,

Oates,

Wilson, of Clarke,

O'Neal, of Lauderdale,

 

 

TOTAL--37,

NOES

                                                              

Almon,

Davis, of DeKalb,

Jones, of Hale,

Altman,

Davis, of Etowah,

Jones, of Wilcox,

Ashcraft,

Duke,

Knight,

Banks,

Eley,

Ledbetter,

Barefield,

Eyster,

Leigh,

Bartlett,

Espy,

Locklin,

Beavers,

Ferguson,

Long, of Butler,

Blackwell,

Fletcher,

Long, of Walker,

Browne,

Foster,

Lowe, of Lawrence,

Bulger,

Freeman,

McMillan, of Wilcox,

Burns,

Glover,

Malone,

Byars,

Greer, of Calhoun,

Martin,

Carmichael,of Colbert

Greer, of Perry,

Maxwell,

Case,

Handley,

Miller, of Marengo,

Chapman,

Harrison,

Miller, of Wilcox,

Cobb,

Heflin, of Chambers,

Moody,

Cofer,

Henderson,

Murphree,

Coleman, of Greene,

Hodges,

Opp,

Coleman, of Walker,

Hood,

O'Rear,

Cornwall,

Howze,

Parker, of Cullman,Craig,

Jackson,

Parker, of Elmore,

Cunningham,

Jenkins,

Pearce

 


582

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

                                                                      

Pettus,

Sentell,

Vaughan,

Pillans,

Smith, Mac A.,

Walker,

Porter,

Sorrell,

Weakley,

Proctor,

Spears,

Weatherly,

Reese,

Spragins,

Whiteside,

Rogers, of Sumter,

Stewart,

Williams, of Barbour,

Sanford,

Studdard,

Wilson, of Washington,

Searcy,

Thompson,

 

Winn,

 

 

TOTAL--90.

ABSENT OR NOT VOTING

                                                                         

Cardon,

Kirkland,

Reynolds, of Chilton,

Carnathan,

Kyle,

Reynolds, of Henry,

Foshee,

McMillan,of Baldwin,

Robinson,

Graham, of Montgomery,

Mulkey,

Samford,

Grant,

NeSmith,

Sloan,

Grayson,

Norman,

Sollie,

Haley,

O'Neil, of Jefferson,

Willet,

Hinson,

Phillips,

Williams, of Marengo,

King,

Renfro,

Williams, of Elmore,

Kirk,

 

 

TOTAL--28.

     So the motion to table was lost.

     MR. PETTUS--I desire to offer an amendment to the minority report.

     The amendment was read as follows:

     Amend Section 7 of the minority report by striking out the word "State" where it occurs respectively before the words "Auditor" and "Treasurer" in the first line of said section and inserting the words "Superintendent of Education" after the word "General" in the second line of said section.

     MR. PETTUS--The reason I move to strike out the word "State" before "Auditor" and "Treasurer" is simply to be in harmony with the rest of the Constitution. That word has been stricken out in the preceding sections. Then the office of Superintendent of Education being a Constitutional office, I think should be within the prohibition of not having his salary increased.

     MR. PROCTOR--I offer a substitute.

     THE PRESIDENT--The minority report is an amendment and a delegate has moved to amend that amendment, and another amendment, in the opinion of the chair, would not be in order at this time. An amendment to an amendment is as far as we can go.


583

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

     MR. PROCTOR--Can I not offer a substitute for the amendment?

     THE PRESIDENT--The gentleman cannot offer an amendment to an amendment to an amendment. An amendment to an amendment seems to be as far as the rule will extend. A substitute in parliamentary law is merely an amendment.

     MR. ASHCRAFT--I notice that the word "Treasurer" is not in this section of the minority report. I would like to ask if it has been amended so as to include the word "Treasurer."

     MR. PETTUS--By unanimous consent, while Mr. Lomax was in the chair, that was done.

     MR. ASHCRAFT--I understand the chair to say that nothing should be entertained that was not in writing.

     THE PRESIDENT--It was in writing.

     MR. ASHCRAFT--Very well, then.

     A vote being taken, the amendment of the delegate from Limestone was adopted.

     MR. PROCTOR--I notice in the amendment offered by the delegate from Limestone he omitted the words "Commissioner of Agriculture and Industries."

     THE PRESIDENT--That is already in the section.

     MR. BURNS--Mrs. President---

     THE PRESIDENT--The gentleman from Dallas. Does the gentleman propose to amend the minority report?

     MR. BURNS--Yes, sir.

     The amendment was sent up and was read as follows:

     Amend by inserting after the word "salary," "and per diem."

     A vote being taken, the amendment was lost.

     MR. VAUGHAN--I now move the adoption of the minority report.

     MR. JONES (Montgomery)--As the chairman of the committee who made this report, and of which, it seems, if I heard their votes aright, the majority voted against it, I will not now say that I speak for the committee, but I beg to make one appeal to this convention for this office. I am sure that no man who hears my voice can imagine there is any motive on earth except the good of my State and the honor of its people, which induces me, after what seems to be an overwhelming vote against the proposition embodied in the majority report, to ask delegates to pause a little while, before they make up their minds.


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OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

     There are some occasions, Mr. President, when a man may be pardoned for speaking of personal experience. It is known to members on this floor that for four years I had the honor to hold that office. Like many others, the office out of possession seemed to be a thing to strive for and to sacrifice for, and worth more than the prize when in possession. For four years, I endured, what I believe every man of moderate means who ever held the office endured--a life to some extent of humiliation. Fellow delegates, under the present salary, you cut out four-fifths of the best men of this State for aspiring to the Governor's office. The office, year after year, has become less attractive to the young men and to the old men of Alabama. We have seen, year after year, its gifted and bravest and best sons seeking seats in Congress, or employment in other political pursuits, where the pay was greater. They could not live on honor alone. Let us stop and think a little, and see if the people--the hill billies about whom so much has been said--would condemn or censure if we passed this ordinance. There is hardly a day in the Governor's experience that some poor woman, often with a child at the breast, does not come to him to appeal for a pardon. Some times she is sent here by subscription from her neighbors, who give her just enough to come here. When she bids you good bye, it may be with tears in her eyes. she says, Governor, I have no place to go tonight, can't you help me? What man could resist such an appeal? Many a time, if it had not been for the kindness of Dave Fleming, when my own means were exhausted, poor people who came here to ask for pardon and for mercy, would have been turned out on these streets at night, because I had neither the private fortune nor contingent fund to help these unfortunates who came here to ask mercy from their State. Fellow delegates, I may be pardoned for mentioning some other experiences. Just at the close of my term, I was invited to Mobile to attend the ceremonies about the cruiser Montgomery. I knew they did not want Tom Jones, but they did want the Governor of this State. The people of Mobile were as kind to me as people could be. I had an elegant suite of rooms. I was the guest of the city. There was much hospitality tendered me by naval officers and strangers for the sake of Alabama. I was bound to return, for I revered the office and had respect for those I represented. My salary for the month of November was $250 and my expenses $278. Fellow delegates, many a time letters of introduction are brought to the Governor of Alabama from other Governors, or distinguished men, asking some attention for honored visitors. Time and time again oppressed by lack of means as Governor of Alabama, I heaved a sigh when such demands came, and there was temptation, straightened as I was, not to act the host as became my high office. But love of my people said no-and for the sake of Alabama I did what I could ill-afford. Fellow delegates, you need not be afraid of our people. We have, as some say, disfranchised


585

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

the Governor. We have said to him, you are in office for four years, you shall hold no office after that for one year, Senate nor anything else. Will the people of Alabama blame us, will they not approve us, when we say, under those circumstances, we will give your Governor money enough, if he is a poor man, that he can live decently, and we won't be ashamed of him.

     I remember, Mr. President, a visit of Governor Holliday of Virginia. He came to Montgomery one summer, some years ago. I had known him during the war, a splendid old Virginia gentleman he was. I said to him: "Governor, there is nobody at home. I am up on the hill where it is cool. You had better come up and stay with me tonight." He replied, "I am sorry, but I have accepted the hospitality of the Governor of Alabama." I saw him next morning. He looked thin and worn. He quietly said he had not slept a wink that night at the Exchange Hotel, and the next time I come to Alabama, I won't accept the Governor's hospitality.

     Do we want to put our Governor in that attitude? Don't the people of Alabama have respect for the office? Isn't he the man who can appoint a Chief Justice, appoint a Senator, put all of you under arms, who is President of your colleges, whose voice and will is equal to one-half of all the Senators and Representatives? Does not he typify your dignity, power and majesty. Isn't there a feeling about this, like that a boy has about his sweetheart or a man about his wife, when he likes to see her dress well and wear flowers? Isn't there something in this besides dollars and cents? Gentlemen, I don't believe, on any stump in Alabama, when this issue is fairly made, that you will find one hill-billie in ten who would not say, thank God you have at last done something to sustain the honor and dignity of this office which belongs to us.

     It has been urged that the Constitution has never undertaken anything like this. My friend from Walker (Mr. Long) is mistaken. In the Constitution of 1875, when we were just recovering from the horrors of reconstruction, he will find a provision requiring the legislature, at its first session after the adoption of this Constitution, to reduce the salaries 20 per cent.

     DELEGATE--Twenty-five per cent.

     MR. LONG--My statement was that it was not fixed in any Constitution since 1819.

     MR. JONES--I understood the gentleman to say that the principle as to increase or decrease, or commands as to what the General Assembly ought to do had never been in the Constitution. Are we in the condition today, Mr. President, that Alabama was in 1875? Is Alabama just emerging from ruin and desolation? Will we have it go out to the world that we are unwilling


586

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

to pay any more salary to keep up the dignity and power of this office, that we did in our days of poverty and despair? We are entering into a new era. Our State is rich, we will be richer. We prosper and will prosper. We will honor ourselves, and we will honor our State, if, in this instance at least, we increase this salary. I am not speaking for any man. When this ordinance was introduced and reported by the Committee, I had hoped, if it passed that, it would benefit and comfort the dear and gentle and wise man who sleeps today at Opelika, but Mr. President, it is not the man, it is the office for which provision should be made. All our hearts are touched by the loving demonstrations we have witnessed in honor of the noble soul whose remains lay here, in our loving care yesterday. He deserved as an individual all the tributes that had been paid him. But after all, was not the grief, the solemnity, tinged with a deeper feeling because two millions of people had lost their Chief Magistrate? I trust delegates will think this matter over and not shrink from the duty of declaring now, and for all time, that the Governor shall have a salary which will comport with his needs and the honor and the dignity of the State, and put it in the Constitution that Alabama desire every intelligent son of hers, who is fit to aspire to the office, to have the opportunity to do so, whether he is rich or poor. It is right. It is just. It is wise. Why not do it?

     MR. OATES (Montgomery)--I have no idea that anything I can say will change the opinion of any delegate on this floor, but as I introduced an ordinance which went to this Committee and in substance is embodied in their report and into the Constitution, I do not wish to shirk the responsibility of being in the minority if such be the fact, but to stand for whatsoever I do. I have been but for half the length of time of my, friend, the distinguished delegate from Montgomery, (Mr. Jones) in a position to know about the salary of Governor, but during those two years I did learn something about it, and I propose briefly to give these delegates something of my observation and experience in that matter. Go back to the condition of this State, when there were, less than half a million of white inhabitants. There were 530,000 inhabitants in the beginning of the war of '61, and prior to that time there were less than half a million, though they made the salary of their Governor $4,000 a year, and it stood at that figure until the Convention of 1875, and then because of the poverty-stricken condition of the State, which had been afflicted with carpet-baggery and a good many counties rendered insolvent, and the State itself which had never made default in the payment of interest on bonds it owed, or in any other respect, and in fact during the war absolutely ran cotton through the blockade to pay the interest on its bonded debt held in Europe, was unable to pay, and made default, and its bonds were hawked about at


587

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

about 30 cents on the dollar, and in the presence of that condition of things it was that the Convention of 1875 passed an ordinance to reduce the salary of the Governor and all other State officers, including judges, 25 per cent., and in that way the Governor was cut down to $3,000 a year. Now what is our condition? Here we have more than 1,800,000 people. We have $265,000,000 taxable property, three times as much as we had when we paid the Governor $4,000 a year, and yet gentlemen object to making his salary $5,000. Compare the condition of Alabama with other States. Take old Virginia, the Mother of States and statesmen, and they give their Governor a four years term and $5,000 a year and furnish him a mansion to live in, and today Alabama has more wealth than old Virginia, and are we to pursue this parsimonious practice? Why, gentlemen, I heard it said in the Convention in 1875, I heard similar declarations to what I have heard today, that you could get men, numbers of them, to take the office for less than the salary. Why, I can go out and find them by the score, those who would take the office for $500. We had better, if that is the way to select a Governor, simply let out the office of Governor to the lowest responsible bidder. (Laughter.) We can get enough men, I guess, to take it at $250. We want a man as Governor who will command the respect of the whole people, who will attend to his duty as such high officer in a manner that will be becoming to him and which will make his people feel a pride in seeing the office thus executed. My friend the delegate from Montgomery, properly alluded to the fact that the Governor is expected to contribute to charity, more largely, more universally, than any other ten men, though they be officials in the State of Alabama. If the Governor don't contribute something to every poor body that comes along and asks it, why what is said and thought? They go away utterly disappointed and say, "My God, what sort of a Governor--he would not even give me a dollar." They are expected to thus contribute and it takes a large amount. If he does it with any kind of liberality it cuts his salary to $2,000 a year; and in this city how can a man support his family and live in any kind of style even upon $3,000, and is not the Governor of our great State expected to entertain friends and officials sometimes. Why Governors of other States do that, and it is a proper thing for him to do in reason. Well then again, our Governor may be a poor man. The one whom we have but recently lost, a most excellent gentleman, a man of splendid capacity was, I am informed, in that category. He was a poor man come here to live with a family to support on $3,000. Was he able to rent an expensive mansion and maintain it? No sir, he found a place in a boarding house and not a first-class one at that, because he was unable, his salary would not warrant his paying the price. Why, sir, is that the way for Alabama to treat her Governor? Then, again, visitors come here,


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OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

and as this is the Cradle of the Confederacy and the Capitol at which the first Confederate Congress met, and where the Confederate President was inaugurated, they come here from New England, and everywhere else, and come up to the Capitol and ask naturally of the guide where is the Governor's office, we would like to see him very much, to meet him. The guide takes them around into the Governor's office to show them the office, and when they get around in there they see him in a little 12x14 room like a half-grown bear, and there is the Governor of the great State of Alabama. Ah, I tell you, gentlemen, it marks a stinginess in our people that is unwarranted. Demagogism has prompted men on the stump to say time and again, "Ah, we won't pay large salaries," and yet expect the best class of men to give their services to the State through mere patriotism. It is true the honor is great because the office of Governor is the highest in the gift of the people in our State and it ought to be honored. It is not for this purpose that report is made, to make it a money getting institution. You take any man of first class ability, as nearly all lawyers are--they are most usually the men elected Governor,--and where is one who goes into the practice and labors at his desk but makes that much and more by his profession. Now why is it necessary to incorporate it in the Constitution? I don't believe that the delegates in this convention are disposed to vote that down because they dislike to give the Governor that salary. That is not the reason, that is not it at all, it is because they do not like the precedent of fixing a salary in the Constitution. That is it. Gentlemen, I know you are patriotic and intelligent and you do not want your Governor cramped as he is now, but you want to show him more liberality. You will, I believe, before this convention adjourns direct the General Assembly as soon as practicable to provide a decent mansion as a residence for your Governor, but you do not like the principle of incorporating it in the Constitution. Wherefore should it be? Because your legislators will not do it. That is the reason. They have had twenty-five years, and where has any progress ever been made in that direction? None at all. Will it be, if you relegate it to your Legislature? There it will stay right where it is. There will be plenty of them will say, Oh, well he ought to live on the honor. Well gentlemen, it is elevating in our State when we show proper respect for this highest of our offices. If you are afraid of the money, cut down the salary--though they be low--of some other officials rather than keep your Governor groping along in this way. The Chief Justice of your Supreme Court gets $600 a year more salary than the Governor of your State, and that is probably not enough. The President of the Railroad Commission gets $500 more than your Governor. Why is it that he is of so much more importance? The Associate Railroad Commissioner gets as much as the Governor. Every solicitor in the State gets as much, every solicitor that goes around


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CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

and prosecutes in the courts gets as much pay as your Governor. It is simply ridiculous and I tell you that if you rely upon the Legislature it will not be done. It is safe to judge the future by the past and when men have been tried for twenty-five years and have not done the necessary and proper thing, why risk it any longer. I have seen nothing in this report, and I presume there will be nothing in any other that attempts to fix the salary of any but this officer, the highest in the gift of the people and the honor that any and every citizen in the State would like to have and properly so. I hope that the delegates in this convention will individually take it unto themselves and consider the necessity for this and the reasonableness of it, and adopt it.

     MR. BLACKWELL--The arguments made by the distinguished gentleman from Montgomery could well have been reserved for the Legislature when it next assembled in the Capitol of Alabama. Individually I am in favor of increasing the Governor's salary. Individually I am in favor of giving the Governor $5,000 a year, but this great State that the gentlemen have presented here this evening is made up of people. It is not the character of the land that Alabama has that constitutes her chief greatness. It is not the mineral wealth that Alabama has that constitutes her chief greatness. It is not the 11,000 square miles of coal lands that Alabama has that constitutes her chief greatness, but it is the people of the State of Alabama that constitute her greatness, I want to know who presented this question to the people in the campaigns for the Constitutional Convention and who said to them that one of the duties they expected to perform as a delegate to this convention was to fix a salary at five thousand dollars a year?

     MR. OATES--If the gentleman will allow me, I was one. I made seventeen speeches and advocated it on the stump each time and was usually applauded.

     MR. BLACKWELL--How many more made it? The only time we have heard the question discussed as to what the Governor's salary should be was in 1875 when the Governor was paid $4,000 a year, and as a matter of fact the only expression given by the people was that they desired a reduction of salaries and in obedience to the demands of the people that salary was reduced 25 per cent. I am perfectly willing to go before the people and say that the Governor should have what these gentlemen say now. I am willing to risk the people to do right in the matter.

     MR. JONES--Won't this Constitution go before the people?

     MR. BLACKWELL--Yes, and I don't want to load the Constitution down with things that the people haven't considered or expressed themselves on, or wherever they have said anything


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OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

about it, have been opposed to it. I don't want to go before the people with a Constitution loaded down with such things and jeopardize the success of this Constitution that will relieve them of negro domination. I want as few things put in here as possible that the people themselves can settle at the polls. If the gentlemen are so certain that the people of Alabama will not object to this measure, why not wait and let that be made an issue in the campaign before the people, and hear the voice of the people direct rather than by proxy. It seems to me we want to put just as few things in that Constitution as it is possible to put in that Constitution that may endanger its success. If the gentlemen are satisfied that the sovereign people of Alabama favor this idea, why put it in the Constitution? Don't you believe that any member of the Legislature, if there is a constituency behind him that wants this thing, will readily carry it out. It is not that I am opposed to the measure personally that makes me object to it, but it is the fact that the people have given me no, authority or instruction to do any such a thing as this.

     MR. O'NEAL--Is it not a fact that provisions of a similar character to this are found in many of the Constitutions of the other States?

     MR. BLACKWELL--Yes, sir, I do not entertain that objection to it that I don't want it in the Constitution, as the gentleman assumes, but I want the people to express themselves on it, and I want to know whether they want it put in the Constitution before I am willing, as their representative, thus to act for them. My people have certainly had no discussion on this matter. My people have certainly expressed no opinion on this matter. My people say they want reductions wherever they can be made, and we are pledged to have no increased rate of taxation. If we go on and increase the salaries of officers, where are we going to get the money to pay the increase except by taxes upon the people. And yet, if the people want to increase it, they have a right to do so, and you say the people would be willing to do it. Then why not submit the question to them and not speak for them when they have not authorized it, but ask them and let them say whether or not they want it. I know Alabama is great enough to do this if she wants to do it, but the people have a right to speak on the matter, and, therefore, I am opposed to putting it in the Constitution as their representatives, and it seems to me that these appeals which the gentlemen are now making should be made to the Legislature, and if it is so important and the people can be made to see it, it would be made an issue in the next campaign and the Governor can have the full benefit of it if the people of Alabama are willing he should have it, and I, for one am willing he should have it.

     MR. GREER--I move the previous question. 


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CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

     A vote being taken, the main question ordered, and a further vote being taken on the motion to adopt the minority report, the yeas and nays were demanded and the roll call resulted as follows:

AYES

                                                                     

Almon,

Freeman,

Murphree,

Altman,

Glover,

Opp,

Ashcraft,

Greer, of Calhoun,

O'Rear,

Barefield,

Greer, of Perry,

Parker (Cullman),

Bartlett,

Handley,

Parker (Elmore),

Beavers,

Harrison,

Pearce,

Blackwell,

Heflin, of Randolph,

Pettus,

Brow ne,

Henderson,

Pillans,

Bulger,

Hinson,

Porter,

Burns,

Hodges,

Proctor,

Byars,

Hood,

Reese,

Carmichael,of Colbert,

Jackson,

Rogers (Sumter),

Case,

Jenkins,

Searcy,

Chapman,

Jones, of Bibb,

Sentell,

Cobb,

Jones, of Hale,

Sloan,

Cofer,

Jones, of Wilcox,

Smith, Mac. A.,

Coleman, of Greene,

Knight,

Sorrell,

Coleman, of Walker,

Ledbetter,

Spears,

Cornwall,

Leigh,

Spragins,

Cunningham,

Locklin,

Stewart,

Davis, of DeKalb,

Long, of Butler,

Thompson,

Davis, of Etowah,

Long, of Walker,

Vaughan,

Duke,

Lowe, of Lawrence,

Walker,

Eley,

McMillan (Wilcox),

Weakley,

Eyster,

Malone,

Weatherly,

Espy,

Martin,

Whiteside,

Ferguson,

Maxwell,

Williams (Barbour),

Fletcher,

Miller (Marengo),

Wilson (Washington),

Foster,

Miller (Wilcox),

Winn,

Moody,

 

 

TOTAL--88.

NOES

                                                                    

Messrs. President,

Fitts,

Morrisette,

Banks,

Gilmore,

Norman,

Beddow,

Graham, of Montgomery,

Norwood,

Bethune,

Graham, of Talladega,

Oates,

Boone,

Howell,

O'Neal (Lauderdale),.

Brooks,

Howze,

Palmer,

B urnett,

Inge,

Pitts,

Carmichael,of Coffee,

Jones, of Montgomery,

Rogers (Lowndes),

Craig,

Lomax,

Sanders,

Dent,

Macdonald,

Sanford,

deGraffenreid,

Merrill,

Selheimer,


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Smith (Mobile)

            Tayloe

White

Smith, Morgan M.

Wilson (Clarke)

Waddell

Watts

 

 

TOTAL--41.

ABSENT OR NOT VOTING

                                                                             

Cardon,

Kirkland,

Reynolds (Chilton),

Carnathon,

Kyle,

Reynolds (Henry),

Foshee,

Lowe, of Jefferson,

Robinson,

Grant,

McMillan (Baldwin),

Samford,

Grayson,

Mulkey,

Sollie,

Haley,

NeSmith,

Studdard,

Heflin, of Chambers,

O'Neill (Jefferson),

Willett,

King,

Phillips,

Williams (Marengo),

Kirk,

Renfro,

Williams (Elmore),

TOTAL--26.

     So the minority report was adopted.

     MR. JONES (Montgomery)--I move the previous question on the section as amended.

     A vote being taken, the plain question was ordered and a further vote being taken the section as amended was adopted.

     MR. JONES (Montgomery)--I move the adoption of Section 8 and on that I call for the previous question.

     Section 8 was read as follows:

     "Section 8. The Governor shall take care that the laws be faithfully executed."

     A vote being taken the main question was ordered and a further vote being taken the section was adopted.

     MR. JONES (Montgomery)--I now move that the Convention adjourn.

     MR. REESE--I ask the gentleman to allow me to offer a resolution so as to have it referred to the Committee on Rules.

     MR. JONES (Montgomery)--I will withdraw the motion to adjourn if you will renew it after you offer your resolution.

     MR. REESE--Very well
.
Resolution 146, by Mr. Reese

     Resolved, That hereafter, when members shall come into. the Convention, after the roll call, their presence may be noted by the Secretary, upon their personal application, without interrupting the Convention proceedings.


593

CONSTITUTIONAL, CONVENTION, 1901

     MR. deGRAFFENREID--I move that the rules be suspended and that resolution be adopted now.

     A vote being taken the rules were suspended and a further vote being taken the resolution was adopted.

     MR. REESE--I now renew the motion made by the delegate from Montgomery.

     A vote being taken the motion was carried, and the Convention adjourned.

_______

CORRECTIONS

     On second page of proceedings nineteenth day in latter part of inquiry by Mr. Sanford transpose "it is" to "is it" so that inquiry will read as follows :

     Is it not a fact that this is a limitation upon the rights of the people to vote for any man they please for any office, and, therefore, is it not a disfranchisement of the people so far as that is concerned?

     The point of order made against the amendment of Mr. Brown, that it had already been offered by the delegate from Walker and had been passed by the House which was attributed to Mr. Brooks, was made by some other delegate.

     Mr. Brooks' sentence in reference to Mr. Browne's amendment should read, "You can offer an amendment to an amendment but you cannot at the same time offer another amendment to another point of the section.