Secession Era Editorials Project

Senator Douglas.

Charleston, South Carolina, Mercury [Democratic]

(6 February 1854)

We are able to do only imperfect justice to the speech of this distinguished Senator in defence of the territorial bill. It was an effort remarkably complete and powerful, and a most triumphant vindication of his own position. In the part which we quote, it will be observed that two points are unanswerably established. 1st. That the Missouri Compromise was in effect abrogated by the acts of 1850; inasmuch as portions of territory acquired with Louisiana, other portions acquired with Texas and still others acquired from Mexico, were all undistinguishingly melted together and organized under the non-intervention law of the last Compromise. 2d, That the amendment of Mr. MASON, to the bill fixing the boundary of Texas, inasmuch, as any construction of it which should make it a confirmation of the Missouri Compromise would be loaded with the absurdity of making the vague words, "or otherwise," operate as a repeal of the substantive provisions of the bill to which they were added. But we desire merely to call attention to the admirable argument of the Illinois Senator.

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