Skip to comments.Gilbert Livingston Speech in the New York Convention, 24 June 1788
Posted on 01/27/2022 10:19:47 AM PST by Renfrew
Consider, Sir, the great influence, which this [Senate] armed at all points will have. What will be the effect of this? Probably, a security of their re-election, as long as they please. Indeed, in my view, it will amount nearly to an appointment for life.
What will be their situation in a federal town? Hallowed ground! Nothing so unclean as state laws to enter there; surrounded, as they will be, by an impenetrable wall of adamant and gold; the wealth of the whole country flowing into it.
Their attention to their various business, will probably require their constant attendance.—In this Eden, will they reside, with their families, distant from the observation of the people. In such a situation, men are apt to forget their dependence—lose their sympathy, and contract selfish habits. Factions will be apt to be formed, if the body becomes permanent. The senators will associate only with men of their own class; and thus become strangers to the condition of the common people.
(Excerpt) Read more at csac.history.wisc.edu ...
In retrospect it seems everything he warned about has come true.
According to his Wikipedia biography, Gilbert Livingston (1742-1806) did in the end vote for ratification of the Constitution because he felt confident that a bill of rights would be added. He was from a less affluent branch of the prominent Livingston family of New York. His son-in-law Smith Thompson became an associate justice of the Supreme Court (after Gilbert’s death).
The members of this site would do well to study the Founding Fathers’ speeches, writings, sermons, etc., including what we now call the Congressional Record. There is nothing new under the sun.
I refer to books written by David Barton of Wallbuilders. He is an excellent scholar in this area. First recommendation is a book titled Original Intent.
Thanks to the 17th Amendment.
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