Elliot’s Debates: Volume 1

Journal of the Federal Convention

Monday, June 11, 1787.

The Hon. Abraham Baldwin, Esq., one of the deputies of the state of Georgia, attended and took his seat.

The order of the day being read, the house resolved itself into a committee of the whole house, to consider of the state of the American Union. Mr. President left the chair.

In Committee of the whole House.

Mr. Gorham in the chair.

It was moved by Mr. King, seconded by Mr. Rutledge, to agree to the following resolution, namely:—

Resolved, That the right of suffrage in the first branch of the national legislature ought not to be according to the rule established in the Articles of Confederation, but according to some equitable ratio of representation.”

And on the question to agree to the same, it passed in the affirmative.

Yeas: Massachusetts, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, 7. Nays: New York, New Jersey, Delaware, 3. Divided: Maryland, 1.

It was then moved by Mr. Rutledge, seconded by Mr. Butler, to add the following words to the last resolution, namely, “according to the quotas of contribution.”

It was moved by Mr. Wilson, seconded by Mr. C. Pinckney, to postpone the consideration of the last motion, in order to introduce the following words after the words “equitable ratio of representation,” namely,—

“In proportion to the whole number of white and other free citizens and inhabitants, of every age, sex, and condition, including those bound to servitude for a term of years, and three fifths of all other persons not comprehended in the foregoing description, except Indians not paying taxes, in each state.”

On the question to postpone, it passed in the affirmative.

Yeas: Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, 10. Nay: Delaware, 1.

On the question to agree to Mr. Wilson’s motion, it passed in the affirmative.

Yeas: Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, 9. Nays: New Jersey, Delaware, 2.

It was moved by Mr. Sherman, seconded by Mr. Ellsworth, “that in the second branch of the national legislature each state have a vote.”

On the question to agree to the same, it passed in the negative.

Yeas: Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, 5. Nays: Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, 6.

It was then moved by Mr. Wilson, seconded by Mr. Hamilton, to adopt the following resolution, namely:—

Resolved, That the right of suffrage, in the second branch of the national legislature, ought to be according to the rule established for the first.”

On the question to agree to the same, it passed in the affirmative.

Yeas: Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, 6. Nays: Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, 5.

It was moved and seconded to amend the 11th resolution submitted by Mr. Randolph, by adding the words “voluntary junction, or partition.” Passed in the affirmative.

Yeas: Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, 7. Nays: Connecticut, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, 4.

It was moved, and seconded to amend the resolution, by adding the words “national government” after the words—

Yeas: Massachusetts, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, 7. Nays: New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, 4.

It was moved and seconded to agree to the 11th resolution submitted by Mr. Randolph, amended to read as follows:—

Resolved, That a republican constitution, and its existing laws, ought to be guarantied to each state, by the United States.”

And on the question to agree to the same, it passed unanimously in the affirmative.

It was then moved and seconded to agree to the following resolution:—

Resolved, That provision ought to be made for the amendment of the articles of union, whensoever it shall seem necessary.”

On the question to agree to the same, it passed in the affirmative.

It was agreed to postpone the following clause in the 13th resolution submitted by Mr. Randolph, namely:—

“And that the assent of the national legislature ought not to be required thereto.”

It was then moved and seconded to agree to the 14th resolution submitted by Mr. Randolph, namely:—

Resolved, That the legislative, executive, and judiciary powers, within the several states, ought to be bound by oath to support the articles of union.”

It was then moved by Mr. Martin, seconded By—, to strike out the words “within the several states.”

And on the question to strike out, it passed in the negative.

Yeas: Connecticut, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, 4. Nays: Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, 7.

It was then moved and seconded to agree to the 14th resolution, as submitted by Mr. Randolph.

And on the question to agree to the same, it passed unanimously in the affirmative.

Yeas: Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, 6. Nays: Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, 5.

It was moved and seconded to agree to the 15th resolution submitted by Mr. Randolph.

And on the question to agree to the same, it passed in the affirmative.

Yeas: Massachusetts, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, 5. Nays: Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, 3. Divided: Delaware, Maryland, 2.

It was then moved and seconded, that the committee do now rise, report a further progress, and request leave to sit again. The committee then rose.

In the House.

Mr. President resumed the chair.

Mr. Gorham reported, from the committee, That the committee had made a further progress in the matter to them referred, and had directed him to move that they may have leave to sit again.

Resolved, That this house will to-morrow again resolve itself into a committee of the whole house, to consider the state of the American Union.”

And then the house adjourned till to-morrow, at 11 o’clock, A. M.

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Contents

General Overview

In 1787 and 1788, following the Constitutional Convention, a great debate took place throughout America over the Constitution that had been proposed.

In-Doors Debate

View in-depth studies of the Massachusetts, Virginia, and New York state ratifying conventions.

The Federal Pillars

View drawings of the federal pillars rising published by the Massachusetts Centinel during the ratification debate.

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The Stages of Ratification: An Interactive Timeline

View the six stages of the ratification of the Constitution with links to many other features on this site.

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Interactive Ratification Map

View interactive maps showing the breakdown of Federalist-Antifederalist strength at the state level during the Ratification debate.

View Interactive

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