-- Dilemmas of Compromise --


Albany Evening Journal, December 19, 1860
Wednesday Evening

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Senator Crittenden's Compromise Proposition

Senator Crittenden is among the least extortionate representatives of the Pro-Slavery section of the Union. We may reasonably assume, therefore, that he would be content with as mild concessions as any of his cotemporaries. And yet he demands, as the basis of another "final settlement," the recognition of the right of Slavery to all the Territory, "now or hereafter acquired," South of 36:30!

He follows up this demand by others, viz:

The recognition of Slavery as property, and its protection in all the Territories south of 36:30:

No Congressional interference with Slaves in the States, or in the District of Columbia:

No interference with the transportation of Slaves from one State to another, whether by land, river or sea:

Compensation for rescued Fugitive Slaves:

The right of Congress to demand the repeal of State laws calculated to impede the recovery of fugitives: and

The equalization of the U.S. Commissioners' Fees, whether the claimed fugitive is surrendered or not.

These propositions have the merit of distinctness. No one can misunderstand them. But they are partial and one sided; and cannot be deemed to embody that spirit of mutual concession without which it will be quite impossible to effect such an adjustment as will even approximate a "final settlement."

But if this be true of what Senator Crittenden proposes, what may we expect to be the character of the plan which will be satisfactory to Senators Mason or Toombs?