George Washington Papers
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From George Washington to the United States Senate and House of Representatives, 6 August 1790

To the United States Senate and House of Representatives

United States [New York] August 6th 1790.

Gentlemen of the Senate and House of Representatives,

I have directed my Secretary to lay before you a Copy1 of an exemplified Copy of a Law, to ratify, on the part of the State of New Jersey, certain Amendments to the Constitution of the United States; together with the Copy of a letter which accompanied said ratification, from The Honorable Elisha Lawrence Esquire Vice President of the State of New Jersey to the President of the United States.2

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LS, DNA: RG 46, First Congress, 1789–91, Records of Legislative Proceedings, President’s Messages; LB, DLC:GW.

1The copy is in the hand of Tobias Lear.

2Elisha Lawrence’s 4 Aug. 1790 letter from Burlington, N.J., to GW merely covered “An Exemplified Copy of A Law of the State of New-Jersey, Ratifying Certain Amendments to the Constitution of the United States” that the New Jersey house of assembly passed on 18 Nov. 1789 and the state council approved two days later. The act, signed by William Livingston, president of the council, and John Beatty, speaker of the house, and certified on 3 Aug. 1790 by Bowes Reed, secretary of the state of New Jersey, approved all of the twelve amendments earlier proposed by Congress to the state legislatures, except for the second: “No law varying the compensation for the services of the Senators and Representatives, shall take effect, until an election of representatives shall have intervened” (DNA: RG 46, First Congress, 1789–91, Records of Legislative Proceedings, President’s Messages; Circular to the Governors of the States, 2 Oct. 1789 and note 1).

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