Alexander Hamilton Papers

New York Ratifying Convention. Third Speech of July 15, [15 July 1788]

New York Ratifying Convention. Third Speech of July 15

[Poughkeepsie, New York, July 15, 1788]

Ham[ilton]—extremely sorry Lan[sing] cannot see the matter as he does1—has this consolation, that they have done all they could to conciliate—heartily wishes the matter may be postponed till tomorrow—gent[lemen] have men[tione]d the breach of the Confed[eratio]n2—considers the clause of amend[ment]s in it only going to the mode of govt—people may alter their govt—Mot[io]n that the committee rise—3

Gilbert Livingston MS Notes, MS Division, New York Public Library.

1John Lansing, Jr., had said that he wished an immediate decision on the question of imposing conditions on New York’s ratification of the Constitution.

2Presumably Gilbert Livingston had stated that the Articles of Confederation were binding on the states and could not be abrogated. In his own notes of debates in the Convention, however, Livingston made only this cryptic notation opposite his own name: “Old Compact.”

3On the following day, July 16, H made one brief remark which, taken out of the context of the debate has little significance. It reads: “gent [presumably John Lansing, Jr.] supposes he meant that the questn. should be finally taken this day—did not mean to preclude himself from offering any other matter.” (Gilbert Livingston MS Notes.)

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