Where in the US Constitution does it say that Lincoln was granted the legal authority to initiate a military invasion against the southern states ?

Belfoured

2nd Lieutenant
Joined
Aug 3, 2019
I have no idea what you’re getting at. According to Lee secession is rebellion and “sending inadequate number of troops across a mile of open territory to assault a well fortified enemy position” is not suicide.
Whenever somebody points to Lee's views about secession stated clearly in his January 1861 letter to his son, the answer is "he wasn't a lawyer". So when the views of a tribunal of 9 lawyers are then pointed to, the answer is "they were wrong". There is indeed an "answer" for everything.
 

NedBaldwin

Major
Joined
Feb 19, 2011
Location
California
The fact is that secession was still a hotly debated topic at the time of the Civil War...

Was it really, or is thus just 21st Century a rationalization by people who hate the Union?
Because I don't see it as an open question that way you do - I think it was generally understood to be unconstitutional at the time.
And I think South Carolina knew it, which is why it did not claim secession was legal but rather it claimed that the Constitution was already broken so they released from their obligations.
 

mobile_96

First Sergeant
Joined
Feb 20, 2005
Location
Ill.
I would humbly ask you to look at Virginia's adoption of the Constitution I believe she made a few provisions some might even call it an escape clause
Ok, lets look at Virginia.
In Ratification, starting Chapter 10 pg 292 thru 319, they only talked of whether to ratify after amendments were added to the Constitution, or to ratify if amendments were to be added at a later date.
On June 26th with nothing attached "and the convention ordered it sent to the Confederation Congress"
Finally on June 27, the Wythe committee recommended a bill of rights and an additional 20 amendments to the Constitution that the people of the commonwealth, would "enjoin" on their representatives in Congress to "exert all their influence and use all
reasonable and legal to have enacted." Until then, all laws were to "conform to the spirit of these amendments as far as the said Constitution will admit."
(Nothing conditional here)
Here is an excerpt of what Virginia said in the only document on acceptance she sent to the Confederation Congress:
"and under the conviction that whatsoever imperfections may exist in the Constitution ought rather to be examined in (pg 375)
the mode prescribed therein, than to bring the Union into danger by a delay with a hope of obtaining amendments previous to the ratifications, — We, the said delegates, in the name and in behalf of the people of Virginia, do, by these presents, assent to
and ratify the Constitution recommended, on the 17th day of September, 1787, by the Federal Convention, for the government of the United States, hereby announcing to all those whom it may concern, that the said Constitution is binding upon the said
people, according to an authentic copy hereto annexed, in the words following. [See Constitution.] Done in Convention, this 26th day of June, 1788." (pg 375)
Jonathan Elliot, The Debates in the Several State Conventions of the Adoption of the Federal
Constitution vol. 1 [1827]
 

mobile_96

First Sergeant
Joined
Feb 20, 2005
Location
Ill.
As some claimed Rhode Island had an escape clause lets see about her.
Rhode Island it a bit more interesting, but I will only touch on the high points
Again from Ratification: page 458-9 "It took another six months and a lot more pressure
to bring Rhode Island back into the union. The state's legislature repeatedly turned down
calls of a convention. Much of the opposition to the Consltitution came from Rhode Islanders
opposed to slavery and the slave trade and also from a concern over the state's paper money and
its program for retiring Rhode Island's debt from the Revolutionary War. But by September 1789 the
debt had been repaid or forfeited, and the state's insistent independence from the rest of the
union became less pressing and more dangerous.....
On May 13 1790, Congress passed a bill that prohibited all trade with Rhode Island by land or sea. Violaters
would face confiscation of their ships, fines up to $500, and six months of imprisonment. The Senate bill also
demanded Rhode Island pay its share of the old government's debt, some $25,000, a fair sum, by December 1.
Finally, on May 29, five days after it had reconvened in Newport, the convention voted by a grudging 34-32 to
ratify the Constitution. four opposition members were absent. Had they voted, Rhode Island would have
remained outside the United States.
(Nothing conditional here)
Here is an excerpt of Rhode Islands document sent to the Confederation Congress
"Under these impressions, and declaring that the rights aforesaid cannot be abridged or
violated, and that the explanations aforesaid are consistent with the said Constitution,
and in confidence that the amendments hereafter mentioned will receive an early and
mature consideration, and, conformably to the fifth article of said Constitution,
speedily become a part thereof, — We, the said delegates, in the name and in the
behalf of the people of the state of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, do, by
these presents, assent to and ratify the said Constitution. In full confidence,
nevertheless, that, until the amendments hereafter proposed and undermentioned shall
be agreed to and ratified, pursuant to the aforesaid fifth article, the militia of this state
will not be continued in service out of this state, for a longer term than six weeks," pg 389
Jonathan Elliot, The Debates in the Several State
Conventions of the Adoption of the Federal
Constitution vol. 1 [1827]
 

mobile_96

First Sergeant
Joined
Feb 20, 2005
Location
Ill.
On to New York. another state that had issues with the timing of amendments. On page 395
"Then in yet another turn in the delegates' tortuous cause, Lansing destroyed the unnatural
harmoney by reintroducing a provision, taken from Melancton Smith's controversial second proposal, that would
reserved New York's right to "recede and withdraw" from its ratification if no convention were called to
consider amendments after a certaun number of years, which his motion left undefined....
Hamilton said Lansing's proposal would keep New York out of the union as effectively as a conditional ratification. To prove his point, he read a letter from James Madison, whom he had asked for advice on the issue.
"My opinion." Madison said, "is that a reservation of a right to withdraw if amendments be not decided on under
the form of the Constitution within a certain time, is a conditional ratification," and so it would not make New York
"a member of the New Union." The Constitution, he explained, had to be adoped "in toto, and for ever." as it had been by the other states, and "any condition whatsoever must viciate the ratification."
(conditional dropped)
"Saturday, July 19, 1788; when Mr. LANSING moved to postpone the several propositions before the house, in order to take into consideration a draft of a conditional ratification, with a bill of rights prefixed, and amendments subjoined." (pg 293)

Debates arose on the motion, and it was carried. The committee then proceeded to consider separately the amendments proposed in this plan of ratification.
Wednesday,July 23, 1788. — Mr. JONES moved, that the words on condition, in the form of the ratification, should be obliterated, and that the words in full confidence should be substituted — which was carried. by a vote of 31-29.
The committee continued the consideration of the amendments till Thursday; when Mr. LANSING moved to adopt a resolution, that there should be reserved to the state of New York a right to withdraw herself from the Union after a certain number of
years, unless the amendments proposed should previously be submitted to a general convention.
This motion was negatived. " (pg 294)
Jonathan Elliot, The Debates in the Several State Conventions of the Adoption of the Federal
Constitution vol. 2 [1827]

This is an excerpt of New Yorks document submitted to the Confederation Congress.
"Under these impressions, and declaring that the rights aforesaid cannot be abridged or
violated, and that the explanations aforesaid are consistent with the said Constitution,
and in confidence that the amendments which shall have been proposed to the said
Constitution will receive an early and mature consideration, — We, the said
delegates, in the name and in the behalf of the people of the state of New York, do, by
these presents, assent to and ratify the said Constitution." pg 379
Jonathan Elliot, The Debates in the Several State Conventions of the Adoption of the Federal
Constitution vol. 1 [1827]
All 5 volumes of the debates can be found here
https://oll.libertyfund.org/title/elliot-the-debates-in-the-several-state-conventions-5-vols
 
Joined
Jun 27, 2017
So you are saying that the congresses that enacted the various Militia Acts and the Insurrection Act had no reason to do so? I don't think so.
Forget any acts of Congress. The President's oath of office requires him to protect, preserve and defend the Constitution of the Us against ALL enemies of the US foreign and DOMESTIC. If I rob a post office the President could send all the Seal teams, the Rangers, the 101st Airborn and the Big Red One to apprehend me. It would be a slight overkill but within his authority.

The Confederacy tried to take control over federal forts, federal armories and prevent federal collection of import duties. The simple attack against FT Sumpter gives the President total authority to resist that attack and resume control over that federal property with or without Congressional action.
 

thomas aagaard

1st Lieutenant
Joined
Nov 19, 2013
Location
Denmark
Forget any acts of Congress. The President's oath of office requires him to protect, preserve and defend the Constitution of the Us against ALL enemies of the US foreign and DOMESTIC. If I rob a post office the President could send all the Seal teams, the Rangers, the 101st Airborn and the Big Red One to apprehend me. It would be a slight overkill but within his authority.

The Confederacy tried to take control over federal forts, federal armories and prevent federal collection of import duties. The simple attack against FT Sumpter gives the President total authority to resist that attack and resume control over that federal property with or without Congressional action.
Actually the US military cant be uset for ordinary lawenforcement... unless local authorities are clearly not Abel to deal with the issue. And this was the exact situation in spring 1861.
 
Joined
Jun 27, 2017
Actually the US military cant be uset for ordinary lawenforcement... unless local authorities are clearly not Abel to deal with the issue. And this was the exact situation in spring 1861.
Actually the prohibition is a Congressional act not a Constitutional requirement. The Posse Comitatus Act is a 20th Century addition.
 

Jantzen64

Private
Joined
Aug 10, 2019
Show me where he met the requirements of the law. Was he requested by the governors or the legislatures of the Southern states to send in militia? That's what the law required.

Here's the 1795 Militia Act, in force when Lincoln was president.
https://www.loc.gov/law/help/statutes-at-large/3rd-congress/session-2/c3s2ch36.pdf
Sorry to be late to the party, and it looks like more recent posts have moved on to other aspects of the issue, but Lincoln DID meet the requirements of the law. Section 2 of the 1795 Militia Act - which you cite - provides as follows:

*******

SEC. 2. And be it further enacted, That whenever the laws of the United States shall be opposed, or the execution thereof obstructed, i any state, by combinations too powerful to be suppressed by the ordinary course of judicial proceedings, or by the powers vested in themarshals by this act, it shall be lawful for the President of the United States, to call forth the militia of such state, or of any other state or states, as may be necessary to suppress such combinations, and to cause the laws to be duly executed; and the use of militia so to be called forth may be continued, if necessary, until the expiration of thirty days after the commencement of the then next session of Congress.

********
There is no requirement in this language that calling out of the militia be done at the request of a state legislature, nor any requirement of any type of threshold showing prior to the call out. The check and balance lies in the limited time of the call out, subject to Congressional oversight and ratifciation/re-approval. By citing the particular passage of Section 2, Lincoln was making sure he was acting constitutionally.

The language you cite referring to requests from the state legislature or executive is from Section 1, which applies to a different scenario; namely, an insurrection in a state "against the government thereof." Section 2 applies to insurrections against the laws of the United States.
 
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