From the New York Times’ Washington correspondent, December 3, 1860: first some good news about compromise possibilities, then some worrisome news about two cabinet members resigning. Senator Clingman from North Carolina proposes a peaceful separation. Finally some bad news about Buchanan’s spineless reaction to secession threats.
(WASHINGTON, Monday, Dec. 3 — P.M.
The remarkable good order and the apparent kind feeling exhibited in both houses of Congress to-day, are the subject of much comment among all parties, and revive a strong hope that all the difficulties will be amicably settled, and the integrity of the Union preserved. Even the most extreme Southern men express gratification at the manifestations, and the several parties actively engaged in arranging a plan for pacification, have become encouraged to persevere, the impression being general that with the President’s Message and wise counsels, the storm will pass over, leaving the Government not only unshaken, but on a firmer basis than it ever before stood.
Senator CLINGMAN, I learn, will to-morrow, or as soon as the opportunity offers, propose a peaceable separation of the States and a fair division of the assets and liabilities. This he thinks desirable, if disunion is to take place. The details could be better settled before than after a separation — each State taking, at valuation, such public property as may fall within her limits, and paying her portion of the public debt.
Secretary COBB will certainly retire from the Cabinet in a few days, to be succeeded by Mr. SOUTTER, although Mr. SCHELL’s claims have been under consideration.
Secretary THOMPSON will resign, it is said, on Thursday, and be succeeded by Gov. PRATT of Maryland.
It has been hinted very privately — it comes from a high source — that rather than coerce the South Mr. BUCHANAN would resign. It is stated in Democratic circles that he said as much to a prominent Secessionist last week. It is certain that he is in great trouble. His Message respecting the sectional difficulty has been rewritten several times, and no one knows the contents to-night. Such a course only betrays the weakness of his Administration, and gives color to the report that he will give up in despair rather than meet the crisis and observe his oath of office. This report gives strength to the revolutionary movement. In case he resigns, BRECKINRIDGE will succeed, which his friends believe would save the Union. The President’s vacillating course respecting this matter and the Message, has sent consternation among the Union men. It is evident that he does not mean to crush treason, Jacksonlike. The Message will tell.
Mr. Buchanan, you’re no Andrew Jackson.