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and XV.
Amendments. The act of May, 1870, the very title of which, "An Act to
enforce the rights of citizens of the United States to vote," is a
concession of all that we claim, provides that the officers of
elections throughout the United States shall give an equal opportunity
to all citizens of the United States to become qualified to vote by
the registry of their names or other prerequisite; and that where upon
the application of any citizen such prerequisite is refused, such
citizen may vote without performing such prerequisite; and imposes a
penalty upon the officers refusing either the application of the
citizen to be qualified or his subsequent application to vote. The
Constitution also provides that "each House shall be the judge of the
elections, returns, and qualifications of its own members." When,
therefore, the election of any candidate for the lower House is
effected or defeated by the admission or rejection of the votes of
women, the question is brought directly before the House, and it is
compelled to pass at once upon the question of the right of women to
vote under the Constitution. All this may be accomplished without the
necessity of bringing suits for the penalty imposed upon public
officers by the act referred to; but should it be thought best to
institute prosecutions where the application of women to register and
to vote is refused, the question would thereby at once be brought into
the courts. If it be thought expedient to adopt the latter course, it
is best that some test case be brought upon full consultation with the
National Committee, that the ablest counsel may be employed and the
expenses paid out of the public fund. Whatever mode of testing the
question shall be adopted, we must not be in the slightest degree
discouraged by adverse decisions, for the final result in our favor is
certain, and we have, besides, great reason to hope that Congress, at
an early day, will pass a declaratory act affirming the interpretation
of the Constitution which we claim.

The present time is specially favorable for the earnest presentation
before the public mind of the question of the political rights of
women. There are very positive indications of the approaching
disintegration and reformation of political parties, and new and vital
issues are needed by both the great parties of the country. As soon as
the conviction possesses the public mind that women are to be voters
at an early day, as they certainly are to be, the principles and the
action of public parties will be shaping themselves with reference to
the demands of this new constituency. Particularly in nominations for
office will the moral character of candidates become a matter of
greater importance.

To carry on this great work a Board of six women has been established,
called "The National Woman Suffrage and Educational Committee," whose
office at Washington it is proposed to make the center of all action
upon Congress and the country, and with whom their Secretary, resident
there, it is desired that all associations and individuals interested
in the cause of woman suffrage should place themselves in
communication. The Committee propose to circulate the very able and
exhaustive Minority Report of the House Judiciary Committee on the
constitutional right of woman to the suffrage, and other tracts on the
general subject of woman suffrage. They also propose ultimately, and
as a part of their educational work, to issue a series of tracts on
subjects vitally affecting the welfare of the country, that women may
become intelligent and thoughtful on such subjects, and the
intelligent educators of the next generation of citizens.

The Committee are already receiving urgent appeals from women all over
the United States to send them our publications. The little light they
have already received concerning their rights under the Constitution,
and the present threatening political aspect of the country, make them
impatient of ignorance on these vital points. A single tract has often
gone the rounds in a neighborhood until worn out, and the call is for
thousands and thousands more.

A large printing fund will therefore be needed by the Committee, and
we appeal first to the men of this country, who control so large a
part of its wealth, to make liberal donations towards this great
educational work. We also ask every thoughtful woman to send her name
to the Secretary to be inserted in the Pledge-Book, and if she is
able, one dollar. But as many workingwomen will have nothing to send
but their names, we welcome these as a precious gift, and urge those
who are able, to send us their fifties and hundreds, which we promise
faithfully to use and account for. Where convenient, it is better that
many names should be sent upon the same paper, and the smallest
contributions in money can be put together and sent with them. Every
signature and every remittance will be at once acknowledged by the
Secretary, and one or more tracts enclosed with a circular as to the
work to be done by individuals.

ISABELLA BEECHER HOOKER, _President_. PAULINA WRIGHT DAVIS,
JOSEPHINE S. GRIFFING, _Secretary_. RUTH CARR DENNISON,
MARY B. BOWEN, _Treasurer_. SUSAN B. ANTHONY.

_Washington, D. C., April 19, 1871._

[144] The National Woman Suffrage Association will hold its annual
convention at Lincoln Hall, Washington, D. C., January 10th, 11th and
12th, 1872. All those interested in woman's enfranchisement are
invited there to consider the "new departure"--women already citizens,
and their rights as such, secured by the XIV. and XV. Amendments of
the Federal Constitution.

LUCRETIA MOTT. ISABELLA BEECHER HOOKER.
ELIZABETH CADY STANTON. SUSAN B. ANTHONY.
JOSEPHINE S. GRIFFING.

[145] RESOLUTIONS.

Whereas, in the adjustment of the question of suffrage now before the
people of this country for settlement, it is of the highest importance
that the organic law of the land should be so framed and constructed
as to work injustice to none, but secure, as far as possible, perfect
political equality among all classes of citizens; and whereas, all
persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the
jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States, and of the
State wherein they reside; be it

_Resolved_, That the privileges and immunities of American
citizenship, however defined, are National in character and paramount
to all State authority.

That while the Constitution of the United States leaves the
qualifications of electors to the several States, it nowhere gives
them the right to deprive any citizen of the elective franchise which
is possessed by any other citizen--the right to regulate, not
including the right to prohibit the franchise.

That, as the Constitution of the United States expressly declares that
"no State shall make or enforce any law that shall abridge the
privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States," those
provisions of the several State Constitutions that exclude women from
the franchise on account of sex, are violative alike of the spirit and
letter of the Federal Constitution.

That, as the subject of naturalization is expressly withheld from the
States, and as the States clearly would have no right to deprive of
the franchise naturalized citizens, among whom women are expressly
included, still more clearly have they no right to deprive native-born
women citizens of this right.

That justice and equity can only be attained by having the same laws
for men and women alike.

That having full faith and confidence in the truth and justice of
these principles, we will never cease to urge the claims of women to a
participation in the affairs of government equally with men.

_Resolved_, That as the XIV. and XV. Amendments to the Constitution of
the United States have established the right of woman to the elective
franchise, we demand of the present Congress a declaratory act which
shall secure us at once in the exercise of this right.

As the recognition of woman suffrage involves immediate political
action, and as numbers as well as principles control parties,

_Resolved_, That we rejoice in the rapidly organizing millions of
Spiritualists, labor reformers, temperance, and educational forces,
now simultaneously waking to their need of woman's help in the cause
of reform.

_Resolved_, That the movement for the enfranchisement of woman is the
movement of universal humanity; that the great questions now looming
upon the political horizon can only find their peaceful solution by
the infusion of the feminine element in the councils of the nation.
Man, representing force, would continue in the future, as in the past,
in the New World as in the Old, to settle all questions by war, but
woman, representing affection, would, in her true development,
harmonize intellect and action, and weld together all the interests of
the human family--in other words, help to organize the science of
social, religious, and political life.

_Resolved_, That our thanks are due to Governor Campbell, of Wyoming,
for his veto, and to the Republican members of the Legislature of
Wyoming, for their votes against the bill disfranchising the women of
that Territory.

_Resolved_, That the thanks of the women of America are due to Hon.
Benjamin F. Butler for introducing so early in the present session of
Congress, a bill to enfranchise woman under the Constitution, and also
to Hon. Wm. Loughridge and to the Hon. Benjamin F. Butler for their
admirable minority report, at the last session, sustaining the
Woodhull memorial.

[146]
WASHINGTON, D. C., January 8, 1872.

_Mrs. Admiral Dahlgren_--MADAM: The National Woman Suffrage
Association is to hold a three days' convention the present week, in
Lincoln Hall, commencing on the morning of Wednesday, the 10th.
Nothing would afford the officers and speakers of the convention
greater pleasure than to hold a debate, during some session, with
yourself and your friends, upon the question of woman suffrage.



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