“I’m not positive what it was, but I’ll tell you
The Speaker pro tempore, (Mr. Blaine, in the chair.) The Chair sustains the point of order.
Mr. Holman: I hope no gentleman will object to the completion of the reading: it will only occupy the time I am entitled to.
Mr. Peters: It is doubtless very instructive, and so would a chapter of the Bible be. but it has nothing to do with the question before the House, and I insist upon the point of order.
The Speaker pro tempore. Up to this point the discussion has been pertinent and germane to the question--very closely so--and the Chair is compelled to rule, the question of order being raised, that this is not germane or in order. The gentleman from Indiana will proceed in order.
Mr. Holman: I suppose, Mr. Speaker, the Constitution of the United States would scarcely be in order. I will not ask to have it read.
The debate continued in the vein illustrated in the foregoing extracts, from the morning of February 22, notwithstanding it was a National Holiday, such was the haste of the impeachers, to the evening of the 24th, almost without interruption. It was at times illustrated by marked ability, and on the Republican side by intense bitterness and partisan malignity. A large number of the members of the House participated in the debate.
Mr. Thaddeus Stevens then closed the debate in the following arraignment of the President:
Now in defiance of this law. (the Office-Tenure Act) Andrew Johnson, on the 21st day of February, 1868, issued his commission or letter of authority to one Lorenzo Thomas, appointing him Secretary of War ad interim, and commanded him to take possession of the Department of War and to eject the incumbent. E M. Stanton, then in lawful possession of said office. Here, if this act stood alone, would be an undeniable official misdemeanor-- not only a misdemeanor per se, but declared to be so by the act itself, and the party made indictable and punishable in a criminal proceeding. If Andrew Johnson escapes with bare removal from office, if he be not FINED AND INCARCERATED IN THE PENITENTIARY AFTERWARD UNDER CRIMINAL PROCEEDINGS, he may thank the weakness or the clemency of Congress and not his own innocence.