The Writings of Abraham Lincoln, Volume 1 by Abraham Lincoln
Protest in the Illinois Legislature on the Subject of Slavery.
March 3, 1837.
The following protest was presented to the House, which was read and ordered to be spread in the journals, to wit:
"Resolutions upon the subject of domestic slavery having passed both branches of the General Assembly at its present session, the undersigned hereby protest against the passage of the same.
"They believe that the institution of slavery is founded on both injustice and bad policy, but that the promulgation of abolition doctrines tends rather to increase than abate its evils.
"They believe that the Congress of the United States has no power under the Constitution to interfere with the institution of slavery in the different States.
"They believe that the Congress of the United States has the power, under the Constitution, to abolish slavery in the District of Columbia, but that the power ought not to be exercised, unless at the request of the people of the District.
"The difference between these opinions and those contained in the said resolutions is their reason for entering this protest.
"Representatives from the County of Sangamon."