Vote Postponed on the Compromise

Franklin Benjamin
Benjamin Franklin, founder of the Library Company
David Rent Etter, 1835

Independence National Historical Park

Vote Postponed on the Compromise

"Resolved That the librarian furnish the gentlemen who compose the Convention now sitting with such Books as they may desire during their Continuance in Philadelphia..."

-Resolution of the Library Company of Philadelphia, presented to the Convention on July 7, 1787

The clause of the Connecticut Compromise providing each state an equal vote in the Senate branch was brought up. Gerry would rather agree to it than have no accommodation. Sherman thought it would give the government more vigor - the small states have more vigor in their governments than the large ones. Wilson was still opposed. On the question shall the words stand, 6 aye, Pennsylvania, Virginia and South Carolina no, Massachusetts and Georgia divided.

Gerry wanted to move on to enumerate and define the powers to be given the new government. Madison disagreed - it was impossible to decide what powers to give Congress until we decide how many votes each state will have. Madison noted his concern that "if a just representation were not the basis of the Govt…the New Govt. would be rendered as impotent and as short lived as the old."

Sherman and Ellsworth moved to postpone a vote on the compromise as a whole until the Committee to fix the initial representation in the first branch reported. Passed, 6 aye, New York, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia, no.

Sunday, July 8, 1787 Recess

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Last updated: February 26, 2015

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