Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln. Volume 1.
Lincoln, Abraham, 1809-1865.
Page  219

Remarks in Illinois Legislature
Concerning Unfinished Business of the Last Session [1]

December 7, 1840

Mr. TURNEY [2] offered a resolution, that the unfinished business of the last session of the Legislature be taken from the files, and placed in the same stage of forwardness in this session of the Legislature, that it occupied at the adjournment of the former session.

Mr. LINCOLN demanded the ayes and noes. . . . [3]

Mr. LINCOLN would state why he had called the ayes and noes on the resolution. If it were a fact that there was no illegality in the proposed measure, then it was certainly desirable on the grounds of expedience, that the resolution should be adopted. But our constitution had provided that every bill should be read three times on three different days, unless three-fourths should dispense with the rules, before it became a law. Now, was it not a matter of serious doubt whether this House could take up a bill which had been twice read during the last session and by reading it once now, pass it into a law?


[1]   Sangamo Journal, December 11, 1840.

[2]   Daniel Turney of Wayne County.

[3]   The resolution was adopted.