Continental Congress Bickering

Continental Congress Bickering


It is amusing to see that even the "gentlemen" of congress can bicker when they get tired.

Stories about Continental Congress Bickering

An argument began when Mr. Burke excused himself

I was very amused when I came across this account in the Papers of the Continental Congress.  Evidently, one evening as the congress was voting on whether to adjourn, Mr. Burke from the State of North Carolina indicated that they could vote as they liked but that he was done for the day.  After he exited, the body of congress tried to call him (and another representative) back to session but he replied "... it was too late and too unreasonable".  Over the following several pages the Congress spends quite a bit of their time fighting over this matter and Mr. Burke tells the other members "That he will not submit to a tyranny of a majority  of this Congress, which would keep him here at unreasonable hours.  The he wished to know the power of Congress over their members."

The ill feelings continued for some time and Mr. Burke was recorded to say, "I do believe that that gentleman from New York and others are in a combination against me in this business."  Eventually the matter was sent to a committee of 3 members who found that Mr. Burke's action was "dangerous, because it struck at the very existence of the house, and ... would enable a single member to put an instant stop to the most important proceedings of Congress."  Evidently, Mr. Burke was censured and a copy of the minutes of the proceedings were sent to the assembly of North Carolina.

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