MVB Senate remarks on internal trade with Mexico, 26 January 1825
Mr. VAN BUREN thought that the government was called upon to afford the same protection to these people, who were engaged in a foreign trade, that was extended to those of the other parts of the Union. The only questions were, whether this trade existed, and whether it was a trade according to the laws and Constitution. If so, they have a right to call on the government for protection; provided, it could be given without infringing on any rights. The means proposed were, to mark out a road, and treat with the Indians for a safe passage. The motion to amend the bill was founded, he thought, on a mistaken view of the subject. It was not to make a road, that the appropriation was asked for, but to mark out, merely, the way the traders should go. This was to be done by negotiation with the Indians on this side of the line, and by negociation with the Mexican government, on the other side; and the appropriation of $30,000, was for this purpose. He did not apprehend, therefore, that any valid objection could exist. They were not going into a foreign country to make a road, but to treat with the Indians, and mark the way they should travel.