Where Mr. Douglas Stands
August 20, 1858.
The St. Louis Republican some days since published a leading article in reference to the relation which Mr. Douglas now sustains to the National Democratic party. In the course of the article a letter is introduced from Senator Green of Missouri, in which that gentleman somewhat qualifies his late indorsement of Mr. Douglas' Democracy, remarking in substance (for we have not now the letter before us,) that if Mr. Douglas will sustain and labor for the Democratic party, it will sustain and labor for him, but that if he keeps up his factious opposition, he will be spurned by it as a renegade and a traitor. The Republican, in order that the public may understand fully and exactly the present attitude and future intentions of Mr. Douglas in this matter whether he intends to consider himself a Republican, or a Democrat, or a nondescript between the two, asks "a prompt answer to two questions on the part of Judge Douglas," viz:
1. If elected Senator by the members of the Legislature to be chosen next November, will he thereafter continue to act with the Democratic party? And
2. Will he abide by and support the nomination of the Democratic party, to be made at Charleston in 1860, for President and Vice President of the United States?
The Republican adds:
"We need not state why it has become necessary that such questions should be propounded; but we will say that there are many men in his own State a sufficient number to control the election who are anxious that they should be answered, and answered in the affirmative, so that they may give to him an earnest and effective support now and hereafter."
Mr. Douglas has not yet replied to the questions of the Republican, but we think a perusal of his speeches passim will fully satisfy the most skeptical of Mr. Douglas' position. Wherever he goes, he is not at all backward in saying that he is an administration Democrat, a Cincinnati platform Democrat, a Dred Scott Democrat, and that he intends to live and die one. The Register, which professes to be fully posted in the secret intentions of Mr. Douglas, is indignant at the doubts on this subject expressed by the Republican. It says:
"For our past we consider the questions gratuitous, impertinent and insulting, and it really appears to us that the Republican so intends them. It is true we can see no reason for it, unless it intends to make the failure of Judge Douglas to respond directly to the insulting questions, a pretext for joining in the warfare against him. If this shall be so, of course we shall regret it, while the Black Republicans and their Danite allies will rejoice."
The Register then proceeds to answer the questions of the Republican, as follows:
"Mr. Douglas will be a DEMOCRAT WHILE HE LIVES. As to his supporting the nominees of the Charleston Convention, WHY SHOULD THERE BE A DOUBT OF IT? We confidently expect Judge Douglas himself to be THE NOMINEE OF THAT CONVENTION, and as such elected PRESIDENT of the United States. We think, in this connection, it is rather impertinent (immodest at any rate) to require a man to say whether he will support his own nomination!"
That's broad and comprehensive. It covers the whole ground. The people of Illinois henceforth need have no doubts as to Mr. Douglas' position. He is as ultra a Democrat as ever. He has gone back to his idols, and again swells the ranks of the fire eating, pro-slavery administration crew. He not only goes the "Charleston Convention" figure, but is laying his traps to be "the nominee of that Convention!" What have the Republicans in common with any such man? How can any honest anti Lecompton, anti administration Democrat follow him back into the fold of the Buchanan camp? What "old line Whig" can honestly take up with Mr. Douglas, after such an avowal of this platform and intentions? What conservative patriot in all Illinois is ready to pledge himself beforehand to such a fire eating conclave as the Charleston Convention is destined to be? Judge Dickey, in his manifesto, announced that his object in supporting Douglas was to defeat the National Democratic party, which , he says, "has been led astray in a foolish crusade on the wicked errand of slavery prapagandism." Judge Dickey and those who, like him, have thought they saw glimmerings of conservation in Mr. Douglas' character, will soon awake to the delusion under which they are laboring. They will find that Douglas' anti Lecomptonism was a systematic sham a mere piece of machinery to make use of in Illinois, in order to get returned to the United States Senate. Those who follow Douglas will speedily discover that they are "on the same wicked errand of slavery propagandism" with the National Democracy. Who will thus "be led astray"?