Mr. Plumb to Mr. Seward.
Sir: On the 19th instant the special committee of the Mexican congress, appointed to examine the votes of the electoral colleges for President of the republic and president of the supreme court, made their report, which was adopted.
Of the 10,380 votes cast by 180 electoral colleges for President, it is stated that 7,422 were given for Benito Juarez, 2,709 for Porfirio Diaz, 57 for Gonzalez Ortega, and the remainder (192) scattering.
A decree was, therefore, passed by congress declaring Benito Juarez constitutional President of the United Mexican States for the period terminating on the 30th of November, 1871, by reason of his having received an absolute majority of all the votes cast.
Of the 10,421 votes cast for president of the supreme court, (the Vice-President of the republic,) it is stated that 3,874 were cast for Sebastian Lerdo de Tejada, 2,541 for Porfirio Diaz, and the remainder (3,970) divided among a large number of other candidates. No candidate having an absolute majority of all the votes cast, the election fell to congress, and rested between the two candidates receiving the highest number of votes. The election then proceeded by states, twenty-three states voting by their delegations. Of these seventeen voted for Sebastian Lerdo de Tejada, and six for Porfirio Diaz.
A decree was thereupon passed by congress declaring Sebastian Lerdo de Tejada constitutional president of the supreme court of justice, by reason of his having obtained an absolute majority of the votes cast by the deputations of the states.
On the following day congress fixed the 25th instant as the day on which the president of the republic should take possession of his office under the new term of which he had been now declared to be elected.
Having received a formal invitation from the minister for foreign affairs, I was present at the ceremony of the inauguration, which took place yesterday in the hall of the national congress.
I have now the honor of inclosing herewith a copy of the Diario Oficial,[Page 395]containing the address of President Jaurez, and the reply of the presiding officer of congress, delivered on that occasion.
It will be observed that in neither of the above addresses is any allusion made to foreign affairs. The tone of the addresses is moderate and practical, and inspires hope for the preservation of constitutional order in the future.
Mexico has now conquered the establishment of a republican form of government. The constitution of 1857, subject to such changes as may be made, in the manner it prescribes, it is settled is to be the supreme law of the land. The separation of state and church has been effected. The vast property of the latter has been nationalized and passed into private ownership.
All the power of France and the pledges and obligations of Maximilian have proved insufficient to reverse this action.
The three years’ rebellion of 1858 to 1861 having been put down, defeated faction appealed to its last resort, foreign intervention. That has succumbed to an eternal verdict, so far as Europe is concerned.”
Permanent peace, therefore, appears now to be within Mexieo’s reach, if she will be just to her national obligations abroad, and the government at home will resolutely and promptly repress any local attempts that may be made to disturb the public order.
I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Hon. William H. Seward, Secretary of State, Washington, D. C.