The Acting Secretary of State to the Chinese Minister.

No. 63.]

Sir: Your note of the 17th instant, acknowledging the Department’s communication replying to your protest against the taking of a census by the bureau of immigration during the pending negotiations for a treaty involving this question, has been received. I observe that you say:

I am gratified to note that the action of the bureau of immigration, as set forth in the Secretary’s letter, is not recognized by you as a sufficient answer to my protest.

The taking of the census in question is a matter within the exclusive jurisdiction of the Department of Commerce and Labor, which is charged with the execution of the existing law, unless it is shown—which your note does not allege—that the action is in contravention of treaty obligation.

The absence of comment in my note of the 13th instant, transmitting the communication from the Department of Commerce and Labor, may not be regarded as a constructive nonconcurrence, in the opinion of the officer of this government who is competent to respond in the name of the government, respecting the execution of the existing law.

Be pleased, etc.,

Francis B. Loomis.