The Ambassador in Cuba (Crowder) to the Secretary of State
[Received 3 p.m.]
51. Reference to my number 47, July 11, 5 p.m., and enclosure to my despatch number 205, July 15th.12 President Zayas’ message vetoing the Lottery Bill read last night in the Lower House which at same session passed the bill over his veto by vote of 93 to 6. In his veto message the President criticized the bill for certain ambiguities which he said ought to be cleared up and for unnecessary repeal of decrees and regulations already repealed; but primarily because the purpose to which the new lottery revenues were to be applied did not include preferential attention to the floating debt. He left unnoticed in his message the provisions of the bill which abolish the maximum price of tickets and open the way to speculators further to exploit the public by forcing up the price of tickets to the maximum which the demand for them will permit.
The Lower House passed resolution giving its reasons for overriding the Presidential veto among them the following: That since there has [have] been rumors of official suggestions on the part of the United States Government, by failing to override the veto Congress would relinquish its prerogative; that no provision of the [Page 846] Permanent Treaty is violated; that no Congress can legislate serenely under continued pressure of unjust criticism; that the bill had been taken as a pretext for insinuations against Cuba’s sovereignty by seconding a policy of interference contrary to the principles of self-government; and that this policy will take on dangerous proportions unless all unite to carry to the Government and Congress of the United States the firm impression that Cubans would feel deeply wounded in their sentiments if said interference should be attempted, because Cuba performs all its international [obligations under the] treaty.
The best opinion is that the Senate will likewise pass the bill over the President’s veto.
Enrique Mazas, Member of Congress, charges in an editorial in effect that Zayas had an understanding with Congress that his veto would be rejected by the necessary two-thirds vote in each House.
Captain Rock13 will be able to explain [in] detail the great power this bill vests in the President, to Congress and nominations and elections next year.