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#53: In Election of 1824, a Clash of Personalities

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Welcome to the MAKING OF A NATION – American history in VOA Special English.

Four of the first five presidents of the United States came from Virginia. They were George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison and James Monroe.

美国独立建国后,前五位总统里有四位都来自维吉尼亚,他们分别是乔治.华盛顿、托马斯.杰斐逊、詹姆斯.麦迪逊和詹姆斯.门罗。

The second president, John Adams, was a New Englander. In the election of eighteen twenty-four, his son, John Quincy Adams, was one of four leading candidates for president. At the same time, the West began to make its presence felt in national politics.

美国的第二位总统约翰.亚当斯是新英格兰人。1824年总统大选的候选人里,亚当斯的儿子约翰.昆西.亚当斯是最看好的四位候选人之一。与此同时,美国西部的政治力量也在不断壮大。

This week in our series, Maurice Joyce and Stewart Spencer discuss the election of eighteen twenty-four.

(MUSIC)

John Quincy Adams
John Quincy Adams

VOICE ONE:

General Andrew Jackson of Tennessee got the most electoral votes: ninety-nine. But he needed one hundred thirty-one to win a majority.

田纳西州的安德鲁.杰克逊将军得到的选举人票最多,共99票,但是没有达到当选需要的131票。

The secretary of state, John Quincy Adams, was second with eighty-four votes. Treasury Secretary William Crawford received forty-one. And Henry Clay of Kentucky got thirty-seven.

国务卿约翰.昆西.亚当斯排在第二位,得到84票,接下来是财政部长威廉.克劳福德,41票,然后是肯塔基州的亨利.克莱,37票。

VOICE TWO:

None of the candidates got a majority of the votes. And the decision went to the House of Representatives. The House voted on only the three top candidates for president.

然而,这四位候选人都没有得到当选总统所必须的131张选举人票。选举结果提交国会众议院裁决。众议院决定对排在前三位的候选人投票表决。

The most powerful man in Congress -- Henry Clay -- was not, therefore, a candidate. But Clay's support would be the greatest help any of the candidates could receive. All three wanted his support.

这就意味着国会大佬亨利.克莱已经出围,剩下的三位候选人都希望能够得到克莱的支持。

Treasury Secretary Crawford had suffered a serious illness before the election, and his health was bad. Clay felt he could not support him for that reason.

财政部长克劳福德在大选前身患重病,健康状况十分糟糕。克莱觉得,克劳福德的身体状况,无法胜任总统职务,因此决定不支持他。

VOICE ONE:

This left Adams and Jackson. Clay did not agree with all of Adams's policies. But he did believe Adams had the education and ability to be president.

在剩下的亚当斯和杰克逊两人之间,克莱不认同亚当斯的政策,但他相信,亚当斯学识渊博,能力过人,能够胜任总统一职。

Clay did not like Jackson, the hero of New Orleans during the War of Eighteen Twelve. He knew Jackson was poorly educated and easy to anger. Clay did not think Jackson would be a good president.

克莱并不喜欢1812年战争中新奥尔良一役的英雄将领杰克逊,他知道杰克逊没受过什么教育,而且脾气暴躁。克莱认为杰克逊不会是一位出色的总统。

So Clay decided to support Adams for president. He said nothing about this for a time. Several of Clay's friends visited Adams. They told him that Clay's supporters in the West would be pleased if Adams, as president, named Clay as secretary of state.

因此,克莱决定支持亚当斯,但又不露声色。克莱的几位朋友前去拜访亚当斯,告诉他说,如果亚当斯当选总统后能任命克莱担任国务卿的话,克莱在西部的支持者会非常高兴。

Adams told them that if the votes of the West elected him president, he would put a westerner in his cabinet. But he would not promise that the westerner would be Clay, or that the cabinet job would be that of secretary of state.

亚当斯告诉他们说,如果西部的选票投给他,他一定会在内阁里任命一个西部的人,但是不肯保证这个人一定是克莱,也不肯保证内阁职务一定会是国务卿。

Henry Clay
Henry Clay

VOICE TWO:

Clay still had not said publicly which candidate he supported. But it became known that his choice was Adams. Late in January, the Philadelphia newspaper Columbian Observer published an unsigned letter. The letter charged that Clay and Adams had made a secret agreement.

克莱虽然没有公开表示他支持哪位候选人,但是大家都知道,他已经选择了亚当斯。费城报纸“哥伦比亚观察家报”1月下旬发表了一篇没有署名的读者来信,指责克莱和亚当斯达成了秘密协议。

Clay, the letter said, would give his support to Adams. In exchange, Adams would name Clay his secretary of state.

信中说,克莱会支持亚当斯,作为回报,亚当斯将任命克莱担任国务卿。

Clay was furious. He not only denied the charge, but offered to fight a duel with the letter-writer, should his name be known. Much was made of the charge that Clay had sold his vote to Adams. But no proof was ever given.

这封读者来信让克莱气炸了肺,他出面公开辟谣,而且主动提出,愿意跟写信的人决斗,如果这个人敢站出来的话。克莱出卖选票,支持亚当斯的传言引起了很大的风波,但是没人能拿出证据。

Clay demanded an investigation. But the man who accused him in the newspaper letter refused to say anything. Clay was sure Jackson's supporters were responsible.

克莱要求对此事展开调查,但是写信的匿名者从此销声匿迹。克莱相信,是杰克逊的支持者在捣乱。

(MUSIC)

VOICE ONE:

Snow was falling in Washington on the morning of February ninth, the day that Congress would elect the president. At noon, members of the Senate walked into the House of Representatives.

2月9号早上,华盛顿飘起了雪花。国会将在这一天投票选举总统。正午时分,参议员们走进众议院参加投票。

The electoral votes were counted, and it was announced officially that no candidate had won. The senators left, and the House began voting.

选票清点后发现,没有候选人胜选。参议员们离开后,众议院开始投票。

Each state had one vote for president. Adams was sure he would get the votes of twelve states. Crawford had the votes of four and Jackson, seven. New York was the question. Seventeen of the New York congressmen were for Adams, and seventeen were opposed to him. Adams needed just one of these opposition votes to get the vote of New York and become president.

每个州有一张选票。亚当斯对拿到12个州的选票很有把握。克劳福德得到四票,杰克逊得到七票。问题出在了纽约。纽约州支持和反对亚当斯的众议员都是十七位,只要任何一位反对派倒戈,让亚当斯拿到纽约这一票,他就是总统了。

Stephen Van Rensselaer
Stephen Van Rensselaer

VOICE TWO:

One of those New Yorkers opposed to Adams was a rich old man who represented the Albany area, Stephen Van Rensselaer. Although Van Rensselaer had supported Crawford or Jackson, he really was not sure now whom to support. Henry Clay had taken the old man into his office that morning and talked to him. Daniel Webster also was there.

反对亚当斯的人当中,有一个很有钱的老头,名叫斯蒂芬.范.伦塞勒。他是奥尔巴尼选区的众议员。他以前支持的不是克劳福德就是杰克逊,但是如今,他却拿不定主意了。亨利.克莱那天上午把伦塞勒带到自己的办公室里,跟他谈话。当时,丹尼尔.韦伯斯特也在场。

They both told the New York congressman that the safety of the nation depended on the election of Adams as president. Clay and Webster told the old man that his was the most important vote in the whole Congress. That Stephen Van Rensselaer would decide who would be president.

他们两人告诉伦塞勒说,亚当斯的当选决定着国家的安危,伦塞勒手中的一票是整个国会里最重要的一票,最终将决定美国下届总统的人选。

The old man's head was not too clear after listening to Clay and Webster. He still did not know what to do.

听了克莱和韦伯斯特的话,伦塞勒更糊涂了。

VOICE ONE:

When the New York congressmen voted, Van Rensselaer still was not sure of his choice. And he put his head down on his desk and asked God to help him make the right choice.

临投票前,伦塞勒还是没有拿定主意。他扒在桌上,恳求上帝帮助他做出正确的选择。

After this short prayer, he opened his eyes and saw on the floor at his feet a piece of paper with Adams's name on it. Van Rensselaer picked it up and put it in the ballot box as his vote.

伦塞勒祷告后睁开双眼,看到自己脚旁边的地上有一张写着亚当斯名字的纸条。伦塞勒捡起纸条,塞进了投票箱。

This gave Adams the vote of the state of New York and made him president of the United States. A committee of congressmen was sent to Mister Adams's home to tell him of the vote.

亚当斯因此赢得了纽约州的支持,当选为美国的下届总统。国会的一个委员会前往亚当斯的住所,向他传达这个好消息。

One member of the committee described the secretary of state: "Sweat rolled down his face. He shook from head to foot and was so nervous he could hardly stand to speak."

其中一个人后来形容当时的情形说,汗珠顺着他的脸往下滑,他从头到脚浑身颤抖,紧张到几乎不能站着讲话。

(MUSIC)

VOICE TWO:

Later in the evening, Adams had control of himself. President Monroe gave a big party at the White House. Adams was there. So was Jackson, and Clay. During the party, Adams and Jackson met face to face. Jackson had his arm around a young lady.

那天晚上,亚当斯平静了下来。总统门罗在白宫举行盛大晚会,亚当斯、杰克逊和克莱都应邀参加。晚会上,亚当斯和杰克逊终于见了面。杰克逊当时正搂着一个年轻的姑娘。

"How do you do, Mister Adams," said Jackson. "I give you my left hand, for the right -- as you see -- is devoted to the fair. I hope you are well, sir."

杰克逊说,“你好啊,亚当斯先生,我只能给你我的左手,你也看见了,我的右手腾不出来。我希望你一帆风顺。”

"Very well, sir," answered Adams, coolly. "I hope General Jackson is well."

亚当斯冷淡地回答说,“好的,我也祝杰克逊将军一切如意。”

VOICE ONE:

Two days later, Adams told President Monroe that he had decided to offer the job of secretary of state to Clay. He said he was doing so because of the western support he had received.

两天后,亚当斯告诉门罗,他决定任命克莱担任自己的国务卿,他说,这么做是因为西部各州对他的支持。

Clay thought deeply for a week about the offer. He asked a number of friends for advice. Most of them urged him to take the job. They told him that a man of the West was needed in the cabinet. And they said being secretary of state would greatly help his own chances of becoming president some day.

克莱花了整个一个星期的时间考虑是否要接受亚当斯的任命。他征求了一些朋友的意见,大多数人都主张他接受。他们指出,亚当斯的内阁里一定得有一个代表西部利益的人。他们还说,担任国务卿对克莱今后选总统大有帮助。

Clay accepted the offer. He said he would serve as Adams's secretary of state. Until now, General Jackson had refused to believe the charges that Clay had sold his vote to Adams for the top cabinet job. Now he was sure of it. He wrote to a friend: "Was there ever before such bare faced corruption. What is this trade of vote for office, if not bribery?"

克莱接受了亚当斯的任命。他表示,他愿意出任亚当斯的国务卿。在此之前,杰克逊将军始终拒绝相信克莱跟亚当斯之间有什么秘密协议,但是如今,他对此确信无疑了。他给朋友写信说,“以前有过这么明目张胆的腐化吗?如果用选票去买官不是贿赂的话,又是什么呢?”

Andrew Jackson
Andrew Jackson

VOICE TWO:

Many of Jackson's supporters did not believe John Quincy Adams had the ability to be political leader of the party. They believed that Clay would seize the party leadership and use this power to help himself become elected the next president.

杰克逊的很多支持者都不相信约翰.昆西.亚当斯能胜任共和党领袖的职务。他们认为,克莱会伺机夺取共和党的领导地位,并借此帮助自己当选下届总统。

Jackson, himself a senator, showed his feelings when the Senate was asked to approve Clay as secretary of state. He voted no. And thirteen other senators joined him against the nomination. But they were too few to prevent Clay from getting the job.

杰克逊本人是参议员,参议院就克莱的任命投票时,他投了反对票,投反对票的另外还有13个参议员,但他们毕竟势单力薄,无法阻碍克莱进入内阁。

The next presidential election was four years away. General Andrew Jackson promised himself this would be one election he would not lose. Before he left Washington to return to Tennessee, Jackson wrote a letter that soon became public.

虽然距离下届总统选举还有整整四年,但是杰克逊将军立誓,下次绝不会输。他离开华盛顿返回田纳西之前,写了一封信,不久就传了开来。

"I became a soldier for the good of my country," Jackson wrote. "Difficulties met me at every step. I thank God that it was my duty to overcome them. I am in no way responsible to Henry Clay. There is a purer court to which I will put my case -- to the intelligent judgment of our patriotic and honest voters."

杰克逊在信中说,“为了国家的利益,我成了一名士兵,每走一步都会遇到困难。我感谢上帝,让我克服重重困难。我对克莱没有任何义务。我把自己交给一个更加廉洁的法院,依靠爱国、诚实的选民们明智的判断对我做出裁决。”

VOICE ONE:

General Jackson returned to Nashville to rest and plan. He was still a senator, and he questioned if it might not be best for him to resign from the Senate. He would be free of Washington politics and able to build his political strength for the election in eighteen twenty-eight. He decided to resign.

杰克逊将军返回纳什维尔休整,计划自己的下一步策略。他当时还是参议员。他思前想后,最后决定辞去参议员的职务,摆脱华盛顿的政治,专心培养政治力量,为1828年大选做准备。

(MUSIC)

ANNOUNCER:

Our program was written by Frank Beardsley. The narrators were Maurice Joyce and Stewart Spencer. Transcripts of our programs along with podcasts and archives of MP3s can be found at www.unsv.com. Join us each week for THE MAKING OF A NATION – an American history series in VOA Special English.

This is program #53 of THE MAKING OF A NATION

网友的学习评论(1条):
作者:Alumni
the history makes the background of presidential elections clear that they all had furious compitition before taking office. it more or less certifies my philosophy that things are ofentimes decided at the back paltform.
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