THE NATION: Rules of Order

New York's Chancellor Robert Livingston, representing the law that preceded, underpinned and nourished the Constitution, administered the oath to the big, embarrassed man in the brown suit with eagles on its metal buttons. Then George Washington, painfully striving to strike exactly the right pitch on history's tuning fork, delivered on April 30, 1789 the first address by a President of the United States to the Congress. "The propitious smiles of Heaven," he said, "can never be expected on a nation that disregards the eternal rules of order and right, which Heaven itself...

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