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To the Senate and House of Representatives :
There are few transactions in the administration of the Government that are even temporarily held in the confidence of those · charged with the conduct of the public business. Every step taken is under the observation of an intelligent and watchful people. The state of the Union is known from day to day, and suggestions as to needed legislation find an earlier voice than that which speaks in these annual communications of the President to Congress.
Good-will and cordiality have characterized our relations and correspondence with other Governments, and the year just closed leaves few international questions of importance remaining unadjusted. No obstacle is believed to exist that can long postpone the consideration and adjustment of the still pending questions upon satisfactory and honorable terms. The dealings of this Government with other states have been and should always be marked by frankness and sincerity, our purposes avowed, and our methods free from intrigue. This course has borne rich fruit in the past, and it is our duty as a nation to preserve the heritage of good repute which a century of right dealing with foreign Governments has secured to us.
It is a matter of high significance, and no less of congratulation, that the first year of the second century of our constitutional existence finds, as honored guests within our borders, the representatives of all the independent states of North and South America met together in earnest conference touching the best methods of perpetuating and expanding the relations of mutual interest and friendliness existing among them. That the opportunity thus afforded for promoting closer international relations and the increased prosperity of the states represented will be used for the mutual good of all, I can not permit myself to doubt. Our people will await with interest and confidence the results to flow from so auspicious a meeting of allied and, in large part, identical interests,