Wasn't the Morgan Report an orchestrated white-wash?

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Contrary to the sovereignty activists who wish to white-wash history and ignore the Morgan Report, the committee hearings were not an orchestrated white-wash to obscure U.S. involvement in the overthrow.

The committee consisted of both Democrats (generally anti-annexation southerners) and Republicans (generally pro-annexation northerners). The committee cross-examined the witnesses, finding testimony both favorable and unfavorable to the U.S., Minister Stevens, Blount, and President Cleveland. And although there was a minority opinion, and it was a 5-4 decision, it was clearly done by the book, and cannot be faulted as a predetermined conclusion.

The Morgan Report was the product of clear deliberation, a mass of testimony and evidence, including the Blount Report and the words of Blount himself, and represented the best, objective judgement of the only official bi-partisan investigation into the matter. After it's submission, it was not contested by the most virulent opponent of the Provisional Government, President Cleveland. Cleveland completely reversed himself based on its findings, and rebuffed the queen, conducted normal diplomatic relations with the Provisional Government, and recognized the Republic of Hawaii as the lawful successor to the Kingdom.

Had it been a white-wash, it would certainly have been challenged by Cleveland, who was no stranger to bucking public opinion. Instead, the person most completely convinced of the righteousness of the queen's position re-examined their opinions on the matter, and changed their actions accordingly.

To assert that the Morgan Report was less credible than the Blount Report is akin to asserting that a presidential investigation into presidential wrongdoing is more credible than a bi-partisan congressional investigation today. Would we have accepted a report on 9/11 written by one person appointed by the president over the findings of an entire bi-partisan commission?

Prediction by William M. Springer (D-IL)

One bit of evidence raised to support the white-wash theory are the words of William M. Springer, Democrat from Illinois, in the North American Review, December 1893. It is asserted that the following passage alludes to the pre-determined nature of the Morgan Report:

"If the restoration of the status quo, which existed prior to the landing of our forces on Hawaiian soil, should result in the restoration of the monarchy, such restoration would only demonstrate the fact that the overthrow of the monarchy was due to our intervention. If it does not result in a restoration of the monarchy, then we have washed our hands of responsibility in the matter, and have vindicated the integrity of our diplomacy and the high character of our government as one which loves justice and maintains international comity. Therefore it is not the restoration of the monarchy which is in issue, but it is the restoration of the condition which existed prior to the armed intervention of the United States. Justice requires that our government should go back thus far, and when we have thus done justice we are not responsible for the injustice that others may do. We must maintain our intergrity as a nation."

The common assertion is that Springer here says that "if it does not result in a restoration of the monarchy...we have...vindicated the integrity...of our government", and that the Morgan Report was orchestrated just to reach that conclusion.

However, this quote is taken completely out of context from what Springer was saying. Springer was actually a supporter of President Cleveland, and took Blount's report as accurate, and demanded the disarming of the Provisional Government, and the re-arming of the Queen's forces. His statement was that if the U.S. did disarm the Provisional Government, and re-armed the Queen, and the Queen was unable to hold power, at that point the U.S. Government could have "washed our hands of responsibility". Here is the full quote in context:

The question is frequently asked in partisan papers, How can the monarchy be restored? or, By what right does the government of the United States assume to reestablish a monarchy which has been overthrown? The government of the United States has no more right to establish a monarchy in Hawaii than it has to establish one in Mexico or in Central America. But it is the duty of the United States Government, when its agents and representatives have committed a wrong against the government of a friendly power, to redress that wrong, and in this case it can only be accomplished by placing the government in stalu quo, or in the condition in which it was found at the time the armed forces of the United States were landed upon Hawaiian soil, and interposed in the local affairs of the monarchy. We cannot redress the wrong we have committed by merely withdrawing our forces, after they have been used for seventy-five days to suppress the existing government and establish a provisional government in its stead. We must restore to the queen her own armed forces and we must disarm the forces of the provisional government which were armed and equipped by the aid and under the protection of our navies.
Anything short of this is a mockery of justice, a disgrace to our diplomacy, is unworthy of a Christian nation, and a travesty upon our devotion to the principles of local self-government. If the restoration of the stalus quo, which existed prior to the landing of our forces on Hawaiian soil, should result in the restoration of the monarchy, such restoration would only demonstrate the fact that the overthrow of the monarchy was due to our intervention. If it does not result in a restoration of the monarchy, then we have washed our hands of responsibility in the matter, and have vindicated the integrity of our diplomacy and the high character of our government as one which loves justice and maintains international comity. Therefore it is not the restoration of the monarchy which is in issue, but it is the restoration of the condition which existed prior to the armed inter- vention of the United States. Justice requires that our government should go back thus far, and when we have thus done justice we are not responsible for the injustice that others may do. We must maintain our integrity as a nation. We must vindicate our regard for the rights of a weak and defenceless government.

Springer's entire article can be found here in the North American Review.