Of compacts of this character which have been entered into, the greater number have been made at the time the States in question have been admitted as States into the Union, and have attempted to place such States under restrictions not directly de-ducible from the federal Constitution, and are, therefore, restrictions not resting upon the other States. To this extent they have been in violation of the general principle of the equality of the States. This principle, it may be said, is not expressly stated in the federal Constitution, but would seem to be implied in the general nature of that instrument.6
The Constitution, without distinguishing between the original and new States, defines the political privileges which the States are to enjoy, and declares that all powers not granted to the United States shall be considered as reserved "to the States." From this it almost irresistibly follows that Congress has not the right to provide that certain members of the Union, possessing full statehood, shall have their constitutional competences in any manner less than that of their sister States. According to this, then, though Congress may exact of territories whatever conditions it sees fit as requirements precedent to their admission as States, when admitted as such, it cannot deny to them any of the privileges and immunities which the other Commonwealths enjoy.
5 The opinion continues: "The Constitution does not state when the consent of Congress shall be given, whether it shall precede or follow the compact made, or whether it shall be express or may be implied. In many cases the consent will usually precede the compact or agreement, as to where it is to lay a duty of tonnage, to keep troops or ships of war in time of peace, or to engage in war. But where the agreement relates to a matter which could not well be considered until its nature is fully developed, it is not perceived why the consent may not be subsequently given. Story says that the consent may be implied, and is always to be implied when Congress adopts the particular act by sanctioning its objects and aiding in enforcing them; and observes that where a State is admitted into the Union, notoriously upon a compact made between it and the State of which it previously composed a part, there the act of Congress, admitting such State into the Union, is an implied consent to the terms of the compact. Knowledge by Congress of the boundaries of a State, and of its political subdivisions, may reasonably be presumed, as much of its legislation is affected by them, such as relates to the territorial jurisdiction of the courts of the United States, the extent of their collection districts, and of districts in which process, civil and criminal, of their courts may be served and enforced."
6 See article "Are the States Equal under the Constitution?" by W. A. Dunning, in Political Science Quarterly, III, 425.