As the twenty year mark was coming closer, President Thomas Jefferson wrote in his 1806 annual message to Congress: "I congratulate you, fellow citizens, on the approach of the period at which you may interpose your authority constitutionally to withdraw the citizens of the United States from all further participation in those violations of human rights which have been so long continued on the unoffending inhabitants of Africa, and which the morality, the reputation, and the best of our country have long been eager to proscribe. Although no law you may pass can take prohibitory effect until the 1st day of the year 1808, yet the intervening period is not too long to prevent by timely notice expeditions which can not be completed before that day."
Ironically, Pinckney's idea of South Carolina banning the trade was unfulfilled as his state was the only one left that did not ban the slave trade on its own. Most Southern states faced a surplus slavery population, so they were willing to ban the trade. However, the debate in Congress was not always easy. One draft of the ban included violators forfeiting their slaves to the federal government, and Northerners did not want the federal government to be slave owners.