To James Madison
Dec. 26. 1800.
All the votes are now come in except Vermont & Kentuckey, and there is no doubt that the result is a perfect parity between the two republican characters. the Feds appear determined to prevent an election, & to pass a bill giving the government to mr Jay, appointed Chief justice, or to Marshall as Secy. of state. yet I am rather of opinion that Maryland & Jersey will join the 7. republican majorities.
the French treaty will be violently opposed by the Feds. the giving up the vessels is the article they cannot swallow. they have got their judiciary bill forwarded to commitment. I dread this above all the measures meditated, because appointments in the nature of freehold render it difficult to undo what is done. we expect a report for a territorial government which is to pay little respect to the rights of man.—your’s of the 20th. came safely to hand. I am almost certain that you sent money by me to Lyon, which he sent to me for & recieved as soon as he heard I was arrived. as I was merely the bearer I did not take a receipt. I will enquire into it, and do what is necessary. no answer yet from R.R.L. cordial & affectionate salutations. Adieu.
RC (DLC: Madison Papers, Rives Collection); at foot of text: “James Madison junr.” PrC (DLC).
Article 3 of the French treaty stated that “the Public Ships, which have been taken on one part, and the other, or which may be taken before the exchange of ratifications shall be restored” (Miller, Treaties, 2:459).
A bill for the territorial government of the District of Columbia was debated in the House of Representatives on 31 Dec. 1800 and recommitted. The act, “An Act concerning the District of Columbia,” was passed on 27 Feb. 1801 (Annals description begins Annals of the Congress of the United States: The Debates and Proceedings in the Congress of the United States … Compiled from Authentic Materials, Washington, D.C., Gales & Seaton, 1834–56, 42 vols. All editions are undependable and pagination varies from one printing to another. The first two volumes of the set cited here have “Compiled … by Joseph Gales, Senior” on the title page and bear the caption “Gales & Seatons History” on verso and “of Debates in Congress” on recto pages. The remaining volumes bear the caption “History of Congress” on both recto and verso pages. Those using the first two volumes with the latter caption will need to employ the date of the debate or the indexes of debates and speakers. description ends , 10:868–74; U.S. Statutes at Large description begins Richard Peters, ed., The Public Statutes at Large of the United States … 1789 to March 3, 1845, Boston, 1855–56, 8 vols. description ends , 2:103–8).
R.R.L.: Robert R. Livingston.