Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from John Breckinridge, 22 March 1806

Washington 22. March 1806


Altho’ I understand, that the opinion which I gave to the Secretary of the Treasury on the 12. instant, with respect to certain decisions of the Commissioners for the District of Louisiana, has been concurred in by yourself & the heads of Departments; yet as I am furnished with no conclusive evidence that the Commrs in forming these decisions were influenced by corrupt motives, I would not, for the present, advise their removal from office. I give this advice however upon the hope, that the Commrs when apprized of the high authority by which my opinion is sanctioned, will retract their errors & conform to the true exposition of the law.—I therefore respectfully advise, that the opinion I had the honor to give, be communicated to the Commrs; that the points adjudicated by them, & which are by that opinion deemed to be founded on a misconstruction of the law, be reconsidered; & that the result be communicated to the Secretary of the Treasury without loss of time.

I have the honor to be most respectfully, your Ob. Sv.

John Breckinridge

DLC: Papers of Thomas Jefferson.

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