James Madison Papers

James Monroe to James Madison, 29 January 1828

Oak hill Jany 29. 1828

Dear Sir.

I have just receiv’d yours of the 23.d., and by the same mail, a second, from Judge Brooke, the purport of which I hasten to communicate to you. He is aware, as I infer, from the communications which were made to the members of the convention, by Col: Mercer, & likewise, on your part, by Mr Cabell, that we will not act, as Electors, nor remain on the ticket, and has assur’d me, in the letter just receiv’d, that on obtaining an answer to one recd. from him some days past, if in the sense of that, of which I advised you, he will immediately give us official notice, of our nomination. In his first letter he requested me, to communicate with you, on the subject, and to take no decisive step until I heard from you. I shall intimate to him, in reply, by the next mail, which will be on thursday, that I have done so, & that we act in accord, in it. I presume, that we shall obtain a regular notification, in the course of the next week, as he assures me, that it shall not be delayd, after the rect. of the letter, in reply to that of his, wh. I recd. to day.

I am aware that a claim to exemption from the service, on acct. of the office, which we lately held, or from considerations, of private feelings, may not be consider’d, by all, as satisfactory. The claim however in both views, has weight, and I think th<at> I shall avail myself of it. I contemplate however, adding another motive, as a public one, alluded to in my letter to Col: Mercer, of which I sent you a copy, stating that instances might occur, in which those who had had experience in public affrs., and by service in the late office, might render useful service<s> to their country, provided they kept aloof, from such elections, & were held in estimation, by the community: that if they became partisans in elections, to the chief office, they could have weight only with the party, with which they arrangd themselves: that they could have none with the other[.] I shall of course state, that I hope, no such event will ever occur, but that it is better, that persons who have so long servd, shod. remain tranquil spectators of the mov’ment, than embark in it. Sincerely your friend—

James Monroe


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