James Madison Papers

James Madison to Robert J. Dillon, 23 June 1829

Montpr. June 23d, 1829


Your letter of May 26, having passed on to a Southern post office did not reach me on its return, till yesterday. Its motive & language, entitled it to a kind, however unsatisfactory answer

The question you state is too important not to forbid a naked decision, and if no other obstacle existed, the infirm state of my health would not admit a comprehensive & argumentative one.

Whether the tendency of our political System, be in the one or in the other of the directions you name, is a problem, which experience alone can finally solve. And the proper discussion of it in the mean time, must embrace a candid review & comparison of the doctrines & proceedings bearing on the question, as they have occurred, on the part of the federal Govt. & of the State Governments. I thank you for the friendly sentiments you have expressed, and tender you my respects & good wishes.

J. M

Draft (DLC).

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