James Madison Papers

From James Madison to Caesar A. Rodney, [1 January] 1802

To Caesar A. Rodney

[Washington, 1 January 1802]

… From a glance at the parts of the Delaware Constitution bound up in the collection in my hands, I am led to suppose that the election of your Governor is now made in pursuance of some changes since made on that subject; and am consequently at a loss to judge of the agency possessed by the Legislature.1 I do not question, how far its interposition as proposed would be an usurpation of power, I am persuaded that you and others on the spot and familiar with the practical constructions put on the Constitution can form a better decision than I can. I question what mode of counteracting an usurpation is most advisable, a like preference is due to your judgment because so much must depend on the degree of flagrancy which the solid part of the community would attach to the usurpation and on the degree of energy which their sympathy would go to in particular measures.…

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