James Madison Papers

James Madison to Martin Van Buren, 9 October 1830

Ocr. 9. 1830

Dear Sir

I recd. your letter of July 30 in due time, but have taken advantage of the permitted delay in answering it. Altho’ I have again turned in my thoughts the subjects of your preceding letter, on which "any further remarks from me would be acceptable", I do not find that I can add any thing material to what is said in my letter of July 5, or in former ones. Particular cases of local improvements or establishments having immediate relation to internal commerce and navigation, will continue to produce questions of difficulty, either constitutional or as to utility or impartiality, which can only be decided according to their respective merits. No general rule founded on precise definitions, is perhaps possible: certainly none that relates to such cases as those of Lighthouses, which must depend on the evidence before the compentent Authority. In procuring that evidence, it will, of course be incumbent on that Authority, to employ the means & precautions most appropriate

With regard to the Veto of 1817, I wish it to be understood that I have no particular solicitude; nor can the President be under any obligation to notice the subject, if his construction of the language of the Document be unchanged. My notice of it to you when acknowledging the rect. of the message you politely enclosed to me, was necessary to guard my consistency agst. an inference from my silence.

With a regret that I can not make you a more important communication I renew the assurances of my great esteem & my cordial salutations

Draft (DLC).

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