Tag Archives: Delaware
… most of all I lament the appearance of a division arising among the friends of republican government in a state where they have no force to spare … still I have so much confidence in the sincerity of their attachment to principles, as to hope & believe they will not suffer themselves to be divided by personal attachments or antipathies. it is not possible for every one to have his own way in all things; & without mutual & just sacrifices of opinion to one another, men cannot act together. these sacrifices will give much less pain than a continuance under the tyrannies of the last three years.
To Dr. John Vaughn, July 17, 1801
Patrick Lee’s Explanation
Leaders must encourage people of similar principle to compromise.
Republicans in Delaware, already in the minority, disagreed over who should be appointed marshal for the district. Marshals picked juries for federal trials, and the position had been abused under the Adams administration. Jefferson was determined to set it right but was dismayed to see his republican allies squabbling among themselves.
Perhaps expressing more confidence than he really felt, he appealed to his fellow republicans to set aside personal likes and dislikes and be willing to compromise. Governing was impossible without it. Sacrificing now would be much less painful than reverting to the political abuses they’d suffered from the Federalists.